By Azer Parrocha and Priam Nepomuceno
MANILA – President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. has named Presidential Adviser on Peace, Reconciliation, and Unity Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr. as the new secretary of the Department of National Defense (DND), Malacañang announced Monday.
In a press statement, Presidential Communications Office (PCO) officer in charge (OIC) Secretary Cheloy Velicaria-Garafil announced that Galvez was named DND chief after the President accepted the resignation of Jose Faustino Jr.
The PCO also shared two photos of Marcos and Galvez having a chat and shaking hands.
“It is with deep regret that the President has accepted the resignation of DND OIC Sr. Usec. Jose Faustino Jr. The President has offered the position of DND Secretary to Presidential Adviser on Peace, Reconciliation, and Unity Sec. Carlito Galvez Jr. and he has accepted,” Garafil said.
She did not give any reason for Faustino’s resignation.
Galvez is a member of Philippine Military Academy (PMA) Class of 1985.
He is best remembered as commander of the Western Mindanao Command wherein he led the AFP in liberating the city of Marawi from the hands of the Maute-ASG-ISIS terror group.
Galvez headed the 6th Infantry “Kampilan” Division of the Philippine Army, the 104th Brigade of the 1st Infantry Division, the 1st Scout Ranger Battalion and the Task Group Panther Bravo of the First Scout Ranger Regiment.
He also held the key positions of Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations, J3, Chairman of the Government of the Philippines Coordinating Committees on the Cessation of Hostilities and Deputy Commander for Peace Process of the Western Mindanao Command.
Galvez was a recipient of the United States Eisenhower Fellowships in 2006 and was adjudged as one of the “The Outstanding Philippine Soldiers” in 2007.
He is also a recipient of the Military Merit Medal, Military Commendation Medal, Gold Cross Medal, Distinguished Service Star, Leadership Award and Outstanding Achievement Medal.
Meanwhile, Faustino, a graduate of the PMA “Maringal” Class of 1988, is a Mindanao veteran who has served under the special forces, infantry and intelligence posts.
He was also the commander of the Joint Task Force Mindanao and was a commanding General of the Philippine Army before being appointed as the 56th AFP Chief of Staff.
Faustino was named DND OIC in June 2022.
The DND on Monday welcomed Galvez’s appointment as its new secretary.
“With Secretary Galvez’s years of experience as a military commander and as a civilian public servant, we are confident that he will be able to effectively lead the Department as we fulfill our mandates to the nation,” DND spokesperson Arsenio Andolong said in a statement.
Andolong, meanwhile, thanked Faustino for his service as the agency’s officer-in-charge.
“On behalf of the entire One Defense Team, we express our deepest gratitude to Senior Undersecretary Jose C. Faustino, Jr. for his service and leadership. We wish him the best in his endeavors in the next chapter of his life,” he added. (PNA)