MANILA President Rodrigo Duterte on Wednesday appointed outgoing Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Chief of Staff Gen. Rey Leonardo Guerrero as head of the Maritime Industry Authority (MARINA).
Duterte announced Guerrero's appointment during his speech at the AFP Change of Command ceremony at Camp General Emilio Aguinaldo in Quezon City on Wednesday.
You sir, that (MARINA) is vacant for a long time now. You know I had to extend your services because of what was ongoing war in Mindanao, specifically in Marawi. So the director of MARINA, the chair is occupied by ghost. It's about time that report to that office by next week perhaps, Duterte told Guerrero.
The President fired former MARINA administrator Marcial Amaro III early of January this year over excessive travels.
Duterte commended Guerrero's exemplary leadership that led to the successful facilitation of the clearing and reconstruction efforts in war-torn Marawi City.
He said the military was also able to prevent the resurgence of any terrorist threat that could have escalated to another conflict and hampered the city's progress under Guerrero's leadership.
The Commander-in-Chief also noted unparalleled increase of number of communist and terrorist surrenderees from less than 800 to more than 5,000 during Guerrero's tour of duty.
These achievements have not come without cost, but let me assure our uniformed personnel, all of you, that the government remains committed in enhancing your capabilities, promoting your welfare and looking after the needs of the fallen and the injured and their families, Duterte said.
Within his six months as AFP Chief, General Guerrero has competently and effectively continued the tradition of dedication and hard work by those who came before him and left a legacy of his own for future leaders to follow. His efforts have strengthened the foundations of not only a stronger and better military, but also of a safer and more secure Philippines, he added.
Lt. Gen. Carlito Galvez Jr. took over as new chief of staff of the AFP, vowing to carry out his task to the best of his ability to end all kinds of conflicts and achieve long lasting peace throughout the country.
Duterte expressed confident that the AFP will continue to move forward in the right direction under Galvez.
With an excellent and motivated workforce behind General Galvez, I am optimistic that the AFP will sustain its gains and remain at the forefront of our fight against all threats to our sovereignty, he said.
The President urged the soldiers to support the leadership of Galvez, who was commander of the AFP Western Mindanao Command prior to his appointment as AFP Chief of Staff.
Armed with our people's unwavering trust and confidence and fueled by the highest degree of professionalism and competence, it is only through our combined efforts as a people and as a nation that we can achieve lasting peace and sustainable development, Duterte said.
Duterte was joined on stage by Vice President Leni Robredo and former Presidents Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo and Fidel V. Ramos. (PNA)
Source: Philippine News Agency