Transnamib Commissions Locomotives

WINDHOEK – TransNamib’s 180-day turnaround strategy inched closer to fruition yesterday when five refurbished locomotives were commissioned by the Minister of Works and Transport, Erkki Nghimtina, at Platform One at Windhoek Station.

The three Ge Class33 locomotives and two EMD34-Class locomotives form part of an envisaged fleet of rolling stock of 21 the parastatal is in the process to buy in the foreseeable future.

The five refurbished locomotives were acquired from Transnet Engineering in South Africa.

Nghimtina, who commissioned the locomotives, said the process was long overdue and could not come at a better time, as the country and TransNamib is celebrating the hallmark of its silver jubilee anniversary of 25 years of freedom, national independence and justice in less than two months.

He said government is aware of the situational analysis of Transnamib.

“We know its strengths, its weaknesses, its opportunities and its threats and we could, therefore, not sit back and turn a blind eye. Instead, we consciously took a well calculated political decision by intervening as the sole stakeholder and commit additional resources for non-capital needs to sustain the uninterrupted rendering of service and business continuity,” said the works and transport minister.

Nghimtina said the ongoing challenges TransNamib continues to experience, make it extremely difficult for the parastatal to deliver on its core and legal mandate.

“We, in government, also made a commitment to support the company, identify remedial interventions and strategic initiatives that will reinstate operational integrity, effiency and long term sustainability of TransNamib for it to fare and cope in the same fashion that other private sector companies do,” further stated Nghimtina.

He said government cannot single-handedly achieve these milestones and urged the private sector to help.

“This must be a joint venture initiative where the private sector companies must support TransNamib to utilise its services,” he said.

The transport sector is among the sectors that have a huge impact in ensuring cost-effective and efficient delivery of goods and services, he said.

Nghimtina said the company is making measurable progress in addressing the existing precarious pulling power shortages, which perennially contribute to unwanted breakdowns and compromising the dispatch and reliability of high quality service to customers.

He said the railway sector will continue to occupy a meaningful domain in the transport and logistics sector and shall justify the important role it plays in the aancement of the country.

“It is unimaginable to perceive our transport sector without the primary role and importance that TransNamib plays. Government would like to see tangible results that benefit not only TransNamib, but the transport sector and the Namibian nation at large,” he told the senior executives in attendance.

Acting Chief Executive Officer, Hippy Tjivikua, said the future of TransNamib’s sustainability and success lies in the public private partnerships (PPPs).

He said craftsmen are busy repairing 11 GE locomotives followed by 10 Ge locomotives and another 10 to push the total fleet of 18 running locomotives to over 50.

“This will improve on the reliability and availability. He said the two EMD34-Class locomotives, which have a ger pulling power will be utilised on the Walvis Bay to Kranzberg Station, while the Ge Class33 locomotives will be operated on the Tsumeb and Oshikango rail lines,” elaborated Tjivikua.

Source : New Era