Attends event marking 75th year of PHL Air Force on his first day as PHL president
(Eagle News) – President Ferdinand Marcos Jr., attended the ceremonies marking the 75th anniversary of the Philippine Air Force on Friday, July 1, stressing the need for a “stronger, bigger and effective air force” to defend the country and its interests, including its territorial disputes in the South China Sea.
This was also one of the first acts by Marcos Jr on his first day in office as the 17th president of the Philippines.
And for Marcos Jr., it is just “appropriate” that this was one of his first acts as President.
-Most opportune time-
“First and foremost, I think it is appropriate. The one of the first my first acts as President is to join you at this momentous 75th year anniversary of our very own the Philippine Air Force.
He congratulated the entire Air Force team, the brave, courageous men and women officers of PAF” saying their “loyalty and commitment and love of country are definitely worth emulation for not only those in the military, but of all citizens of the Philippines.”
He said this was important as PAF and all Filipinos fly and aim high “given the resounding and historical mandate that this administration has received.”
“It is a most opportune time,” he said.
-Defending PHL sovereignty-
Marcos said that his administration has the vision for a “stronger, bigger and effective air force capable of defending and maintaining our sovereign state and of assisting our people in times of dire consequences.”
“A more modern aerial surveillance capability is all the more felt, given the territorial disputes that we in the Philippines are involved in,” he said.
The president also talked about the need for a strong Air Force which is critical to “protect the nation from local communist insurgents and the extremist groups in the South.”
-PAF role amid natural disasters-
Given that the country is also composed of more than 7,000 islands, and that it experiences some of the strongest typhoons recorded in history, a strong air force dependable in times of calamities, not just to bring aid, but for rescue operations, is very important he said.
“Natural disasters are certainties we all expect now to happen,” he said.
“Transport aircraft, helicopters and the like, are important facilities that only the Philippine Air Force can suitably and sufficiently provide, especially during humanitarian assistance and disaster relief operations,” he said.
Marcos also congratulated the entire Air Force, and the awardees who were honored that day for their exemplary performance.
He arrived at the PAF Clark Air Base at past 4 p.m. Friday, July 1, and was given arrival honors.
Former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo was also among those who were there to welcome him at the event.
Marcos acknowledged the former president, now Pampanga second district representative, during the ceremonies.
The Commanding General of the Philippine Air Force Connor Anthony Canlas thanked Marcos for spending his first day in office as the Philippine president with the PAF during its celebration of its milestone diamond anniversary.
He said it was “heartwarming and gratifying” that attending the PAF ceremony marking its 75th year was one President Marcos’ first acts as president and commander-in-chief.
“As we mark our diamond year, it is our role to never lose our luster, our strength and our clarity of mission as Your servants and defenders on or above ground,” Major Gen. Canlas said.
Your Philippine Air Force is committed to continue on the path to greater heights, ready to serve, support, save, defend and accomplish any assigned task
(Eagle News Service)