CAMP AGUINALDO, Quezon City – The Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process (OPAPP) Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr. lauded the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) for being a champion of the peace process on Monday, September 28 during the AFP-OPAPP Peace Symposium at the AFP Commissioned Officers Club.
“We commend the AFP not only for keeping our country safe from both internal and external threats but also for helping the government create an environment for genuine peace. Over the years the AFP has been putting the primacy of the peace process in its core values–you are our champion of the peace process,” said Secretary Galvez.
The AFP in partnership with the OPAPP conducted the onsite-online peace symposium which was attended by Secretary Galvez via virtual teleconferencing.
“We thank the AFP for its hard work in the successful ratification of the Bangsamoro Organic Law, the maintenance of peace and cooperation with the MILF and MNLF, the successful conclusion of the RPA-ABB Kapatiran Peace Tables and its support to the NTF-ELCAC. It is truly inspiring for the AFP to become the number one organization in public service,” Secretary Galvez added.
The symposium is part of the AFP’s efforts in observance of the 16th National Peace Consciousness Month. It aims to ensure that the AFP Planning Staff, especially AFP field units are provided with updates and assessments of the government’s peace programs and initiatives.
The AFP Vice Chief of Staff Vice Admiral Gaudencio C. Collado Jr. presided over the activity that was anchored on the theme “Maaasahang Sandatahang Lakas Para sa Ligtas at Mapayapang Pamayanan”.
“The AFP-OPAPP Peace Symposium 2020 exemplifies the urgent need for a dynamic and responsive armed forces, one that possesses not only the skills and expertise for armed dispute but more importantly, an armed forces that is capable of generating transformative perspectives in approaching our longstanding goal of bringing peace to our fellow citizens,” Vice Admiral Collado said.
Also present were Undersecretary for Operations and Deputy Presidential Adviser on Peace Process Isidro L. Purisima, and AFP Peace and Development Office (AFPPDO) Assistant Chief, Rummuell J. Perez.
The AFPPDO headed by Brigadier General Francisco Ariel Felicidario III spearheaded the activity which was also live streamed via the AFP Civil Relations Service Facebook Page. This is to achieve widest dissemination for military and civilian audiences amid the COVID19 pandemic.
There were a total of 79 participants who are key officers and personnel from the General Headquarters, Philippine Army, Philippine Air Force, Philippine Navy, Unified Commands and Divisions. Of which, 26 were onsite and subscribed to safety protocols while 49 attended virtually.
The subject matter experts were Director Pamella Ann Padilla-Salvan, Head of Peace Policy and Planning Department of OPAPP who discussed the Government Peace Agenda and Women, Peace and Security; Mr. Ariel C. Hernandez, Chairperson of the Joint Normalization Commission who talked about the Normalization Process for the Bangsamoro and COVID19 Implication; and USec Cesar B. Yano, National Defense Undersecretary for Defense Operations who tackled Defense Department Guidelines on the Peace Process with Different Threat Groups.
“As sworn protectors of the state and the people, the men and women of the AFP shall not limit its capacities to out-dated methods and strategies that we have been taught, rather, we should adeptly adapt to the fast-paced changes in the security environment in order to become effective implementers in the government’s quest to bring lasting peace to our country,” Said Vice Admiral Collado.