Aide defends Robredo’s criticism of delayed Marawi rehab
MANILA, Philippines — Vice President Leni Robredo’s criticism of the delayed rehabilitation of Marawi City is a reminder for the government to do better for Filipinos affected by the siege, her spokesperson Barry Gutierrez said on Monday.
On the third anniversary of the Marawi siege on Saturday, Robredo called on officials handling the rehabilitation of the city to immediately implement programs for its recovery, noting that the temporary shelters provided to displaced residents “pose an even more profound challenge given the virality of COVID-19.”
Task Force Bangon Marawi Chairman Secretary Eduardo Del Rosario, however, bristled at Robredo’s remark, saying it was “very inaccurate and unfair” to the 56 government agencies involved in the rehabilitation.
In coming to Robredo’s defense, Gutierrez claimed that the vice president is not in doubt that an action was taken.
“(T)he question is, and has always been, whether that action is sufficient and timely enough,” Gutierrez said.
“More than a thousand days have passed since the siege began, and still, many of our fellow Filipinos whose lives were disrupted by this catastrophe continue to await a full restoration of their homes and livelihoods,” he added.
The bloody war between the Islamic State (IS) sympathizer Maute group and government forces — which broke out on May 23, 2017 and lasted for five months — led to the significant destruction of lives and property in the Islamic city.
Thousands of survivors were displaced and were forced to live in temporary shelters provided by the government.
But while the Office of the Vice President welcomed the updates on ongoing actions by the national government on the rebuilding of Marawi, Gutierrez said that Robredo’s statement is “simply a reminder that thousands of Filipinos need the government to do better for them.”
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