SA Navy controls Simon’s town dockyard – again
Control of the dockyard at Simon’s town, long regarded as one of South Africa most important naval and military assets, has been returned to the SA Navy. Defence and Military Veterans Minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula, made the announcement as part of her budget vote speech to the National Assembly earlier this month bringing to an end years of speculation about the future of the dockyard. “In September 2015 I instructed that the Armscor Dockyard in Simon’s Town be run under a business model as recommended by the Defence Review 2015. The Naval Dockyard is returned to the control of the Navy,” she said. In the just on nine years that control and management of the dockyard was in the hands of Armscor, the national defence and security acquisition agency, problems and “challenges” were reported more often than work well done. According to a recent Armscor annual report: “The year under review continued to be marred by challenges of insufficient capacity, capabilities and funding. The funding gap still exists to maintain a baseline support capability but dockyard resources reflect a shortfall in both its human and technical capability to fulfil its intended capability to support the full SA Navy upkeep capability”.