Amid constant criticism, President Duterte gets encouragement for his leadership of the armed forces of the Philippines in Marawi City from the only other living President who also declared martial law.
Former President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo particularly praised President Rodrigo Duterte’s regular visits to the soldiers in the field and the pay and other increases in financial benefits given to members of the AFP and PNP since July 2016.
Arroyo also cited that among the latest benefits increased was the soldiers’ combat pay which has been raised to P 3,000.00 monthly under President Duterte’s E.O. 3.
“The least a leader can do to increase the morale of the defenders of our democracy and peace is to make sure that their families do not go hungry,” the former President said.
Magdalo rep. Gary Alejano, who was in the Oakwood Mutiny that threatened to oust Arroyo as president in 2003, disagreed.
Alejano in a separate statement said that there is No raise of pay for soldiers and police. “The Duterte administration has yet to deliver on their promise to double the salaries of our police and soldiers. The arrears owed by the government to our veterans and retirees have also been not addressed. Further, the takeover of KADAMAY on AFP and PNP housing units which was subsequently awarded to them by the President. All these have been a huge letdown for the soldiers and police.”
Alejano also panned Duterte’s allaged failure to further strengthen the armed forces. “The Duterte administration has made initiatives to further strengthen the armed forces through the continuation of the AFP Modernization Program and procurement of defense resources. The revival of mandatory ROTC in senior high school is also a welcome action since this would help in augmenting force in times of need. However, more focus of the military on internal security rather than on external security rollbacks efforts towards security sector reform.”
the former chief executive ound out early in her Presidency that the soldiers and policemen were among the lowest paid among government workers.
early in her term, arroyo implemented in 2002 the law increasing the policemen’s salaries, which, since its passage in 1992, had never been implemented for lack of funds.
Also during her Presidency, Congress passed RA 9166, to increase the pay of AFP personnel and raise the pension of the recipients of the Medal of Valor or their families from P200.00 monthly to P25,000.00.
Just recently, Duterte confirmed that Arroyo was in Malacanang to give him encouragement.
Arroyo is now a congressman on her last term as congressional representative of Pampangas 2nd district.
Arroyo has also been a vocal ally of the President, who in turn repeatedly praises her work as chief executive and the fact that she appointed him as her anti-crime adviser during her presidency.