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South Africa: Minister of Transport Congratulates South African Rescuers for UN International Maritime Organisation Awards
Source: Issued by: Department of Transport
Source Date: Friday, November 29, 2013
Focus: Citizen Engagement
Country: South Africa
Created: Nov 29, 2013

The two professional rescuers received their awards from the Secretary-General of the IMO at the multilateral organisation's headquarters in London last night.
This is in recognition of their bravery and extraordinary efforts for rescuing three passengers trapped under the capsized sightseeing catamaran *Miroshga*, during darkness and in freezing cold water on 14 September 2012 in Hout Bay, Western Cape.
The IMO Award for Exceptional Bravery at Sea serves to honour those who have put their own lives on the line, acting instinctively, with courage, to try to save others when harsh weather, cruel seas or other extraordinary circumstances have put lives in danger.
Minister Peters has praised the two as unsung heroes whose extraordinary and challenging work often goes unnoticed.
"We are proud as a nation to be associated with these two outstanding individuals who have dedicated their lives to saving the lives of others, often putting their own lives at great risk," says Minister Peters.
The Minister says the commitment and dedication displayed by Mr. Uhde and Mr. Higgins should serve as inspiration to other South Africans especially those aspiring to pursue careers in Maritime Safety.
"This recognition and vote of confidence extended to us by the IMO will spur us on to ensure the development of the maritime industry. There are many opportunities that could be unlocked in this industry. We need to market these opportunities to young South Africans both in coastal and inland provinces," says Minister Peters.
The Minister will address the IMO Assembly currently sitting in London on Thursday. She will highlight South Africa's strategic importance in Maritime given its long coastline totalling 3 500 kilometres. It is the only country in the Southern African region to straddle three oceans.
South Africa's economy is served by eight major ports, including the recent commissioning of the Port of Ngqura in the Eastern Cape.
Regardless of its reputation for stormy waters, the sea route around the Cape remains the main waterway for oil transportation from the Middle East to Europe and North America.
An estimated 7 000 vessels pass through the South African coastline annually, of which a large number are laden tankers carrying in excess of 30 million deadweight tonnage of crude oil.
For more information please contact:
Mr Tiyani Ponto-Rikhotso
Cell: 083 570 1275
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