6th Infantry Division changes guard in historic rites

Published May 27, 2018, 10:00 PM

by Mario Casayuran and Vanne Elaine Terrazola

By Ali G. Macabalang and Francis T. Wakefield       

Datu Odin Sinsuat, Maguindanao – The Army’s 6th Infantry “Kampilan” Division (6ID) changed leadership in symbolic rites witnessed for the first time by Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) officials  who are working closely with the military in the campaign for lasting peace in Mindanao.

The command turnover between Brig. Gen. Cirilito Sobejana and Lt. Gen. Arnel dela Vega preceded a brigade-size parade Saturday morning honoring the latter for his fruitful stewardship of the 6th ID marked by close rapport with the MILF in sustaining tranquility and combating radical rebels in Central Mindanao.

Gen. Sobejana, a well-decorated military officer and a member of the Philippine Military Academy’s Class 1987, replaced Gen. Dela Vega, who assumed the leadership of the Zamboanga City-based Western Mindanao Command (WestMinCom) side-by-side with his promotion to three-star rank by President Duterte.

The ceremonial changing of guard at the 6ID headquarters at Camp Siongco, Barangay Awang here was administered by Lt. Gen. Rolando Joselito Bautista, commanding general of the Philippine Army, representing new AFP Chief of Staff Gen. Carlito Galvez Jr.

Sobejana, a recipient of numerous medals for gallantry in combats in his junior days, assured that he would continue all peace-enhancing initiatives of his predecessors in the 6ID, notably now retired Gen. Edmundo Pangilinan, Gen. Galvez, and Gen. Dela Vega.

Civilian officials led by Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao Gov. Mujiv Hataman, Maguindanao Senior Board Member Jazzer Mangudadatu and other elected leaders in Central Mindanao attended Saturday’s ceremony.hipelago.