A SCULPTURE that pays tribute to the services and sacrifices of soldiers to the country will be unveiled on Monday by the Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA) and Fort Bonifacio Development Corp. (FBDC).
The Alab ng Puso (Fire in the Heart), a sculpture hemmed by artist Daniel de la Cruz, will be unveiled at the Bonifacio Global City (BGC) by BCDA, FBDC and military officials, including Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Vice Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Salvador Melchor Mison Jr.
Mison will represent President Duterte during the event that will give the public the first glimpse of the sculpture that shows an ordinary Filipino soldier, with his weapon set aside, reading a letter from his family.
“The Alab ng Puso sculpture is a fitting tribute to the sacrifices of our men and women in uniform, always putting country first above self,” BCDA President and CEO Vivencio Dizon said.
The event kicks off the BGC Historical Markers Project initiated by the BCDA, in collaboration with the FBDC and the Bonifacio Art Foundation Inc.
“The installation of historical markers at the Bonifacio Global City is also an initiative to promote the historical value of Fort Bonifacio, a former military camp,” the BCDA said.
The BCDA has already contributed P8 billion to the modernization program of the AFP during the first two years of the Duterte administration.
In total, the AFP has received P40 billion from the BCDA since the agency was created in 1992.
During the term of former Presidents Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo and Benigno S. Aquino III, the military put forward a grand plan of shedding off or at least leasing some of its current camps to private entities as a principal source of funds to back up its modernization program.
Even Camp Aguinaldo, the general headquarters of the AFP and where the office of the Department of National Defense is located, was included in the plan.
Nothing concrete, however, came out of the proposal. Instead, Aquino worked out and managed to have the military modernization law extended in 2012 for another 15 years with a corresponding yearly budget allocation.