Category: News & Updates

(Update: 11:30AM, April 24, 2017)

The Combined Arms elements of 1st Infantry (Tabak) Division, Philippine Army and tactical operations units of the Philippine Airforce conducted focused military operations against more or less 162 members of Local Terrorist Group (LTG) – Maute Group in Piagapo Complex, Lanao del Sur starting midnight of April 21, 2017.

The continuous focused military operations are in accordance to the President and Commander-in-Chief Rodrigo Roa Duterte’s directive to destroy local terrorists groups not later than July 31, 2017.

The 103rd Infantry Brigade, 1st Infantry (Tabak) Division, Philippine Army headed by BGEN NIXON C FORTES AFP reported 36 members of the Maute group were killed during the 3 days combat operations, which led to the seizure and occupation of enemy’s main encampment with fortified bunkers, fighting positions, and running trenches at Sitio Pagalungan, Brgy Gacap, Municipality of Piagapo, Lanao del Sur. Whereas, the government forces sustained 3 wounded in action (WIA) caused by shrapnel and bullet wound.

Aside from the enemies killed, 1 cadaver wearing camouflage uniform was recovered during the initial search. Further, various war materials were recovered in the encounter site: Fragmentation and rifle grenades; IED components such as blasting caps, detonating wire, and cellphones; video camera; assorted uniforms, literature’ and identifications of personalities; three (3) motorcycles; food stuffs; and passport of an Indonesian national.

According to BGEN ROLANDO JOSELITO D BAUTISTA AFP, Commander, 1st Infantry (Tabak) Division, Philippine Army, combination of lethal and non-lethal effects were implemented to force the LTG out of its current stronghold and compelled them to break into smaller groups. Moreover, BGEN Bautista stressed the application of proportionate force such as surgical airstrikes and precisions to avoid collateral damage towards non-combatants.

The recruitment of teenagers conducted by LTG at Brgy Tambo and the establishment of their camp near their village at the boundary of Balindong and Piagapo towns forced the communities to coordinate and report the LTG activities to the military.

“The Government forces, Local Government Units, and communities will continue to work hand in hand to thwart banditry and terroristic activities and to ensure security, peace and development in Piagapo and adjacent municipalities,” BGEN Bautista said.

The success is the result of a nonstop collaboration and partnership with the military, LGUs and populace in the collective battle against terrorism, banditry and criminality.

Interagency and law enforcement operations in support of the Police and LGUs are continuously being implemented by the military in various places to prevent LTGs diversionary attacks.

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As part of the month-long celebration of its 81st Founding Anniversary, the 1st Infantry (TABAK) Division, Philippine Army held the “Libreng Opera sa mga Bungi ug Ngoho (Free Harelip Operation)” at the Kuta Major Cesar L Sang-an Station Hospital, Pulacan, Labangan, Zamboanga del Sur on April 19-23, 2017.

The beneficiaries of this activity included 67 patients with harelip condition mostly children from the provinces of Lanao del Sur, Lanao del Norte, Misamis Occidental, Zamboanga del Sur and Zamboanga Sibugay.

This surgical mission that covered cleft lip and cleft palate operations was conducted in partnership with the Alpha Phi Omega Project Brotherhood Sweet Smile (BOSS) and Advance Craniofacial Project Philippines Incorporated Foundation (ACPPIF).

Among those who participated in this medical mission included doctors from ACPPIF and the APO Project BOSS founders Belton T. Yenko and Gaudiosa C. Rota.

“With the unified efforts of stakeholders and your 1st Infantry (Tabak) Division, there is now a reason to smile for the poor beneficiaries who were once victims of embarrassment and ridicule,” said BGEN ROLANDO JOSELITO D BAUTISTA AFP, Commander, 1st Infantry (Tabak) Division, Philippine Army.

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To bring the Division closer to the people primarily to the communities in Zamboanga Peninsula, Lanao Province and Misamis Occidental and to manifest its ability to trend with technological developments, the 1st Infantry (TABAK) Division, Philippine Army formally launched TEAMTABAK.COM, the Division’s official online presence along with vigorous initiatives in strengthening its social media properties during the Media Fellowship event at Kuta Major Cesar L Sang-an, Pulacan, Labangan, Zamboanga del Sur on Saturday, April 22, 2017.

