CAMP GENERAL EMILIO AGUINALDO, Quezon City – The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) honored the Heroes of the Battle of Zamboanga through the ceremonial ‘3 Volleys of Fire’ in commemoration of their heroism and sacrifices, today in Zamboanga City.
The ceremony was conducted during the joint wreath-laying and awarding program at the Zamboanga City Municipal Hall.
In the activity, the local government of Zamboanga City led by Mayor Maria Isabelle Climaco-Salazar awarded the first responders in the 2013 Defense of Zamboanga. Personnel, unit, NGOs and individuals who contributed to the successful restoration of Zamboanga City were also awarded plaques of appreciation by the AFP.
The Secretary of Interior and Local Government, Manuel Roxas and Defense Secretary Voltaire T. Gazmin attended the activity.
Also present were AFP Chief of Staff General Gregorio Pio P. Catapang Jr., and Commander, AFP Western Mindanao Command, LtGen Rustico O. Guerrero.
Following the ceremony was a site visit to Mariki, Rio Hondo, Lustre Street, KGK Building, and Paniran Area all of which were greatly affected during the crisis and are now undergoing rehabilitation. The officials will also tour the Buggoc Transitory Site in Brgy. Sta. Catalina, and the rehabilitation site in Mampang, both of which are now set for finalization.
A photo exhibit was also held at the Zamboanga City Municipal Hall while General Catapang met with LtGen Guerrero and conducted the traditional “talk to men” at the WESMINCOM headquarters in Camp General Navarro, Zamboanga City.
It has been a year since the AFP declared victory over the rogue Misuari-led Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) elements that attempted to invade Zamboanga and took its citizens hostage.
The victory of Zamboanga will always remind us of the heroism and sacrifices of our soldiers. They risked their lives to defend the city and save innocent civilians from lawless elements selfishly trying to grab power.
Rest assured the AFP will continue to guard against those who attempt to destroy or harm our way of life. Be it Zamboanga or anywhere else.
Defense News Daily PH