SAS Spioenkop to be handed over to navy on Friday

Feb 14, 2007
Author: P&S


Defence Minister Mosiuoa Lekotais will officially receive the third Meko class frigate SAS SPIOENKOP at a ceremony in Simon's Town on Friday.

SAS Spioenkop is the third of four warships acquired by the navy as part of the Strategic Defence Package. The four frigates have already been delivered to South Africa were they have and are undergoing final fitting out.

The other three warships are SAS Amatola, SAS Isandlwana and SAS Mendi Ė the latter ship will be the last to be completed and handed over.

The official handing over of SAS Spioenkop to the South African Navy takes place at a commissioning ceremony at the naval base. The ship arrived from Germany in 2004 and has since remained under the supervision of the contractors.

She will be under the command of Cmdr Douglas Roy Fourie, who said 125 members of his unit were ready to patrol and protect South Africa's waters.

"The frigate will be used for training operations, peace support operations, escorts, diplomatic missions, operational exercises with African and navies from other countries," he said.

Of the 125 crew members, 16 are women.

Last year South Africa took delivery at Simonís Town of the first of South Africa's three submarines from the German consortium. It has also been announced that the South African Air Force has taken delivery of seven of the 30 Agusta A109 Light Utility helicopters which form part of the Defence Strategic Package. (BuaNews)


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