The Philippine Rise Anniversary was celebrated on May 16, 2019, held on board of BRP Davao del Sur (LD602) by the Area Task Force – North (ATF –North) at the Casiguran Bay, Casiguran, Aurora together with The National Task Force –West Philippine Sea (NTF-WPS) and Local Government officials of Aurora Province.
The commemoration celebrates the 2nd Anniversary of renaming the 13-million-hectare Benham Rise to Philippine Rise last May 16, 2017 by the Executive Order No. 25 signed by the President Rodrigo Duterte. A portion of the Philippine Rise was declared as Marine Resource Reserve. Based on the Proclamation of the President 50,000 hectares are to be Strict Protection Zone limited only for scientific studies, and 300,000 hectares for Special Fisheries Management Area.
The NOLCOM held a Maritime Forum for the fisherfolks of Casiguran and nearby town to address their concerns regarding maritime safety. The ceremony begins with the welcome message of our Municipal Mayor, Dr. Ricardo A. Bitong, addressing and thanking the people who work hard for the celebration to come true, and tackle the importance of protecting our maritime area not only for our constituent but also for the fishermen who rely through fishing.
LTGEN Emmanuel B. Salamat, Commander of NOLCOM, head of ATF-North, said that they will do their best to protect and preserve our maritime area with the collaboration and cooperation of other maritime agencies such as Coast Guard and BFAR.