DEFENSE Secretary Delfin Lorenzana has hinted that former Armed Forces chief Gen. Felimon Santos Jr., who bowed out of the service on Monday upon reaching the retirement age of 56, will get a government position.
“I don’t know if his retirement will last because he might be tapped again to work in government,” Lorenzana said during the change of command ceremony in Camp Aguinaldo on Monday
Santos relinquished the highest military post to Lt. Gen. Gilbert Gapay, former Army chief. Santos is the seventh AFP chief appointed by President Duterte. The six others are Ricardo Visaya, Eduardo Año, Rey Leonardo Guerrero, Carlito Galvez, Benjamin Madrigal, and Noel clement.
Of the six, only Clement has not been given a position in the government. Clement retired from the service last January, leading to the assumption of Santos as AFP chief.
Visaya is now administrator of the National Irrigation Administration, Año is the interior secretary, Guerrero is customs commissioner, Galvez is presidential peace process and concurrent National Task Force Against COVID-19 chief implementer, while Madrigal is administrator of the Philippine Coconut Authority.
Santos, asked if he has been offered a post in the government, said, “Wala pa (None yet.)”
On whether he is ready to serve in the government, Santos said, “Magpahinga muna (I will rest first).”
Meanwhile, Lorenzana said Santos had no chance to travel abroad to visit his counterparts because of the COVID-19 pandemic. “So in the process, he had a lot of travel money in savings,” he said.
Lorenzana said Santos used the savings to buy vehicles for the use of area commands of the Armed Forces. “That’s a very good, noble act, Jun (Santos’ nickname),” the defense chief said.