From the Philippine News Agency (Nov 21): President Duterte thanks soldiers for sacrifices
President Rodrigo Roa Duterte on Tuesday, November 21, committed the government’s assistance to wounded soldiers who are confined at the Army General Hospital in Taguig City.
The President personally checked the condition of the 26 soldiers, mostly from the siege in Marawi City, and conferred the Order of Lapu-Lapu.
“Nandito ako to give you the medals for you richly deserve it. You earned it in the service of the country,” the Chief Executive said in his message to the troops, who also received financial assistance from the Office of the President.
“And for serving the Republic and maintain its preservation, talagang nandito ako para sumasaludo sa inyo. At kung anong maitulong ko sa inyo, kung kaya ko, ibibigay ko,” he added.
President Duterte also mentioned the release of P500 million that would be allocated to make the lives of the soldiers comfortable.
“I released 500 million kaagad nung matapos ‘yung giyera para ‘yung mga kailangan ninyo. Kung ano-ano lang. Hindi medisina. Whatever that would help you, ‘yung komportable kayo sa buhay,” he said.
For the soldiers who lack the physical agility due to the injuries they sustained, the President said he would ensure that they would still be “gainfully employed.”
“And for those na ano, hanapan ko ng paraan. The… Ang sikreto ngayon, itong panahon natin sa ating buhay is ‘yung computer, cyberspace,” he said.
“For those na wala na masyadong physical agility, you can take part of that program. I will see to it that you are taken in, I said, and gainfully employed sa buhay ninyo,” the President said.
In his message to the troops, the Chief Executive also announced that the government would provide troops with the weapons that they need and would acquire 23 attack helicopters as well.
"I am ordering new ones para pampalit doon sa inyo. Alam ko nagrereklamo kayo sa barrel pati vault. Baka in the next few months… I am in a hurry, nagmamadali ako. May papuntahin akong mga opisyal ng militar doon sa ibang lugar para mag-negotiate kaagad," he said.
“Meron tayong acquisition na 23 attack helicopters. ‘Yun supisyente (sufficient) na ‘yon for a --- ‘yung mga rebellion-rebellion lang,” he added.
Duterte also said he would not purchase second-hand equipment for the government troops.
"So lahat nang bibilhin ko para sa inyo, puro bago. Wala ng purchases ang --- sa panahon ko, ‘yung Armed Forces pati police na secondhand. Bago lahat at gagastos tayo," he said.
Meanwhile, the President said he would visit soldiers deployed in Marawi City and Jolo during Christmas time.
“So I am here to thank you for your sacrifice at ‘yung dugo ninyo at hirap dinaanan ninyo, mahirap ‘yan,” he said.
“Kaya ako I find time. Pupunta pa ako rin sa ano, Christmas time. The following day, I’m going to… Day after tomorrow, baka magpunta akong Jolo. Bibisitahin ko lahat ng na-deploy doon sa Marawi pati sa Jolo,” he added.