The Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA) and the Philippine National Police-Maritime Group (PNP-MG) inaugurated the Vessel Operations Training Center inside this premier Freeport on Friday.
According to SBMA Chairman and Administrator Rolen C. Paulino, the creation of the training center was thru the efforts of the agency and the PNP-MG via a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA). The newly constructed center is located at Bldg. 696 of the Global Industrial Park.
Paulino said that according to the MOA, the SBMA will provide a facility for the PNP-MG that will help in training police officers in operating seagoing vessels of the agency. He added that the agency will also provide additional amenities and equipment that will help in training police officers operate SBMA ships.
Currently, PNP-MG personnel operate the vessels of the SBMA, including MV Kalayaan, MV Binictican, MV Redondo, MV Ilanin, MV Triboa, MV Cubi, and MV Maritan. Paulino and PNP-MG Director Police Brigadier General Harold B. Tuzon signed the MOA at the administration building on March this year.
Paulino and Tuzon, along with Regional Maritime Unit 3 chief Police Col. Oliver Tanseco and assistant chief Police Lt. Col. Sami B. Lorenzo, led the inauguration of the new facility near the Alava Pier. Reverend Father Orlando Correa led the blessing of the facility.
The facility boasted of a gym, mess hall, offices, rooms, shower areas for men and women, and other areas needed for the training of personnel.
Tuzon expressed his gratitude to Paulino for the unwavering support given to his unit, citing that the SBMA chief has gone above and beyond what was stipulated in the MOA.
According to the MOA, the PNP-MG will conduct security operations for the waters of Subic Bay, while providing trained and licensed personnel to man the seven patrol boats of the agency. These boats include three multi-purpose patrol boats, a search and rescue vessel, a garbage collection/ firefighting vessel, an oil skimmer/ firefighting vessel, and a line handling and utility boat.
“The operation tasking will be under our Seaport Department, and these vessels can only be used with the SBMA’s prescribed authority and within the vessels’ operational requirement,” Paulino said, adding that the PNP Maritime will use, maintain, and occupy the facility for the use it is intended.
“They will shoulder the repair and maintenance of the facility for the entire duration of the agreement,” he said.
PNP MG chief Tuzon said that aside from manning the boats, the group will provide technical, mechanical and physical vessel services for the repair of the patrol boats at their own expense. He added that they will provide operation trip reports.
“In case of emergency or natural disaster or as maybe needed by the SBMA, the PNP-MG shall provide assistance and services upon request of the SBMA,” he added.
“With that said, we will provide security and other support and assistance, which shall promote the development, conservation, management, protection, and utilization of resources in the Subic Bay Freeport Zone and its surrounding areas,” he cited.