Army’s 55th Engineer Brigade has new commander

BALO-I, Lanao del Norte (MindaNews / 8 February)—The 55th Engineer “Mobilizer” Brigade of the Philippine Army based here has a new commander.

L-R: BGen. Crespillo, Col. Olarte, and BGen. Sebastian during the turnover ceremonies. MindaNews photo by MARIVIC OMANDAM DAVIS

Col. Ulpiano T. Olarte assumed the command from Brig. Gen. Erinio F. Sebastian, who is retiring, during turnover ceremonies presided by Brig. Gen. Steve D. Crespillo (PA Vice Commander) at its headquarters in Barangay Maria Cristina here on Tuesday.

Sebastian was the 14th commander of the 55EBde, starting his tour of duty in November 2020.

Olarte already served in the brigade from 1995 to 2002. He is a licensed civil engineer and a holder of a master’s degree in public management majoring in development security and a master’s in history.

In his speech, Olarte recalled that during the Marawi Siege in 2017, he led a combat engineer battalion “providing mobility, counter mobility, and survivability in general support to Task Force Marawi.”

He said he is ready to face the challenges “in all facets of engineering operations,” including projects like school buildings, farm-to-market roads, electrification, water systems, bridges, and flood control.

Olarte commended his predecessor in leading the 55EBde to have “remained steadfast in providing general engineer support to the Philippine Army units and contributing to the socio-economic development programs of the government” despite the COVID-19 pandemic. (Marivic Omandam Davis / MindaNews)