MANILA — Around 641 Philippine Army (PA) enlisted personnel, who took part in the five-month battle to liberate Marawi City from the clutches of the Maute Group terrorists, were promoted to next higher rank Tuesday.
Lt. Col. Louie Villanueva, PA spokesperson, said the pinning of ranks took place at the PA Grandstand in Fort Bonifacio, Taguig City.
Out of the 641 promoted enlisted personnel, 36 are master sergeants, 98 are technical sergeants, 103 are staff sergeants, 193 are sergeants, and 211 are corporals.
“You put your lives on the line and you did not fail your country all in the name of service. Ako’y umaasa na kapag dumating man muli ang pagkakataong kakailanganin ng ating bansa ang inyong tulong, sana’y hindi kayo mag-aalinlangan o magaatubiling muling ibigay ang lahat kahit ang inyong buhay para sa bayan (I am expecting that when the time comes where your help will again be needed by our country, I hope you will not hesitate to give everything, even your lives, for the country),” PA chief Lt. Gen. Rolando Joselito D. Bautista said.
The number of promotees recognized Tuesday is just part of the large promotion of 4,252 soldiers this year.
“They will be promoted for their contribution in the fight to liberate Marawi,” Villanueva stressed.
The battle to liberate Marawi started on May 23, 2017 and ended in October. Some 165 soldiers and police officers sacrificed their lives during the hard fought urban battle while a total of 1,465 troopers were wounded in action.
“To our Marawi troops, I know the countless challenges that you have grappled with day in, day out while you were in Marawi, including the uncertainty of returning home safe from deployment to be in the arms of your families again. I admire your courage for having fought with such challenges while you also endure and fought the physical war. The valor and resilience that you have displayed present the finest values of the military and the Filipino people,” Defense Undersecretary Cardozo M. Luna, who was guest-of-honor of the event, said. PNA-northboundasia.com