Johannesburg is a freak city in a country largely maritime!

Pretoria: 07 November 2015

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A week ago, South Africa saw the launch of the country’s Marine Tourism & Leisure strategy aimed at providing for the first time a coherent road map forward for the sub-sector of South Africa’s maritime economic sector and the latter whose focused development, transformation and integration into the main economy is deemed highly important, as clearly articulated in the current Operation Phakisa: (Ocean Economy) national campaign.

IMG_0709Launch of the strategy by its developer, the SA Maritime Safety Authority (SAMSA) together with partners Worldsport and the V&A Waterfront, supported by financial sponsors, Calulo Group and several others; occurred during an inaugural national Ocean Festival held at the V&A Waterfront in Cape Town.

The country’s media covered the event and picked up on key salient points.

There were salient points all right! For one thing, an interesting fact to surface was that Johannesburg is effectively a freak city, given that all around the world, cities its size are all maritime based as developed on the basis of sea trade.

For this and various other interesting illuminations, it is worth revisiting the historical event last weekend to listen carefully to the officials that presided over it and whose speeches told more than traditional media could master in its highly limited space and time.

IMG_0725As it transpired, on the evening of Friday, October 30, 2015; close on 100 guests gathered in a splendidly decorated marquee featuring a nautical theme, to be treated to fine sea food, a bit of friendly banter, but importantly, to share in the enthusiasm of the officials behind the event as they explained the genesis of the Marine Tourism & Leisure Strategy, its positioning within the development framework of the country’s maritime economic sector, as well its objectives for the marine sub-sector.

Focus on maritime economic sector the way to go for SA

David Green, CEO V&A Waterfront
David Green, CEO V&A Waterfront

The list of speakers on the evening, (and who incidentally were all given no more than five minutes each!) included (in order of appearance) V&A Waterfront CEO David Green.

Summarily, according to Mr Green; it was high time South Africans took to the oceans, and made use of the resource for wealth generation and sharing…….

(Please do note that audio is bad at first but improves dramatically thereafter with all the clips. Also, a video version of the speeches will be loaded soon on the “Reflections” page.)

South Africa is a maritime country. Johannesburg is a freak city!

Commander Tsietsi Mokhele, CEO SA Maritime Safety Authority (SAMSA)
Commander Tsietsi Mokhele, CEO SA Maritime Safety Authority (SAMSA)

Meanwhile, according to SAMSA CEO, Commander Tsietsi Mokhele, the launch of the Marine Tourism & Leisure Strategy marked what he described as; “the beginning of a change that one day, when our time shall have passed, from another media somewhere, we will look back and say, we thought it was a party for one day, but it happened to be a day marking the beginning of the change we have all wanted for our country…..

“The biggest frustration for all of us in the maritime sector,“ he said: “has been a failure to move the consciousness of our nation to the fact that we are a maritime country, a maritime people, who live off a maritime economy.” Importantly, he properly contextualized the entire weekend activity in terms of South Africa’s grand plan for the maritime economic sector.

Take a listen……

The private sector wants in…

Mkhuseli Faku, chairman Calulo Group
Mkhuseli Faku, chairman Calulo Group

Up next was Calulo Group Chairman, Mkhuseli Faku whose group of companies largely operational in maritime sector he said was excited about the openness the SA Maritime Safety Authority (SAMSA) reflected in its keen invitation to private sector companies to get involved and work closely with State entities. Because of it, he pledged future support of initiatives of the nature.

The Ocean Festival will be all over South Africa come 2016…

Bruce Parker-Forsyth, CEO Worldsport
Bruce Parker-Forsyth, CEO Worldsport

The final word on the evening fell on SAMSA partner in the Ocean Festival initiative, Worldsport, whose leader, Bruce Parker-Forsyth unpacked the Ocean Festival initiative going forward….

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A fine evening of seafood, lighted boat parade, ocean sports and illuminating speeches for some 100 or so guests during the launch of the Ocean Festival and the country’s first coherent and comprehensive Marine Tourism and Leisure Strategy at the V&A Waterfront, in Cape Town

SAMSA Centre for Maritime Excellence executive head, Sindiswa Nhlumayo snatches IPM’s Leadership Top Award

Pretoria: 05 November 2015

Ms Sindiswa Nhlumayo, Executive Head, Centre for Maritime Excellence
Ms Sindiswa Nhlumayo, Executive Head, Centre for Maritime Excellence

The SA Maritime Safety Authority (SAMSA) headquarters in Pretoria was still abuzz with fervor of excitement and a degree of nostalgia Tuesday and early Wednesday this week after confirmation of news that Ms Sindiswa Nhlumayo, an executive head of the organisation’s Centre for Maritime Excellence; has been recognized as the Institute of People Management’s “Business Leader of the Year 2015.”

The country’s top leadership recognition and achievement award was presented to Ms Nhlumayo at the IPM’s 70th anniversary celebrations and 59th year of its people management excellence awards presentations held at Sun City, North West on Tuesday evening.

