Media statement by Alan Khan, Senior Director: Corporate Affairs at the Durban University of Technology
An honorary Doctor of Technology Degree in Maritime Studies will be conferred by the Durban University of Technology on Vice Admiral Johannes R Mudimu for his exceptional role in transforming the South African Navy, his commitment to peace and community welfare as well as his support to DUT.
V Adm Mudimu, 58; the Chief of the South African Navy will receive his honorary doctorate during DUT’s graduation ceremony on Thursday April 19 2012 in Durban where he is also expected to be guest speaker.
In his letter recommending V Adm Mudimu for the award, Shakeel Ori; DUT Co-Operative Education Director and member of Senate said V Adm Mudimu has made the navy a “People’s Navy” by providing previously denied access to common people and students since his appointment as Chief in 2005. Ori describes V Adm Mudimu as having an excellent grasp of the country’s education and training needs, adding that he has gone beyond the confines of the navy in trying to assist people obtain skills that would lead to employment and further study.
“Although the Navy only contracts a percentage of those that complete their basic Navy training, he has ensured that even those rejected by the Navy have some skills that will enable them to support themselves and their families. He has also committed to strengthening DUT’s maritime programmes by facilitating linkages with navies including the Indian Navy,” said Ori.
V Adm Mudimu was born on in Sophiatown, Johannesburg and served the African National Congress and the now defunct Umkhonto We Sizwe in exile. He was one of the student leaders in the 1976 Soweto Uprising. He received his military training in Angola, East Germany and the then USSR. He holds a Masters Degree in Military Science as well as an Honors Degree in Public Management and Governance and an Associate Degree in Safety and Security. He holds diplomas in Human Resource Management and in Personnel and Training. He has certificate in Journalism and other management qualifications and has successfully completed all military courses prescribed for senior officers since 1994.
“Even though his background in exile was with MK, he is a pacifist and committed to peace and
goodwill amongst all. He is a dedicated humble servant of the People. He plays a pivotal role in bringing Navies of the Region and Continent together. VADM Mudimu is an ardent participant and contributor to issues maritime in the International Navies Conferences. Given Admiral Mudimu’s strength of character, his leadership of the Navy, his commitment to peace and community welfare and his overt support for DUT, I recommend him for the award of an Honorary Doctorate,” said Ori.
V Adm Mudimu was appointed Deputy Chief of Personnel and Training in 1992 and served in the MK High Command until the integration of the forces to form the South African National
Defence Force in 1994. He became the Director Integration of the Non Statutory Forces after the integration of the forces. In 1998, he was appointed into the South African Navy as a Rear Admiral (Junior Grade) and appointed as the Inspector General (Navy). On 1 April 1999 he was transferred to Simon’s Town where he was appointed Chief of Fleet Staff until 30 September 2000. On 1 October 2000 he was promoted to the rank of Rear Admiral and appointed as Chief Director Maritime Support, the post description later changed to Chief of Naval Staff.
V Adm Mudimu has been awarded the Legion of Merit (Degree of Command) by the President of United States of America, French National Order of Honor (Degree of 0fficer), Brazil National Decoration Medal, Brazil Tamandaré Merit Medal and the Argentinean Navy Cross for Distinguished Service.
V Adm Mudimu said he is humbled by the honor bestowed to him by DUT. “I will accept this honor on behalf of all men and women serving in the Navy at sea and ashore. This is a recognition of their sterling work in the service of our people and country. My happiness is born of the fact that this will fuel us further to help curve a better future for our youth who seek better opportunities so they too can be better contributors of a better society. Our thanks goes to those who saw and understood what we are and seek to mean to our people,” he said.