Namibian Air Force pilots inspire future military aviators

Niël Terblanché

A team of seven pilots from the Namibian Air Force took time out of their rigorous schedule amidst Independence Day preparations to engage with students at the Greater Achievers Academy in Katima Mulilo.

This engagement was not just a break from their duties but a mission to enlighten and motivate young minds about the vast opportunities that await them in the Namibian Air Force.

Grades 7 to 11 learners of the academy were treated to an extraordinary session where the pilots, amidst their participations in the Namibian Defence Force (NDF) parade for the country’s 34th Independence Day celebration, shared insights into the life of an aviator and the academic paths that lead to such a prestigious career.

The essence of their message was clear: Dedication to academic excellence is the runway to achieving dreams of flying.

The invitation extended to these members of the Air Force was conceived by Angela Shumbwa, the Principal of Greater Achiever Academy.

The sight of NDF jets and helicopters flying over the region over the past week, coupled with the pilots’ temporary presence and availability in town for the Independence Day celebrations, created an opportunity that Shumbwa was keen to capitalize on.

She said her goal was to broaden the horizons of every learner, presenting the Air Force as a potential career path and instilling the children with the ethic that hard work and education can indeed lead them beyond set horizons.

Each pilot shared their unique journey into the Namibian Air Force while telling the children about the importance of perseverance, discipline, and a strong educational foundation.

This initiative by the principal of the Greater Achievers Academy, supported by the willingness of the Namibian Air Force to engage with the community, is a powerful reminder of the impact of mentorship and the importance of providing young people with role models who exemplify the virtues of service, dedication, and academic pursuit.

Shumbwa said that encouraging learners to aim high and dream big, reinforces the belief that with hard work and determination, the sky is indeed the limit.

According to the Ministry of Defence and Veterans Affairs, the pilots who took time out to inspire young minds were Wing Commander Eliphas Shilongo, the Commanding Officer of the Air Defence Wing, alongside his colleagues Wing Commander Samora Liswaniso, Wing Commander Eliakim Iipinge, Flight Lieutenant Paulus Namolo, Flight Officer Marx Kamati, Flight Officer Vineta Tjingaete, and Flight Officer Sam Nekongo.

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