PRESIDENT Rodrigo R. Duterte has appointed a general from Mindanao as his new Army chief, according to the presidential palace.

Major General Andres C. Centino, commander of the Fourth Infantry Division in Northern Mindanao, will replace Lieutenant General Jose Faustino, Jr. presidential spokesman Herminio L. Roque, Jr. said in a statement on Sunday.

“We are confident that Major General Centino will continue the initiatives to professionalize and modernize the principal branch of the Armed Forces of the Philippines while building the gains to serve our people and secure our land,” he said.

Mr. Centino had also served as deputy chief of staff for operations of the Armed Forces.

Senator Panfilo M. Lacson had questioned the appointment of Mr. Faustino in February, saying he had been in active service for less than a year.

Mr. Centino belongs to the Philippine Military Academy Maringal Class of 1988. He profiled more than 400 Maoist rebels since an anti-communist task force was formed in 2018, according to a report by state media. — Kyle Aristophere T. Atienza