The Armed Forces of the Philippines is way ahead of its timeline for the modernization program.
At the Laging Handa public briefing on Thursday, AFP spokesperson Col. Medel Aguilar bared the armed forces had already entered their third phase of modernization.
"The President has made sure that the AFP Modernization Program will continue. Now that we are into Horizon 3 already, some procurement have already been processed and we expect the delivery of big items that will modernize and make the AFP more capable of performing its mission," Aguilar said.
The AFP's Horizon 1 and Horizon 2 began in 2013 to 2018 and 2018 to 2022, respectively. Horizon 3 is slated from 2023 to 2028.
While the AFP improves the country's defense and security mechanisms, Aguilar said the government's fight against insurgency shall also continue.
He said the security forces will continue to implement the Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration Program intended for those rebels who wish to surrender to the government.
"We have to sustain the momentum of our campaign against violent extremism which involves the communist terrorist group and the local terrorist groups," he added.
Continuing such efforts, he said, will encourage more rebels to start fresh away from the battlegrounds.
"It will be better for our country if they will join the mainstream society and we can avoid more conflicts that will destroy our properties and the life of our people," he said.
As this developed, the Office of the Presidential Peace, Reconciliation and Unity aims to mainstream peace education at all academic levels nationwide.
Peace adviser Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr. said the OPAPRU is now working closely with the Department of Education and Commission on Higher Education to push through this project.
"Part of our effort is to strengthen the mainstreaming of peace education Program in all levels of our educational system, including the non -formal education. This must start at the elementary level to tertiary," he said during the kick-off celebration of the National Peace Consciousness Month on Wednesday, 1 September at the Quezon City Memorial Circle.
Galvez said President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. has already given his support for the mulled program.
The OPAPRU, in collaboration with its peace partners along with national line agencies, local government units, academe, and other civil society organizations, will implement a series of peace-themed activities nationwide.
Galvez said the government is determined to complete all of its peace agreements with the government with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front and the Moro National Liberation Front, toward healing and reconciliation in the Bangsamoro region.
He added that OPAPRU will maintain its stand on ending the local communist armed conflict by expanding the transformation programs for the local conflict peace process.
Meanwhile, the Commanding General Philippine Army has reminded the 110,000-strong military personnel to stand by the principle of "Servant Leadership" in protecting and defending Filipinos against security threats.
CGPA Lt. Gen. Romeo S. Brawner Jr. urged the soldiers to embrace the organization's operations and administrative compliances.
"I would like also like to remind everyone that the Army should be guided by Servant Leadership. As Commanders, we are expected to lead and serve them at the same time. This should remain as our driving force in winning wars and serving our people," he said in a virtual message during the recently concluded Philippine Army-wide Command conference.
Brawner bared updated comprehensive command guidance such as ensuring the physical and mental health of soldiers as the Army's most important resource; enhancing individual soldiers' skills and unit capabilities and pushing down much-needed resources to all units nationwide.