A major reorganization of the Armed Forces of the Philippines is imminent, after the number three position in the military was vacated Monday by Lt. Gen. Eduardo Oban, and the retirement of several senior military officials.
Brig. Gen. Honorato de los Reyes, Armed Forces deputy chief of staff for Personnel, however, said yesterday that the AFP Board of Generals has not yet convened to decide and recommend senior military officials to occupy the vacant positions, those to be vacated soon.
The recommendations of the BOG will be forwarded to Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin for concurrence, and later the approval by President Benigno Aquino III.
The position of AFP Deputy Chief of Staff vacated by Oban after his appointment Monday as the new Philippine military chief is open.
The race is now also on for the position of commanding general of the Army 3rd Infantry Division, with the retirement of its present commander, Major General Vicente Porto, on April 5.
The names of Maj. Gen. Josue Gaverza, commanding general of the Army Support Command, and Brig. Gen. Rey Ardo, chairman of the Philippine government’s Committee on the Cessation of Hostilities in Mindanao, cropped up among the contenders for the position of Porto.
Gaverza who used to serve as commander of the 303rd Infantry Brigade, belongs to the Philippine Military Academy Class 1978, while Ardo is a member of PMA Class 1981, with Chief Supt, Cipriano Querol Al-Haj, regional police director of Western Visayas, and Chief Supt. Charles Calima, PNP Training Service director, and newly-promoted Chief Supt. Mark Edison Belarma, former Negros Occidental police director, among his classmates.
Army chief Lt. Gen. Arturo Ortiz is also retiring in November, while Oban bows out from the military service in December.
Retired Lt. Gen. Nestor Ochoa, former AFP officer-in-charge and 3rd ID commander, said Monday that he is set to assume his new position as Philippine Ambassador to Brunei, where he will replace former AFP chief Alexander Yano, an appointee of former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.*GPB