MANILA - Regarded by the Philippine Navy as its “most powerful ship” to date, the ex-Pohang-class corvette BRP Conrado Yap (PS39) docked in the Port of Manila Tuesday after being acquired from South Korea.
The 32-year old warship is recognized by the navy as its most powerful ship to date because of its sonars and torpedo launchers are capable of anti-submarine warfare.
Three torpedo launchers are on each side of the BRP Yap, while the bow and stern, or front and back of the ship, have a 76mm Oto Melara and 40mm twin-barrel Breda secondary guns each. These guns are suited for anti-ship and anti-surface warfare.
The ship is expected to aid the Philippine Navy in bridging the newly acquired capabilities and those still on the way. It can partner with the new Agusta 159 helicopters which also have anti-submarine detection capabilities.
It will also complement the capabilities of the two brand-new frigates that are being built by Korean company Hyundai.
Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana hopes that the BRP Yap will be deployed in Palawan and Sulu Sea, but the navy is still waiting for more improvements to be made on the warship before it is deployed.
It is named after the late Army Capt. Conrado Yap, who died in battle trying to rescue and defend another besieged Philippine Army unit in the Korean War. For his bravery, Captain Yap posthumously received a Medal for Valor, the highest military honor that the military confers.
The ship was decommissioned by the Korean Navy in 2016 and commissioned by the Philippine Navy in 2019. Lorenzana expressed hope that the Korean Navy would let the Philippines acquire two more corvettes of its kind.