SANGLEY POINT, Cavite City— President Rodrigo Roa Duterte made an assurance Monday that he would continue modernizing the Philippine Navy to make it responsive to both external and internal threats.
In a speech during the 121st anniversary celebration of the Philippine Navy here, the President admitted that he is dismayed by the rampant corruption in government but he is doing everything to fix the bureaucracy.
“But anyway let me fix things before I go. But one thing is very sure, you have had the best of the procurement money sa ating gobyerno. I have contracted to buy…already bought…and I will give you more by the end of my term,” he said in his address during the celebration.
He then asked navy personnel to maximize their potentials and capacities as the country takes on the modern threats of terrorism and violent extremism. The President assured them of his full support as the nation charts a better and brighter future.
“Always keep in mind that this government will always assist the men and women of the Philippine Navy as we pursue a more peaceful future for everybody,” he told the members of the navy.
“Together, let us continue to embody solidarity as we build a stronger and prosperous society for the benefit of the future generations of Filipinos.”
Also presented Monday were newly acquired navy assets that are expected to boost its capability in combatting different threats like piracy, terrorism, kidnapping, and human trafficking.
Among those commissioned were two newly acquired anti-submarine AW159 helicopters and four amphibious assault vehicles (AVV). Four more AVVs will be delivered to the navy in the coming months.
“May the acquisition of two anti-submarine helicopters and four amphibious assault vehicles embolden [you] to further strengthen your capabilities to serve our countrymen,” the President said.
“It is also my hope that, as we send off our newly refurbished and upgraded commissioned naval vessels, you will remain steadfast in protecting the Republic against all threats in the seas.”
A send-off ceremony of the newly refurbished and upgraded commissioned vessels of the navy highlighted Monday’s anniversary celebration.
The vessels include BRP Magat Salamat (PS20), BRP Emilio Jacinto (PS35), BRP Apolinario Mabini (PS36), BRP Quezon (PS70), BRP Jose Loor Sr. (PC390), and BRP Alberto Navarette (PC394).
The President also led the awarding rites for dedicated individuals of the navy, both civilian and uniformed personnel.
Recognizing the contributions of the awardees, President Duterte said, “In today’s awardees, let this be a milestone to inspire you to harness your skills and expertise to promote the common good. I trust that you will continue to be the embodiment of integrity and passion as you protect the seas and secure the future of the land.”
Order of Lapu-Lapu awardees
Part of the recognition was the conferment of the Order of Lapu-Lapu on dedicated and gallant navy personnel.
The recipients of the Order of Lapu-Lapu rank of Kampilan were Maj. Prudencio Casas III, Cpl. Jessie John Balansag, and Pvt. Jayson Paras.
The Order of Lapu-Lapu rank of Kampilan is awarded to officials and personnel of the government and private individuals who were seriously wounded or injured or suffered great loss of property as a direct result of their participation in an activity pursuant to a campaign or advocacy of the President.
The navy personnel, who received the Order of Lapu-Lapu rank of Kamagi were Col. Armel Tolato, Lt. Col. Bill Pasia, Maj. Ronald Lapizar, Maj. Paolo Jose Jandusay, Capt. Felix Serapio Jr., Capt. Edgar Bernardo Jr., Capt. Arnel Arrieta, Capt. Wilmer Mercado, SSgt. Ruel Gaufo, SSgt. Jonifer Quijano, SSgt. Romel Ruma, SSgt. Dennis Carulla, Sgt. Diego Boncales Jr., Sgt. Francis Angeles, Sgt. Ernesto Almoros Jr., Sgt. Anthony Catayong, Sgt. Walter Cervantes, Cpl. Norman Encabo, Cpl. Mario Jerlene Pajarillo, Cpl. Joey Monchiguing, Cpl. Frederick Magabilin Jr., and Cpl. Marlon Añes.
The Order of Lapu-Lapu rank of Kamagi is awarded to officials and personnel of the government and private individuals who actively participated in and contributed significantly to an activity pursuant to a campaign or advocacy of the President. PND