Armed Forces to highlight modern assets in 85th anniversary fleet review

Some of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP)’s most modern assets will participate in the fleet review and wing fly to be held in Morong, Bataan on Wednesday, as part of the celebration of its 85th founding anniversary.

Navy Capt. Jonathan Zata, AFP public affairs office chief, said some ships of the naval contingent consists of the brand-new missile frigate, BRP Jose Rizal (FF-150), offshore patrol vessel BRP Ramon Alcaraz (PS-16), patrol ship BRP Emilio Jacinto (PS-35), BRP Davao Del Sur (LD-602), landing craft BRP Batak (LC-299), patrol craft BRP Abraham Campo (PC-396), and BRP Ang Pangulo (AT-25).

“(Meanwhile) BRP Tarlac (LD-601) will serve as the viewing deck for defense officials and senior military officers,” Zata added in a message to the Philippine News Agency (PNA) Tuesday.

The BRP Tarlac is also expected to serve as a reviewing ship where guest-of-honor and speaker Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana along with other ranking defense and military officials would stay.

“Onboard BRP Batak, a Navy landing craft, is the Philippine Army’s Simba armored personnel carrier and the Philippine Marine Corps’ V-150,” Zata said.

Expected to be present in Wednesday’s event are AFP chief-of-staff Gen. Gilbert Gapay, Army commander Lt. Gen. Cirilito Sobejana, Navy chief Vice Admiral Giovanni Carlo Bacordo, and Air Force head Lt. Gen. Allen Paredes.

Zata said a total of 63 naval and air assets will be participating in Wednesday’s activities.

The aerial contingent will be spearheaded by three of the Air Force’s Mach 1.5 capable FA-50 light-lift jet trainers, the Navy’s two brand-new AugustaWestland AW-159 “Wildcat” anti-submarine helicopters, and three AW-109 “Power” and two of the newly-commissioned S-70i “Black Hawk” combat utility helicopters.

Other assets expected in fleet review and wing fly are the Navy’s Beechcraft King Air TC-90 aircraft and along with an unspecified number of multi-purpose assault craft (MPAC) and floating assets coming from the Philippine Navy-Affiliated Reserves Units (PNARU).

Having these assets participate in the fleet review and wing fly highlights the ability of various units of the AFP to work together aside from showcasing the progress made in the ongoing modernization program.

The AFP marks its 85th anniversary on Dec. 21 with the theme, “Pinag-isang Lakas na Maaasahan ng Pilipino”. PNA.GOV.PH