President Rodrigo Duterte was exasperated with the delays in the groundbreaking for the rehabilitation of Marawi, the Palace said Thursday after the planned reconstruction was postponed at least five times.
“He was exasperated, but things are about to start. It’s natural to have complications in negotiations,” Presidential Spokesman Salvador Panelo told reporters Thursday.
The original date scheduled for the rehabilitation of Marawi City’s ground zero was set on Oct. 17. But it was moved to the end of the month as the President would not be able to attend.
Panelo defended Duterte’s absence saying there was only a conflict of time with certain schedules.
He also said the President’s non-attendance did not mean he was not interested.
“In fact, he has been doing a lot of things for the rehabilitation of that place,” Panelo said.
Asked whether the Duterte administration would experience the criticism the former Aquino administration received on the rehabilitation case of Tacloban after Super Typhoon “Yolanda,” Panelo expressed optimism that the Duterte administration would not be put in hot water.
“The President hates bureaucratic red tape. That is precisely why he said he was appointing military men because they didn’t ask questions; they just followed orders,” Panelo said.
“He has ordered the full movement that will immediately rehabilitate the place and as I said earlier, the groundbreaking will start at the end of the month. So hopefully we’re going straight now.”