Healing the heart of Marawi

Published May 30, 2021, 11:36 AM

by Liza Abubakar-Jocson

THE RISE OF MARAWI. A drone shot of the Grand Mosque (Jaimie O’Mindanao Al Islam), touted as the biggest mosque and Islamic center in Northern Mindanao which incurred heavy damage during the 2017 Marawi siege. Rehabilitation of the mosque is expected to be completed by December 2021. (Loloy Dayot/MANILA BULLETIN)

Marawi is regaining its title as the country’s Islamic capital after Task Force Bangon Marawi (TFBM) announced the near completion of six mosques inside the city center.

Among the projects is the Grand Mosque (Jaimie O’Mindanao Al Islam), touted as the biggest mosque and Islamic center in Northern Mindanao.

The Dansalan Bato Ali Mosque, one of the oldest and well-visited places of worship, is projected to be even more beautiful after its P105-million reconstruction.

The two mosques were devastated by heavy artillery bombardment after being used by Daesh rebels as hiding places during the 2017 Marawi conflict.

The structures have since emerged from the ruins and now stand tall and proud inside Marawi’s Most Affected Area (MAA).

Four other emblematic mosques are set for completion this year: the Lilod Madaya Mosque, Masjid Darussalam, Masjid Disomangcop, and the Shiek Abdul Rahman Pacasum Mosque also known as the White Mosque.

The six mosques are among an initial 31 set for reconstruction after being destroyed in the 2017 siege.

Incentivized housing developers’ escrow funds amounting to more than P32-million was tapped to rehabilitate four of the structures.

During the 4th Anniversary commemoration of the Marawi siege, TFBM Chief Eduardo Del Rosario, also Secretary of Human Settlements, said remaining TFBM infrastructure projects are 65% completed and will most likely meet their December 2021 deadline.

Del Rosario however said the government is prioritizing the re-construction of the mosques, which the Secretary believes can provide the key to Marawi’s “social healing.”