Mayor urges ‘fake’ IDPs to return home-A A +A
By Bong Garcia
Wednesday, April 16, 2014
MAYOR Ma. Isabelle Climaco-Salazar has told the “fake” internally displaced persons (IDPs) to return to their respective places of origin.
Salazar’s statement came after the Zamboanga City Government has found out that some 400 fake IDP-families who have mixed up with the displaced Badjaos temporarily housed along Cawa-Cawa Boulevard.
Salazar said these fake IDPs steal the assistance from the government which is intended for families displaced in the siege in September 2013.
The siege started September 9, 2013 when hundreds of the so-called Misuari faction of the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) infiltrated Zamboanga City.
The presence of the fake IDPs was uncovered as the number of families temporarily sheltered on tents along Cawa-Cawa Boulevard suddenly swelled to more than 1,000 from 800 families.
Assistant City Administrator Elmeir Apolinario said the fake IDPs have stayed along Cawa-Cawa Boulevard with the intention of availing free food given by the government and by humanitarian agencies.
Apolinario said some of the fake IDPs are from the other villages of this city that are not among the siege-affected areas while the rest are from Basilan and Tawi-Tawi provinces.
The Housing and Land Management Division (HLMD) also confirmed the presence of the fake IDPs through the conduct of revalidation of IDP-families.
The local government through the HLMD has conducted “tagging” of displaced families immediately after the siege broke out last September to determine how many families were affected.