Palace: Faustino knew of Centino’s reappointment

Former Department of National Defense OIC Jose Faustino Jr.

Contrary to the claims of former acting defense secretary Jose Faustino Jr., Malacañang on Tuesday said he “knew of the developments with regard to the appointment of Gen. Andres Centino” as the country’s military chief.

Faustino, in a statement on Tuesday, claimed that he only learned about Centino’s reappointment to the Armed Forces of the Philippines through news reports and social media posts over the weekend.

He added that he resigned from his post on 6 January because he was not informed beforehand about Centino’s reappointment to the post of AFP chief of staff, replacing Lt. Gen. Bartolome Bacarro.

Centino previously served in the same position from November 2021 to August 2022.

Presidential Communications Office Secretary Cheloy Garafil stressed that President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr., as the Commander-in-Chief, “has the sole prerogative to appoint the AFP Chief of Staff.”

“According to Executive Secretary Lucas Bersamin, former DND OIC Jose Faustino Jr. knew of the developments with regard to the appointment of Gen. Andres Centino, who is the only 4-star general in the AFP,” Garafil said in a statement.

Malacañang, however, has yet to explain the reason for the sudden changes in leadership in the military.

Following Centino’s departure, the President appointed Carlito Galvez Jr. as the new Secretary of the Department of National Defense.

Prior to Galvez’s appointment, he served as Marcos’s adviser on peace, reconciliation, and unity.

Last month, the President said he was so far satisfied with Faustino’s performance and those of other temporary agency chiefs, hence he was not keen on appointing a full-time Secretary.

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