Proposed change on AFP fixed terms to affect 3-star generals: spokesman

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Dec 06 2022 07:43 AM | Updated as of Dec 06 2022 08:28 AM

A proposal to do away with the 3-year fixed term for some of the key officers of the Armed Forces of the Philippines will affect 3-star generals, the AFP spokesman said Tuesday. 

Col. Medel Aguilar, Armed Forces spokesperson, said House Bill 6482 authored by House Speaker Martin Romualdez with Representatives Raul Tupas, Mercedes Alvarez, Divina Grace Yu and Jorge Bustos was crafted after consultation with military officials. 

President Rodrigo Duterte signed Republic Act 11709 last April 13, setting a fixed three-year tour of duty for the AFP chief of staff, vice chief of staff, deputy chief of staff, major service commanders (Army, Air Force, and Navy), unified command commanders, and inspector general "unless sooner terminated by the President".

Aguilar said the 3-year tour of duty from the chief of staff is "not too long."

"The term of the chief of staff is not being changed. The prerogative on the part of the President to terminate the designation of one officer is already incorporated in the law so I think there is no change," he said in an ANC Rundown interview. 

"But there are some minor changes that are being proposed especially among the 3-star generals so that there will be movement, that the organization will be more flexible and dynamic as it addresses the security threat and at the same time as we aspire for professionalism in our ranks."

Aguilar said the change in fixed terms for some military officers will depend on the situation and the needs of the organization.

Then Senator Panfilo Lacson, principal sponsor and a co-author of the bill, earlier said the fixed terms for military officers would end the "revolving door" policy in the AFP and ensure the implementation of merit-based promotion and attrition systems.

House Bill 6482 will restore the rule that except for the Chief of Staff of the AFP, no officer shall be designated to the key positions or promoted to the rank of Brigadier General/Commodore or higher if said officer has less than six (6) months of active service remaining prior to compulsory retirement.

It also provides for lengthening for those in the positions of Captain, Major, and Lieutenant Colonel and increase the maximum tenure-in-grade for Colonel while it also addresses the retirement grade provision of the law together with the proposed measures on pension and retirement for Military and other Uniformed Personnel.

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