South African Institute of Marine Engineers and Naval Architects
SAIMENA is the South African Institute of Marine Engineers and Naval Architects, the only technical society in South Africa dedicated to marine engineers and naval architects. It was founded in 1975 by the former members of the overseas branches, in Cape Town and Durban, of the Institute of Marine Engineers, London. These branches were formed in the 1950s. In 1968, the S.A. Government promulgated the Professional Engineers Act, which states that only South African Technical Societies would be recognised under this Act.
SAIMENA was thus founded to represent South African Marine Engineers and Naval Architects. It now has branches in Cape Town and Durban, with a total membership of over 400. Its members are from all sections of the industry, seagoing engineers, ship repairers, shipbuilders, marine paints,classification societies, salvage associations, the S.A.Navy, naval architects, marine consultants, educators etc. – in fact, people who live by the marine industry.
A BRIEF HISTORY
Prior to 1974 many members of the Marine Industry belonged to the Institute of Marine Engineers and/or the Royal Institution of Naval Architects, both of which had their headquarters in London.
The South African Council for Professional Engineers, created as a result of the Professional Engineers act of 1968, refused to have affiliated institutions which were based outside the R.S.A. so Marine Engineers and Naval Architects resident in South Africa decided to form a combined Institute, with its headquarters at the Athenaeum in Cape Town.
A Constitution, supported by a set of by-laws, was drawn up with professional legal advice, and the South African Institute of Marine Engineers and Naval Architects (SAIMENA) was formed on 29 November 1974 with the late Harry Smith, General Manager of Globe Engineering Works as President and the late Rear Admiral J.R.Nortier S.A.N. as Senior Vice President.
Corporate Members of RINA and IMarE, provided that they were in good standing with those bodies, were automatically accepted as Corporate Members of SAIMENA.
The main branches were setup at Cape Town and Durban and the Branch Chairmen, who are required to be Corporate Members, became members of Council ex officio, as did the now defunct Transvaal Representative, whose job was to co-ordinate the activities of members resident on the Reef. Sub branches were subsequently formed at Port Elizabeth, East London and Richards Bay.
Both the Cape Town and Durban Branches hold a monthly meeting, at which a technical paper is read. Attendance is generally by thirty to forty members and guests.
Annual General Meetings are held at Branch and National level to report on activities and finances and to elect Council and Branch Committee members for the following year.
In general the AGM is held in Durban and Cape Town on alternate years. Each branch holds an annual dinner dance, a golf day and a cricket match against the local branch of the Society of Master Mariners. Quarterly luncheons area popular event in Durban, as is the annual luncheon held in Cape Town.
Membership has ranged between three and five hundred members, of the following grades
- Honorary Fellow
- Associate Member
The only person to have been appointed a Companion of SAIMENA was Captain D.P. de Wet S.A.N. (Retired). Fellows are require to be registered with the Engineering Council of South Africa (ECSA) in one of the following categories :
- Registered Professional Engineer -PrEng
- Professional Technologist (Engineering) -ProfTech.(Eng)
- Registered Professional Certificated Engineer -Reg.Cert.Eng
Following a Worldwide trend, SAIMENA has reduced the number of grades and since 2001 membership has been made up of the following :
- Honorary Fellow
- Student (or Cadet)
- Marine Partner
- Honorary Recognition
SAIMENA currently has a total membership of about 435.
In 1992 members of the Durban Branch decided to build themselves a permanent headquarters which could not only be used for monthly and annual meetings of SAIMENA but could also earn its keep by being hired out for private functions.
A fundraising drive was set in motion and contributions from members and companies and individuals within the maritime industry were obtained. An agreement was entered into with Berea Rovers Sports Club to build a new wing onto their existing Clubhouse, to be known as “SAIMENA House.”
