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Mindanao lawmakers support Marawi city rehab budget

Some Mindanao lawmakers have expressed their support for the rehabilitation of the besieged Marawi City through allocation of funds as the Lower House has started deliberating the budget for next year.

The Lower House has begun scrutinizing last Aug. 1 the proposed national budget for 2018 in the amount of P3.767 trillion, which is dubbed as “The Budget that Reforms and Transforms,” said the House of Representative on its website.

The proposed budget was handed over by President Rodrigo Duterte to House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez and Senate President Aquilino Martin Pimentel III during his second State of the Nation Address last July 24.

Rep. Maximo Rodriguez Jr., of the city’s 2nd district, said there should be a continuing study on how to rebuild Marawi, specifically on the housing of its civilians and the establishments of the business sector.

In a separate interview, Sultan Nasser Sampaco, chairman of the Marawi Sultanate League, said the physical rehabilitation of Marawi is not enough as he urges the Duterte administration to also consider providing financial aid to business owners who had lost their investments in the conflict.

Sampaco has urged the government to help the Maranao business owners get back on their feet but without them paying interests.

“They have already lost their business. The government must not anymore give them many requirements before releasing the financial assistance,” he added.

For her part, Rep. Juliette Uy, of the Misamis Oriental 2nd district, a bigger chunk of 2018’s budget is needed to rebuild school buildings that were damaged due to the heavy fighting between the government forces and armed extremists in Marawi. (davaotoday.com)

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