The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) is celebrating its 77th Anniversary on December 21, 2012. The AFP has an active strength of 120,000 with over 130,000 personnel in the reserve service. It is divided into three main services: the Philippine Army (PA), the Philippine Air Force (PAF), and the Philippine Navy (PN) composed of the Philippine Fleet and the Philippine Marine Corps.
The AFP plays a key role in nation-building. The men and women of AFP serve, defend, and safeguard the country and people. Soldiers, airmen, navymen and marines perform a wide spectrum of tasks, such as building roads, bridges, and classrooms; and peacekeeping and humanitarian missions. The military builds housing units for its personnel. The AFP's Internal Peace and Security Plan (IPSP) Bayanihan, launched on January 1, 2011, is people-centered, working on a broader security framework in partnership with communities.
The AFP said the peace framework signed between the government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front on October 16, 2012, "puts into concrete example the principles embodied in IPSP Bayanihan that concerted efforts and cooperation among stakeholders is key to achieving the goal of a just and lasting peace. Peace and development programs continue through Bayanihan teams."
The AFP has its roots in the Tejeros Convention of March 22, 1897, when President Emilio F. Aguinaldo's revolutionary government created the Philippine Army, from August 30, 1896, until the Treaty of Paris of December 10, 1898. A new Philippine Army was created under the American regime, through Commonwealth Act No.1, the National Defense Act, signed on December 21, 1935. The Philippine Army was renamed the AFP on December 23, 1950.
The Manila Bulletin, led by its Chairman of the Board Dr. Emilio T. Yap, President and Publisher Atty. Hermogenes P. Pobre, Executive Vice President Dr. Emilio C. Yap III, Editor-in-Chief Dr. Cris J. Icban Jr., Business Editor Loreto D. Cabañes, Officers and Employees, congratulate the Commander-in-Chief, President Benigno S. Aquino III, AFP Chief of Staff Gen. Jessie D. Dellosa, Philippine Navy Flag Officer in Command Vice Admiral Jose Luis M. Alano, Philippine Army Commanding General Major Gen. Emmanuel T. Bautista, Philippine Air Force Commanding General Lt. Gen. Lauro Catalino G. dela Cruz, other Officers and Personnel, on the 77th AFP Anniversary and wish them the best and success in their joint undertakings to safeguard Philippine territory and the Filipino people. CONGRATULATIONS AND MABUHAY!