• April 25th, 2019
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Elite unit recruits only the best


Grootfontein The Minister of Defence Penda ya Ndakolo urged the acting Chief of the Namibia Defence Force (NDF), Vice-Marshal Martin Pinehas, to consider recruiting the best and brightest soldiers to become members of the elite Namibian Special Forces. “They should be trained at a higher intensity to prepare them properly for their missions as a rapid deployment force,” he said during the fourth graduation ceremony held last week Friday at the Namibia Special Forces School in Grootfontein. “To those of you who are graduating today, remember that you are chosen for this special training because you are among the most fortunate and finest Namibians and members of the NDF, who have been given this excellent opportunity to become members of the special forces and to obtain the best military training available in the world. Therefore you are expected to be exceptional soldiers in both your performance and behaviour,” he said. He told the commander of the special forces Major Kashiwanhapo, and his deputy Lieutenant Colonel Johannes Shimwetheleni, that they have the responsibility to ensure the force is always ready and well equipped to fulfil its distinctive roles and functions essential to the comprehensive mission of the NDF. One of the trainers from the company Chute Systems Specialists, Waldo Krahenbuhl, who conducted the training for the last six years, said as a skills transfer process they train Namibians to become future instructors at the academy. Training to graduate at the advanced level took about 18 months. Krahenbuhl said once one has been admitted to the special forces, the hardest and harshest training system ever subjected on a human being begins. “It’s almost like torture and the drill sergeants know no other way than the contents prescribed in training manuals. Personnel admitted to the unit specialise in mountain warfare operations at high altitude terrains where they are exposed to the tough skills of climbing and cold weather survival. Other than mountain warfare they are also drilled in vehicle insertion techniques, motor vehicle maintenance and mechanics,” said Krahenbuhl. To come to wear the maroon beret paratrooper commando insignia is no easy task as only the exceedingly intelligent make it. New Era was informed that to be admitted to the Namibia Special Forces is a tedious process. A high security clearance and thorough vetting process are undertaken to eliminate all possible doubts and compromised possibilities. Krahenbuhl said extreme physical and mental tests are carried out on would-be candidates before they are admitted and they can withdraw anytime during training. The general public know little about them and will only see them during the national pass-out parades or on Independence Day when they march in the official parade. Within the army they are just known as the “maroon berets”, but thanks to their unique paratrooper wings insignia one can identify them. Seeking information on them is an uphill task. Former and current commandos who have served in the battalion are extremely friendly and courteous but they reveal nothing about their work.
New Era Reporter
2015-07-29 10:59:17 3 years ago

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