(Photo courtesy of PAF) 

MANILA – The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) on Thursday formally turned over a Beechcraft Hawker 800XP transport aircraft donated by conglomerate San Miguel Corporation (SMC), to the Philippine Air Force (PAF) to be used for their command-and-control and transport missions.

"A formal acceptance, turnover, and blessing ceremony was presided over by Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana at the Villamor Air Base in Pasay City. He was joined by SMC Chief Executive Officer, Ramon Ang," AFP public affairs office chief Col. Jorry Baclor said in a statement Friday.

The Beechcraft Hawker 800XP is a mid-size twinjet corporate aircraft acquired by SMC in 2022. It was donated to the Department of National Defense (DND) and turned over to the AFP.

A ceremonial champagne pouring and turnover of documents to the AFP highlighted the activity. AFP chief-of-staff Gen. Andres Centino received the documents on behalf of the Armed Forces.

Also present during the ceremony were PAF chief Lt. Gen. Connor Anthony Canlas, Air Logistics Command head Maj. Gen. Florante Amano and Air Mobility Command commander Brig. Gen. Joannis Leonardi Dimaano.

"The PAF will utilize the (Beechcraft) Hawker 800XP as a Command and Control Aircraft. It will work in tandem or as an alternative system to the Gulfstream G280 acquired by the AFP in 2020," Baclor said.

The aircraft will likewise be operated by the 250th Presidential Airlift Wing. (PNA)