Celso lauds Zambo soldier, cop in 2013 siege for Metrobank award PDF Print E-mail
Friday, 04 September 2015 13:28

by Jubels Santos


Zamboanga City District 1 Representative Celso Lobregat hailed a Zamboangueño member of the Philippine Navy who was awarded as one of the Outstanding Philippine Soldiers (TOPS) for 2015 (Philippine Navy enlisted personnel category) in the annual search organized jointly by the Metrobank Foundation Inc. and Rotary Club of Makati Metro.

TSgt. Romel Bustamante Bancairin, PN (M) is a resident of barangay San Roque and is connected with the Military Intelligence Group (MIG)-9.

Lobregat likewise commended and expressed gratitude to a Benguet policeman, awarded as one of the Country’s Outstanding Police Officers in Service (COPS) for 2015 also in the same Metrobank-initiated search. P03 Adolfo Campos Andrada is a member of the elite Special Action Force who took part in the anti-terror mission during the 2013 siege in Zamboanga.

TSgt. Bancairin is a native and Zamboanga City resident, currently assigned at San Roque, Zamboanga City. He is the Assistant Team Leader, Military Intelligence Group 9 assigned in the Intelligence Service Armed Forces of the Philippines, Western Mindanao Command, Zamboanga City. He is now 24 years in service. Bancairin’s strategic expertise helped in neutralizing the MNLF forces at the height of the Zamboanga siege in 2013. His expertise in intelligence greatly helped the AFP in the arrest of top-ranking Abu Sayyaf Group leaders such as Abu Sabaya and Abu Solaiman who are involved in a series of kidnappings and bombings in Mindanao. As an innovation, he also lead the deployment of button cameras and GPS trackers during missions to capture high quality photos and video footages of target personalities to help accurately validate location and identity of these high value targets. Also in one of his operations, as a team leader, he successfully rescued 86 victims of human trafficking in Basilan. TSgt. Bancairin also devotes his time to reach out to communities he was assigned to. As an intel operative and agent handler, he has risked his life many times, but TSgt. Bancairin says he will continue serving the community because he is proud to be a Filipino soldier.

On the other hand, PO3 Andrada is from Benguet and is a member of the 84th Special Action Company of the elite Special Action Forces who took part in protecting Zamboanga City during the 2013 siege. He was part of the operations team who arrested 143 MNLF members and rescued 13 hostages during the Zamboanga City siege. He is now 7 years in service.

By winning in this Search, TSgt. Bancairin and PO3 Andrada will join the elite roster of the outstanding soldiers and police officers of our country. They will receive gold medallion, trophy and cash prize courtesy of Metrobank Foundation.

The awarding ceremonies of this year’s Search for TOPS, COPS, and the Search for the Outstanding Teachers (SOT) collectively dubbed as the Metrobank Foundation Outstanding Filipinos was held on September 3, 2015 at the Metrobank Plaza in Makati City.

A courtesy visit of the awardees of the TOPS, COPS and SOT to House Speaker Feliciano Belmonte was held on September 2, 2015, 3:00pm, at the Speaker’s Social Hall. Afterwards, the awardees also appeared in the Plenary Hall on the same day for proper acknowledgment and recognition. Lobregat personally extended his congratulations to the awardees during their recognition in the Plenary on September 2.

Metrobank Foundation conducts this annual search to recognize and pay tribute to the outstanding soldiers, police officers and teachers in the country. The 16th Congress also passed Resolution Nos. 223, 224 and 226 authored by Western Samar 1st District Representative Mel Sarmiento (TOPS final board of judges vice-chairperson), Camarines Sur 3rd District Representative Leni Robredo (COPS final board of judges co-chairperson) and Antipolo City 1st District Representative Roberto Puno (SOT final board of judges chairperson) honoring and commending the achievements of the awardees. They were presented to the Congress led by Speaker Feliciano Belmonte. — Jubels Santos