Five high-ranking generals have been shortlisted as candidates for Philippine Army chief.
Three three-star generals and two two-star generals were on the list submitted by the Armed Forces of the Philippines’ (AFP) Board of Generals to President Rodrigo Duterte through Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana.
Brig. Gen. Edgard Arevalo, AFP spokesman, said on Sunday it is not yet known if Duterte had already chosen the replacement for Lt. Gen. Macairog Alberto, who will reach the mandatory retirement age of 56 on Friday, December 6.
“All [candidates] possess the attributes of integrity, competence, experience, command and managerial expertise to command the more than [180,000] soldiers tasked to protect the people and secure the land,” Arevalo said in a statement.
He hinted that the military could make an announcement “sometime next week.”
Arevalo did not divulge the canidates’ names, but the Army has at least four three-star generals: Lt. Gen. Ramiro Rey of the Northern Luzon Command, Lt. Gen. Gilbert Gapay of the Southern Luzon Command, Lt. Gen. Felimon Santos Jr. of the Eastern Mindanao Command and Lt. Gen. Cirilito Sobejana of the Western Mindanao Command.
The three-star general, Maj. Gen. Roberto Ancan, is currently head of the Cebu-based Central Command.
All the Army’s infantry division commanders, as well as several deputy chiefs of staff, have a two-star rank.