The digital innovations on the Internet have offered new opportunities in reaching more people to promote TABAK’s advocacies efficiently. “We recognize that the Internet is an efficient platform to disseminate information about what we do – serving the community and protecting the land – for a wider reach anytime, anywhere. The Internet does not only allow us to have better access to knowledge and information, but it also facilitates easier and faster connection with others around the World. It opens up an entirely different venue for communication and dialogue between our organization and the people we serve. We intend to harness this power of the Internet in today’s digital environment,” said BGEN ROLANDO JOSELITO D BAUTISTA AFP, Commander, 1st Infantry (TABAK) Division, Philippine Army.

BGEN BAUTISTA said TEAMTABAK.COM would also allow an easier alignment not only to the TABAK Division’s mission but also to higher headquarters of the Philippine Army. While keeping its constituents informed, TEAMTABAK.COM can be accessed 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. It will also allow the Division to reach more people not only in the Philippines, but also global communities all over the world.

“A vital asset for information support in our operations, TEAMTABAK.COM will give a better appreciation to effectively and efficiently address interests, issues and challenges in carrying out the Division’s mission,” BGEN BAUTISTA said.

“We are able to establish a platform that would make communications easier and paint a picture of what TABAK really is as we reach and engage more people in the digital world, our website would pave way to a meaningful form of communication to our Brigades and other AFP and PNP units, the local media, and other agencies and stakeholders,” BGEN BAUTISTA said.

“Information dissemination is one of our objectives in creating TEAMTABAK.COM as we are more open through posting projects of the division. Over the years, we have conducted several medical and dental missions, and other community service activities that reached out to barangays in our area of operation. Through these, we are able to change the mindset of the general public that we, soldiers can do good; we are able to change what we are perceived to be,” BGEN BAUTISTA said.

With about 60% of the Philippine’s population now accessing the Internet, it is imperative to establish an online presence for the 1st Infantry (TABAK) Division. As a valuable information dissemination asset to its organization, TEAMTABAK.COM can provide a real-time visualization of press releases, news and updates element for the media and will be available to anyone as a community platform. TEAMTABAK.COM will feature content not only about the military but about the community that the TABAK Division serves.

In the video presentation of TEAMTABAK.COM launching with the theme: “Strength in Online Presence, Enhancing Digital Media Capability,” it was stated that the new website will showcase “the Division’s best efforts toward the achievement of the Armed Forces of the Philippine’s Ultimate Vision: A World-Class Armed Forces and Source of National Pride.”

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As part of its efforts to strengthen relationships with the local media, the 1st Infantry (TABAK) Division, Philippine Army, held a Media Fellowship and Funshoot event at Kuta Major Cesar L Sang-an, Pulacan, Labangan, Zamboanga del Sur on Saturday, April 22, 2017.

51 media practitioners from various organizations in Ozamis, Dipolog, Zamboanga del Sur, Zamboanga Sibugay, Lanao del Sur Oroquita and Calamba areas participated in the events.

The activities aim to boost the camaraderie and enhance relationships between the 1st Infantry (TABAK) Division, Philippine Army and the Tabak Division Press Corps (TPDC-ATR Champion) members and also to increase the number of stakeholders’ engagement.

Cris Llamon of Pagadian-based media organization ABS/TV 24/ITVN and president of the TABAK Press Corps (TPDC-ATR Champion) said: “We are very thankful to the TABAK Division for spearheading this event. The Division can count on the TABAK Press Corps to support the Division’s initiatives in serving the people and protecting the land.”

During the event, the media group also formally announced its resolution to support the policies and thrust of the new Division Commander, BGEN ROLANDO JOSELITO D BAUTISTA AFP, 1st Infantry (TABAK) Division, Philippine Army.

The event also highlighted the launching of the Division’s official online presence, TEAMTABAK.COM along with its vigorous initiatives in strengthening its social media properties.

