The Namibian Navy is currently participating in a multilateral maritime exercise Obangame Express 2022′(OE22), taking place along the West African coastline, and has deployed it’s largest vessel ‘Elephant.’
The Namibian Ship ‘Elephant’, sailed to the exercise on 4 March with 104 crew on board.
NS Elephant (S11) is a multipurpose warship of the Namibian Navy. Construction of NS Elephant began in mid-2011 and the ship was officially handed over to the Namibian Navy on 3 July 2012 after sea acceptance trials were completed.
China’s Wuhan Shipyard-built Namibian Ship (NS) Elephant is armed with a 37mm naval gun and two 14.5mm twin-barrelled machine guns.
Capable of carrying 6x12ft containers of 24t, the 2,500t ship has been designed to carry six armed personnel carriers of 12t each and at least a crew of 150.
The vessel is used to monitor Namibia’s exclusive economic zone.
Namibia’s Ministry of Defence and Veterans Affairs said the exercise Obangame Express 2022 is designed to improve regional cooperation, increase Maritime Domain Awareness and enhance information sharing practices and operational capabilities within the West African Coastline.
“The exercise commenced on 6 March and is scheduled to end on 19 March and will honour regional maritime agreements that seek to intensify interoperability among African, European, U.S and other partners in a broad range of naval tasks including energy security, counter-piracy, counter illicit trafficking, combating illegal fishing and maritime domain awareness,” the ministry added.
African countries participating include, Angola, Benin, Cape Verde, Cameroon, Cote D’Ivoire, Democratic Republic of Congo, Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Liberia, Morocco, Namibia, Nigeria, Rep of Congo, Sao Tome and Principe, Senegal, Sierra Leone and Togo.