Residents of Marawi can return to their homes at the so-called “Ground Zero” in April, Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council chairperson Eduardo Del Rosario said.
Del Rosario, chair of Task Force Marawi, said residents can return to the Ground Zero after the military finish the clearing operations in the area by the first week of April.
Ground Zero refers to the area that was most heavily damaged by the six-month fighting between soldiers and the Maute group last year.
“I will give one week to 10 days gap para iyong lahat ng residente, 11,000 families, makapunta doon sa kanilang mga buildings, sa kanilang mga bahay. If they would like to recover personal belongings na puwede pa nilang magamit,” Del Rosario said at a press briefing in Malacañang Friday (January 26).
He, however, added that residents will have to sign a waiver absolving the government of liability should any untoward incident happen to them.
“Kailangan namin iyon, dahil ang gusto namin talaga, hindi na sila babalik. But because of the tremendous pressure ng 11,000 residents who would like to see. We will allow it, provided they issue a waiver,” Del Rosario said.
He said the period for the residents’ return is limited because the ground rehabilitation will start on the third week of April.
Del Rosario estimates the rehabilitation will be complete by December 2021.