OFF DUTY PCG OFFICER WHO SAVED 62 LIVES ONBOARD ILL-FATED VESSEL TO RECEIVE 2020 IMO AWARD FOR EXCEPTIONAL BRAVERY AT SEA
Probationary Ensign (P/Ens) Ralph Ofalla Barajan, off-duty Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) officer who ensured the safety of 62 lives, including his own onboard ill-fated passenger vessel, MV Siargao Princess in the waters of Cebu on November 7, 2019, will receive the distinguished 2020 International Maritime Organization – IMO Award for Exceptional Bravery at Sea.
The IMO Award for Exceptional Bravery at Sea is an annual international recognition for individuals who performed acts of exceptional bravery – risking their own lives to ensure safety of life at sea, or to prevent or mitigate marine environmental damages.
Upon comprehensive review of the nomination submitted by Philippine Ambassador to the United Kingdom, Honorable Antonio Manuel R. Lagdameo, the IMO Panel of Judges, under the Chairmanship of IMO Secretary General Kitack Lim, decided to bestow said award to P/Ens Barajan.
PCG Commandant, Admiral George V Ursabia Jr commended the selfless efforts of P/Ens Barajan to ensure the safety of his fellow Filipinos.
“P/Ens Barajan’s display of courage, determination, and presence of mind which led to the successful rescue of 62 victims, including himself is indeed worthy of emulation and respect for him, his family, and for the PCG – as a perfect demonstration of the Coast Guard service,” Admiral Ursabia said.
On 14 October 2020, P/Ens Barajan will be one of the exceptional Coast Guard personnel who will be recognized and commended during the celebration of the 119th founding anniversary of the PCG.