CAGAYAN DE ORO (MindaNews / 17 February) — A veteran in the fight against the Dawlah Islamiyah, a group linked to the ISIS has assumed command of the 4th Infantry Division which covers the entire northern and northeastern Mindanao regions.
Maj. Gen. Jose Maria Cuerpo will replace Maj. Gen. Wilbur Mamawag who will be retiring from military service next month.
Army Chief Lt. Gen. Romeo Brawner Jr. said the turnover of command at the division is scheduled sometime in March before Mamawag’s retirement.
The mandatory retirement age for military personnel is 56.
Cuerpo, a member of the Philippine Military Academy “Bigkis-Lahi” Class of 1990 and who hails from Iligan City, is the current deputy chief of staff for personnel of the Armed Forces of the Philippines.
Prior to that, he served as the commander of the 103rd Infantry Brigade in Marawi City where he spent five years hunting the remnants of the Dawlah Islamiyah.
In March 2022, troops led by Cuerpo overran a Dawlah Islamiyah camp in Maguing, Lanao del Sur reportedly killing at least 40 rebels and seizing a sizable amount of war material.
Cuerpo also was the deputy commander of the 103rd Brigade during the five-month fighting between the government and the Maute-led Dawlah Islamiyah that seized Marawi City.
He will assume command of an Army division whose achievements included the killing of National Democratic Front spokesperson Jorge Madlos alias “Ka Oris” and NDF consultant Pedro Cudaste. (Froilan Gallardo/MindaNews)