By Martin Sadongdong
The Philippine Army (PA) concluded on Friday the five-day Dagohoy Patrol (DagPat) Challenge 2020 as part of its 123rd founding anniversary celebration this month.
DagPat 2020 was patterned after the United Kingdom’s Cambrian Patrol Exercise where participating units cover multi-mile course within 48 hours while performing numerous types of military maneuvers and patrols placed throughout the rugged Cambrian mountains and swamp lands of mid-Wales.
DagPat exercises was named after Francisco Dagohoy, a famous Boholano hero who led the longest revolution in the country against the Spanish colonial government. The Dagohoy revolution took place from 1744 to 1829, or 85 years, in the island of Bohol.
Lieutenant General Gilbert Gapay, Army Commanding General, said DagPat 2020 aimed to “assess and enhance the operational capabilities and readiness of the participating Army units” and “pave the way for recommendations in the development of other military training concepts.”
The Army’s DagPat 2020 was held from March 2 to 6 at the Jungle Training Base in Batuan, Bohol.
Participating squads from Army’s major units and reserve command traversed a 50-kilometer route along the mountainous terrains of the training base for 48 hours, Gapay said.
Each team member carried a minimum of 25-kilos load while they underwent various maneuvers such as military briefing, obstacle crossing and renaissance patrols.
At the height of the challenge, the Army units had to conduct and finish much more complex tasks including patrol base operations, field stripping of squad organic weapons, land mine breaching, tactical combat casualty care, and finally, a simulated raid.
Gapay said the patience, persistence and perseverance of the participating units were tested all throughout the challenge.
The First Scout Ranger Regiment, considered as one of the three elite units under the Army’s Special Operations Command (SOCom), ranked first place after the evaluation of the participating units’ overall performance.
The Maguindanao-based 6th Infantry “Kampilan” Division (6ID) finished second while the Special Forces Regiment (Airborne) came in at third place.
“Let this event inspire all of us to train hard and strive more,” Gapay said during the closing ceremony of the DagPat 2020.
The Army currently holds various activities in celebration of its founding anniversary which kicked off last Thursday, March 5, with a football match between the Army football team and the Philippine Azkals.
The Philippine Revolutionary Army, the predecessor of today’s Philippine Army, was established on March 22, 1897 in Cavite.