The SA Air Force might not make any headlines these days but now it really does have something to shout about. Phetogo Molawa has officially become the ultimate “boss lady” of the air force in PE.
On Saturday, a Tweet from Lucy Lastic showcased a picture of two officials marching next to each other. The one, Lastic’s son, a Lt Colonel with close to 20 years service. The woman marching next to him was about to have command of the PE SA Air Force (SAAF) handed over to her.
Phetogo Molawa has carved her name into the history books as she became the first woman and first black person to take command of an SAAF station (PE Charlie Flight)
“My son handing over command in PE SAAF yesterday to not only the first Black, but the first woman! I’m shocked it didn’t make more media coverage. She’s a great chopper pilot & single mom. Take a bow, Phetogo (‘Pets’) you’re a star,” Lastic said.
As the Tweet started gaining traction online, Lastic explained that Molawa and her son had become good friends while working together.
“He says she’s one of the best (even among males) he’s ever trained. Since about Feb this year he’s been grooming & helping her ease into the Big Seat as Boss. She’s very popular,” a second Tweet from Lastic read.
Molawa is originally from the Free State and finished her pilot training for the South African National Defence Force (SANDF) in 2007. She has also made history as the first black female pilot in SA. She was just 21 when she received her license.
“I wanted to show other young women that I can do what men can do. Above all, soldiers get things done, we protect our country’s airspace and also contribute in building a better world during our external deployments,” Molawa said.
Currently, since we’re not fighting any wars, the SAAF has a drastically reduced combat capability. Today, our Air Force focusses on disaster relief as well as regional peace-keeping.
We can’t wait to see all the good work Molawa continues to do at the helm of the SAAF, she certainly deserves it.