IPM Win 2015By Wednesday morning the news of Ms Nhlumayo’s high recognition award had spread far and wide, thanks to Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and such other modern social media communication platforms. Wednesday afternoon, SAMSA CEO Commander Tsietsi Mokhele in a brief general meeting with staff also shared the news, sparking a momentary frenzy of excitement characterized by ‘high fives’, hugs, kisses and handshakes.

Commander Tsietsi Mokhele, CEO of the SA Maritime Safety Authority (SAMSA)
Commander Tsietsi Mokhele, CEO of the SA Maritime Safety Authority (SAMSA)

Mr Mokhele described the awarding of the IPM’s “Business Leader of the Year Award 2015” to Ms Nhlumayo as both indicative of the high leadership qualities the award winner possesses and displays, but also an evidence of the calibre of people SAMSA has driving its programmes.

As executive head of the Centre for Maritime Excellence at SAMSA, Ms Nhlumayo is responsible for promoting and driving the growth of skills and human capacity in the Maritime Sector, promoting research, development and innovation and unleashing opportunities for economic development lying in our coastal areas and inland waterways.

Prior to her joining SAMSA, she was head of the Human Resources Development Council whose role is to ensure the implementation of the Human Resources Development Strategy for South Africa and to drive the message of ensuring that South Africa competes better through people in the entire human resources development service value chain.

Before that she was the Deputy Director General for Tourism at the National Department of Tourism and had previously served as head of the first ever Tourism Black Economic Empowerment Council. Ms Nhlumayo is also a former Special Advisor to the Minister of Tourism and former Chief Director for Tourism and Economic Development in the Western Cape.

She holds a Master of Science Degree from the University College of Buckinghamshire and is currently enrolled for a PhD in Maritime Affairs (World Maritime University) in Sweden, specifically focussing on maritime policy and job creation.

She is a founding member of the Cape and Craft Design Institute, and also a lifetime fellow of the Emerging Leaders Programme from Dukes University in the United States and University of Cape Town in South Africa.  She currently serves on the National Heritage Council, Tourism KwaZulu Natal, TETA Maritime Chamber and Cullinan Holdings (Non-Executive Director).  She was the 2013 Best Female Public Servant.  She also got an award from the University of Durban Westville (University of KZN) for being exemplary alumni.

Speaking briefly to staff Wednesday afternoon, Ms Nhlumayo expressed gratitude for the support her work with people received from all, including top management, her peers as well as support staff in her centre and the rest of the establishment.

She committed to maintaining and improving the people leadership standards she’d now been formally recognized for by industry, and to continuing to share her experiences with others. For the period of her ‘reign’ as “Business Leader of the Year 2015” Ms Nhlumayo would also serve ceremoniously as ‘ambassador’ of the IPM, making such appearances at various functions or events as shall be possible.

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South Africa’s first registered cargo vessel lends hand to skills development on first day at work

SALDANHA BAY: September 27, 2015

Three South Africa youths made history in South Africa’s maritime economy sector here at the weekend when they boarded the country’s first registered cargo ship since the dawn of democracy.

MAKING HISTORY: (From Left) Samkelo Ndongeni (25) a deck cadet from Ngqushwa near King Williams Town, Thembani Mazingi (24) an engine cadet from Cofimvaba, and Gordon Sekatang (26), also an engine cadet from Nelspruit in Mpumalanga, with the Cape Orchid skipper, Captain Edgardo De Asis prior to departure Friday with a trade cargo destined for Asian markets. The trio will remain with the ship for at least six months.
MAKING HISTORY: (From Left) Samkelo Ndongeni (25) a deck cadet from Ngqushwa near King Williams Town, Thembani Mazingi (24) an engine cadet from Cofimvaba, and Gordon Sekatang (26), also an engine cadet from Nelspruit in Mpumalanga, with the Cape Orchid skipper, Captain Edgardo De Asis prior to departure Friday with a trade cargo destined for Asian markets. The trio will remain with the ship for at least six months.

Similarly, the city of Nelson Mandela Bay also marked its name in the country’s maritime sector’s history books when it was confirmed as the home of the country’s first registered vessel since 1985. The city is already home to the country’s first higher education and research institute, the SA International Maritime Institute (SAIMI) based at the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University.

The youths, two from the Eastern Cape – Samkelo Ndongeni (25) a deck cadet from Ngqushwa near King Williams Town, and Thembani Mazingi (24) an engine cadet from Cofimvaba, and the third from Nelspruit, Mpumalanga; Gordon Sekatang (26), also an engine cadet – were taken on board the newly registered vessel at Saldanha Bay Friday for a hands-on ship management practical training scheduled to last six months.

The trio’s first travel aboard the Cape Orchid – a 32 day one way journey went underway at the weekend to China where the 279m long cargo vessel will off-load some 170,000 tonnes of iron ore – the vessel’s first trade cargo from South Africa since its registration under the country’s flag.

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