Kenya’s President William Ruto officially rededicated the Kenya Navy’s patrol ship KNS Shupavu on July 29th, in a ceremony that marked a major milestone for the East African country’s investment in a new shipyard.
The 60-meter ship received an extensive overhaul at Kenya Shipyards Limited’s (KSL) Mombasa Shipyard, which was built at Mtongwe Naval Base with the help of the Dutch shipyard Damen and officially opened in December 2021. Shupavu was already inside one of the two new sheds when the shipyard was completed.
KSL released photographs showing that the ship was relaunched in May but was put back on the yard’s ship lift earlier in July for its rededication ceremony, which was attended by Ruto and senior military officials.
In his speech, KSL managing director Major General Paul Otieno said that the refit included replacing Supavu’s engines, generators, and communications equipment; upgrading its electrical systems and navigation equipment; and refurbishing its crew quarters.
The engines, generators, and communications equipment were all replaced with new, more efficient models. The electrical systems and navigation equipment were upgraded to meet current standards. The crew quarters were refurbished to provide a more comfortable and functional living space for the sailors. A new davit crane was installed to allow the ship to launch and recover boats more easily.
In July 2018, the Kenyan patrol ship KNS Shujaa returned from a 21-month midlife refit and training voyage. The refit was carried out in the Netherlands by Damen Shipyards, and was received by Cabinet Secretary for the Ministry of Defence Raychelle Omamo in Mombasa. The vessel is one of two Shupavu class large patrol boats built by Gondan shipyard in Spain – the sister ship is the KNS Shupavu. They were acquired in 1997 and both are armed with 76 and 30 mm guns.
The rededication of KNS Shupavu is a significant achievement for the Kenya Navy and KSL, and it demonstrates the country’s commitment to its maritime security. The ship’s overhaul has significantly improved its capabilities, and it will now be better equipped to fulfill its mission of protecting Kenya’s coastline and maritime interests.
Kenya has inaugurated the shipyard at the Mtongwe Navy base in Mombasa on 22 December, 2021, making it the first country in sub-Saharan Africa with such a facility.
The Kenya Shipyards Limited (KSL) Mombasa Shipyard comprises of a 4,000-ton slipway for shipbuilding activities including refitting of vessels operated by the Kenya Navy, Government agencies and private operators.
Egypt hopes to collaborate with Kenya’s Kisumu shipyard on shipbuilding projects, as well as share technical ideas between the two countries.
An Egyptian military delegation visited Kenya in January last year, to discuss joint future Egyptian-Kenyan military cooperation projects with intent to exchange expertise and experience.