BY: LTCOL ADGARD A AREVALO PN(M)
Director, Naval Public Affairs Office
Following the government’s drive to decimate economic saboteurs, Philippine Navy vessel BRP Rafael Pargas (PG 379) confiscated 100 drums of smuggled gasoline in Parang, Sulu Thursday afternoon, 10 September 2009. The smuggled gasoline was on board M/L J-Sayang-1 when the Navy intercepted the motor launch in the vicinity southwest off Bunga Pt, Parang, Sulu.
Patrol Gunboat 379 and elements of Naval Special Operations Unit-6 launched the operation based on intelligence information from NISG- Western Mindanao. Board and search procedure conducted by the Navy yielded the drums of smuggled gasoline with an estimated market value of P607,500.00. The items, without proper documents are reportedly from Sandakan, Malaysia. The said motor launch is owned by a certain Jomalol Dahi while the ship’s master is identified as Master Patronbara Uri with 13 crew and one passenger. The Navy vessel escorted the motor launch to Jolo Pier for proper turn-over to the local office of the Bureau of Customs.
Navy units in the south have remained vigilant in their inter-agency conduct of maritime operations together with the Bureau of Customs to prevent pirates and lawless groups from exploiting our marine resources and using our maritime territory for their illegal activities. “A secure maritime environment is a big boost to the government’s economic development goals and peace efforts especially in Mindanao,” says Vice Admiral Ferdinand S Golez, Flag Officer In Command, Philippine Navy. “The Philippine Navy remains committed to its objectives through intensified operations of Fleet-Marine units all over the country against insurgent and separatist groups, smugglers and other lawless and criminal elements who retard the country’s economic gains.”
In July this year, intensified maritime and negation patrols resulted in the confiscation of smuggled goods worth P10.95 million in the Basilan-Sulu area. LCdr Ronnie C Pava is the skipper of PG 379.