ARMM to build toilets in Lanao Sur evacuation camps

THE Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) is set to construct sanitation facilities in three evacuation centers in Lanao del Sur to ensure the health condition of the internally-displaced persons (IDPs) from Marawi City.

ARMM Governor Mujiv Hataman on Sunday, June 18, said he ordered the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) to construct a total of 20 toilets in the two evacuation camps in Saguiaran town and 10 toilets in Malabang town in Lanao del Sur.

Hataman and ARMM officials on Saturday inspected the evacuation centers and found out that unsanitary conditions exposed the evacuees, especially the children, to potential health risks.

The governor said the facilities, which will be separate for male and female, will have the capacity to cater at least 500 families. It will include washing and bathing facilities as well as provision of water tanks.

Thousands of people are forced to crowd into evacuation camps due to the armed conflict in Marawi City. Other families sought shelter in their relative’s homes.

The ARMM installed operation centers in Iligan City and in Malabang to facilitate the coordination of its humanitarian response, which include relief and medical aids and rescue and retrieval operation of trapped civilians.

Hataman, however, said they will transfer the Iligan City operation center to Marawi City to improve relief efforts and other humanitarian interventions to families, who have evacuated to different towns in Lanao del Sur.

The fighting in Marawi City, the capital of Lanao del Sur, broke out when the Maute bandits went berserk and occupied several establishments when the government forces raided on May 23 the hideout of Hapilon in the area.

The Maute group members are providing protection to Hapilon, who pledged allegiance to the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria. (Bong Garcia/SunStar Philippines)