Work started on 15 October 1993 and the building was completed on 20 January 1994, being officially opened on 25 March 1994 by Professor Roy Marcus, President of the South African Association of Engineers. Further information on SAIMENA House. can be found elsewhere on this website. Due to circumstances SAIMENA House has now been lost and is sadly no more.
The past few years have seen a downturn in the maritime industry and the virtual demise of the shipbuilding industry in South Africa. The number of naval architects in SAIMENA was never great and is now only about five per cent of the total membership.
Many local marine engineers are serving offshore in various parts of the World so although our overall membership figure is quite healthy, there are fewer members available to serve on Council and on Branch Committees and, in fact, to attend branch meetings. The smaller Branches, located in Johannesburg, East London and Richards Bay no longer have enough members to remain viable but Council is ever hopeful that the situation will improve.
What is SAIMENA?
SAIMENA is the South African Institute of Marine of Marine Engineers and Naval Architects, the only technical society in South Africa dedicated to marine engineers and naval architects. It was founded in 1975 by the former members of the overseas branches, in Cape Town and Durban, of the Institute of Marine Engineers, London. These branches were formed in the 1950s. In 1968, the S.A. Government promulgated the Professional Engineers Act, which states that only South African Technical Societies would be recognised under this Act. Thus, in 1975, SAIMENA was founded to represent South African Marine Engineers and Naval Architects. It now has branches in Cape Town and Durban, with a total membership of above 400. Its members are from all sections of the industry, seagoing engineers, ship repairers, shipbuilders, marine paints,classification societies, salvage associations, the S.A.Navy, naval architects, marine consultants etc. – in fact, people who live by the marine industry.
SAIMENA has 3 Grades of Membership: Associate, Member, and Fellow, to become a Fellow it is necessary to register with the Engineering Council of South Africa, the mouthpiece of all the engineering disciplines in South Africa. The joining fee for SAIMENA is R300 and the annual membership is R150 from 1 Jan 2017.
Branches hold monthly General Meetings for the presentation of Technical Papers by both local and overseas speakers. Subjects of such papers cover the technical development of marine equipment, both in the engine room and on deck. An online magazine is published, entitled “The Two Oceans ” and sent to all members. The official Yearbook of SAIMENA, entitled “Shipyear”, was published annually for all members and is circulated internationally to the marine fraternity, this now functions as an independant entity fro the marine industry.
Regular social activities are also persued, quarterly lunches, golf days, cricket matches, and annual dinners etc.
Why you should join
If you are a rugby afficionado, you join a rugby club or sports club, where you meet and associate with rugby enthusiasts to discuss and promote the game. If you are in the marine industry, SAIMENA provides a similar opportunity to promote your marine environment. You meet with the South African Marine Industry in all its facets.
On joining, you receive a frameable certificate, stating the date of joining and grade of membership. This is intended to be displayed in your cabin at sea or your place of business ashore. It enables any person associating with you to know, immediately, that you are a marine engineer. As students progress in their chosen careers in marine engineering, they eventually gain certificates of competency, which give them access to the Engineering Council of South Africa, as an Engineer in Training, Prof. Certificated Engineer, Prof. Technologist and Pr. Eng. etc.
BILL SINGLETON MEMORIAL EDUCATION FUND
SAIMENA has an Education Bursary Fund (the Bill Singleton Memorial Education Fund) to assist marine engineers who wish to take higher education and university degrees etc. This is done by providing financial assistance to members of SAIMENA seeking to advance their studies in the fields of Marine Engineering or Naval Architecture, rewarding members of SAIMENA for academic achievement, fostering an awareness of career opportunities in Marine Engineering and Naval Architecture among high school students, or assisting High Schools within the Republic of South Africa which offer recognised courses in maritime studies either financially or by providing teaching aids or prizes.Subject to the Rules and Conditions of the fund in the awarding of assistance.
SAIMENA is a corresponding member with the Royal Institute of Naval Architects in the U.K. and is affiliated with the Institute of Marine Engineering, Science and Technology of London.