Shilongo wants more immigration officials at harbour

06 Feb 2018 15:30pm
WALVIS BAY, 06 FEB (NAMPA) - Chief Security Officer at the Namibian Ports Authority, Retired Commissioner Festus Shilongo, has said there is a need for 24-hour surveillance at all access points at the port of Walvis Bay.
Speaking about security challenges to a Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defence and Security here on Tuesday, Shilongo said currently only some points at the port have permanent monitoring and called for more immigration officers to be availed to the port.
While requesting for monitoring of the port on a 24 hour basis, Shilongo also noted that there is a serious need for the establishment of maritime security training institutions to equip security staff for the port with the requisite skills.
According to Shilongo, he currently manages a team of 15 security officers that he trained himself.
“Our security officers should be appointed as peace officers, this will give them power to arrest offenders within the port’s jurisdiction just like many other ports. Currently we do not have that power and we always work with the police to execute arrests.”
He said the security department has 72 positions of which 53 are filled and 19 are vacant due to a lack of finances.
His future plans are to increase competitiveness in human capital and expand the security force at the same pace as the port’s expansion.
With regards to achievements, Shilongo said they now have a fire truck and an internal police station with sniffer dogs. They have also managed to reduce the number of crimes at the harbour.
The committee, chaired by Levi Katoma and deputised by Agnes Kafula, will present the recommendations to Cabinet for decision-making.