By MB Online
CAMP RANAO, Marawi City – Classes resumed in 12 public elementary schools in Marawi City yesterday despite the continuing clashes between government forces and Daesh-inspired fighters in the main battle area.
Brigadier General Rolando Joselito Bautista, commander of the Joint Task Force Marawi, said classes in Sultan Conding Elementary School, Sikap Elementary School, Cabingan Primary School, Banga Elementary School, DatuTambak Elementary School, Rorogagus Elementary School, Bito Elementary School, Pendolonan Elementary School, Abdulazis Elementary School, Camp BagongAmaiPakpak Central Elementary School, Sugod Elementary School, and Mipaga Elementary School resumed on Tuesday, September 5.
“We are nearing the end of the battle with the gun fight confined to the main battle area in the besieged city. Security measures are being tightened to preempt any attempts by the terrorists to hamper classes,” Bautista said.
The different Joint Task Groups under JTF Marawi had a series of conferences, discussing security preparations and arrangements to ensure the safety of faculty members and students.
“This is one of the steps taken by the security forces and the local government units to bring normalcy in the city. We are taking a gradual phase because we want to ensure that we are doing the right thing and that we are giving priority to the welfare of the Maranaos,” Bautista said.
“We are optimistic that as long as everyone is taking the same path, we will surely win this war against terrorism,” said Lieutenant General Carlito G. Galvez, Jr., commander of the Western Mindanao Command. “I have always said that ‘education is the antidote for peace’, and with that, your Armed Forces will make sure that we will continue to work for the rehabilitation of the other schools, colleges and universities within the city that were affected by this crisis. We will be with the people in taking the road to normalcy,” added the WestMinCom Chief.
Last August 22, 600 students were transported from Iligan City to the campus of the Mindanao State University (MSU) in Marawi City as classes resumed in the said university.
More than 9,000 students of MSU joined the university’s 56th founding Anniversary celebration with Lt. Gen. Galvez as their guest of honor and speaker.
“Unity in diversity is not a myth. What we have done here can attest to that line,” said Atty. Jamaloden Basar, MSU VP for Administration. “We may be different in our beliefs but we are the same in one goal: we want to promote peace and education in the lives of the next generation,” he added.
Following the opening of the schools, other government offices will also soon start cleaning their respective offices in Marawi City for the immediate resumption of their operations.