AFP spokesman named next PSG chief  

Michael Punongbayan - The Philippine Star
AFP spokesman named next PSG chief   
STAR / File

MANILA, Philippines — The spokesman for the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), Col. Ramon Zagala, has been designated as the next chief of the Presidential Security Group (PSG) responsible for the safety of president-elect Ferdinand Marcos Jr. and his family.

Though official orders are yet to be issued, the military revealed yesterday that Zagala will also serve as the incoming commander-in-chief’s senior military assistant.

Col. Jorry Baclor, AFP Public Affairs Office (PAO) chief, confirmed that Zagala has already been relieved of his duties as spokesperson so that he may prepare to take over his new post at the PSG in Malacañang.

Baclor added that the designations will both be in acting capacity though details of the appointment will be covered in an official order that is expected to be issued soon.

Zagala, 52, was commissioned to the AFP regular force in August 1994. He was a former corps commander of Dela Salle University’s Naval Reserve Officer Training Course (ROTC) unit from 1989 to 1990, and was once part of the PSG as aide to former president Joseph Estrada.

He belongs to a family rich in military tradition spanning three generations from his grandfather, Col. Ramon Zagala to his father Maj. Gen Rafael Zagala.

The incoming PSG chief graduated from the Officer Candidate School in 1994 and was thereafter assigned to hold various command and staff positions in different Philippine Army units throughout the country and General Headquarters.

He completed various career and specialization courses here and abroad, including the Special Forces Operation Course, Basic Airborne Course, Scout Ranger Orientation Course, Armor Officer Basic Course, Basic Practical Pistol Course, VIP Protection Course, UN Peacekeeping Operations Pre-Deployment Training, Armor Officer Advance Course, the Public Affairs Officer Qualifying Course at Fort Meade, Maryland, USA under the International Military Education and Training Program (IMETP), Military Freefall course, Jumpmaster course, Australian Command and Staff Course, Australian Defence College and Master of Military and Defense Studies, Australian National University at Canberra, ACT, Australia under the Philippines and Australia Defence Cooperation Program.

Zagala is also a recipient of a number of awards and decorations both in administrative and combat duties, such as the Distinguished Service Star, a Gold Cross Medal for gallantry in combat, Gawad sa Kaunlaran Medal, two Bronze Cross Medals, 19 Military Merit Medals (three in combat), AFP Senior Parachutist Badge, Army Aviator’s Badge, US public affairs badge, the Presidential Medal of Merit and other distinguished awards and commendations.


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