Thursday, 06 January 2011 12:41
President Benigno S. Aquino III on Tuesday expressed confidence in the competence of the Philippine Navy in securing the country’s coastal waters and assured full support in its pursuit of peace and development for the nation.
In a speech at the Navy’s change of command ceremonies at the Naval Station on Roxas Boulevard, Manila, President Aquino noted the unrelenting dedication of the Navy personnel in protecting the country’s territorial waters despite the various challenges hounding the organization.
“Saludo ako sa pagtupad ninyo sa inyong tungkuling protrektahan ang ating teritoryo, nariyan man ang mga balakid tulad ng mga pinaglumaang barko at kakulangan sa ilang mahahalagang kagamitan, asahan po ninyo doble kayod din ang inyong gobyerno upang makahanap pa ng maiinam na paraan upang mapabuti ang mga ito at maipag-patuloy ang integridad ng ating hukbong dagat,” the President said.
“Malaki ang aking kumpiyansa na habang pinalalakas natin ang inyong hanay at isinasaayos ang inyong mga kagamitan, patuloy ninyong mapapangalagaan ang kaligtasan ng ating karagatan,” he added.
Apart from peace and security, the Chief Executive also noted the Navy’s valuable efforts in ensuring social stability through its humanitarian response and disaster relief operations during natural calamities.
One of these successful operations, the President said, was the Task Force “Amianan Recovery” involving at least 170 Sailors and Marines on board LC 551 Navy Logistic Support Vessel that spent 25 days afloat rough sea conditions to bring tons of relief goods, engineering equipment, constructions materials and rescue teams to the coastal towns of Isabela Province which was ravaged by Typhoon Juan last October.
The President recognized the Navy’s constant coordination with foreign counterparts within the Asia Pacific Region leading to a strengthened and a more unified drive in maintaining order within the area.
During the event, President Aquino witnessed the formal assumption of Rear Admiral Alexander Pama as the 32nd Flag Officer in Command.
Rear Admiral Pama succeeded Rear Admiral Danilo Cortez who retired from almost 38 years of military service.
Also in attendance were Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin, Armed Forces Chief of Staff General Ricardo David and defense, military and other government officials, among others.
Admiral Pama vowed to prioritize programs that would uplift the morale of Navy personnel and upgrade the capability of the troops.
The new Navy flag officer said uplifting the morale of troops and maintaining discipline among soldiers are important in accomplishing the Navy’s mission.
Right after the turnover ceremonies, President Aquino presided over his first command conference for the year with military officers to discuss the new security plan “Bayanihan.”
The new defense plan focuses on developmental programs designed to curb the roots of rebellion such as poverty. (PCOO/PIA9-BST)
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