Defense chief appeals for trust in the military PDF Print E-mail
Friday, 08 April 2011 14:45

PAGADIAN CITY – As President Benigno Simeon Aquino III expressed his full trust and confidence to the Armed Forces of the Philippines, the same is being expected from the Filipino people.

Department of National Defense (DND) Secretary Voltaire T. Gazmin, in an ambush interview with members of the Tabak defense press corps (TDPC) during his visit at the headquarters of the 1st Infantry “Tabak” Division on Wednesday appealed to the people to put their faith and trust in the military being their protector and that of the State, following allegations of military corruption.

Gazmin, who made his first visit to the headquarters as Defense secretary with AFP chief of staff Lt. Gen. Eduardo Oban Jr. and army chief Lt. Gen, Arturo Ortiz, said the recent Pulse Asia Survey that tagged the AFP as “most corrupt” agency in the government is unfair saying that the attribution was for the entire military institution.

“Mga iilang tao lang ang na-involved sa katiwalian, bakit isinama ang buong organisasyon, mukhang hindi tama. Iyong spekulasyon nila na apat lang ang magnananakaw, buong grupo ay magnanakaw na? (There were only few involved in the corruption and why include the whole organization?),” Gazmin said.

The soldiers, Gazmin said, are seriously doing their job to provide protection and welfare to the general public and help attain peace.

“Kung ang mga sundalo ay hindi magtatrabaho ng maayos, hindi natin makakamit ang kapayapaan (If the soldiers will not do their job well, we cannot attain peace),” Gazmin explained.

“Dapat nating igalang ang mga sundalo dahil sila ang ating mga bayani. Seryosohin natin ang pagtingin sa kanila at hindi iyong naririnig natin sa TV at radyo, at nababasa sa dyaryo (We need to respect our soldiers because they are our heroes. We should regard them seriously not based on what we see on TV or hear over the radio, and read in the newspaper),” Gazmin concluded .

The defense chief, after having presided over the division conference joined by 1st infantry division commander Brig. Gen. Noel A. Coballes, immediately flew with his party to the Western Zamboanga City  and was also scheduled to visit the Special Operations Task Force in Basilan.