ILIGAN CITY, August 26 – The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) conducted a Press Briefing with Assitant Secretary Abdulgani Macatoman, Task Force Bangon Marawi (TFBM) Sub-committee on Business and Livelihood earlier today at Celadon Pensionne House, Iligan City. Also present to give updates on DTI projects for TFBM were DTI-10 Regional Director Linda Boniao and Lanao del Norte Provincial Director Ruel Paclipan.
The “Diskwento Caravan” was recently launched for the internally displaced families from Marawi City taking refuge in Lanao del Sur. The DTI in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao tapped the provincial government, Task Force Group Ranao and the private sector for the implementation of the program. The Diskwento Caravan or rolling store sells food and other basic commodities to the refugees at lower prices in different towns in Lanao del Sur, including Timber, Bubong, Ramain, Buadipuso-Buntong, Mulondo, Taraka and Tamparan.
The rolling store caravan is a project of DTI to support the buying public, traders, and local businesses to ensure the availability of basic commodities for the affected families.
ASec. Macatoman also discussed the plans to set up a commissary in some identified key areas in Lanao del Sur. The first jobber in Tamparan was already established, with plans to also set up in the towns of Binidayan and Ganassi.
Aside from the Diskwento Caravan, DTI also conducted price monitoring in the affected areas. Due to the difficulty of access, which meant a 6- to 8-hour travel time for goods from Cotabato City via Malabang or from Pagadian City, a reasonable price increase was noted.
IDP’s Livelihood Programs
DTI has also intensified its efforts to provide livelihood programs for the internally displaced families from Marawi City. The Task Force Bangon Marawi will also provide 100 sewing machines through the DTI.
The Provincial Technology and Livelihood Development Center (PTLDC) of Lanao del Sur has provided 20 sewing machines for the production of malong and dresses by the IDPs. Some of the products are currently displayed at Kahimunan Trade Fair in SM CDO Downtown Premier, Cagayan de Oro City, which runs until August 29th. Products are also sold at the Lanao del Sur GO Negosyo Center in Camague, Iligan City.
To date, DTI are negotiating with Robinsons Place Iligan, Gaisano Mall Iligan and SM Cagayan de Oro to accommodate IDP traders and sellers.
Plans for Little Padian
Provincial Director Paclipan mentioned of plans for establishing “Little Padian” in Iligan City. DTI is currently negotiating with the landowner to allow them to build a space for IDPs to earn a living. In Marawi City, a “padian” is a place where Maranaos sell anything, from “malong” and dresses to Maranao delicacies.
Diyandi Fiesta Park
In the meantime, while plans for Little Padian are still in the works, DTI has reserved 50 stalls at the Diyandi Fiesta Park in C-3 Road, Brgy Tipanoy for the IDPs to display and sell their goods.
The public is encouraged to support the IDPs by buying their products.