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Incoming Chief of staff vowed to prioritize AFP modernization program

Incoming AFP Chief-of-Staff Ricardo Visaya vowed to prioritize acquisition of modern equipment and weapons for the Armed Forces of the Philippines. 
"We have to build a credible force. We have to have a defense capability that can deter foreign aggression," he said in reply to question on whether he will continue to push for the AFP's modernization.

Currently the AFP's ongoing modernization program include the two Hamilton-class cutters, six multi-purpose assault craft, 113 armored personnel carriers(APC), three brand-new C-295 medium lift aircraft, two C-130 heavy transports,two FA-50PH light-interim fighter aircraft and eight attack version of the Agusta Westland AW-109 "Power" helicopters, five landing craft heavies and two strategic sealift vessels.

Modernizing the AFP will allow the Philippines to stand up on its own against aggressors without dependence from the other countries, Visaya said.

"Just like any Armed Forces, the AFP is bound to defend our country and secure our sovereignty," he added.

Visaya is slated to take command of the 125,000 strong AFP by July 1. He is the member of the Philippine Military Academy(PMA) Class 1983 and outgoing commander of the Lucena, Quezon-based Southern Luzon Command.

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