'Squatters take over Gaisano mall; billions lost'

Posted at 12/02/13 11:29 AM
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MANILA - A mall that was the target of looting in typhoon-hit Tacloban City has become a huge squatters' area more than three weeks after the onslaught of super typhoon "Yolanda."

Former senator and now rehabilitation czar Panfilo Lacson said he talked to the owners of Gaisano mall who confided that they lost billions of pesos after residents looted the mall in Tacloban.

He said that after mall owners sent people to clean up the mall, they found that electrical wirings were cut, batteries of generator sets were stolen and there were squatters living in the mall.

"They made the whole mall a huge squatters' area," Lacson said.

The rehabilitation czar said he has yet to verify the information given by mall owners but said the looting could discourage business owners from going back.

"Under the noses of the PNP, binebenta yung mga looted goods. We must motivate them to go back there and continue their investment. How can they be motivated kung ganoon ang sitwasyon?"

ANC, December 2, 2013