Minister for Defence Dr Ng Eng Hen officiated at a ceremony to mark the commissioning of the High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS) and operationalisation of the first HIMARS Battery at Khatib Camp this afternoon. During the ceremony, Dr Ng witnessed a demonstration of the deployment and operation of the HIMARS as part of a networked force that included other land platforms.
Speaking at the commissioning ceremony, Dr Ng highlighted the significance of the event to the Artillery and the transformation journey of the Singapore Armed Forces (SAF). He said, "The successful induction of the HIMARS reflects well on the ability of the SAF to respond decisively to new challenges and changing circumstances in the operational environment."
Commending the gunners of 23 SA for their competency and professionalism, Dr Ng noted that while advancements in technology has enhanced the SAF's capabilities and reduced the reliance on manpower, heavier responsibility now rests on the servicemen.
He said, "It is ultimately the professionalism and commitment of our people that will translate the latest weapon systems into effective capabilities."
The SAF took delivery of the HIMARS in July 2010 and conducted its inaugural battery live firing in November 2010 in Fort Sill, Oklahoma, USA. The HIMARS, which will be operated by Bravo battery, 23 SA, provides artillery forces with precision fire power, enhanced mobility and advanced networking capabilities.
Also present at the ceremony were Minister of State for Defence Mr Lawrence Wong, Chief of Army Major-General Ravinder Singh and other senior officers from the SAF.