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Statement of the National Security Adviser Secretary Eduardo M. Año

With respect to his recent call to the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and the Philippine National Police (PNP) to withdraw support from the administration, Rep. Pantaleon Alvarez severely underestimated the professionalism and integrity of both the AFP and the PNP. Both institutions are loyal to the Constitution, the rule of law, the chain of command, and the President as Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces. Insinuations to the contrary are baseless and unfounded.

Any call for withdrawal of support when done by a public official, more so one that is also a high-ranking reservist officer, is not only irresponsible but also illegal and unconstitutional. It erodes the very foundation of our democratic institutions and undermines the supremacy of civilian authority over the military. Such utterances and actions can be construed as seditious or rebellious and they have no place in our society.

In a democratic society such as ours, the armed forces are neutral and apolitical, serving the interests of the nation as a whole. The AFP and PNP shall continue to remain above petty partisan, political, or personal interests. Rep Alvarez, and others who may be similarly inclined, should not drag such respected institutions to serve their partisan agenda or self-interest, even if such calls are made, as he claimed, in a fit of emotion.

We call on the Department of Justice to thoroughly review this matter and consider appropriate legal actions against Rep. Alvarez and others similarly situated. His words and deeds are a disservice to our men and women in uniform who risk their lives daily to safeguard our nation's security, defend us from all manner of threats, and uphold the Constitution.###

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