Coast Guard's BRP Melchora Aquino prepares to sail home

MRRV-9702, which will be commissioned as the BRP Melchora Aquino, has a maximum speed of 24 knots with an endurance level of 4,000 nautical miles.
CGPA / CG LTJG D Baterbonia

MANILA, Philippines — A new multi-role response vessel for use by the Philippine Coast Guard is preparing to sail to the Philippines from Japan and is expected to arrive by June 1.

MRRV-9702, which will be commissioned as BRP Melchora Aquino, is the second 97-meter MRRV for the coast guard.

The coast guard’s inspection team is currently in Japan for a last "harbor acceptance test and inspection" of the ship, which is expected to sail on Friday, May 27. 

Coast Guard Commander Patrick Babag, MRRV-9702 commanding officer, said the final inspection is being done to see if the ship is compliant with the technical specifications detailed in the contract provided.

MRRV-9702 has a maximum speed of 24 knots with an endurance level of 4,000 nautical miles.

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She is said to be modeled after the Japan Coast Guard’s Kunigami-class vessel. 

Meanwhile, her name takes inspiration from the “Mother of the Philippine Revolution” who is also known as “Tandang Sora,” who aided Philippine revolutionaries going against Spanish colonizers.

A sister ship BRP Teresa Magbanua (MRRV-9701) is already part of the coast guard fleet.

The two will be patrolling alongside each other to improve the country’s maritime security, maritime safety, maritime law enforcement, as well as the search and rescue efforts of the PCG and to support their marine environmental protection capabilities.

Both vessels were acquired through the maritime safety capability improvement project of the Department of Transportation.

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