MANILA - President Rodrigo Roa Duterte lauded the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) for their "tireless toil during times of crises and helping their fellow Filipinos."
"I was on the ground two after the typhoon or the day after. Nakita ko yung mga sundalo at yung, (I saw the soldiers and those) Philippine Navy or Air Force -- all of them participating in the relief operations and helping the people move," Duterte said in his prerecorded Talk to the People aired on Tuesday.
Duterte commended the soldiers for sending humanitarian services to the people in trying times, on the top of their job to secure peace and order, particularly neutralizing the communist terrorist New People's Army (NPA).
"I would like to reiterate, on behalf of the people of the Philippines. I would like to commend and salute the AFP for their toil. It was really a toil to be there, helping everybody," Duterte said.
He offered a snappy salute to the soldiers in front of the key government officials physically and virtually present during the Talk to the People at the Arcadia Active Lifestyle Center in Matina, Davao City.
"Salamat (Thank you) for all of the achievements so far that you have gathered throughout the -- it's a never-ending job for you hanggang ngayon at nagpapasalamat ang tao, ako mismo nagpapasalamat (until now and the people are thanking, even myself I'm thanking you). Keep up the good work," he said.
Duterte noted that soldiers can easily be tapped when "a lot of people are needed to be assisted and they won't say no."
"I am praising the military because they deserve it," he said.
Apart from its internal and external security defense roles, the AFP also plays a very important role in the country's ongoing efforts to contain the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) pandemic.
The air, land, and sea assets of the AFP are also being used to transport medical equipment, healthcare supplies, and even Covid-19 vaccines to different regions across the country.
Currently, thousands of military doctors, nurses, and other medical auxiliary are deployed in Covid-19 treatment and quarantine facilities nationwide. (PNA)