Six months after and there is no master plan yet?

EDITORIAL | December 27, 2017

Six months had already gone after the tragic Marawi siege and there is no master plan yet. On December 7, the chairman of the House Committee on Housing and Urban Development urged the local government in Marawi to immediately submit a master plan on the rehabilitation and reconstruction of the strife-torn city.

Negros Occidental Rep. Albee Benitez, committee chair, made the call following an ocular inspection of the 11-hectare Transitory Shelter project here to assess the housing needs of over 5,000 Marawi residents affected by the five-month take-over of the Maute group. “It seems their master plan is not done yet. I advise the local government to make sure that they already have the master plan before we start with the rehabilitation,” Benitez said in an interview with reporters.

On December 26 in Iligan City, a Meranaw leaders forum under the auspices of the three Maranaos in Dutete’s cabinet was held to add inputs on the already designed consolidated plans submitted by such top-notch agencies as MSU and Lanao del Sur provincial government unit. Why is this too long to take for a supposed urgent plan is now the question.

A Maranao lawyer present during the Iligan forum commenting in his social media account said “It’s circuitous and inherently delaying.” He pointed out, “Ordinarily, the responsive approach to a calamitous event is by adhocracy, by a task force and/or technical working groups tasked to perform a special act by bypassing the delay-laden bureaucracy. It’s ideally a short-circuit approach to enhance immediate response.”

But something different is lingering in our mind: The government’s encouraged meetings and fora and workshops done almost everyday among stakeholders, both from the government and non-government, is only a matter of procedural formality. As we see it, the government has already a template for the Marawi reconstruction and rebuilding that they have already started doing. Any new input contrary to their template will not be accepted. (RSP)

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