July 22, 2018, 11:51 pm
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Marawi rehabilitation suffers setback as gov’t, Bangon Marawi talks collapse

GROUNDBREAKING plans for the rehabilitation of Marawi City are set back by a month following the collapse of negotiations between the government and private contractors that were supposed to undertake the reconstruction project.

Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council (HUDCC) head and concurrent Task Force Bangon Marawi (TFBM) chairman Eduardo del Rosario yesterday said the government is now in discussions with China Power after the failed talks with the Bangon Marawi consortium. 

Del Rosario said the private consortium did not meet the legal, technical and financial capacity criteria set by the government for the project. 

Because of the setback, Del Rosario said the HUDCC and TFBM are forced to move back the groundbreaking date for the project from July to August.

“Unfortunately, we could not meet that indicative timeline because we had an unsuccessful negotiation with the Bangon Marawi consortium and now we are on the process of negotiating with the next in line, which is the China Power,” he said.

The Chinese firm, he quickly added, would have a local partner, which Del Rosario said would be known within the week. 

Del Rosario said despite the delay, the deadline for the completion of the program is still the last quarter of December 2021. 

“We programmed the rehabilitation in such a way that we will be able to complete it not later than December of 2021. So we are on time. With regards to criticism na mabagal, ‘yung ganitong klase naman ng scenario, wala talagang mabilis na rehabilitation na pwedeng gawin ng gobyerno (With regards to criticism that it is slow, in this kind of scenario, there is no fast rehabilitation that the government could do),” he said.

Del Rosario said he could not provide more details because of the ongoing talks, which he said started two weeks ago. 

Marawi sustained heavy damage during the five-month siege by fighters belonging to the Maute group, a Daesh-inspired local terrorist group, which tried to take-over the city in May 2017.
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