Rundu – President Hage Geingob, who is also the commander-in-chief of the Namibian Defence Force (NDF), said he wants to see greater representation for women at all levels of the country’s defence force.
He made the remarks on Friday when he commissioned 42 army cadets in Rundu. Out of the 42 cadets who completed the 17-month intensive training, only four are female.
“I’m sure that if we all made a concerted effort in motivating and encouraging female soldiers it will give more young women the confidence to join the army, navy and air force,” Geingob said.
“Therefore, I challenge more women to join the NDF and urge those already in the force to aim as high as possible and assume staff and command appointments in the NDF.”
According to President Geingob, the NDF is an institution which brings great pride to the Namibian nation. “Our armed men and women are the sentinels that stand guard over our Namibian house,” he said.
“It therefore gives me great pride to witness the ushering in of new recruits, young Namibians who have chosen the path of discipline, sacrifice … for the purpose of safeguarding our peace, democracy and rule of law.”
Geingob further said the young recruits have walked through the doors of the NDF military school, whose vision is to provide training to all members of the NDF to enhance their knowledge and skills in order to maintain the required standards of professionalism in the force.
Given the professional conduct and discipline executed by the young recruits on the day, Geingob said the NDF military school is living up to its vision and mission.
The regular commissioning course is the 8th of its kind in the history of the NDF and is meant to train identified members of the NDF who have displayed the potential to become officers by possessing good leadership qualities and fitness, which have come to the fore during interviews and medical checkups.
The regular commissioning training is designed to train, transform and arm cadet officers with the necessary military skills, knowledge and behaviour befitting officers that in future will be able to train educate and lead a platoon in the NDF during war and in peace.
The military school’s curriculum covers basic soldiery skills, conventional warfare, leadership and administration in order to mould and develop students as knowledgeable officers, capable of steering the NDF to even greater heights.
President Geingob urged the soldiers to know the social significance and meaning of courage. “You can only have courage if you have character first. Be a woman and man of character in peace so that if and when the time calls you will become a man or woman of courage in war,” he said.