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(Update: 7:57 AM, April 23, 2017)

As part of continuous focused military operations in Lanao Province in accordance to the President and Commander-in-Chief Rodrigo Roa Duterte’s directive to destroy local terrorist groups, the 1st Infantry (TABAK) Division/Joint Task Force ZAMPELAN conducted focused military operations in Piagapo Complex, Lanao del Sur starting midnight of April 21, 2017.

The operations resulted to a series of encounters between the operating troops of 103rd Infantry Brigade under 1st Infantry Division/JTF ZAMPELAN and undetermined number of local terrorist group members starting 1:00AM of the next day (April 22, 2017).

According to BGEN ROLANDO JOSELITO D BAUTISTA AFP, Commander, 1st Infantry (TABAK) Division, Philippine Army, coordination with the community and local government units paved the way to pinpoint the location of terrorist groups in Lanao del Sur.

At around 5:45AM today (April 23, 2017), intense firefight between the operating troops and local terrorist groups  took place in the area and still ongoing as of this report.

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PAGADIAN CITY, April 20, 2017 – The Battalion Commanders’ Symposium (BCS) 2017 – WESTMINCOM leg, with the theme: “Competent and Dynamic Battalion Commanders, Key to Success of the AFP Development Service Support Plan (DSSP)”, was held at Mardale Hotel and Convention Center, Pagadian City on April 18 – 20, 2017.

The first BCS conducted by the Headquarters Philippine Army this year, this event was spearheaded by the 1st Infantry “Tabak” Division to instill upon the battalion commanders on their critical role in advancing the Commander-in-Chief’s directives as stated in the AFP Development Support and Security Plan “Kapayapaan”; and to update them on the current Command’s initiatives and programs in support to the AFP’s mission.

Participants of the BCS 2017 included 61 Battalion Commanders from Combat, Combat Support, and Combat Service Support Units from 1st Infantry (Tabak) Division and 6th Infantry (Kampilan) Division.

The three-day symposium included talks and lectures of resource speakers from the military and civilian sectors.

Zamboanga del Sur Governor Antonio H. Cerilles, who provided insights as a Local Chief Executive, emphasized that one way to effectively develop a community is to engage with various government agencies. He also encouraged the battalion commanders to maintain robust relationships with the local government units and support for the success of their development initiatives, which also contribute to the fulfilment of the Army’s duties and responsibilities.

BGEN ROLANDO JOSELITO D BAUTISTA, Commander, 1st Infantry Division shared his insights on the role of the military in community development. He said that in addition to their tasks to maintain peace and security, military units must commit to contribute to the development of their community or area of responsibility. “Once we are given a task, we go for gold and always do our best”, he said.

LTGEN CARLITO G GALVEZ JR, AFP, Commander, Western Mindanao Command provided inspiration to the participants when he described the WESTMINCOM based battalion commanders as the “best among the bests”. He challenged them to level up and explore as leaders who should “go to where they have never been before.”

The arrival of Commanding General, Philippine Army, LTGEN GLORIOSO V MIRANDA, AFP highlighted the final day of BCS 2017. He motivated the battalion commanders in his keynote message: “Being a soldier is never easy. It will remain difficult but one has to accomplish its mission at any cost while putting the welfare of every soldier at the top. Soldiers must develop the ability to learn, to remember, and most importantly to adopt. For soldiers to succeed, they should never stop to imagine and think. Thay should always look forward and anticipate things.”

The CGPA also assured that the Headquarters Philippine Army is always open for the battalion’s concerns.

The Battalion Commander’s Symposium is a yearly program to update its Battalion Commanders on the current policies and thrust of the Philippine Army. The symposium was also a venue where the participants had the opportunity to discuss critical issues and strategies as well as best practices in peace and development.

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Pagadian City, April 9, 2017 – The Philippine Army’s 1st Infantry (Tabak) Division joined Zamboanga del Sur’s celebration of “Araw ng Kagitingan (Philippine Day of Valor)” at Pagadian City Hall grounds on April 9, 2017. “The Day of Valor” is observed annually in the Philippines on April 9 as a national holiday to commemorate the fall of Bataan during World War II.

