Officer-in-Charge Jose Faustino Jr., who just left the Department of National Defense (DND), claimed on Tuesday that he left his position after discovering “only from news and social media” that a new military head had taken the oath in Malacanang.

Faustino released a statement on Friday, January 6, 2023, saying, “With the utmost respect, I submitted my irrevocable letter of resignation to the President, His Excellency Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr., after learning only from news and social media reports that the new Chief of Staff, AFP, had taken an oath of office at Malacanang.

General Andres Centino was reappointed by Marcos to lead the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), replacing Lieutenant General Bartolome Bacarro, who had held the position for only about five months.

Faustino asserted that in order to maintain the AFP’s stellar reputation, he must allow it to be “tarnished, vilified, or politicized.” The AFP “has definitely demonstrated its mettle over the decades. It is a highly disciplined and competent institution that will endure under any given condition,” he added without going into further detail.

Carlito Galvez Jr. has recently been chosen to lead DND in the wake of Faustino’s resignation as Presidential Adviser on Peace, Reconciliation, and Unity Secretary.

As stated by DND spokeswoman Arsenio Andolong during an interview on Super Radyo dzBB, Faustino communicated with Marcos after tendering his resignation and prior to the AFP turnover ceremony.

Additionally, Andolong made it clear that there is no “mass resignation” in the DND. After the change in leadership, he claims that all coterminous appointments must submit a polite resignation.

It is now automatic for all co-terminus appointees to submit their courtesy resignations, he said. “Ngayon po na inanunsyo na po yung bagong kalihim po ng kagawaran,” he said.

(Now that the department’s new secretary has been named, all coterminous appointments are required to submit polite resignations.)

But in the context of a mass resignation, he said, “wala pong ganun [But in the context of a mass resignation, there is no such thing].”

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