July 23, 2018, 3:09 pm
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Duterte names Albayalde new PNP chief, Galvez AFP chief

BY Jo montemayor

PRESIDENT Duterte yesterday appointed National Capital Region Police Office Director Oscar Albaylde as the new PNP chief, and Western Mindanao Command commander Lt. Gen. Carlito Galvez Jr. as the new Armed Forces chief effective April 18.

The President, during the 2018 “Gawad Saka” and “Malinis at Masaganag Karagatan” awarding ceremony at Malacañang, announced that he chose Albayalde to take over from PNP chief Ronald dela Rosa, who was supposed to retire last January 21.

Dela Rosa’s tour of duty was extended for three months. Last February, Duterte announced that Dela Rosa will stay on as PNP chief indefinitely.

“Albayalde will head (the) PNP. I asked those from Davao. I mentioned two other names. They said, “That one sir is good, kind.’ I asked, ‘How about Albayalde?’ ‘Sir, he’s too strict.’ So it’s Albayalde for you. B****. Then Albayalde is the man for you. So the stricter the better,” he said.

Albayalde thanked the President for naming him as the next PNP chief, saying: “Thank you to the President really, I am speechless. I will continue to serve the Filipino people.”

He also thanked Dela Rosa, his classmate at the PMA Class of 1986, for endorsing him to the President.

Duterte said he recently talked to Albayalde and told him to make the detention center at the national headquarters in Camp Crame bigger to accommodate more people, especially those who would engage in smuggling and colorum operations.

The President said he has also appointed a new AFP chief but initially declined to announce his choice.

Presidential Spokesman Harry Roque later said he was asked to announce the appointment of Galvez.

Roque said Galvez and Albayalde will assume their new posts on April 18.

Albayalde, before becoming NCRPO chief, served as deputy director of the NCRPO’s Directorate for Plans.

Galvez, the commander of the Zamboanga City-based AFP Western Mindanao Command, will replace Gen. Rey Leonardo Guerrero whose tour of duty was extended until April 24. He was supposed to retire last December 17.

Galvez supervised operations leading to the liberation of Marawi City from the clutches of the Daesh-inspired Maute Group on October 23 after a five-month battle that left 974 terrorists, 168 soldiers and policemen, and 47 civilians dead.

Galvez is a member of the PMA class of 1985 and is a classmate of two other top contenders for the post AFP post – Army chief Lt. Gen. Rolando Bautista and Eastern Mindanao Command chief Lt. Gen. Benjamin Madrigal.

Galvez is due to reach the retirement age of 56 on December 12 this year. 

Duterte said Guerrero will be named the administrator of the Maritime Industry Authority after he bows out of the military service.

Galvez assumed command as Wesmincom chief in January last year. Before that, he was the commander of the 6th Infantry Division based in Maguindanao. Galvez also served as the AFP deputy chief of staff for operations.

He also served as head of the government’s Coordinating Committee on the Cessation of Hostilities. It was in that capacity that he helped in the de-escalation of the conflict with Moro Islamic Liberation Front rebels during the Mamasapano massacre in January 2015.

Galvez also served as commander of the Army’s 104th Brigade that fought Abu Sayyaf terrorists in Basilan.

Galvez thanked the President for the opportunity to serve the 125,000-strong Armed Forces.

“I would like to thank the President for the trust and confidence. I would like to take this opportunity and will do be best,” he said, adding he will serve as AFP chief “with honor, integrity and loyalty.”

Galvez said being a “peace-maker” could have worked in his favor. – With Raymond Africa and Victor Reyes
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