OUR MARAWI:  We grieve … but we also look forward to a more prosperous, more peaceful, and more hopeful future

(Message of MP Anna Tarhata Basman on the 3rd Anniversary of the Marawi Siege, 23 May 2020) 

Today, we mark three years since the Marawi Siege. And yet even today, many of its residents still struggle to recover in its aftermath—a burden that we know is multiplied by the outbreak of COVID in the country.

BEAUTY AMID THE RUINS. Meranaw students walk on the well manicured golf course of the Mindanao State University campus on Wednesday (29 May 2019) as Ground Zero in downtown Marawi in the far background lies in ruins. MindaNews photo by BOBBY TIMONERA

Today we hear the resounding cry of Marawi’s residents for the opportunity to return home and rebuild as soon as possible; for prompt and adequate relief assistance during this crisis; and for transparency in rehabilitation efforts.

As Vice Chair of the Bangsamoro Transition Authority – Parliament’s Special Committee on Marawi and Chair of its Sub-Committee on Rehabilitation, we also reaffirm our commitment to bring to life the mandate of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM)  to support the national government’s rehab efforts, in a manner that puts the real needs and sentiments of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) first.

We will continue to do whatever we can with whatever resources we have to help ease the burden of those who continue to suffer from the after-effects of the siege, and those whose struggle to recover became more difficult because of COVID.

And today, we grieve. We remember who we lost and what was taken from us three years ago. But today we also look forward to a more prosperous, more peaceful, and more hopeful future—and we pray with you, for the sake of our sisters and brothers, that it comes sooner rather than later.