Foreign aid for Marawi rehab reaches P2-B: Lorenzana

Friday, September 22nd, 2017. Filed under: Asian News News Philippine News

MANILA – The Department of National Defense (DND) on Friday said donations coming from other countries for the rehabilitation of Marawi City have reached almost PHP2 billion.

In a press briefing in Malacañang, Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana said Australia, so far, is the biggest donor with PHP1 billion in pledged assistance.

United States recently announced a PHP730-million assistance for the Marawi rehabilitation.

Other donor countries are Japan and Thailand with a pledged of PHP100 million each and European Union with a PHP49-million pledge.

Meanwhile, China had pledged PHP85 million, but Lorenzana said only PHP15 million of this amount is earmarked for the rehabilitation.

He said the other PHP70 million is for wounded security forces in Marawi.

Lorenzana said except for China, which has earmarked its donation for specific purposes, the other donor countries only stated that it was for Marawi.

“Sabi nila, for Marawi. So we assumed na kung hindi naman specific na wounded, we will give it to the rehabilitation. Kasi kulang eh. Wala pang isang milyon ‘yung natatanggap nating cash for the rehab, while we already have PHP13 million for the wounded (They only say it is for Marawi. If it is not specified that the aid will be for the wounded, then we will allot it for the rehabilitation because it is now enough. The amount received has not even reached P1 million),” he said.

Despite the pledges, the Defense chief said more funds are needed for the Marawi rehabilitation program.

He said the initial ballpark figure that was given was PHP50 billion but the needed funds could be higher.

“When we went there early this week with the President, I think PHP50 billion is not enough. Talagang grabe ‘yung destruction,” Lorenzana said.

He said that members of the Post-Conflict Assessment Group are already starting to go around the cleared area but a more accurate estimate of the funds needed could only be arrived at once the fighting ends.

“So malalaman natin ‘yan (we will know) in two weeks’ time, especially when the war is over. We will be able to just accurately determine how much we’ll need to rehabilitate Marawi City,” Lorenzana said. (PNA)


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