The military will be acquiring more ships and aircraft to boost its capability for border protection, surface surveillance, search and rescue and maritime security, President Benigno Aquino 3rd promised Friday.
In a speech at the celebration of the 78th founding anniversary of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) at Camp Aguinaldo, the President said the government will be acquiring two more C-130 transport planes to add to its three operational C-130s.
He said three Augusta Westland naval helicopters were purchased from Italy, and two more will be delivered soon.
“In the face of many challenges, we expect a lot from our soldiers. That is why it is but fitting that the government boosts your capacity to respond to the call of duty,” Aquino said.
“You can be assured that from procuring brand new hardware to providing opportunities to your family up to the time that you retire, the government will continue to push for what is best for you,” he said.
The President thanked the military for responding quickly both in time of emergencies, including the Zamboanga City hostage crisis, the earthquake in Cebu and Bohol, and the unprecedented super typhoon Yolanda.
“You have proven to the world that no matter how big the challenges or no matter how dangerous your task is even in the most far-flung places, as long as there is courage and dedication to help, Filipinos can stand on their feet,” Aquino added.
CATHERINE S. VALENTE