Several seamen complete Russian marine course

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Walvis Bay

Namsov Fishing Enterprises’ readiness to invest in human capital, despite it being costly, has paid off. On Monday the company presented 10 young men who successfully transitioned to qualified navigators and marine engineers after four years of intensive training in Russia.

Namsov reportedly invested N$4.3 million to facilitate training for the 10 graduates, that will see a change and effectively minimize foreigners in the maritime industry. It will further see a smooth transition of Namibians to senior jobs in the marine sector where expatriates still hold sway.

The proud graduates were paraded to the media and stakeholders on Monday at a small ceremony held at the company’s premises to welcome the graduates back home after spending four years in Russia. They are Erickson Ndakondja, Samuel Mwenyo, Emmanuel Shatiwa, Laramanandane Namholo, Herman Hamunghete, Erasmus Amukwaya, Johannes Helungi, Johannes Hainyonna, Hamukwaya Hamukwaya and Sinvula Mwilima.

The ten completed their maritime studies at the prestigious Baltic Fishing Fleet State Academy in Kaliningrad. The course included theory and practicals.

The group are now qualified marine engineers and navigators and will advance to on-the-job training in senior officer positions onboard Namsov vessels.

According to the human resources manager of Namsov, Edwin Kamatoto, the initiative to invest in Namibia’s human capital is a strategic and deliberate effort to prepare Namibians to reach the highest level of managing mid-water trawlers.

“Prior to 1990 there was no expertise or suitable vessels in Namibia for catching and processing of horse mackerel by means of mid-water trawling, and foreign vessel operators took up these positions. However, being a Namibian company that is on its journey to Namibiasation we embarked on purchasing our own vessels and introduced Namibian crew. We invested in advanced training for them to totally manage the fleet,” he explained.

Kamatoto added that Namsov undertook the initiative to send the group to Russia in June 2011. “We are celebrating and reaping the fruits of our Namibiasation process,” he said. One of the graduates, Erickson Ndankondja, on behalf of his fellow graduates thanked Namsov for investing in them and granting them the opportunity to advance their careers.

“It was tough training and we started from mastering the language, which felt like starting school from Grade 1. However, we made it and are back to plough our knowledge into our industry,” he said.

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