A Philippine Navy (PN) vessel rescued Saturday nine tourists, including minors, stranded on an island in El Nido.
BRP Nestor Reinoso (PC 380) under the operational command of the Joint Task Force Malampaya (JTF Malampaya) rescued the tourists who were stranded for four hours on January 4 on Snake Island in Bacuit Bay.
A copy of the report sent to Palawan News on Monday by Capt. Donn Anthony Miraflor, commander of the Malampaya task force, claimed the tourists were guests of the Terra Nova private beach resort in El Nido.
Rescued were five Filipino-Americans and four American citizens between the ages of 6 to 74-years old.
The Coast Guard Station (CGS) in El Nido also assisted in the rescue, he said.
“Lahat ng assistance na puwedeng ibigay sa kanila ay ibinigay during the rescue as per guidance ng Western Command (WESCOM). Lahat ay in good health condition after their rescue,” Miraflor said.
Miraflor said the tourists got stranded on Snake Island when the motorboat they were riding for their island-hopping suffered from “engine derangement”.
Help for the stranded tourists was requested by Terra Nova resort employee Edgardo Panda to BRP Nestor Reinoso after tour boats plying the Snake Island area were unable to provide rescue support.
Meanwhile, councilor Sonny Llanera, tourism committee chair of the El Nido municipal council, said no request for rescue was received by their town tourism office on January 4.
He said Terra Nova was also registered as a business in a different town, not in El Nido.
“Ang incident na ‘yan, walang natanggap na report ang tourism office, walang natanggap na report ang Philippine Coast Guard at ang ating lokal na pamahalaan. Walang natanggap na mayroong pangyayaring ganyan. ‘Yong resort na ‘yan ay naka-register doon sa ibang munisipyo, hindi sa El Nido,” Llanera said.