AFP, BCDA sign MOA for ‘Bantayog ng Kabayanihan’

CAMP AGUINALDO, QUEZON CITY – The Civil Relations Service Armed Forces of the Philippines (CRSAFP) entered into a Memorandum of Agreement with the Bases Conversion Development Authority (BCDA), Fort Bonifacio Development Authority (FBDC) and Bonifacio Arts Foundation Incorporated (BAFI) on June 9, 2023, Friday at the Headquarters, Civil Relations Service Armed Forces of the Philippines for the establishment of the Bantayog ng Kabayanihan in Bonifacio Global City, Taguig City.

Bantayog ng Kabayanihan is a monument that will symbolize the sacrifices and heroism of the soldiers who have fought for peace and freedom, and for the living heroes who are continuously dedicating their lives in protecting the country and serving the Filipinos. It aims to awaken the sense of patriotism of Filipinos, and to help them realize that addressing insurgency and social issues is a shared responsibility.

This project is also aligned with BCDA’s Historical Markers Project under the Saludo sa Sundalo Program.

Brigadier General Arvin R Lagamon PA, Commander of the CRSAFP; Atty. Gisela Z Kalalo, Executive Vice President and Chief Operations Officer of the BCDA; Ms. Maria Lourdes R Reyes, Chief Financial Officer and Mr. Alfonso Javier D Reyes, Chief Operating Officer of FBDC; and, Ms. Maria Isabel O Garcia, Managing Director/Curator of BAFI. signed the Memorandum of Agreement.

The event was graced by BCDA Chairman Delfin N Lorenzana, together with other guests, such as Lieutenant General Charlton Sean M Gaerlan PN (M), the Deputy Chief of Staff, AFP; Police Major General Edgar Alan O Okubo, Regional Director of NCRPO; Major General Gilbert F Saret (Ret.) of Armed Forces and Police Savings and Loans Association, Inc. (AFPSLAI); BCDA Director Reghis M. Romero III, and Brigadier General Ferdinand S Razalan (Ret.) of Armed Forces and Police Mutual Benefit Association, Inc. (AFPMBAI). The fund for the establishment of the monument was donated by the AFPSLAI and AFPMBAI.
BGen Lagamon said, “Bantayog ng Kabayanihan is a fitting tribute for the sacrifices and heroism of our sailors, airmen, soldiers and marines to include the police and other uniformed service – past and present, active and retired – who works silently and remained loyal and true to their oath in fighting those who threatened to destroy the freedom and independence of our country. And to those who remained loyal to their oath of defending our country and our people with our lives if necessary.”

“This monument will keep the soldiers inspired, motivated especially those who are in the isolated distant posts, those who are manning the isolated islands at the West Philippine Sea, our personnel who are patrolling the skies, seas and streets and our personnel who have to leave their respective families not knowing if they will be able to return safely,” he added.

Chairman Lorenzana stated, “As a soldier who served for three decades, I have seen firsthand the sacrifices a soldier had to make in furtherance of its solemn duty of defending our country and protecting our people. The Bantayog ng Kabayanihan is one way of empowering our soldiers through immortalizing their stories of heroism and sacrifices.”

The “Bantayog ng Kabayanihan” will be the second historic marker that will be built in BGC in honor of our military. In 2018, the BCDA together with partners FBDC and BAFI installed the “Alab ng Puso,” which portrays a Filipino soldier who is reading a letter from his family. The installation of these markers are part of the BCDA’s BGC Historical Markers Project, which aims to consistently and continuously share stories about patriotism and the rich history of Fort Bonifacio–a former military camp that now houses the country’s premiere business district.