Eveline de Klerk
Walvis Bay-The Commander-in-Chief of the Namibian Defence Force, President Hage Geingob, last Friday commissioned two new navy patrol vessels at the Namibian Navy headquarters at Walvis Bay at a ceremony characterised by military pomp and fanfare.
The two vessels, Daures and Brukkaros, arrived in July this year from China and are part of the navy’s fleet that will be used to protect Namibia’s natural resources and carry out patrols along the vast Namibian coastline.
Daures is named after Daures Constituency in Erongo Region while Brukkaros is named after the volcanic mountain in //Kharas Region.
The new acquisitions bring the navy’s patrol vessels to six.
Geingob stressed the importance of Namibia’s military forces and the need to continuously upgrade their capabilities.
He added that Namibia has always espoused peace and diplomacy, both at regional and international level.
“We are a child of international solidarity, enemy to none and friend to all, unless our sovereignty is placed under threat. Although we are a peaceful nation, given the disturbing rate of flux in modern day geopolitics we must always remain vigilant in terms of our national security. It is for this reason that we must constantly upgrade our military hardware and train our military personnel to enable us to repel any threat to our sovereignty, whether aerial, terrestrial or marine,” said the president.
Geingob added that although the country is currently seized with mitigating the negative effects of the economic headwinds, the government still remains committed to ensure modern, capable and adequate equipment for the military.
“Therefore as commander-in-chief, I would like to challenge our defence minister, chief of defence and our service commanders to develop innovative proposals for the funding of our military,” said Geingob.
Also speaking at the event, the navy commander Rear Admiral Sinsy Ndeshi Nghipandua said the navy, which coincidently celebrated its 13th anniversary, has grown tremendously.
“We, however, still have a long way to go with the acquisition of required capabilities and operationalisation of the fleet,” he said.