The recently appointed SA Navy Flag Officer Fleet (FOF) is a 23-year veteran of the maritime service.
Forty-six- year-old Rear Admiral Musawenkosi “Kop” Nkomonde was born in Soweto where he completed primary school before heading to Newcastle in KwaZulu-Natal for his high school career and a matric certificate.
He signed on for service as a full-time Navy rating in 1997 when he was 23. He completed military training for officers, part 1 MTO1, the same year before moving to the SA Military Academy. Here he earned s BSc degree in natural sciences three years later.
With university level academia behind him, Nkomonde went to the SA Navy training facility SAS Simonsberg for part 1 of the combat qualifying course in 2001. In August the same year he was appointed to the torpedo recovery vessel, SAS Fleur (P3148), where he served first as gunnery officer and then as navigation officer. In June 2003 he was transferred to the Mine Counter Measures Squadron and was navigation officer on the River Class Vessel SAS Umzimkulu (M1142).
Nkomonde attended the International Mine Warfare Course for Commanders in HMS Collingwood in England in 2004 and two years later completed combat qualifying course part 2 as well as the Junior Staff and Warfare Course. He also did the UN Military Observers course.
After being earmarked to command a mine counter measures vessel, he completed the officer commanding qualification part 1 in July 2007 and took command of SAS Umkomaas (M1499) in September 2007.
In April 2009, Nkomonde was back at HMS Collingwood for the International Principal Warfare Officer’s Course. In Jan 2010 he was appointed to the Valour Class frigate SAS Mendi (F148), where he started frigate command qualifications (CQ2). In June 2011 he was named Officer Commanding SAS Isandlwana (F146). Nkomonde completed the Security and Defence Study Programme (SDSP). On 1 April 2017 he was promoted to the rank of rear admiral (JG) and appointed Inspector General of the SA Navy. He served in this post until the end of May this year he was appointed FOF and promoted to rear admiral.