Pres. Duterte to turn-over temporary shelters to IDPs

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte is slated to visit Marawi City, Lanao del Sur today to turn-over transitional shelters at Barangay Sagonsongan to internally displaced persons (IDPs) from the 24 barangays hardest hit by the clashes between the Maute terror group and government troops starting May 23 to Oct. 16 this year.

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Some 500 units of 22-square meter houses have been constructed on a 14-hectare land to serve as temporary shelters for families affected by the Marawi siege.

 

Dubbed “Biyaya ng Pagbabago Temporary Shelter,” this housing project for the IDPs is jointly implemented by the Office of the President, Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council (HUDCC), city government of Marawi, Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) and the National Housing Authority (NHA).

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In an interview with the Philippine Information Agency (PIA), Farmida A. Macabando, barangay Mipaga chair and Association of Barangay Captains (ABC) president said the beneficiaries of the transitional shelters are the poor residents of the 24 barangays at ground zero.

 

These beneficiaries, Macabando said, were validated by the technical working group (TWG) tasked with identifying the beneficiaries of the transitional shelters.

 

“Residents of the same barangay shall also stay in one area at said transitional shelter site to give them the feel that they are living in their own barangay,” the lady barangay chair explained.

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It could be recalled that Housing Secretary Educardo del Rosario had disclosed that some 1,175 houses would be constructed for the IDPs, and half of these would be completed by mid December.

 

President Duterte is coming here today to award these transitional shelters to qualified beneficiaries, two months after he declared Marawi liberated from terrorist influence.

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Twenty-four of the 96 barangays turned ground zero when the Islamic State (ISIS)-linked Maute terror group stormed the city seven months ago. (FPG/PIA)

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Biyaya ng Pagbabago caravan reaches Marawi

The Biyaya ng Pagbabago caravan has reached Marawi on December 7, to drum up support for the poverty alleviation programs of the Duterte administration.

The caravan was welcomed by officials of the Mindanao State University (MSU) main campus at the university’s administration building where they discussed the possible participation of MSU to the success of the program.

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The Biyaya ng Pagbabago Tungo sa Masagana at Matiwasay na Buhay Pilipino (Biyaya ng Pagbabago) program was initiated by the Office of the Cabinet Secretary (OCS) in partnership with the Kilusang Pagbabago movement to bring various poverty alleviation programs of the national government to the communities.

Director Abdulrashid Ladayo, Mindanao Cluster Head of the Office of Participatory Governance-OCS, said the program will bring the programs and services of 12 participating agencies to the grassroots level.

 

The agencies include the Cooperative Development Authority (CDA); Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council (HUDCC); National Anti-Poverty Commission (NAPC); National Commission on Indigenous Peoples (NCIP); National Commission on Muslim Filipinos (NCMF); National Food Authority (NFA); National Youth Commission (NYC); Presidential Action Center (PACE); Philippine Commission on Women (PCW); Philippine Coconut Authority (PCA); Presidential Commission for the Urban Poor (PCUP); and Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA).

 

During the caravan, Fr. Elmer Cajilig of the Kilusang Pagbabago stressed the importance of community participation for programs and services to reach the grassroots level.

Watchdog 

He said they are eyeing the organization of Kilusang Pagbabago members in every barangay to help the Office of the Participatory Governance in identifying the needs of people at the communities.

 

The Kilusang Pagbabago will also serve as a watchdog in the implementation of the Biyaya ng Pagbabago program as well as in the criminality and anti-illegal drugs programs of the Duterte administration, he further said.

 

Director Ladayo’s backed Cajilig’s statement saying that the Kilusang Pagbabago will continue to push for communities’ awareness on the poverty alleviation, criminality, and anti-drugs programs of the President. This, he cited, is the true people empowerment.

 

Part of the caravan was the signing of manifesto of support by the MSU officials who expressed commitment to the program.

 

After the signing, the Biyaya ng Pagbabago caravan proceeded to Cotabato City.

 

The Biyaya ng Pagbabago program will be formally launched by President Duterte on December 9 in Davao City. (APB/PIA-10)

Marawi IDPs complete TESDA dressmaking training, receives sewing machines, toolkits

Seventy five home-based Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) from Marawi City graduated Dressmaking Training of Technical Education Skills Development Authority (TESDA) with National Certificate (NC) II and received sewing machines as source of livelihood on 2 December 2017 at Brgy. Balulang Covered Courts, Cagayan de Oro City.

