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South African Navy names vessels

Announcing names of new SA Navy ships

SOUTH AFRICA: With the construction of the three new Multi-Mission Inshore Patrol Vessels (MMIPVs) on track, the South African Navy has announced the names for the vessels being built by Damen Shipyards Cape Town (DSCT). 

The three names chosen for the vessels are: 

  1. SAS SEKHUKHUNE
  2. SAS ADAM KOK
  3. SAS SHAKA

These are the first locally built vessels for the SA Navy since 1986 following the SAS Drakensberg and three Warrior Class Strike craft that were built in Durban. The construction of the MMIPV’s is a major rejuvenation of the SA local shipbuilding industry that has again put South Africa on the map in terms of shipbuilding capability. The keel laying of the last vessel was held last month in Cape Town. 

The names have been chosen to acknowledge the warriors who led their people with great bravery to fight many battles in South Africa's history. They follow the heritage path of their predecessors “The Warrior Class Strike Craft” in order to continue with the names of the celebrated SA Warriors.

SAS SEKHUKHUNE is due to be delivered to the SA Navy in the first quarter of next year and the crew has commenced with the training and familiarisation of the ship. Following the delivery, the ship will undergo sea acceptance trials that will be followed by the commissioning. The commissioning signifies the operational capability of the ship as it affirms its readiness to fulfill the mandate of the SA Navy thereby further enhancing the SA Navy’s patrol capability.

The first vessels was launched in March of this year. At the time DSCT Project Manager, Ian Stewart noted the important milestone for the shipyard. “This is the culmination of three years of hard work by a dedicated team of people. Ultimately, more than one million man-hours of work will be invested in the construction of the three MMIPVs.”

The more than 600-ton vessel was transported from the DSCT shipyard on the evening of 23 March 2021 to the Transnet National Ports Authority (TNPA) synchrolift at the Victoria & Alfred (V&A) Waterfront Basin. The move was conducted by Mammoet South Africa, using 48 axle lines of Self‑Propelled Mobile Transporters (SPMTs) to provide precision movement.  Mammoet Project Manager, Uzayr Karimulla, says while moving the vessel at night meant less impact on traffic, the reduction in light came with its own challenges. “Through careful planning, close collaboration, and the teamwork between DSCT and Mammoet South Africa, our team made this move a success. We are very happy to have been part of the project, contributing to the advancement of safer waters in Southern Africa.”

Once the vessel was raised onto the synchrolift, the team waited for high tide  before moving it out of the V&A Basin via TNPA tugs towards the Elliot Bason. 


PHOTO SOURCE: Damen Shipyards

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