THE Cagayan de Oro City Government is set to implement an identification (ID) system for the about 19,000 internally displaced persons (IDPs) from Marawi City.
Initiated by the City Social Welfare and Development (CSWD), Balay Mindanaw, and the Initiatives for Dialogue and Empowerment through Alternative Legal Services, the ID distribution is meant to identify every "bakwit" residing in the city temporarily.
CSWD head Teddy Sabuga-a said the ID system is also meant to make the relief goods distribution "smooth" as displaced families are already pre-identified by the City Government and non-government organizations.
He said the ID system is for easy and efficient identification with the Muslim community who are seeking refuge in some barangays. Most of the IDPs in the city are home-based.
Barangay Balulang has most the number of IDPs in the city, with over 5,000 individuals, followed by Barangay Carmen with 1,497 evacuees, and Barangay Macabalan with 1,024 evacuees, police records show.
Mohamad Gondarangin, president of the Oro Muslim Association, said the ID system is fine as evacuees could also use their IDs, also called the Disaster Assistance Family Access Cards in checkpoints, and other transactions.
"Marami kasing mga Maranao na wala talagang ID kaya mas maganda na mapagawan sila ng ID. Kaysa naman ma-hold pa ng mga police, na mapagkamalan na kung ano. So maganda itong ginagawa ng gobyerno (Many Maranaos don't have an ID that's why it's better to make one for them than being mistaken by the police. The government is doing the right thing)," he said.
Part of the City Government's planning in handling the IDPs in the city, Gondarangin said "there is nothing to worry about as the ID system is created in good faith and intention."
He urged his fellow Muslims to submit themselves into this initiative to receive aid from different organizations.
"Wala namang issue dito ng diskriminasyon (There's no issue of discrimination) or whatsoever, this is a simple process para matulungan kami (to help us), and this is only temporary, and only for 18 years old above, hindi naman included ang mga bata (children are exempted)," he added.