The Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) has honored its Commandant, CG Admiral George V Ursabia Jr as he retires after almost 38 years of serving the Filipino people today, 08 September 2021.
During his low-key retirement ceremony, CG Admiral Ursabia delivered an inspiring message to his fellow Coast Guardians who will continue the delivery of service with humility and compassion.
“To an ordinary boy who was born and raised in Polomolok, South Cotabato, I have never dreamed of becoming a military man. But little did I know that it was my father’s dream for me. And I suppose, it is God’s way of leading me to the path to be an instrument for greater change: to serve and to lead with humility and compassion,” CG Admiral Ursabia shared.
During his retirement speech, the Coast Guard Admiral looked back on the adversities that made him a stronger and more compassionate public servant, the latest of which was when he and his spouse, Mrs. Agnes C. Ursabia, contracted COVID-19.
“Mine was diagnosed as severe and for Agnes was a mild case. Through God’s boundless mercy, we survived. Indeed, God is gracious to allow me to bow out of service in good health,” the Coast Guard Commandant gratefully expressed.
From June 2020 to August 2021, CG Admiral Ursabia has transformed the PCG into a credible and dependable humanitarian armed service that is patriotic, compassionate, and God-fearing.
Under his stewardship, the PCG has intensified its presence in the West Philippine Sea and the southernmost part of the country through the Task Force Pagsasanay.
“Our integrated efforts are sustained and carried out based on rules and through peaceful means. And together with the PCG Auxiliary, we have improved the facility of Coast Guard Station Kalayaan and have adopted a school to further improve the development of our youth in Pag-asa Island, particularly in the municipality of Kalayaan, Palawan,” CG Admiral Ursabia furthered.
In the past 15 months, the PCG has enhanced its recruitment process to hire the right people for the right job that would allow them to serve with credibility. The Coast Guard Commandant also ensured that all regions in the country are given a rational quota to ensure inclusivity.
In its bid to be compliant with Republic Act 9187 also known as the Procurement Law and to ensure that no resources and assets will go to waste, the PCG has significantly improved its procurement system. The Coast Guard’s systems and doctrines also underwent developments to make sure that the men and women of the PCG could effectively deliver needed public service in a timely and cost-efficient manner.
“Our Coast Guardians go beyond the call of duty by providing a people-first approach in these trying times – and they continue to do so. We see them in the frontlines – in checkpoints, seaports, airports, and areas where there are needs to be met – aiding citizens with humility and compassion,” CG Admiral Ursabia added.
The PCG has also extended humanitarian assistance in far-flung areas, including Calayan Island, Pag-asa Island, Sulu, and Tawi-Tawi through the support of numerous government agencies and non-government organizations that are one with the PCG in rebuilding the country amid the global pandemic.
“Being a relatively young humanitarian government agency, there is still a lot to be done. The PCG will still face a lot of challenges and reforms, but I hope it will be for the better,” CG Admiral Ursabia uttered.
“It is a great honor to serve the country hand in hand with you. Thank you, PCG and the people who have allowed me to serve our motherland and the Filipino people, and even others, to the best of my ability,” he concluded.