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4 eyed as Año’s AFP successor

By: Francis T. Wakefield

Four senior military officials are being eyed as possible successors of Armed Forces of the Philippines Chief of Staff Gen. Eduardo Año who is retiring on Oct. 26 as he reaches the mandatory retirement age of 56
Año said that the 125,000-strong military will be in good hands as whoever will replace him at the helm of the AFP is qualified or fit to handle the job.

He did not disclose the names of the candidates he recommended but said the AFP Board of Generals have submitted their names – all three-star generals – to President Duterte almost two weeks ago.

“Meron na akong, may sinubmit na yung Board of Generals kay Presidente, four three-star generals,” Año said.

“Lahat sila are qualified to be the chief of staff. They have the seniority, they have the experience, they have the…what we say leadership material. Mga senior leaders. They have risen to the ranks and they are well respected.

Kahit sino doon iyung piliin ni Presidente, the Armed Forces will be good, we will be in good hands,” he added.

Año, a member of the Philippine Military Academy Sandiwa Class of 1985, said they are now awaiting the President’s announcement on his successor as his retirement date approaches. “Maybe in a few days before my retirement he will already have a decision,” he said.

Año said Duterte has not disclosed his plans for him when he retires. The Chief Executive has said that he wants Año to become the Secretary of the Department of Interior and Local Government.

“I don’t know. Hindi pa uli kami nagkausap ni Presidente,” Año said. “If not, I have lots of plans to do after my retirement. For the last 38 years, almost all my life, it has been dedicated to the military. So it’s about time to give time for my family and for myself,” he added.