MANILA — Social Welfare Secretary Judy Taguiwalo said Wednesday her department has sent 10,000 family food packs to Marawi City in Lanao del Sur in response to requests made by the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao’s (ARMM) social welfare chief, Vice Governor Moy Lucman.
Taguiwalo said her department has been in close coordination with Lucman, who conveyed that they have been preparing the grounds of the provincial capitol and the Mindanao State University (MSU) in Marawi as evacuation centers, as these are deemed safe from the Maute Group.
“Nakatuon ngayon ang DSWD sa pagtulong sa mga evacuees, partikular sa mga bata, kababaihan, at mga senior citizens (The Department of Social Welfare and Development is now focused on providing assistance to evacuees, particularly the children, women and the elderly),” the social welfare chief said in a Facebook post.
President Duterte on Tuesday night declared the entire Mindanao island under martial law following clashes between government troops and members of the Maute Group in Marawi City.
The violence began Tuesday afternoon after the military conducted operations to flush out Isnilon Hapilon, a top terrorist suspect, from his hideout in Marawi City.
Several facilities had been torched by the terror group, including St. Mary’s Church, the city jail, the Ninoy Aquino School, and Dansalan College. Leilani Junio/PNA-northboundasia.com