A Banner Year for Our Defense & Armed Forces Officials

Manila Bulletin, December 19, 2003 | Go to article overview

A Banner Year for Our Defense & Armed Forces Officials


Byline: Gloria Macapagal Arroyo

(President GLORIA MACAPAGAL ARROYOs speech during the 68th Anniversary of the Armed Forces of the Philippines at the AFP Grandstand, Camp Aguinaldo, Quezon City, December 19, 2003.)

THANK you. Thank you very much, Secretary Ermita.

His Excellency President Fidel V. Ramos and the other former Secretaries of Defense and Chiefs of Staff of the Armed Forces; Speaker De Venecia and the other legislators who are here with us today; General Abaya and the other officers of the Armed Forces of the Philippines; members of the Cabinet; members of the diplomatic corps; officers, men and women of the Armed Forces of the Philippines; Ladies and Gentlemen:

Isang pagbati sa inyong lahat, mga sundalo at mga sibilyang kawani ng Armed Forces of the Philippines at Department of National Defense sa Kaarawan ng Sandatahang Lakas.

At espesyal na pagbabati ko dahil sa unang pagkakataon nakita ko kayo ngayon, bagamat meron tayong luncheon mamaya, ang ating mga nanalo, ang ating magaling na pangkat ng Pilipinas sa Southeast Asian Games, sa pamumuno ni Colonel Tagibao at yung ibang mga nanalo nagfourth place and ating pangkat at pinakamaraming medalya sa kasaysayan ng Southeast Asian Games na pumunta sa Pilipinas, congratulations sa inyong lahat.

Akoy nasisiyahan na nanalo si . . .ay, di pala si. . . sorry, si ano, si Private First Class Valda pala. Binabati ko siya at binabati ko rin si Lt. Col. Tagibao sa kanyang pagtsampiyon ng tatlong beses naman sa powerlifting, flyweight category sa weightlifting championship. Siya ay dating PSG pero ngayon nawala ko na siya. . . . .dito sa headquarters pero congratulations pa rin sa kanya.

Akoy nagpapasalamat kay Secretary Ermita at saka kay General Abaya sa pagpili ng tema para sa 2003 Sandatahang Lakas ng Pilipinas: Nagkakaisa Tungo sa Matatag na Republika.

Pagkakaisa ang importanteng salita sa temang yon. Pagkakaisa the country has had enough of political bickering and partisan strife bitter memories of the past are hampering our goal to move forward. We cannot have change before genuine reconciliation with justice. I would like to spare this pagkakaisa from politics because this is a sincere and earnest effort to transform our divisions into unity and thereby see a clear path to a brighter future.

Ang ating kinabukasan ay liliwanag lamang kung magkakaroon tayo ng pagkakaisa at kung baguhin natin ang ekonomiya. At mababago lamang natin ang ekonomiya sa pamamagitan ng mga kailangang puhunan at bahagi sa puhunang kailangan para sa ekonomiya ay ating seguridad, kaya sa ngalan ng sambayanang Pilipino, gusto ko magpasalamat sa ating mga kawal sa inyong matapat na paglilingkod sa bansa para magkaroon tayo ng matatag na seguridad.

I would like to commend the Armed Forces once again for its professionalism in upholding the peace especially the peace in Mindanao despite recent losses in a recent isolated conflict in Mindanao. You have held your fire. You have allowed the ceasefire mechanism to work. I salute you for your disciplined adherence to the welfare of the people. Naalaala ko tuloy noong Mayo Uno 2001, kayo at mga sundalo handang sumugod, bihasa sa pagsugod ngunit nung araw na yon sa Mendiola tinawag ko kayo para ipagtanggol ang Republika at ginamit nyo ang maximum tolerance kaya mapayapang natapos sa loob ng isang araw yung rebelyon na nangyari noon.

Ngayon, ginagamit pa rin ninyo yung inyong disiplina doon sa Mindanao.

I also commend the Armed Forces for your unstinting support for our renewed campaign against crime and terrorism. Espesyal na pagbati sa ating Former Chief of Staff of the Armed Forces and former Secretary of National Defense, si Secretary Angelo Reyes, dahil buong mundo kinikilala ang kaniyang mga tagumpay kontra sa kidnapping at ibang krimen na importante at kailangan sugpuin.

Binabati ko siya at binabati ko lahat nung mga nagsugpo kay commander Robot. …

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