The Leaderboard: Emmanuel Bautista

Who is he?

Lt. Gen. Emmanuel T. Bautista served as Commanding General of the Philippine Army since 2011 and has a long and distinguished career in the Philippine Armed Forces; he is a recipient of several military awards, including five Distinguished Service Stars, a Gold Cross Medal for gallantry in action, and a Bronze Cross Medal for bravery.

Bautista is a graduate of the Philippine Military Academy and received his master’s degree in public administration at the University of the Philippines, Diliman. He is the son of the late Brigade General Teodulfo Bautista, who was massacred along with his men in a failed attempt to negotiate a ceasefire with a MNLF commander in the 1970s. Bautista is also credited as the architect of the Internal Peace and Security Plan (IPSP) Bayanihan, the government’s current anti-insurgency campaign.

Lt. Gen. Emmanuel T. Bautista, center, in uniform. Source: DNDPHL's flickr photostream, used under a creative commons license.

Why is he in the news?

Philippine president Benigno Aquino appointed Gen. Bautista as the new chief of staff of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) effective January 20.

What can we expect from him?

The military warmly welcomed Bautista’s appointment. Military spokesperson Col. Arnulfo Burgos said in a statement that they are hopeful Bautista will implement much needed reforms that will modernize the AFP and is confident in Bautista’s ability to accomplish the counterinsurgency goals of the IPSP Bayanihan.

Bautista says he wants to take on the legacy of his father and work to end the decades-long communist insurgency that has endangered the lives of many Filipinos and has fueled instability in the country.

The general also intends to repair the public image of the Philippine Army as corrupt violators of human rights and establish it as a credible institution. He is a supporter of Army Transformation Road Map, a program created to improve good governance and standard practices across the Philippine Army.


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