The training in Dressmaking NC II thru the Training for Work Scholarship Program (TWSP) of TESDA started on 26 October 2017 and was provided by Lorenz International Skills Training Academy, Inc. (LISTAI).

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The Massive Skills Training initiated by TESDA was intended to provide a form of psychosocial support and source of Livelihood for the IDPs. This is in line with the mandate of TESDA under the leadership of Director General/Sec. Guiling “Gene” A. Mamondiong to ensure that the IDPs are equipped with relevant and employable skills to facilitate rehabilitation and restoration of the affected communities.

As part of their post training assistance, the IDPs also received their training allowance and their very own sewing machines and tool kits provided by TESDA apart from the free training & assessment fee.


“Education and training is a very important asset, it can never be stolen from you,” TESDA-10 Regional Director Lorenzo G. Macapili said during his message to the graduates. 

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He added, “I would like to encourage you all to apply for more training, ask for assistance from your Brgy. Chairman or to the Provincial Office [Misamis Oriental]”. 
 
He also expressed his gratefulness for the excellent and significant training that Lorenz International Skills Training Academy has provided.

 

During the ceremony, the graduates pledged to serve as role model to future ge nerations by demonstrating professionalism and integrity in their career, thrive to find a better life for themselves, their family, and above all the community, people and country.

TESDA Misamis Oriental, one of the two Provincial Offices implementing the IDP Massive Skills Training, headed by Provincial Director Leo V. Velez, shall continue to monitor the beneficiaries together with TESDA-10 under the leadership of Regional Director Lorenzo G. Macapili. This is to ensure that our Muslim brothers and sisters will be transformed into active survivors and not passive victims. (Kimberly C. Condeza/TESDA 10)

Duterte: Liberation of Marawi marks beginning of rehab

Following the day after the top terrorist leaders of Marawi siege, Isnilon Hapilon and Omar Maute were killed in a military assault, President Rodrigo Roa Duterte(PRRD), declared the liberation of Marawi from the control of terrorists.

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“I hereby declare Marawi city liberated from the terrorist influence… that marks the beginning of rehabilitation,” said Duterte.

The president also commended the valor of the troops as they braved the dangers posed by gun fires and improvised explosive devices (IEDs) in fighting against the terrorists and in rescuing hostages.

Symbolizing the achievement of victory against the terrorists, the President led the raising of the Philippine flag held at the Jamiatul Philippine Al-Islamia campus, located at the main battle area.

Ending of Crisis

Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Chief of Staff Eduardo Año  said in a press conference on Monday that “the Marawi crisis will be over–sooner than later. The resistance of–or what is left of it— the terrorists will crumble.”

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Meanwhile, Col Romeo Brawner, deputy commander of Joint Task Force Ranao,  said that the death of terrorist leaders led to the declaration of Marawi’s liberation as they are the “center of gravity, they are the ones who are binding Maute-ISIS together.”

“It [the declaration] is a strategic message to tell the world na tapos na itong problema sa Maute-ISIS [that the problem with Maute-ISIS is over], na they cannot be victorious anymore. Patapos na po [This is about to end.],” said Brawner.

Beginning of Rehabilitation       

Brawner also asked the residents of the Marawi City to be patient as clearing operations of the area are being conducted.

“We will rescue remaining hostages and make sure na wala ng stragglers na naiiwan at mga IEDs [that there will be no longer stragglers and IEDs in the area].. tuloy na pa tayo [we are ready for]  sa next phase which is the rehabilitation,” Brawner said.

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Brawner also shared that the cleanup drive ‘Brigada Marawi’ has began last week.

The  Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) teams will also check and remove remained IEDs.

Meanwhile, Post Conflict Needs Assessment (PCNA) teams composed of various national and local government agencies had begun their assessment on the damages in 24 barangays in Marawi City.

The results of the data analysis, consolidation, and report development of the assessment is to be completed before October ends.(LEAntonio-PIA ILIGAN/LDN)

AFP chief says safety of hostages being prioritized

Following the death of Marawi siege top leaders, Isnilon Hapilon and Omar Maute, the Chief of Staff of the Armed Forces of the Philippines General Eduardo M. Año, emphasized during the press conference held in Camp Ranao last October 16 that the safety of hostages was being prioritized in their operations.

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Año said that rescuing the hostages was the main goal of the troops that day.

 

He also said the group of Hapilon and Maute together with hostages was seen dashing from one building to another at around 1:30 a.m. with the intention to escape from the main battle area with the hostages.

