Former Army chief Alberto is new PH ambassador to Israel

Sofia Tomacruz
Former Army chief Alberto is new PH ambassador to Israel
President Rodrigo Duterte also reappoints former speaker Jose de Venecia Jr as special envoy for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation

MANILA, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte appointed former commanding general of the Philippine Army Major General Macairog Alberto as the Philippines’ new ambassador to Israel. 

Alberto’s name was included in the latest list of Presidential appointees sent by Malacañang to the media on Wednesday, March 11. Alberto was appointed on Monday, March 2, while his appointment papers were released Friday, March 6. 

Alberto’s new government post as Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to Israel comes some 3 months after he retired from the Philippine Army in December 2019.  

Before Alberto was chief of the Philippine Army, he led the Intelligence Service of the Armed Forces of the Philippines.  

Like many of Duterte’s appointees to key security positions, Alberto had once been commander of Task Force Davao. 

He is a 1986 graduate of the Philippine Military Academy.

De Venecia keeps post

Meanwhile, Duterte reappointed former speaker Jose de Venecia Jr as special envoy for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC). 

De Venecia was first given the post last May 2017, a month after meeting Duterte in Malacañang. 

De Venecia served as speaker of the House of Representatives from 1992 to 1998, and from 2001 to 2008, or during the presidencies of Fidel Ramos and Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, respectively. He was representative of the 4th District of Pangasinan for a total of 6 terms.

De Venecia was also a peace envoy during the Ramos administration. He made a failed bid for president in 1998, finishing a distant second to Joseph Estrada.

Though he was an ally of Arroyo, De Venecia had a falling out with the former president after his son, businessman Joey de Venecia, dragged Arroyo and her husband, Jose Miguel Arroyo, into the NBN-ZTE corruption scandal in 2007. 

The two politicians have since reconciled and reunited in a vow to win more members back into the Lakas-Christian Muslim Democrats (Lakas-CMD) party. – Rappler.com

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Sofia Tomacruz

Sofia Tomacruz covers foreign affairs and is the lead reporter on the coronavirus pandemic. She also writes stories on the treatment of women and children. Follow her on Twitter via @sofiatomacruz. Email her at sofia.tomacruz@rappler.com.