THE Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) on Thursday, September 27, denied the claims that some of its officers are planning to oust President Rodrigo Duterte from office.
AFP Spokesperson Col. Edgard Arevalos vowed that the Philippine military would remain professional and obedient to the 1987 Constitution “that it has sworn to uphold and to defend.”
“We will never allow ourselves in the ranks of the active service to take direct or indirect participation in any political actions against the present duly constituted authorities,” Arevalo said as reported by The Manila Times.
Military arm still supports Duterte
Aside from AFP, the Philippine Army, Philippine Navy, Philippine Air Force and the Philippine Marine Corps all supposed ongoing recruitments in their respective commands to participate in the “Red October” plan supposedly involving the Liberal Party, the Magdalo group and the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP).
Army spokesman Lt. Col. Louie Villanueva assured that no officer or soldier had been monitored to be involved in plans to oust the president.
“There is no reason for us to lose our loyalty. When you say loyalty, of course, [we refer]to the Constitution. We work for the Constitution, we work for the sovereignty of the state, we are always sticking to that,” Villanueva said.
He that the 96,000-strong army was also supportive of the Duterte administration.
Navy spokesperson Commander Jonathan Zata stated that none of their activities are in any way associated with removing Duterte from office.
“As what the [military]chief of staff said, these rumors should not be dismissed outright, but as I mentioned, I haven’t heard of any rumors of recruitment or anyone being recruited within the Navy’s ranks,” Zata said.
Air Force spokesperson Maj. Aristides Galang Jr. said that his Air Force troopers were very grateful to the president for boosting their morale through the support they have been receiving in his administration.
“With all the platforms we have been receiving and the ongoing modernization program, our troops and officers, we are all focused on the modernization program of the Air Force,” Galang said.
Philippine Marines spokesperson Capt. Jerber Belonio still pledged the Marines’ loyalty to the Constitution despite reports that some Marine personnel and officers were getting haircuts to sympathize with Sen. Antonio Trillanes 4th, the former Navy officer whose amnesty was revoked by President Duterte.
“So far, nothing out of the ordinary is happening here,” he said.
Palace urges the military to work with NBI
Palace spokesperson Harry Roque Jr. on Thursday, September 27 urged the military to work together with the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) by sharing intel on the supposed “Red October” ouster plot against Duterte.
“It is the mandate of the NBI and law enforcement agents to investigate and look into every possible crime that may happen. So, if the military has intelligence information, I hope they can share it with the NBI so we can know whom to punish,” Roque said.
On Monday, September 24, Duterte expressed his disappointment upon hearing rumors that some of the military officers were working together with the Liberal Party to remove him from office.