Two brand new Cessna-208B Caravan intelligence, reconnaissance and surveillance aircraft were donated to the Philippines by the government of the United States. Uses of the planes will include the Marawi City security and battling operations as well as terrorist group attacks.
Two planes and its Worth
The two-brand new Cessna-208B Caravan is worth Php 1.67 billion pesos which translate to $33 million dollars. The plane is a single-engine turboprop that could have nine seats for the passengers and another one for the pilot (FAR Part 23 could fit 14 passengers).
According to the US Ambassador Sung Kim, the plane is also fully equipped with cameras and receivers. Training, support, and maintenance are also part of the package of the plane donations.
The act of donation was said to “tighten” the alliance of two old friends and the bond of two diverse countries.
“These planes are latest but definitely not the last manifestation of what our alliance is supposed to be — a partnership of two old friends and allies who work together, fight together and overcome adversity together,” Ambassador Sung Kim said.
The Philippines Defense Secretary Deflin Lorenzana spoke on the president’s behalf to show his gratitude towards the US Government. He said that this (the plane/aircraft) is the most modern thing we have as of the moment. Aside from the battling the Maute groups, the planes would also be used in various operations in disaster relief, emergency calls, found and naval operations.
“They will be used anywhere in the Philippines, including Marawi, Sulu Sea, West Philippine Sea, and Benham Rise,” he added.
Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte was supposed to attend the official handing over. However, he was fully scheduled with his visit to Dumaguete and the surviving cops of the killing in Guihulngan Ambush. The president personally visited and awarded the surviving cops at Silliman University Medical Center.