BRP Gregorio del Pilar christened, commissioned | Global News

BRP Gregorio del Pilar christened, commissioned

/ 02:51 AM December 15, 2011

BRP Gregorio del Pilar

Hailed as an “icon of the modernization of the Armed Forces of the Philippines,” the Philippine Navy’s BRP Gregorio del Pilar will finally set sail to the West Philippine Sea by next week.

A bottle of basi (sugar cane wine) not champagne was smashed on the ship’s bow during the formal naval commissioning rites at the Manila South Harbor on Wednesday led by President Benigno Aquino III.


His sisters Ballsy, Pinky and Viel acted as sponsors for the two Navy ships and helicopter that were christened and commissioned.


Navy tradition requires that a woman be the christening sponsor for a ship “for good luck.”

Captain Alberto Cruz, who was handpicked to command the Navy’s biggest and most modern warship to date, said the warship will deploy “within this month, before Christmas.”

The Navy said the BRP Gregorio del Pilar will secure the Malampaya gas-to-power project off Palawan and “defend the country’s territory and exclusive economic zone in the West Philippine Sea” where the Philippines has overlapping claims with Vietnam and China.

“Yes, this is the cream of the crop,” Cruz said of the ship’s more than 100 Navy sailors, pilots and elite troops and Marines handpicked for the crew. Dona Z. Pazzibugan

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TAGS: AFP, BRP Gregorio del Pilar, China, Defense, Foreign affairs, Global Nation, maritime dispute, Military, Philippine Navy, Vietnam, West Philippine Sea

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