Roxas names new fire bureau OIC
MANILA, Philippines - Interior Secretary Manuel "Mar" Roxas assigned on Wednesday, October 10, Chief Supt. Ruben F. Bearis Jr., current deputy operations chief of the Bureau of Fire Protection, as OIC of the bureau.
Bearis' appointment comes after former Fire Director Rolando Bandilla took an early retirement on August 20, two days after the late Interior Secretary Jesse Robredo died in a plane crash off the waters of Masbate.
The 53-year-old Bearis was chosen from among other candidates for the post, that included Chief Supts. Ariel Barayuga, Santiago Laguna, Nymfa Cuartel and Carlito Romero.
Bearis was a classmate of Bandilla in the Philippine National Police Academy (PNPA), and was a recipient of the Civil Service Commission's Centennial Presidential Lingkod Bayan award in 2000, which recognizes individuals for their performance and contributions to public service.
Focus on modernization
Bearis said he was grateful for the trust of Roxas and will use his new position to better serve the department and the public.
"I welcome this new assignment and look at it as a challenge and a great opportunity for me to be of more service to BFP and to the people,” he said.
He added that he will prioritize the modernization program of the fire bureau, by implementing the fire code fees collection nationwide.
In September, Bearis told Rappler that about 600 municipalities and towns still do not have fire trucks.
Bearis intends to use the collected money to supply stations with their needs, since 80% of the total collection is authorized for modernization purposes.
“This will help the bureau to purchase more fire trucks, personnel protective equipments like fire boots, fire helmets, fire coats and trousers, and build fire stations,” he said. - Rappler.com