BGEN ROLANDO JOSELITO D BAUTSTA AFP, Tabak Division Commander said in his keynote message in Filipino: “Sa pagdiriwang ng ika-75 taon ng Araw ng Kagitingan na may temang: “Parangal sa mga Beterano, Tungo sa Bayan na Nararapat sa mga Pilipino, mga Pilipino na Nararapat sa Bayan”, maipakikita natin kung paano tayo magiging karapat dapat sa kasarinlang tinatamasa natin ngayon at kung paano natin dapat ihandog ang ating mga sarili sa pagtulong sa bayan sa abot ng ating makakaya.” (In celebrating the 75th year of the Day of Valor with the theme: “Recognizing the War Veterans Towards a Worthy Country for Filipinos, Filipinos Worthy for the Country,” we can show how we can be deserving for the independence we enjoy today and how we can offer ourselves in helping our country.)

Acknowledging the World War II veterans present in the celebration, BGen. Bautista said in Filipino: “Salamat po, aming mga bayani sa inyong pakikipaglaban sa panahon ng digmaan. Ipagpapatuloy namin ang inyong ipinaglaban kaya naman kami ngayon ay may sariling bayang pinaglilingkuran. Lumaban kayo noon upang kami ngayon ay mabuhay ng mapayapa. Maraming salamat sa inyong gabay at inspirasyon tungo sa isang mapayapa at maunlad na bayang pilipinas. (We are grateful to you, our heroes, for what you have done during the times of war. We will continue what you have fought for. Because of what you have done, we now have our own country to serve. You fought then so that we can live peacefully today. Thank you for your guidance and inspiration toward a peaceful and progressive Philippines.”

Taking on this year’s celebration theme, BGen. Bautista said in Filipino: “Tayo ang mga bagong bayani sa henerasyon ngayon dahil nagbibigay tayo ng mga serbisyo para sa kapapayaan ng ating bansa. Ating tatandaan, kahit ano ang posisyon sa gobyerno o isang ornidaryong mamamayan, tayo ay pwedeng tawaging bayani kung nanaisin natin. (We are the new heroes in this present generation because we provide services to maintain peace in our land. Let us always remember that whatever position we have in the government or even if we are ordinary citizens, we can also be called hero if we have the desire to become one.”)

Zamboanga del Sur Governor Antonio H. Cerilles challenged the audience to take on the inspiration of veterans who gave priceless sacrifices during World War II. “Without them, there is no Philippines,” Cerilles said.

Pagadian City Mayor Romeo P. Pulmones stressed in his message that “The Day of Valor” epitomizes the legacy of Filipino’s courage and determination. “It speaks of our country and the qualities of its leaders who are deserving to Filipinos and Filipinos deserving of their country. These qualities are still in our hearts and minds. If we dig enough until we realize the sacredness of our heritage, we will see the glory and wonder of the promise of the Filipino vision,” Pulmones said.

Pagadian City Vice Mayor Ernesto A. Mondarte said the courage in the hearts of our soldiers today allows our flag, which symbolizes our dignity, to fly freely and makes our country secured and peaceful. “We celebrate the Filipino’s courage to protect our birthplace and courage which stood for compassion even in the face of violence,” Mondarte said.

Claudio R. Porio, District Commander of 1st Zamboanga Del Sur Veterans District said: “Araw ng Kagitingan commemorates the heroism of Filipinos and American soldiers. It is an important event that reminds us of our duty to fight for liberty against invaders. Let everyone become a part of what our heroes have fought for. I challenge every Filipino of this generation to be vigilant against foreign invader and keep the flames of patriotism. Everyone can be a hero even by a simple act of bringing smile to our fellow countrymen.”

Other officials of Pagadian City including the City Council and representatives from Zamboanga del Sur Philippine National Police Provincial Office (PRO9) and the Department of Local Government also participated in the program and the laying of floral offerings at the Veteran’s Marker in Pagadian City Hall.

Students from Pagadian City Science High School rendered a special intermission number of a musical play portraying the valor of Filipino soldiers from one generation to another.

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