Head of Philippine military pledges to support new president

20:36, May 11, 2010      

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The head of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) is throwing his full support to the country's next president, debunking rumors that he will step down from his post.

AFP chief Gen. Delfin Bangit told reporters on Tuesday that he will continue to serve "at the pleasure of the new president." Partial and unofficial count of the Commission of Election showed that Benigno Aquino III is leading the race.

Bangit is widely believe to be a loyalist of incumbent President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, who will step down as the country's commander-in-chief on June 30. "If you are referring to me, then I work at the pleasure of the commander-in-chief every time," Bangit said.

He said that he was proud of the generally peaceful outcome of the elections, pointing out that the military and the police were at the forefront of ensuring an honest, orderly, peaceful and credible election.

Meanwhile, the head of Philippine National Police director general Jesus Verzosa on Tuesday told reporters that he will file his courtesy resignation when the elected president takes office next month. "My plan is to file my courtesy resignation after the new president takes his oath of office," Verzosa said. For now, his immediate goal is to ensure a smooth transition of government after Monday's general election, Verzosa said. Officials appointed by the current president usually file their courtesy resignation to give the new leader a chance to organize his own men.



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