CAGAYAN –The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Northern Luzon Command (Nolcom) ordered on Thursday the deployment of military engineers to help the people of Region 2.
Nolcom Commander Maj. Gen. Arnulfo Marcelo Burgos Jr. said that the move was in compliance with President Duterte’s with to use all available assets to help in the relief and recovery efforts in Cagayan Valley.
There are three engineer construction battalions that are strategically deployed across Northern and Central Luzon.
Burgos said that “such is a calculated and proactive move in preparation for the next logical step in post-disaster operations” something which, according to him “they have learned in the AFP’s long history of being first responders in times of calamities.”
He stressed to his soldiers that their “commitment to provide assistance and help constituents go through this challenge by sending forces and equipment in the area to hasten the relief efforts as well as the eventual rehabilitation operations.”
Like with the regular and reserve forces, these additional manpower and equipment will be placed under the control of Joint Task Force Tala, Nolcom’s operating arm in Region 2.
They will be working in close coordination with the Emergency Operations Center of Cagayan Valley’s Office of Civil Defense as well as the Governors of Cagayan and Isabela through their Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office.
Burgos highlighted that “this crisis showed our nation and the international community that the AFP’s state of the art equipment acquired through the modernization program are not only tools for war but, more importantly, they are tools to save Filipino lives and tools that give hope amidst the uncertainties of calamities.”