Naval ROTC Corps of Officers hold first reunion
In support to the call of President Rodrigo Duterte to recall the ROTC program in colleges and universities throughout the country, former students mostly from Davao City call on their former classmates to hold their first ever reunion at Barokkan dine and drink along Maa Road, Matina, Davao City on April 23. After more than two decades since their ROTC days, they sense the need to show support to PRRD’s plan to reactivate the ROTC program in schools. Having undergone the rigors but fruitful military training, they are proud to make known to the public that thru this, the essence of patriotism and self-discipline is now engrained in their character and behavior. These character traits are now what they proudly say not easily gained but rightfully taught under the ROTC program.
Earlier, PRRD gave the green light for the mandatory ROTC program for Grades 11 and 12 in both private and public schools. Corroboratively, Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana had also cited the importance of Republic Act 7077, otherwise known as the “ Citizen Armed Forces of the Philippines Reservist Act” stressing the need to make ROTC mandatory.
Following the controversy on the alleged mismanagement under the program and the subsequent passing of R.A. 9163 establishing the National Service Training Program (NSTP) in 2001, reserve manpower development under R.A. 7077 drastically dipped, thereby depleting the Reserve Force in the AFP. The latter law also defeats the Constitution which provides among others that: “The defense of the state is a prime duty of the government and the people, and in the fulfillment of this duty, all citizens may be required by law to render personal military or civil service.
Under the Naval ROTC in maritime schools in Davao City, a number of male and female college students completed the basic course while some even pursued the advance ROTC courses and are now gainfully employed in different maritime companies while some chose land-based companies.
And now, for the first time this group of reservists in the Philippine Navy, closed-ranked to hold a reunion showcasing how ROTC program molded their individual career, personality and potentials in their respective community. Colloquially termed in the school campus, “The Corps” refers to the whole organization of Midshipmen as well as Midshipwomen while “Corps” is the generic name referring to the Corps Commander of “The Corps”.
Captain Roberto E. Rubia PN(GSC), chief of staff of Naval Forces Eastern Mindanao, Philippine Navy was the guest of honor together with other invited PN officers in the different units stationed in the city. Captain Rubia was delighted with the enthusiasm of this group, the most potent category of reservists – young, highly-skilled and able-bodied – who can be termed as the “Cream of the Crop” in the Reserve Force, Philippine Navy.