Army officers welcome new recruiting policy; urges Lumads to join military service

January 27, 2010 11:28 am 

DAVAO CITY, Jan. 27 – Officers of the Philippine Army here welcomed the new policy of five feet minimum height requirement for incoming soldiers, giving a chance for more qualified applicants and even the Lumads or indigenous peoples to join the military service.

Maj. Gen. Carlos Holganza, commander of the 10th Infantry Division, said with the new policy the military can now accommodate more Lumads into the service.

“With this new scheme, we can now take more of our Lumad brothers into the Armed Forces and help us in our campaign to win peace,” Holganza said.

He said the government can easily provide the indigenous communities with jobs thru their integration in the military service.

“The link of our Lumad brothers to the community will spell out the outcome of our peace efforts in the countryside particularly here in Davao region and SOCSKSARGEN (South Cotabato, Sultan Kudarat, Saangani and General Santos City),” Holganza said.

Capt. Emmanuel Garcia, spokesperson of the 10th ID based in Camp Panacan here, said the new policy is based on a memorandum signed by Defense Secretary Norberto Gonzales dated Nov. 18, 2009, setting the minimum height requirement of five feet regardless of gender.

Garcia said the change in the Armed Forces regulation on the height limit, which takes effect this year, is a bid to accommodate aspiring soldiers who are not so lucky with their height but are equally competent or possess the skills needed by the service.

He said the new height limit is seen to benefit the indigenous peoples whose average height is a little below the average.

Meanwhile, Garcia said the registration for the Philippine Army Aptitude Test and Battery (PAATB) for applicants in Davao and SOCSKSRGEN regions is now ongoing at S.I.R., Bucana and Matina in Davao City which started last Jan. 18 until Jan. 27.

He said examination will be on Feb. 2-3 at the University of Mindanao, Matina, Davao City. (PNA) FFC/JLC/lvp

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