Ejercito vows no repeat of Yolanda ‘mistakes’ in Marawi rehab

BAGUIO CITY— Senator Joseph Victor “JV” Ejercito on Friday assured the “fast” recovery of conflict-torn Marawi City, and vowed that there will be no repetition of the “mistakes” of the previous administration in handling the post-Yolanda rehabilitation period.

“Yolanda left us a lesson,” Ejercito said.

Ejercito vowed that even the issue of substandard housing for the affected residents will not be left unturned.

Ejercito, who chairs the Senate committee on urban planning, said the rehabilitation of Marawi should start immediately, as soon as state troops declare it free from all Maute stragglers.

In a press conference here Friday, Ejecito said he will be joining the heads of the Task Force Bangon Marawi to assess the damage in the area and look into rebuilding efforts to get Marawi back on its feet.

He said government troops are still clearing the business district of the war-torn city, especially with the reported presence of about 30 remaining terrorist stragglers, including foreign extremists, before they proceed with the rehabilitation phase.

“We want to be sure that if there is an opportunity, we will do it the right way immediately,” Ejercito added.

He explained that while rebuilding infrastructures is part of the agenda, the task force wants to fast-track building of houses for affected residents.

Ejercito also disclosed Japan’s financial aid for the recovery of Marawi.

During President Rodrigo Duterte’s visit to Japan last week, Ejercito mentioned that Japan Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has committed to give Php500 million for Marawi’s rehabilitation.

He also bared the productive visit of the President to Japan wherein aside from the support for Marawi, Japan will also donate $942 million that will be used to build a subway from Metro Manila to La Union. PNA-northboundasia.com