BY GILBERT P. BAYORAN
The Army’s 302nd Infantry Brigade stationed in Tanjay City, Negros Oriental, will soon have a new commander.
He is Col. Leonardo Peña, who relinquished his position recently as Chief of the Unified Command Staff (CUCS) of the AFP Western Mindanao, in Zamboanga City.
Peña will succeed Brig. Gen. Noel Baluran as commander of the 302nd Infantry Brigade in Negros Oriental. However, the date of the turnover of command ceremony has not been set, as of this time, Maj. Cenon Pancito III, spokesperson of the 3rd Infantry Division, said.
Baluran is reportedly set to replace Brig. Gen. Alberto Desoyo as the Assistant Division Commander of 3ID. Desoyo is slated to retire from the military service.
Peña was replaced as AFP WESCOM Chief of Unified Command Staff on Oct. 9 by Col. Elmer Suderio at Camp Navarro in Calarian, Zamboanga City, with Lt. Gen. Corleto Vinluan Jr. presiding over the turn over ceremony.
Vinluan also conferred on Peña the Distinguish Service Star medal for his meritorious and valuable services rendered as the CUCS of AFP Western Mindanao Command for two years and two months.
Peña, a member of the Philippine Military Academy Class 1991, is not a stranger to his new assignment in the Visayas, having been a commander of the 61st Infantry Battalion in Capiz from 2015 to 2017.
As the incoming 302IB commander, Peña will supervise the 11th, 15 and 94th Infantry Battalions tasked by 3ID to dismantle three NPA guerilla fronts in central and southern Negros.*