PCG Commandant Rear Admiral William M Melad together with Lieutenant Junior Grade Lalaine M Manapul represented the Philippines to the Launching and Naming Ceremony of the 1st Philippine Coast Guard Multi Role Response Vessel (MRRV) held at Japan Marine United Corporation (JMUC) Yokohama Shipyard Isogo Works 12, Shin-suguta-cho, Isogo-ku in Yokohama, Japan last May 12.
The first forty four (44) meter vessel was named "Tubbataha", one of the lighthouses in the Philippines situated in Tubbataha Marine National Park, Palawan.
Said naming ceremony was also participated by Philippine delegates headed by DOTC Secretary Honorable Joseph Emilio A Abaya and His Excellency Ambassador Manuel M Lopez of the Embassy of the Republic of the Philippines to Japan.
High-ranking officials from concerned agencies in Japan headed by Vice Admiral Hideyo Hanazumi JCG also graced the event.
Meanwhile, the Keel Laying Ceremony of the 2nd MRRV of the Philippine Coast Guard was held also at the Isogo Works of JMUC Yokohama Shipyard on May 13.
A Shinto Priest led the "Anzen-kigai-sai", a traditional Japanese Shinto ceremony to pray for the safe construction of the second vessel.
During the ceremony, the sacred "Sake" was offered to the altar with a prayer delivered by the Shinto for the purification of the building site. Each representative from Philippine Coast Guard (PCG), Japan Coast Guard (JCG) and Japan Marine Science (JMS) then offered the sacred branches.
Eight (8) more multi role response vessels will be built by JMUC.
The MRRVs will serve as additional fluvial assets to the PCG and will also be named after the primary lighthouses in the country to denote the importance of the lighthouse in the maritime community.