MANILA – President Rodrigo Roa Duterte has named Maj. Gen. Ernesto Torres Jr., commander of the Philippine Army's 10th Infantry "Agila" Division based in Davao de Oro, as the new commander of the Northern Luzon Command (Nolcom).
Torres, former Civil Relations Service of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (CRSAFP) chief, will replace former Nolcom commander, Lt. Gen. Arnulfo Marcelo Burgos.
In a January 7 letter addressed to Department of National Defense (DND) Secretary Delfin Lorenzana, Duterte said he has accepted the latter's endorsement to designate Torres as new Nolcom commander.
"I wish to inform you that, per your letter-endorsement and in accordance with the recommendation of the Chief of Staff, Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and Chairman AFP Board of Generals, pursuant to Republic Act No. 8186, as amended by Republic Act No. 9188, the designation of Major General Ernesto C. Torres Junior O-10054 Philippine Army as Commander, Northern Luzon Command, Armed Forces of the Philippines vice Lt. Gen. Arnulfo Marcelo B. Burgos Jr. O-9865 PA is hereby approved effective this date," the letter read.
Prior to his appointment, Torres was head of the Joint Task Force Haribon and deputy commander of the Eastern Mindanao Command.
Torres, a member of the Philippine Military Academy Class of 1989, is an experienced public affairs officer with stints in the General Headquarters and the Philippine Army.
He was also the commander of the 1003rd Infantry Brigade and Army assistant chief of staff for personnel, or G-1.
Torres' combat and administrative experience were highly recognized with several Distinguished Service Stars, Distinguished Service Medals, Meritorious Achievement Medals, Bronze Cross Medals, and Outstanding Achievement Medals, among others.
Meanwhile, Duterte also approved the appointments of Col. Adonis Ariel G. Orio and Col. Randolph Cabangbang to the rank of Brigadier General.
The appointments of both Orio and Cabangbang were confirmed in a letter from Duterte to Lorenzana dated January 16. (With reports from Priam Nepomuceno-PNA)