The Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines elected Cebu Archbishop Jose Palma as its President during the 103rd Plenary Assembly held at the Pope Pius XII Catholic Center in Manila. According to the CBCP Statues, Palma will take his position as the new CBCP President on December 1, 2011. He will succeed Tandag Bishop Nereo P. Odchimar, who did not seek reelection.
Coming from the Archdiocese of Jaro in Iloilo, Palma was ordained to the priesthood on August 21, 1976 and named Auxiliary Bishop of Cebu on November 28, 1997. At age 47, he was ordained to the episcopacy and named bishop of the Diocese of Calbayog on January 13, 1999. He became Archbishop of Palo on March 18, 2006 and later appointed Archbishop of Cebu on October 15, 2010.
Elected new CBCP Vice President is Lingayen-Dagupan Archbishop Socrates Villegas. Dumaguete Bishop John Du was elected Treasurer succeeding Cubao Bishop Honesto F. Ongtioco. The assembly also elected Msgr. Joselito Asis, then assistant secretary general and assistant treasurer, as Secretary General succeeding Msgr. Juanito Figura who will now return to the Archdiocese of Jaro. (CBCP News/CBCP Monitor, July 18-31, 2011)