DND oversees MOA between AFP, Cebu province; envisions deeper collaboration on security, economy

October 13, 2023

The Department of National Defense (DND), Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), and the Provincial Government of Cebu signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) for the land swapping of properties within the AFP Visayas Command (VISCOM), Camp Lapu-Lapu, Brgy. Apas, Cebu City on October 12, 2023.

The MOA was signed by AFP Chief of Staff Gen Romeo S Brawner Jr and Provincial Governor Gwen Garcia, witnessed by DND Assistant Secretary for Real Estate and Installations Emmanuel Anthony V. Ramos and Cebu Vice Governor Hilario P. Davide III. The MOA was approved by the Secretary of National Defense (SND) Gilberto C. Teodoro, Jr.

In his speech, Secretary Teodoro expressed his enthusiasm for the partnership between the AFP and the local government of Cebu, emphasizing the mutually beneficial nature of the agreement.

“This agreement is a synergistic agreement where everybody wins, because not only will Cebu regain what is rightfully hers, but the Armed Forces will also not lose because of the replication commitment of the Province of Cebu,” Secretary Teodoro said.

Under the MOA, the Province of Cebu will facilitate the relocation of the displaced units of VISCOM into their new camp. In addition, the provincial government will fund the construction of exact replicas of military structures and facilities of VISCOM in their new camp to ensure the unhampered operations of the Armed Forces.

“This kind of synergy between a province and the city, between a province and the Armed Forces, makes the job of the Armed Forces much, much easier,” said Secretary Teodoro. “…we have an important role to play here, not only in maintaining internal peace and security in Central Philippines, but for the Armed Forces, it will remain as a principal logistical hub where we need its location to service all our units as we expand outwards.”

Moreover, Secretary Teodoro stressed the significance of partnerships with local governments, highlighting their role in enhancing the resilience and security of the Philippines on the global stage.

“Partnership and siblinghood arrangements between our local government units (LGUs) is just as important, or even more important, than such kind of agreements between an LGU and a foreign local government or national government entity,” Teodoro said.

“Because of our vulnerability as a country, we need to strengthen our internal bonds to make ourselves less vulnerable and more resilient so that we can face the world at an arm’s length basis, and preserve the interests of the Republic of the Philippines first, before the interests of others,” he concluded.

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