Five members of the Budgetary Committee of the German Federal Parliament (the “Bundestag”) visited Namibia from 23 to 25 January 2019. Focus was the German support of the Namibian Defense Forces (NDF) as part of the German Federal Government's Equipment Aid Programme.
The delegates representing various parties in the Bundestag first travelled to Walvis Bay and visited the Ammunition Disposal Plant there. The plant was built as part of the Equipment Aid Programme from 2001 to 2004 and has been operated by the Namibian Armed Forces under its sole responsibility since 2006.
The delegation then visited Osona Base near Okahandja where the German Government supports three ongoing projects. One of them being a central support element (Center Mission Support Element) which is currently being set up. In future, the facility will be used to maintain and refurbish material for potential peacekeeping operations, as well as train military staff to prepare Namibia for deployment within SADC, African Union or United Nations missions.
In addition, a central medical training facility is being built, also in Osona Base. This will enable the NDF to provide sustainable training and qualification for healthcare professionals in future.
The third ongoing project is the expansion of the existing Mobile Field Hospital which is already used for exercise missions. The Mobile Field Hospital will be expanded to include a mobile hygiene and disease protection component as well as a dental section.
Back in Windhoek, the delegation held talks with the Deputy Minister of Defense, Billy Mwaningange, the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah, as well as with the Namibian Parliament Government Chief Whip, Evelyn! Nawases-Taeyele.
The Parliamentary delegation was able to obtain a comprehensive and up-to-date picture of the former and current projects under the Federal Government's Equipment Aid Programme in Namibia.
Highly experienced and committed soldiers of the Namibian armed forces briefed the Honorable Parliamentarians on projects already handed over to the NDF.
With its Equipment Aid Programme, the German Government has been actively promoting independent peacekeeping capacities in selected African partner countries for more than four decades. Namibia has been a partner country since 1992. So far, equipment assistance agreements worth more than € 30 million have been concluded with Namibia.