By DPAO, 8ID PA
September 3, 2016
CAMP GENERAL VICENTE LUKBAN, Catbalogan City – The 8th Infantry (Stormtroopers) Division Philippine Army sent another unit in the island of Sulu to augment the other maneuvering troops in compliance with President Rodrigo Roa Duterte’s government mandate against the Abu Sayyaf Terrorist Group.
The send-off ceremony was conducted at Calbayog City Airport on 31 August 2016 with Brig Gen Alan R Arrojado AFP, Deputy Commander, CENTCOM as Guest of Honor and Speaker accompanied by BGen Cesar M Idio AFP, the 8ID Assistant Division Commander.
During the ceremony, Capt John O Geronimo, the Division Chaplain blessed the troops for having God’s guidance in fighting the terrorists. After which, Col Mario C Lacurom, Commander 803rd Infantry “Peacemaker” Brigade presented a plaque of recognition to Lt Col Carmelito T Pangatungan, the unit Commanding Officer on behalf of the “Innovators” for their laudable services rendered in Eastern Visayas Region.
Furthermore, a generous Ms. Myta Maglabus, former President of Rotary Club of Mactan gave rosaries and spiritual booklets to spare God’s wisdom and courage among the troops. In addition, Mr. Mike Ato, Deputy Officer of the Presidential Assistance for the Visayas and Mr. Kenneth Sotto, Country Director, Project Abroad Philippines donated 33 sando bags of assorted goods, three boxes of medicines/vitamins, 23 boxes of canned goods and 31 sacks of rice that will help sustain the food and medicine requirements of the troops.
Along this line, Lt Col Carmelito T Pangatungan reported the completeness of the troops followed by the inspection by Brig Gen Alan R Arrojado prior the boarding to Air force C-130 plane.
As a former Joint Task Group Sulu Commander, Brig Gen Arrojado gave points of view in accordance to his experiences in the area on what they are going to face in hunting the Abu Sayyaf Group. He gave emphasis on the provisions of Combat SOP’s and the individual tactical preparedness against the terrorists to keep in line of strength all throughout the battle. He also added to the troops on the observance of human rights despite of terrorists’ blood affinity among the residents in the area.
The unit will be stationed in the area of Jolo, Sulu to conduct focused military operations. Henceforth, the AFP is asking the sympathy of the people of Sulu to support the ongoing operation to help achieve our long aspiring peace and development in the Southern Philippines.