President Rodrigo Duterte on Wednesday pledged to raise P50 billion by 2022 for a foundation dedicated to fund the education of all soldiers' children.
"I promise you, I will set up a foundation independent of the benefits na nakuha niyo. Para lang ito sa edukasyon ng mga anak niyo," Duterte told soldiers in Tacurong, Sultan Kudarat
Duterte said P20 billion has already been set aside for the education fund, while the P30 billion will be raised in the next 5 years.
The president did not specify the source of the funding, but said that the amount will be deposited in banks to allow it to gain interest.
"That P50 billion can take care of the education of all of your children... Over the years dagdagan ko na lang para sigurado. Hindi niyo maubos 'yan dahil sa interest," he said.
Duterte made the commitment amid ongoing firefights between government forces and terrorists in Marawi City, where soldiers have been deployed over the last two weeks.
As of June 6, deaths due to continuing clashes have reached 202, including 134 terrorists, 38 government troops and 30 civilians, said Brig. Gen. Restituto Padila, Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) spokesperson, in a separate press briefing.