Pag-asa Island devt continues after completion of beaching ramp

Pag-asa Island devt continues after completion of beaching ramp

A momentous event for the Philippines Pag-asa island in the Kalayaan Island Group, as the Department of Defense (DND) visited the island to inaugurate the much needed and long delayed beaching ramp that would allow Philippine sea assets to dock in the area.
Led by its head Delfin Lorenzana the visiting group is composed of Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Chief of Staff Felimon Santos Jr., Navy Flag Officer-in-Command Vice Admiral Giovanni Bacordo, Air Force chief Lt. Gen. Allen Paredes, Army Chief Lt. Gen. Gilbert Gapay and newly installed AFP Western Command chief Lt. Gen. Erickson Gloria.

The said inauguration also marks the first time that top brasses from the DND and the AFP visited the Philippine held territory.
Beach ramp in Pag-asa island, Muncipality of Kalayaan
(photo credit to owner)

The cemented beaching ramp also known as the “AFP Basing Support System at Pag-asa Island Project”, completes the Phase One of the government’s Master Development Plan for the island which is part of Kalayaan Island Group (KIG).
The beaching ramp will be utilized for both military and civilian use.
“We can now proceed with the other projects planned for Pag-asa Island. This is a necessary first step which will facilitate the transportation of essential construction equipment to the island,” Lorenzana said.

He beaching ramp is but one of the many projects intended to improve the living conditions of the people in the island which is under the Municipality of Kalayaan.

Chinese vessels were spotted

During the military visit, several different Chinese vessels were spotted circling the waters of the island.
Lorenzana said there is no caused for concern as long as Filipino fishermen and residents of the island are not harassed or intimidated.

“This is Kalayaan Island Group. This is outside our EEZ (exclusive economic zone). But we have claims here. We have 9 islands here. This (Pag-asa Island) is the biggest. And all of those islands are occupied by our people. So, we have presence here,” asserted Lorenzana.
“Maybe it’s because they’re seeing high-ranking officials are now coming here. We are solidifying our claim in the area. They pose as fishermen, but we know that they are militias. As long as they don’t molest or hurt our fishermen, they can stay there,” he added.

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Report from Daily Tribune

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