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SAAF Pays Mark Of Respect At Its 89th Anniversary

By Amn Tebogo E. Kekana, AD ASTRA Magazine, photos by F Sgt David Nomtshongwana.

On a wet day that seemed perfectly fit for a Naval exercise, Friday the 30th of January’s weather was not about to deter the SA Air Force’s mission to celebrate its 89th Air Force day at Swartkop (Centurion). True team spirit prevailed when the rain did not have to be reason enough to hinder the show from going on. The blue culture couldn’t have been more visible than when the formal proceedings continued even when Mother Nature was crying tears of joy. (it was raining)

Regardless of the bad weather, Air Force had its fly past

Amongst those who graced the event with their presence included most SAAF top management personnel including the bubbly Yvonne Chaka Chaka (Honorary Col for Air Force Gymnasium, business woman and music artist). When AD ASTRA came up close with her she revealed how honored she was to be a part of such an amazing event and added that she was humbled by how the parade managed to maintain their composure regardless of the weather. She congratulated the winner unit and wished all other units to sit up and take notice.

CAF presents the Prestige Unit of the Air Force Award to Lt Col E.G. Swanepoel

This occasion takes pride in the fact that although plan B had been catered for, (indoors in a hanger) it wouldn’t have felt like it is the “Air Force Day” if there was no parade or fly past. This gave spectators an opportunity to watch and learn as a SAAF Super Lynx helicopter was displayed for the very first time in Gauteng.

The CAF with the proud recipients shared a moment of victory.

The Chief of the Air Force, Lt Gen Carlo Gagiano highlighted the highs and lows that were experienced in the past year (2008). He further encouraged that he envisages that more effort and positive drive will prevail, as the year 2009 will be swamped with national events like the FIFA Confederations Cup, the parliamentary elections and the inauguration of the President.

The super Lynx preparing for demonstration

“My congratulations go to the winners on parade most especially to 2 Air Servicing Unit (2ASU) which scooped the prestige unit of the year award. I hope this will prompt other units to up their games so that next year, they will also experience the rewards of hard work”.

CAF also challenged members to commit themselves to continuous learning in order to ensure optimum improvements in the workplace. He further extended his gratitude to Brig Gen Zimpande Msimang, coordinator of AF Day 2009, Air Force Band and all those who have assisted in making this notable event possible in conclusion.


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