 

“In our rescue operations, we are very careful. We do not fire on anybody carrying arms; we make sure na hindi hostage [that they are not hostages],” said Año.

 

Prioritizing the protection of the hostages, 20 were rescued including a two-month-old baby.

 

“It is worth the effort that we save a life. One additional life that we save is good enough and worth the effort,” he added.

 

Boosting the morale         

 

Año said that the death of the top leaders boosted the morale of the soldiers.

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“It will even inspire the armed forces, policemen and other law enforcement agencies to go after the remaining enemies and finish them all,” said Año.

 

“Nawala lahat ng pagod. Kahit walang tulog, walang pahinga, hindi makakain on time, lahat yun nawala,” he added.

 

[All of the exhaustion was gone. Even if they were not able to sleep, to rest, to eat on time; all of it was gone.]

 

Año also said that full support is the biggest recognition that soldiers can receive.

 

Meanwhile, Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana said, “The biggest reward is that they did their job properly and being happy that it is over.”

 

Countering Backlash and Extremist Ideology

 

With the death of the two top leaders of Marawi siege, Año said that the military is ready for the possible retaliatory attacks from other terrorists.

 

“We have forces employed all around. Huwag mag alala [do not worry], but of course we need the supporting cooperation of the community na makapagreport ng [to report] suspicious persons immediately and we will take action,” said Año.

 

While there are plans to go after Abu Sayyaf and the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters when the Marawi conflict ends, Año said “We will make sure that there will be forces left behind in Marawi.”

 

“Kailangan pa rin ng pwersa dito, kasi tutulong sila sa reconstruction and rehabilitation ng Marawi,” he added.

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[Armed forces are still needed here, as they will be part of the reconstruction and rehabilitation efforts for Marawi.]

 

Meanwhile, Secretary Lorenzana said that the government started initiatives to counter extremist ideology.

 

“We have talked with the ulamas (Muslim scholars) and imams (officiating priest of a mosque). I asked them to [monitor] madrasahs (Islamic schools); what they are teaching to the kids, and who are the teachers,” said Lorenzana.(LEAntonio-PIA ILIGAN/LDN)

Marawi hospital gets go signal to resume operation

The Department of Health (DOH) is doing necessary assessment and inventories to revive its health facility, Amai Pakpak Medical Center in Marawi City, following a go signal from the Philippine Army to resume operation in the area.

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In a press conference in Iligan City command and coordinating center, Dr. Adriano Suba-an, assistant regional director of DOH region 10 said that the Philippine army has given them the go signal to resume operation of Amai Pakpak medical center in the area to provide health services to residents and evacuees of Marawi City.

Another good news, he said is that contrary to reports, they don’t have casualties from hospital personnel. Right now, they are planning with the chief of hospital regarding skeletal forces that will be deployed in the center.

“We are doing the assessment and we’re going to do the inventories. And we are going to calibrate our response, deployment based on the operations of the hospital,” said Suba-an.

If there is a need to deploy more, then we will do it,” he said.

“We are happy that we have a go signal from the military because that means the insurance of the safety of our personnel there,” added Suba-an.

Meanwhile, DOH is looking at the whole picture, the long range plan not just with the patients but for the human resources and physical facility of the hospital. Further, he said that health secretary Paulyn Jean Ubial issued a memorandum up to June 13 that all personnel of Amai Pakpak will do some stress debriefing. Some are crying, in trauma. They don’t want to be deployed there.

We would like to give the highest services needed by the people of Marawi, but we would also like to make sure that our personnel is equipped and ready to provide these services, Suba-an explained.

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On the other hand, Dr. Alinader Minalang, chief integrated provincial health office Lanao del Sur assured that they have not monitored any pattern of outbreak in the evacuation centers.

This is attributed to the health services we are providing, he said.

Our health personnel who are also evacuees themselves are able to operate our operation center with health emergencies and this is with the help of center for health development of region 10 especially in monitoring our evacuees both home based and in evacuation centers. Twenty five (25%) evacuees are in evacuation centers meanwhile 75% are home based or living with their relatives, Minalang said.

When it comes to diseases observed in the evacuation centers, most of them are due to harsh conditions, such as lack of sanitation facilities. Number one is upper tract respiratory infection, cough, fever, acute gastroenteritis, diarrhea especially on children. Next is hypertension and skin diseases because of congestion and hot temperature. (JMOR/PIA10)