By Edwin Fernandez
CAMP SIONGCO, Maguindanao – A total of 88 candidate soldiers took their oath on Monday and began their journey as members of the Philippine Army here.
Maj. Gen. Juvymax Uy, Army’s 6th Infantry Division commander, said the candidate soldiers commenced their six months of rigorous training inside the 6th Division Training School in Barangay Semba, Datu Odin Sinsuat, Maguindanao.
Uy, also the commander of the Army-led Joint Task Force Central (JTFC), led the ceremonies signaling the start of the candidate soldiers’ training.
“You will be temporarily deprived of the things you enjoyed doing before. This is part of your military training to mold your character,” Uy said.
“You are into difficult training ahead, may the best come out victorious, be strong and you will survive,” he added in the vernacular.
He advised every candidate to listen attentively to their training committee members.
“They (trainers) were carefully selected to train you on military principles that will guide you in performing your duties, don’t be shy, ask questions so you will learn better,” he said.
Uy said the selection board considered the recommendation for the enlistment of 64 males and 9 females from different tribal groups that included 52 Ilonggos, eight Maguindanaons, four Cebuanos, three Tedurays, and two each from the Ilocano, Manobo, and Tagalog clusters.
At least 15 others came from various groups, Uy added.
The candidate soldiers, upon becoming regular members of the Armed Forces of the Philippines, are expected to help push forward the peace initiatives that the 6ID has been advocating in Central Mindanao.
The 6ID covers the provinces of Maguindanao, Sultan Kudarat, South Cotabato, and parts of North Cotabato, Lanao del Sur, and Sarangani in mainland Mindanao. (PNA)