New boss for AFB Waterkloof


AFB Waterkloof, the SA Air Force’s (SAAF) Centre of Transport Excellence, has a new commander.

Brigadier General Mbulelo Mcetywa took over command from Brigadier General Sam Madumane at the beginning of this month.

Mcetwya was previously Officer Commanding the SAAF VVIP unit, formed following allegations of misuse regarding VVIP and VIP flights, both chartered and by SAAF aircraft, two years ago. The unit is based at 21 Squadron and is tasked with reviewing and setting requirements for any new VIP and VVIP aircraft acquisitions.

Since integration as a member of the SA National Defence Force (SANDF) in 1994 he has held various positions in operations planning, doctrine and was also Officer Commanding 42 Squadron and the Air Force Command and Control School.

Madumane has been commander of AFB Waterkloof since 2008. During his tenure the base was extensively revamped with runway and taxiway upgrades as well as navigation aids. He also oversaw the return of the continent’s premier defence exhibition, Africa Aerospace and Defence, to the Centurion base from its temporary home at AFB Ysterplaat in Cape Town.

He was put on “special leave” with other senior SAAF officers following the apparently unauthorised landing of a privately chartered jet at the military base in April last year. He was exonerated during the subsequent SANDF board of enquiry headed by Lieutenant General Derrick Mgwebi, Joint Operations Chief.

AFB Waterkloof is home to 21, 28, 41 and 44 squadrons flying VIP aircraft including Inkwazi (the Presidential Boeing Business Jet) as well as C-130BZs, Cessna 208s, C-212, King Air 200 and the Pilatus PC-12. One of Mcetywa’s previous commands, the Air Force Command and Control School, is also at the Centurion base as is the Joint Air Reconnaissance Intelligence Centre.