Senegalese Navy’s first OPV 58S ‘Walo’ receives armaments

The first of three heavily armed OPV 58S for the Senegalese Navy has started receiving its armaments in time for its June 2023 delivery.

Walo is the first ocean-going missile-armed patrol vessel for the Senegalese Navy was launched in Concarneau on September 13, 2022, by French Piriou Shipyard.

The OPV 58 S can carry out a variety of missions due to its robust and versatile nature. Amongst such missions is its anti-surface warfare and anti-aircraft deterrent capability through a potent array of offensive weapons systems.

The OPV’s weapons suite consist of; a 76mm main gun by Leonardo, four SIMBAD-RC surface to air missiles, four 12.7mm manned machine guns, two Nexter 20mm remote weapon stations and four Marte MK2/N anti-ship missiles placed forward of the ship.

Niani the second vessel of the class was floated out on 2 February by Kership, a joint venture between Piriou and Naval Group and was moved to Concarneau where alongside the first vessel of its class ‘Walo’.

Walo, the first vessel of the OPV 58S class was launched in September 2021, eleven months after the steel cutting ceremony was held in Concarneau Flag of France.

The OPV 58 S is part of the Senegalese Navy fleet recapitalisation efforts which began in 2019. This acquisition was first unveiled during the Africa Maritime Security Forum  (AMSF 2020) held between 20th – 22nd January 2020 in Dakar, Senegal.

The contract for three OPV 58 S was signed in November 2019 by the Ministry of Armed Forces of Senegal and the PIRIOU group.

As part of the deal, Piriou subsidiary Piriou Ngom will support the vessels for a number of years. Piriou subsidiary Pirou Ngom Senegal was created in October 2017 through a partnership with Ngom & Freres.

Engine manufacturer MAN Energy Solutions supplied the engines for three OPV 58S patrol boats, as well as for two Israel Shipyards vessels ordered by Ivory Coast.

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