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About Capt. Gregorio Oca


When there was no structured organization for Filipino seafarers, our seafarers received low compensation, dealt with poor working conditions, and were not guaranteed with necessary protection and health benefits.

This plight of Filipino seafarers inspired Capt. Gregorio Oca to advocate seafarers’ welfare and rights by founding the Associated Marine Officers’ Union in 1960. Later on, in 1972, the Union merged with the Associated Seamen’s Union of the Philippines and became known as the Associated Marine Officers’ and Seamen’s Union of the Philippines (AMOSUP).

Captain Oca initiated programs and services concerning seafarer training, health, and welfare, such as the AMOSUP Seamen’s Hospital and the Maritime Academy of Asia and the Pacific. It was due to his endless passion and dedication in upholding the welfare of the Filipino seafarers and workers worldwide that AMOSUP grew to become the country’s largest seafarers’ association.

He was also considered as a key figure behind the ratification of the Maritime Labor Convention (MLC) in 2006. Considered as a maritime expert, he also served as a presidential consultant on maritime affairs. He also represented the sea-based sector in the POEA governing board, and in the board of trustees of the Overseas Workers’ Welfare Administration (OWWA).

Capt. Oca also became the President of Bagong Bayani Foundation Inc., and Philippine Maritime Education and Training Foundation, Inc.

In recognition his achievements and contributions in the maritime industry, Capt. Oca received several awards. In 2010, Capt. Oca was awarded the Order of Lakandula with the rank of Bayani, the highest distinction given by the government to a civilian. He also received the Papal Award Pro Ecclesia Et Pontifice, for his support and services to the Catholic Church. Meanwhile, San Beda College (now San Beda University) inducted him as a Hall of Famer for his achievements in shipping. Posthumously, the International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF) conferred him an honor of international category.

His passing on November 21, 2010 was mourned by the maritime industry and several government sectors. The wake was held at the Immaculate Conception Cathedral in Cubao, and then the AMOSUP Seamen’s Center in Intramuros. He was laid to rest at the Loyola Cemetery in Marikina, to full military honors, on November 28, 2010.

Despite the loss of its founder, the government and maritime industry expressed their optimism and confidence that AMOSUP will continuously uphold Capt. Oca’s legacy.