The Greatship Manisha will soon be fitted to serve PetroSA as a dual purpose diving vessel. Photo: Supplied
MOSSEL BAY NEWS - The Greatship Manisha, soon to become a regular in the Port of Mossel Bay when it operates under contract for PetroSA, is the very first vessel to be registered by Marine Crew Services (MCS) under the South African flag, and is only the third to be placed on the SA Ships Registry.
The vessel is a 93.67m modern, multi-purpose platform supply and support vessel owned by the Singapore-based Greatship Gloval Offshore Services. It was, until this morning, registered in Singapore.
At lunchtime today a select audience gathered on the ship to witness the hoisting of the South African flag under the piped sounds of the South African anthem.
"In many ways, it is like welcoming a newborn," MCS Group CEO, Mr Daniel Ngubane said when he assured everyone that it would also not be the last ship to bear the new South African identity.
Speaking to the Mossel Bay Advertiser, he likened the flagging to that of a national identity. "Today we will give the Greatship Manisha her South African identity, her passport," he said. He said the flagging was the culmination of great co-operation between various parastatals and government agencies who partnered with MCS to realiee a dream.
The CEO of South African Maritime Safety Authority (SAMSA), Mr Sobantu Tilayi, said that despite the disabling local legal environment South Africa should not let up the push for more South African registered vessels.
"Countries attach importance to the tonnage they control. Self-sustainability in this regard is very important for progress." He demanded, however, that South African seafarers in future form at least 50% of the crew of the Greatship Manisha and gave the assurance that SAMSA would give future ventures of this kind all the necessary support.
"The Greatship Manisha will serve the people of Mossel Bay going forward, therefore it was only fitting the the vessel receive it's flagging in the Port of Mossel Bay."
PetroSA's Vice President of Operations, Mr Micheal Nene congratulated MCS with "chartering the uncharted territory."
He added: "Greatship Manisha now shows the world it can be done. Soon she will be fitted to serve the various purposes of PetroSA as a dual purpose diving vessel that will also from time to time be required to do the milk run."
He added that having the Greatship Manisha in Mossel Bay will add a search and rescue enabler to all of the South African seas.
For the group CEO of Marine Crew Services (MCS), Daniel Ngubane, the flagging of the Greatship Manisha in Mossel Bay on Wednesday, 15 March, was not only the culmination of hard work and an indication of what can happen when those in the industry work together, but it was also "history being made".
MCS group CEO Daniel Ngubane with the CEO of the South African Maritime Safety Authority (SAMSA), Sobantu Tilayi, the master of GGOS Singapore, Captain Kishore Prabhakar and PetroSA's vice president of operations, Micheal Nene, directly after the South African flag was hoisted on the Greatship Manisha on Wednesday morning.
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