The Philippine military has dismissed reports that Joint Task Force Sulu Commander Brig. Gen. Arnel de la Vega has been sacked for failing to stop the Abu Sayyaf from its kidnapping activities despite a massive military operation in the south.
Military spokesperson Col. Edgar Arevalo said De la Vega was in fact taking the spot of Maj. Gen. Rodolfo Santiago, who retired on Monday as commandant of the Command and General Staff (CGSC) of the Armed Forces of the Philippines after 38 years of service.
De la Vega spent just four months as joint task force head, during which there has been an increase in Abu Sayyaf kidnappings despite a massive military build up to combat the extremist group in the south.
De la Vega was a member of Philippine Military Academy ’85 while Santiago belonged to Class ’82.