Armed Forces chief assures lawmakers military will never back revolutionary government

Senate Minority Leader Franklin M. Drilon welcomed the assurances made by Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) chief of staff Lt. Gen. Gilbert Gapay that the military will never support calls for a revolutionary government but he said Congress and the Filipino people will hold the chief of staff to account for his words.

Responding to questions by Drilon during the committee of national defense of the bicameral Commission on Appointments (CA) hearing on Wednesday, Gapay said the AFP will not allow its members to participate in the talks on revolutionary government.

“As the AFP, we will not allow anybody to be part of this movement and to actively participate in the furtherance of the goals and objectives of the group pushing for the establishment of a revolutionary government,” Gapay said.

“The Armed Forces of the Philippines do not support this movement in calling for a revolutionary government, precisely because of the reason that it is unconstitutional and we find it politically motivated,” Gapay stressed

“It will cause more harm than good at this point in time in our country. Our actions are being guided by our sworn duty to uphold and protect our Constitution and serve our people,” Gapay added.

“That is very reassuring and it is good to hear that for the record,” Drilon said in response.

“With those reassurances, I want to place my record that the nominee has my vote and support on this confirmation process,” Drilon added. In a separate statement, the minority leader said: “We will hold Lt. Gen. Gapay to his words. The assurance he made should lay to rest these loose talks about a revolutionary government.”

“We should not be distracted by all these loose talks about a revolutionary government. The task at hand is enormous – contain Covid-19 so that we can get our lives and the economy moving again. We should not be sidetracked. Our people need help – 7.3 million Filipinos are unemployed and 5 million families are hungry. Businesses are closing down,” Drilon said.

“Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenza and the AFP, led by Lt. Gen. Gapay, should continue to uphold the Constitution and denounce calls for a revolutionary government,” Drilon added. SENATE.GOV.PH