Army reservists on COVID-19 frontline

Forty-five reservists of the Philippine Army in Catanduanes are now performing their sworn duty as a regular soldier, minus the salary, serving at the frontline in the province’s battle against the spread of COVID-19.

Teams from the 503rd Ready Reserve Infantry Battalion (RRIBn) of the Philippine Army headed by Battation Commander Major Alan T. Sapanta (RES) PA and the 503rd Community Defense Center (CDC) headed by Director Maj. Gilbert Bragais (INF) PA and under the supervision of 5RCDG Commander Col. Rodolfo Batang (INF) PA are participating in the checkpoints set up by joint personnel of the Philippine National Police (PNP) and the Army in strategic areas in the island province in connection with the Enhanced Community Quarantine being implemented in Luzon.

The 45 Army reservists are deployed in the municipalities of Virac, Bato, Caramoran, Pandan, Bagamanoc and Viga during the entire quarantine period that is scheduled to end on April 14, 2020.

Aided by their strong will to help stop the spread of the coronavirus disease without expecting something in return for their volunteerism, the reservists are risking their lives to help the government in its fight against the virus.

Reservists are the mirror image of regular soldiers, with the only difference that they do not receive remuneration for their services unlike their regular counterparts.

They are usually participate in the civil-military operations of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) like medical/dental operations, tree planting, search-and-rescue operations, community service, manning of checkpoints, blood-letting activities and other non-combatant activities of the country’s military pursuant to the provisions of Republic Act 7077, also known as the AFP Reservists Act of 1991.

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