HM commissioned new patrol boat VOEA Ngahau Siliva
The second of the new Guardian Class Patrol Boats VOEA Ngahau Siliva was commissioned by His Majesty King Tupou VI this morning at Masefield Navy Base, Touliki.
The vessel was provided by the Australian Government to Tonga under Australia’s Pacific Maritime Security Program which committed $2 billion to the Pacific and Timor-Leste over 30 years.
Australian High Commissioner to Tonga H.E. Mr Adrian Morrison stated, “Siliva joins her sister vessel, the VOEA Ngahau Koula, which His Majesty commissioned in October 2019. Together Siliva and Koula represent a significant security capability for Tonga.”
“They provide the platform for more effective, more wide-ranging protection of Tonga’s maritime borders and resources. They build on defence force capability to serve the nation during times of emergency.”
He added that, “An improved capability to provide humanitarian assistance and contribute significantly to disaster relief operations and to continue in a similar way to Tonga’s response to COVID-19.
Mr Morrison said, “We have been impressed with the results Tonga’s Navy has achieved from Koula. Particularly the results achieved through Joint Maritime Surveillance Patrols, which bring together border security agencies and enable more targeted and effective operations.”
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister Responsible for Defence, Lord Ma’afu on behalf of the Government of Tonga expressed his sincere gratitude to the Government of Australia for strengthening Tonga’s security capability.
VOEA Ngahau Siliva is the eight Guardian Class Patrol Boat for the Pacific.
The event was attended by Nobles of the Realm, Honourable Prime Minister of Tonga, Honourable Ministers of the Crown, Members of the Diplomatic Corps, government officials and other guests.