MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine Navy on Wednesday, May 10, held an arrival and welcome ceremony for its newest ship, the BRP Davao del Sur.
The BRP Davao del Sur is the navy's second amphibious landing dock vessel, after its twin ship BRP Tarlac last year. They are currently the biggest ships in the inventory of the navy.
The latest vessel has a length of 123 meters or about 10 meters longer than the ships given by the US Coast Guard.
The ships were acquired to boost the country's capability for humanitarian assistance and disaster response.
But the BRP Tarlac has also been used for naval blockades in seas in the southern Philippines, where the military is fighting local terrorists.
The BRP Davao del Sur has a crew of 120 sailors headed by its first commanding officer, Captain Richard Gonzaga.
They returned to the country after 4 months of training in Indonesia, where the ships were built.
Commissioning rites for the BRP Davao del Sur are scheduled on May 31.
– Carmela Fonbuena / Rappler.com