THE Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) received Wednesday P98-million aid for the families of soldiers who have fallen in the ongoing battle in Marawi City from an anonymous donor.
"The lone philanthropist donor, who wished to remain anonymous despite the large amount of financial aid, pledged and actually donated P1-million each to the kin of our brave soldiers who paid the ultimate sacrifice fighting to wrest Marawi City from terrorists' control," said AFP Public Affairs Office chief Colonel Edgard Arevalo.
Five families of the soldiers killed in action received P1 million each in the ceremonial turnover presided by the AFP Chief-of-Staff General Eduardo Año held at the AFP General Headquarters in Camp Aguinaldo in Quezon City.
On August 2, Año also handed over P1 million each to the families of three fallen soldiers during his visit to the headquarters of the 4th Infantry Division at Camp Evangelista in Cagayan De Oro City.
Arevalo said the remaining amount will be turned over to the major services department for distribution to other recipients.
"What is immensely admirable with this anonymous donor, apart from his or her selflessness in giving away such an enormous sum of money, is the express continuing commitment to provide a-million-peso each to the family of soldiers who may be KIA (killed in action), God forbid, in the continuing crisis in Marawi. The number of soldiers KIA has now reached 122 from 98 at the time of the pledge," he said.
Año, however, commended the private individuals who are continuously displaying generosity for the soldiers and their families.
"This, and the countless other gestures of goodwill, sympathy, and support that we have received in this time when our resolve is being challenged manifest the true spirit of Bayanihan that is kindled in each one of us," he said.
The Marawi siege started on May 23 when members of the Maute group staged an attack there where they occupied and burned several buildings, took hostages and killed innocent civilians.
As of August 6, 528 enemies were killed while 45 civilians were killed by the extremists.
The AFP earlier said that only four barangays have remained to be the enemies stronghold while the rest were already cleared by the government forces. (SunStar Philippines)