The Second Year of the NGP (MSD) Training

In the second year of the NGP (MSD) contract the sailors are divided into various branches (or musterings) in the South African Navy. Some of the musterings that the sailors are divided into are:

Protection force.
This is the mustering that is responsible for the maintenance of security within the South African Navy. The second year NGP (MSD) learners must undergo a 10-week long protection part 1 course that is presented in Simons Town. Some of the things covered in this course are: Roadblocks, searching of vehicles and buildings, Clearing of buildings, cordoning-off of buildings, weapon handling that include the 9mm pistol, shotgun, R5 rifle and LMG medium machine-gun, identifying of basic explosives, evacuation procedures in the event of fires and bomb scares, protection of the vulnerable parts of the base, escorting of VIPs etc. After this course the sailors are sent to various Navy Bases where they complete the rest of the year as Protection Force Personnel.

Engine Room Attendants Mustering (ERATS).
This mustering teaches the basic technical skills required for those sailors that are selected to be attendants in the engine rooms of ships. This six-week long course is presented at SAS WINGFIELD in Cape Town. Some of the subjects that are presented include a basic mechanical course, introduction to internal combustion engines, basic maritime refrigeration, basic outboard motors, lubrication, hand tools, plan maintenance, ship systems, propellers and shafting and safety in the workshop. After their course the sailors are sent to various base workshops and to ships.

Public Relations.
The Navy also has a Public Relations section and some of the sailors spend their second year in this mustering. The sailors all undergo the Public Relations Institute of South Africa (PRISA) Basic Principles of Public Relations course. In their second year they are then exposed to all the facets of the Public Relations field in the Navy, which includes media releases, conducting visits, manning shows and exhibitions, basic photography and office administration.

Personnel Section.
The Navy also manages its own personnel administration by means of the Personnel section. The second-year NGP (MSD) sailors in this mustering must undergo a three-week long course in Pretoria where the following subjects are presented: Conventions of Service Writing, Signal Writing, Managing the computer based Remuneration system, Human resource Functioning, Human Resource Maintenance, Labour and Service Relations and Client Service. After this course the sailors are sent to various Navy bases where they apply these skills in the workplace.

Physical Training Section.
Due to the fact that the Navy is a fighting force, the physical fitness of its members is of the utmost importance. Thus we have a branch of trained physical fitness instructors who must ensure that the physical fitness of the members does not deteriorate.

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Teamwork is crucial for getting the accommodation up to standard for inspections.
(Photo: Seaman M Venter)

The sailors who join this branch have to undergo the Joint Physical Training Sports and Recreation Curse in Pretoria, which is nine weeks long. Some of the subjects presented are: Fitness education; foundation of PT; the importance of flexibility; Basic Anatomy; basic physiology, the methodology of PT; fitness education; sport injuries and sport and recreation management. 

The learners are also expected to know the rules of some sports, which will allow them to present it to their learners when they are qualified Physical Training Instructors. These sports include rugby, cross-country running, tug of war, volleyball, military pentathlon, soccer and orienteering.

Hospitality Section.
The Navy conducts its own hospitality service and hence requires professional and dedicated chefs and stewards to fulfil this function. The NGP (MSD) sailors who are interested to become chefs or stewards are sent to Catering School in Simon's Town for an 8-week course entitled Caterers Part 1. During this course they are introduced to subjects for both chefs and stewards, which means that they can be used in either field. Some of the subjects that they do on this course are: The basic principles of cooking; hygiene, the principles of the occupational Health and Safety Act (OHASA); wine and bar services, the art of entertainment; equipment and utensils; victualling, menu planning and nutrition.

Fire fighting Section.
Ship-borne fires are one of the largest threats in the maritime industry and hence all Navy personnel are trained to combat fires. In addition to this the Navy also has its own dedicated fire fighting service to combat both shore-based and ship-borne fires. The formal fire fighting qualification that the NGP (MSD) sailors obtain is 7 months long and includes the following: Hazardous material awareness and operation, fire fighting, advanced fire fighting, petro-chemical fire fighting and bush fires. The course is very practically orientated and although the theory part is important, it only takes about 20% of the time. In addition to these qualifications the sailors in this branch also does a basic ambulance course, which is the equivalent of First Aid Level 5.

Logistic Section.
In any large organisation the logistic department is vitally important to ensure the smooth functioning of all the facets of the organisation. The course presented to the sailors is 5 weeks long and it is done in Cape Town. Some of the subjects taken are: Stocktaking; damage, loss and control of state property; receipt, storage and transportation of equipment and material; packing, unpacking and transportation of equipment and material; principles of accounting and accounting documents and material controlling authorities. The members are then sent to either shore bases or ships where they must apply their knowledge within the logistic field.

Communication Section.
The nature of the Navy's communication necessitates that all formal communication is done in a secure format. Thus the communication section is very important to safeguard the integrity of communication within the Navy. The NGP (MSD) sailors that go into this branch has to complete the Communication Part 1 course in Simon's Town, which is 9 months long. Some of the subjects covered include Morse Code, Telex Net, Ceremonial, Flags and Pennants, Voice and Radio Procedures, Flashing lights, semaphore and Microsoft Word. Once the sailors have completed this course they are sent as communication assistants to various shore units and ships.




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revision date: Thursday, January 11, 2018
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