The United States government has turned over P3.65 million worth of equipment to strengthen the country’s maritime law enforcement capability, the US Embassy in Manila said yesterday.
The donation, which includes 12 sets of scuba gear, underwater evidence collection items, and some related training equipment, would support the ongoing Underwater Crime Scene Investigation program Washington funded since 2016.
The equipment was turned over to the Philippine National Police-Maritime Group on Monday.
The Embassy’s director for International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs Kelia Cummins said this is the latest assistance provided to Manila over the course of a “long and productive relationship” between US government partners and the PNP-MG.
PNP-MG director Police Brig. Gen. John Jamili, meanwhile, welcomed the continued cooperation between the Philippines and the US government to expand the agency’s capabilities.
The PNP-MG has previously partnered with the US Joint Interagency Task Force West , America’s counter-narcotics task force in the Indo-Pacific region, to open several patrol boat facilities throughout the southern Philippines.
In 2019, the two opened a PNP-MG patrol boat facility worth USD2 million (approximately P100 million) in Lantawan, Basilan. The facility includes a boat ramp, pier, armory, offices, barracks, and a laboratory.*PNA