MANILA, PHILIPPINES — The Commission on Higher Education (CHED) chief is proposing to include disaster response training if the Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC) becomes mandatory again.
CHED chairperson Prospero de Vera asserts that the implementation of mandatory ROTC to train students is not just for “military training but [also] to develop a corps of individuals who can assist the government during disasters.”
De Vera also did mention that whenever there is a disaster, the country relies on the armed forces, which strains the government’s resources. However, he stated that they would have to wait and see how ROTC is reinstated.
“Mas maganda kung meron tayong corps of students, pool of volunteers who could help in disaster management and that should be the content of the ROTC,” De Vera said. “We will have to wait on what is the congressional action. If the bill is filed to do it in higher (education), then pag-aaralan natin. Kung nasa senior high, eh di (Department of Education) dapat ang sumagot.”
During the election campaign, Sara Duterte-Carpio proposed reinstating ROTC to help instill patriotism in students.
Meanwhile, the defense department supports Duterte-Carpio’s proposal for mandatory military service for all Filipinos over the age of 18, it admits there are “huge” challenges in making it a reality.
Defense Sec. Delfin Lorenzana said that while it will provide a “steady” pool of reservists and inculcate patriotism among Filipinos, funding and resources could be difficult.
Source: ABS-CBN News