President Rodrigo Duterte is proud to say that among the country’s presidents, only he and the late President Ferdinand Marcos who went out of their way to take care of the military.
“Never was a time na walang ibang — Hindi ako nagyayabang. Walang ibang presidente, dalawa lang, ang nagbigay na atensyon na kinakailangan para sa isang sundalo. Ako lang pati si Marcos. Marcos was also a lover of soldiers, ” said Duterte in a speech in a military camp in Jolo.
Duterte has lavished soldiers and policemen with higher salaries and perks, additional hand guns, new war equipment and uniforms, modern hospital facilities, and a P50 billion fund to take care of the education of soldier’s children , compensation for widows, and livelihood capital for retirees.
“I have told you if you have a problem. I give you my number. If you cannot solve your problem here or hindi kaya solbarin, just call me. Maybe, just maybe kaya kong solbarin. Kasi ako bilib ako sa serbisyo ninyo. Saludo ako,” said Duterte.
Duterte has openly declared his admiration for Marcos (his father, Vicente, was a Cabinet Secretary in Marcos’ first term as president) whom he considered as the country’s “best” president.