Resigned Department of National Defense (DND) Senior Undersecretary and Officer in Charge Jose Faustino Jr. finally broke his silence over the issue of his abrupt resignation from the DND.
Based on his statement that military reporters obtained on Tuesday, Faustino, who is also a retired chief of staff of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), was apparently hurt by the installation of Gen. Andres Centino as AFP chief-of-staff without him being officially informed.
“With the utmost respect, I submitted my irrevocable letter of resignation to the President, His Excellency Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr., on Friday, January 6, 2023, after learning only from news and social media reports that an oath of office of the new Chief-of-Staff, AFP had taken place at Malacañang,” he said.
President Marcos, replacing Lt. Gen. Bartolome Bacarro, who also succeeded Centino last year when Marcos assumed the presidency, reappointed Centino, a former chief of staff of the AFP, to his post.
When Bacarro replaced Centino last year as the top military chief, Centino did not file for an optional retirement and instead held on to his four-star rank on a “floating status.”
Reports said that when rumors spread last month that Bacarro would be replaced, Faustino dropped words that he would resign if Bacarro were removed from his post. In his statement, Faustino said he could not “allow the AFP’s reputation to be tarnished, maligned, or politicized,” although he assured that he would always “hold the AFP in high esteem, which its men and women have painstakingly earned.”
“Through the years, the AFP has metamorphosed into an institution that the Filipino people can truly be proud of. Admittedly, it has had its own share of life’s ups and downs, but nonetheless, it genuinely strives hard to earn and deserve the trust, respect and confidence of our people and allies,” he also said.
Image credits: PNA file photo