Philippine Coast Guard Headquarters, Port Area, Manila
October 12, 2016

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte led the 115th anniversary celebration of the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) where he formally commissioned the MRRV Tubbataha at the PCG Headquarters in Port Area, Manila.

The President expressed his gratitude to Japan for the financing of the MRRV Tubbataha plus nine other ships being built for the Philippines which would support the country in its efforts to rescue those in danger at sea, protect marine life, stop piracy, smuggling, illegal fishing and to also help on the war against illegal drugs of the administration.

He continued by explaining that the country has 3-4 million drug addicts, saying that if he was not elected, the country would not know the sheer number of people that illegal drugs have consumed.

President Duterte also addressed the government forces present, saying, “As a prosecutor, I am aware of the travail that a law enforcer has to go through… In my 22 years as Mayor I have never allowed a military man, a policeman to go to jail. I fought, tooth and nail…”

He said, “You cannot build a nation over the bones of your country men,” and warned, “Do not destroy my country… Do not tinker with the interests of my country… do not destroy the youth of the land.”

The President said that to have people walk at night undisturbed and unmolested is the standard that he wants for the country. He further added that a strong economy would follow after safety has been ensured and corruption erased.

President Duterte also encouraged the people present to read Gangsters Warlords by Ioan Grillo, saying that the book shows the history of illegal drugs in Latin America, explaining that the book would help them understand narco-politics.

The MRRV Tubbataha is the first of ten ships financed by Japan to support the Philippines in its efforts to rescue those in danger at sea, protect marine life, stop piracy, smuggling, illegal fishing and to also support the war on illegal drugs of the administration.

The President also led the presentation of awards to four (4) PCG officers, eight (8) PCG units, and five (5) individuals who received special awards.

The Japanese Ambassador to the Philippines, H.E. Kazuhide Ishikawa, was also present in the event to express the strong bond between Japan and the Philippines.

The President was accompanied to the event by Special Assistant to the President (SAP) Mr. Christopher ‘Bong’ Go and Commandant of the PCG, Rear Admiral (RADM) William Melad.

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