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Marawi: Why not declare as a City of Peace and Culture?

Looking Back
By Dean Yahya

Marawi City has long been known as a cultural city of the Philippines. It is said it is the cultural center of the country; the center of Islamic civilization; and the Summer Capital of the South. Its climate is the best in the country, and its natural scenery most attractive.

After the Marawi siege, government and non-government organizations, both within and without the Philippines are desirous to rebuild, reconstruct and rehabilitate the devastated city. In that case, the city's history, cultural heritage and the natural beauty and grandeur it brings need priority in the gigantic task, after the provision of urgent human basic needs and security of lives and properties.

The Marawi Assistance Coordinating Organization (MACO) which was born during the International Conference on Marawi Post-Conflict Reconstruction held in July 2017 in Cagayan de Oro City attended by leaders of multisectors and representatives of stakeholders to the Marawi crisis has a strong point in recommending that Marawi City be declared officially as "City of Peace and Culture."

The government, if, indeed, it is sincere for all the pronouncements to develop the siege city into a new peaceful, progressive city, and possibly world-class tourism hub, it should declare the city as a City of Peace and Culture. This can be done by an act of Congress, or, maybe, merely a presidential order.

If Marawi becomes officially the City of Peace and Culture in the Philippines, it will not only add to the grandeur of the country with global competitiveness but also the most sought tourism hub in the world which will definitely increase manifold income to the nation and place the country in world limelight. (RSP)
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