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Kenya rededicates first domestically refitted patrol ship

The KNS Shupavu was lifted out of the water again in preparation for its rededication ceremony. (Kenya Shipyards Limited)

Kenya's President William Ruto officially rededicated the Kenya Navy's patrol ship KNS Shupavu on 29 July in a ceremony that marked a major milestone for the East African country's investment in a new shipyard.

The 60 m ship received an extensive overhaul at Kenya Shipyards Limited's (KSL's) Mombasa Shipyard, which was built at Mtongwe Naval Base with the help of the Dutch shipyard Damen and officially opened in December 2021, when Shupavu was already inside one of the two new sheds.

KSL released photographs showing the ship was relaunched in May but was put back on the yard's ship lift earlier in July for its rededication ceremony, which was attended by Ruto and senior military officials.

In his speech, KSL managing director Major General Paul Otieno said the refit included replacing Supavu's engines, generators, and communications equipment; upgrading its electrical systems and navigation equipment; and refurbishing its crew quarters.

During the process, KSL announced that the ship had been fitted with a new davit crane for launching and recovering boats.

β€œThe mid-life refit was completed within the planned period of 18 months and within budget,” Maj Gen Otieno said. He added that refitting the ship in Kenya rather than sending it to a foreign country had saved an estimated KES600 million (USD4.18 million), as well as providing employment for 150 technical and 200 unskilled personnel.

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