by Karylle Panorel | February 9, 2022
C/Col Sophie F. Rodrigazo 1CL, corps commander of the Silliman University Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (SU ROTC) Unit, said she’s “okay and supportive” of the proposal to require military service for all young Filipinos.
Rodrigazo, who was named ROTC Cadette of the Year by the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) recently, agreed on the importance of having military service but she thinks that there should be thorough planning on how the program should be executed.
“I believe we need it but not now, they need to take time to plan it properly before they implement it,” she said.
Recounting Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio, vice-presidential aspirant, she announced her plan to push for mandatory military service if she wins the forthcoming election.
Duterte-Carpio also clarified that the training for individuals enrolling in compulsory military service would not last for just one weekend or a month, which is currently the case for ROTC.
Rodrigazo then added that ROTC strengthens national security to avoid invaders as well as conflict, it plays a part in getting leverage and setting on equal terms on diplomacy to other nations.
“I do believe military service can instill patriotism to our citizens but it’s not the only answer. We don’t instill patriotism through the fear of war, but we inspire the Cadets to love our country and to know how to take care of our nation,” she said.
Meanwhile, AFP also awarded SU for its “outstanding support” as the academic institution of Rodrigazo. Cpt. Ma. Ellaine Adarna, Nurse Corps (NC) Reserve (RES) training staff of the SU ROTC Unit, received the plaque on behalf of SU.
The said recognitions were received during the 86th AFP anniversary held at Camp General Emilio Aguinaldo in Quezon City.
“It’s very heavy. Especially with the concern that we didn’t have face-to-face training, it gives me a different kind of weight… The pressure here is I had to do good as is expected. I feel that I should be successful after I graduate,” said Rodrigazo.
ROTC is a college program designed to train civilians in the rudiments of military service in order to produce capable AFP reservists.