“It’s Garma of the PNP [Philippine National Police] who will replace Balutan. She is an Ilocana who’s from Cagayan Valley,” Duterte told reporters.
He made the statement even as Armed Forces Chief Benjamin Madrigal said Major General Cirilito Sobejana, head of the Sixth Infantry Division, will take over the Western Mindanao Command on Friday.
“The turnover will be on 28 June. He is most qualified, having been assigned there most of his career,” Madrigal said, in a text message to the Philippine News Agency late on Monday.
“Sobejana is a Medal of Valor awardee and a dedicated officer.”
Malacañang initially announced that Duterte had sacked Balutan, but Presidential Spokesman Salvador Panelo said later that Balutan had resigned.
Balutan led the PCSO in 2016, but offered to step down in March this year following accusations of overspending for the PCSO’s Christmas party in 2017.
Earlier this month, the 44-year-old Garma, a colonel, assumed office as the first female police chief of Cebu City, replacing Col. Joel Doria.
She had also served in the President’s hometown Davao City as an administrative officer, then as head of Davao City’s Women and Children’s Protection Desk, and later as chief of Davao City’s Sasa and Santa Ana police precincts.
Garma recently intensified a campaign to curb the illegal gambling in the city and strengthened the government’s anti-narcotic efforts.
She is a graduate of the Philippine National Police Academy Class of 1997. With PNAREAD: Lawmakers seek revamp of PCSO
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