• AFP to bid Aquino goodbye

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    THE Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) will give President Benigno Aquino 3rd on Monday a testimonial parade and review, in anticipation of his stepping down on June 30.

    The event, according to Brig. Gen. Restituto Padilla Jr., AFP spokesman, will be held at the GHQ (General Headquarters) Grandstand at Camp Aguinaldo at 3 p.m. Monday.

    “It’s a tribute of the Armed Forces to him as Commander-in-Chief, and it’s a sign of our gratitude for the capability buildup he and his administration given to the AFP,” said Padilla.

    He said that the outgoing administration understood very well the requirements of the AFP, that in order to perform its task as mandated by the Constitution, its capability needs to be upgraded.

    Padilla noted that the AFP is the least capable in Asia, but because of the deep understanding of the Aquino administration, it fully supported the military modernization and upgrade by pouring in at least P60 billion for the acquisition of much-needed equipment.

    “More than the three administrations, past administrations combined, this administration was able to expedite the upgrade of the military. While it is still not enough, he initiated and started the upgrade capability program so that we can perform our mandated tasks in Constitution,” he added.

    The AFP official explained that it is crucial for the next administration to continue the modernization because in order for the country to be respected by other nations in the region, “we must be able to have a credible defense posture that will ensure that a degree of respectability.”

    He also mentioned the 2028 transformation road goal to become a world class armed forces.

    “We are hoping and praying that the programs that we have launched in this administration would be supported by the next administration because after all this is not for the Armed Forces alone, it is for the Filipinos, it is for the country, it is to defend its interest, national interest,” he said.

    The testimonial parade and review for Aquino, Padilla said is going to be simple.

    -The following day, the military will also give outgoing Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin the same honor.

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