Maj. Gen. Romeo Brawner, whose leadership of a Mindanao-based military infantry division led to the death of communist top leader Jorge Madlos alias “Ka Oris” in October is the new commanding general of the Philippine Army, the largest branch of service of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP).
Brawner will replace Lt. Gen. Andres Centino who was earlier named as AFP chief of staff.
A member of the Philippine Military Academy (PMA) “Makatao” Class of 1989, Brawner was the commander of the 4th Infantry Division before President Duterte signed his appointment as the Army chief.
It was under his leadership of the 4th ID that high-ranking officials of the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army (NPA) were neutralized, including Ka Oris who was the most influential leader of communist rebels being the head of the NPA’s National Operational Command.
Before his appointment to the 4th ID, Brawner served various positions that include the first Deputy Chief of Staff for Financial Management, J10, an office which was newly activated in December 2020; Commandant of Cadets of the PMA; and, commander of the 103rd Brigade during the liberation of Marawi City.
He also served as chief of the AFP’s Public Affairs Office.
Brawner is also a Special Forces and Airborne Officer who was awarded as one of the country’s Most Outstanding Filipino soldiers in 2013.
Centino, for his part, welcomed the appointment of Brawner as his replacement.
“His appointment is a testimony to the professionalism and dynamism of the military organization which are important in carrying out our mission to protect the people and the state,” said Centino.
“The Philippine Army congratulates Maj. Gen. Brawner on his appointment. As a competent and dedicated commander and leader, the Philippine Army is in good hands with Maj. Gen. Brawner at the helm,” he added.
In an interview after his appointment, Brawner said that he would prioritize the health, welfare and morale of Army troopers and their families.
“The reason is that our troops are the most important resource of the Philippine Army,” said Brawner.
“Of course, we will also focused on our core competency which is war fighting. We will develop the capability of every Army soldier so that we are ready not just for internal operations but also external defense,” he added.