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MANILA, Philippines – Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) chief General Carlito Galvez Jr said he wants to serve as consultant at the Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process (OPAPP) after his retirement on December 12.
“I already conveyed my interest [to] OPAPP. I told Secretary Jesus Dureza, ‘Can I be some sort of consultant?’ He accepted my request,” Galvez said in a press conference in Camp Aguinaldo on Monday, November 19.
“We have trust and confidence [in the] MILF (Moro Islamic Liberation Front) and MNLF (Moro National Liberation Front). Maybe we can also reach out to the BIFF (Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters) so that they can join hands with us and they will also have a peaceful life,” said Galvez.
All AFP chiefs appointed by President Rodrigo Duterte have taken posts in government after their retirement.
Galvez has closely worked with the MILF since he served as co-chairman of the Coordination Committee on the Cessation of Hostilities (CCCH), a joint government-MILF mechanism that protected the ceasefire between the military and the MILF armed group Bangsamoro Islamic Armed Forces.
After the CCCH, Galvez rose from the ranks to lead the 6th Infantry Division in Maguindanao, the Western Mindanao Command in Zamboanga City, and eventually the entire AFP.
“I’ve always said that for the rest of my life, I will always dedicate my services for the peaceful resolution of armed conflicts in Mindanao, particularly the Bangsamoro,” Galvez said in his opening speech at a press conference in Camp Aguinaldo.
MILF chairman Al Haj Murad Ebrahim made a historic visit to Camp Aguinaldo on Monday, symbolic of the growing partnership between the military and the rebel group that embraced peace talks with the government.
Galvez gave assurances that the AFP will continue to support the peace process after his retirement. – Rappler.com