Press Release
April 13, 2010

Villar vows modernized AFP, PNP

Nacionalista Party standard-bearer Manny Villar vowed to implement the modernization of the Armed Forces and the National Police to address peace and order and national security concerns.

"The effective and efficient implementation of a national security program will rely on the AFP's modernization. Ang pinaplanong modernization noong araw pa na hanggang ngayon ay hindi pa ma implementa ay kailangan matupad na," Villar said in an interview with radio station DZMM.

"Modernization is critical to national security and peace and order in the country," he added.

Villar also said that the AFP modernization needs to be implemented for the sake of the soldiers. "Our soldiers really deserve something better from the government. Kailangan maitaas natin and antas ng kanilang buhay," Villar explained.

At the same time, the NP standard-bearer said he would upgrade the capabilities of the Philippine National Police (PNP) to make it more responsive and effective against crime.

"Our policemen are too ill-equipped. Dapat natin silang tulungan. Kawawa ang ating mga pulis, walang sasakyan at kulang ang gamit. Kapos sa gasolina. Metro Manila policemen need more helicopters so they can better perform their tasks," Villar said.

He said the modernization of the AFP and PNP will go a long way in solving the country's law and order problems. "Papalakasin natin ang AFP, lalong-lalo na sa Mindanao, para sa ganun ay hindi na kailangang magkaroon ng private armies," he said.

But Villar stressed that the situation in Mindanao will require a holistic approach. He said he will continue a policy of negotiation while committing to deliver badly needed services in education, health, and agriculture.

He said any peace process for Mindanao must allow the participation of major peace stakeholders including religious groups, civil society, the academe, women, the youth, NGOs and people's organizations, peace advocates and armed groups.

Villar also vowed to implement a sustainable economic development program in the region.

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