By Roy Mabasa
Japan on Friday assured it will continue to support the rehabilitation and recovery in Marawi through the ongoing 61.77 kilometers of road network projects in the area amid the lull in economic activities due to the COVID-19 (coronavirus disease ) pandemic.
The Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), through the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), is implementing the grant road projects to rehabilitate the Marawi Trans-central Road Phase I and II.
According to JICA, Phase III of the Marawi Trans-central Road Marawi City Ring Road is also underway.
Once completed, these infrastructure projects aim to strengthen the transport link from resettlement areas to new markets, improve people’s access to public facilities and mobility of Marawi folks, and facilitate the movement of goods.
Right after the 2017 Marawi siege, the surrounding communities of Cotabato, Zamboanga, and Maguindanao were faced with difficulties accessing Marawi’s trading centers.
In a statement, JICA said it has always supported the Philippines’ inclusive development priorities, adding that the road projects in Marawi are “essential to help the people get back on their feet, boost economic opportunities, and enable the people to access public services like health, housing, and water supply, among others.”
JICA is one of the international organizations and aid agencies supporting human security, poverty alleviation, and peace-building in conflict-affected Mindanao.