Duterte hopes successor will sustain AFP modernization
MANILA, Philippines —President Rodrigo Duterte is hoping that his successor will maintain the modernization program of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and take care of the needs of the uniformed personnel.
Duterte issued the remark during the 72nd anniversary of the Philippine Air Force (PAF) in Pasay City on Tuesday.
“I want to leave the office of the presidency with an assurance to myself that I leave the functions, pass it on to the next whoever he will be, na sana naman he will also take care of the requirements of the Armed Forces because it is a continuing one,” Duterte said.
“And during my time, I have never said ‘no’ to any of the commanders and to (Defense Secretary) Delfin Lorenzana at kay (National Security Adviser Hermogenes) Esperon. All the things that they wanted for our Armed Forces pati ang pulis (including the police),” he added.
The revised AFP modernization program is divided into three horizons. The first was implemented from 2013 to 2017, the second from 2018 to 2022, while the third will be implemented from 2023 to 2028.
On June 20, 2018, Duterte approved the Armed Forces modernization program’s shopping list for Horizon 2 which will be implemented until 2022, with a budget of about P300 billion.
Under his presidency, soldiers and other uniformed personnel also saw a gradual increase in their salaries.
Doubling the salary of soldiers, policemen, and other uniformed personnel has been one of the Duterte’s oft-repeated promises.
The President also announced in his speech that the PAF will “receive substantial assets” worth over P139 billion under the Second Horizon of the Revised AFP Modernization Program.
“This includes the procurement of utility vehicles, drones, and other command and control fixed-wing aircraft, among others,” Duterte said.
The President also revealed that the acquisition of an Air Defense Radar System and an FA-50PH flight simulator earlier this year will be supplemented by the expected delivery of six A-29B Super Tucano Aircraft and another Air Defense Surveillance [Radar] System. (Editor: Eden Estopace)
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