SADC air forces complete Blue Kunene exercise

04 Sep 2017 18:10pm
OSHAKATI, 04 SEP (NAMPA) – The Southern African Development Community (SADC) air forces have successfully completed the ‘Blue Kunene’ military exercise.
The SADC Air Forces, Air Arms and Air Wings from Angola, Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, South Africa, Tanzania, Zambia, Zimbabwe and host Namibia conducted the military exercise from 24 August to 05 September in the Kunene Region.
The exercise involved more than 1 200 military personnel from these countries and affected the areas of Ondangwa, Ruacana, Opuwo and Okangwati.
During the closing ceremony held at Oshakati on Monday, Namibian Air Force Commander, Air Vice- Marshal Martin Pinehas commended all participants, saying the exercise’s goals were reached.
“The objectives of the interoperability of various human and material resources were practiced and enhanced, although we must continue to improve on this important area,” Pinehas noted.
He said about 250 tonnes of food aid was airlifted to the Kunene Region, while close to 1 500 people in need of medical care were treated during the exercise.
“Furthermore, major and some minor rehabilitation work was done at some schools in the region, amounting to thousands of dollars,” he added.
The exercise involved more than 1 200 military personnel, 23 different aircrafts and helicopters flying over 350 hours.
It is a product of the African Union (AU) strategy on the role of the African Standby Force in Humanitarian and Natural Disaster Support, which is expected to contribute to overall efforts to prevent and effectively respond to complex emergencies to the continent.