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Tells it All - Namibian Sun

older | 1 | .... | 1058 | 1059 | (Page 1060) | 1061 | 1062 | .... | 1152 | newer

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    Opoloyeka yomakaya ya pewa omulilo omuziziOpoloyeka yomakaya ya pewa omulilo omuzizi KENYA KAMBOWE

    Omukwatakanithi gwongundu yoSwapo mOshitopolwa shaShikoto, Armas Amukwiyu okwa popi kutya opoloyeka yongushu yobiliyona yimwe yokulonga omakaya moshitopolwa shaZambezi otayi nyanwa omolwa uuyelele wa puka mboka wa gandjwa moshigwana.

    Oshiwike sha piti okabinete kaNamibia oka gandja omulilo omuzizi kehangano lyoNamibia Oriental Tobacco, moka Amukwiyu e li omuniipambuliko pamwe nookume ke mongeshefa aakwashigwana yaChina, opo ya hiile oshitopolwa shevi shi longithwe melongo lyomakaya.

    Okatokolitho hoka oka holola woo kutya oompango nomilandu dhopoloyeka ndjoka otadhi kamanithwa okupitila moCabinet Committee on Trade and Economic Development (CCTED).

    Amukwiyu mehuliloshiwike okwa lombwele oshifokundaneki shoNamibian Sun kutya omatompelo sho aantu oyendji yeli ompinge nopoloyeka ndjoka, omolwaashoka inaya pewa uuyelele womondjila kombinga yopoloyeka ndjoka.

    Amukwiyu okwa popi kutya oye na ontseyo yomaiyuvo goshigwana ngoka itaga popile opoloyeka ndjoka, mwakwatelwa gehwahwameko lyoAffirmative Reposition (AR) ndyoka omasiku ga piti lya shangele omukanda Omupresidende Hage Geingob moka ya holola omaiyuvo gawo kombinga yezimino ndyoka lya ningwa kokabinete omasiku ngaka.

    Amukwiyu okwa pula oshigwana shi kale sha ngungumana nokutegekela ehangano lyoNamibia Oriental Tobacco li yelithe nokukutha po omalimbililo ngoka geli po shi na sha nopoloyeka ndjoka.

    “Katu na oshindji okupopya, kutse oshili mondjila aantu opo ya holole omaiyuvo gawo kombinga yoshinima kehe shoka kaya uvite. Otwiinekela kutya esiku limwe otatu ka vula okukuutumba poshitaafula shimwe nokuyelitha okwaahauvathana hoka kuli po ngashiingeyi,” Amukwiyu a popi.

    Uule woomvula dha piti, Amukwiyu nookume ke mongeshefa AaChina oya kala taya kondjitha opo yapewe oshitopolwa shevi shuunene woohecta 10 000 shofaalama moLiselo moshitopolwa shaZambezi kelelo lyopamuthigululwakalo lyaMafwe Traditional Authority.

    Nonando ongaaka opoloyeka ndjoka oya li ya tindwa nokominista nale yuundjolowele Bernard Haufiku ngoka a li a popi kutya opoloyeka ndjoka oyi li iilwitho yopauzigo.

    Okwa pula woo aakalimo yomoshitopolwa ya hogolole uundjolowele pehala lyuuzigo.





    Omulandulwa gwaHaufiku, Richard Kamwi naye okwa li a tindi opoloyea ndjoka omolwa omalimbililo guundjolowele.

    Sho a ningilwa omapulo, Ominista yUundjolowele, Kalumbi Shangula okwa popi kutya okatokolitho hoka ka pitithwa okuzimina opoloyeka ndjoka yomakaya okeli oshinima shomondjila.

    Okwa popi kutya ye okuli oshitopolwa shokabinete hoka ka ningi etokolo ndyoka, ta gwedhwa po kutya aalandulwa ye oyali ya gandja omaiyuvo gawo pondje yokabinete.

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    Kaaronda a toto ongundu yopolotikaKaaronda a toto ongundu yopolotika FESTUS NAKATANA

    Omukalelipo gwaaniilonga, Evilastus Kaaronda okwa popi kombinga yohokwe ye okukutha ombinga methigathano lyuupresidende, pethimbo lyomahogololo ngoka taga kalako muNovemba nuumvo.

    Pahapu dhaKaaronda elelo lyoshilongo ndyoka li li miilonga ngashiingeyi oli na ko owala nokuyambapaleka oondjato dhawo na kali na ko nokulongela oshigwana.



    Okwa popi kutya onkalo yuulingilingi mepangelo oyo ya etitha onkalo yeliko ndjoka oshilongo sha taalela na otayi thiminike epangelo li pule aanashilonga ya gandje oopresenda 2 dhiiyemo yawo komvula.



    Pethimbo a popitha aatoolinkundana moKatutura Youth Complex omutenya gwOsoondaha, Kaaronda ngoka ngashiingeyi e li omukomeho gwoNamibia National Labour Organisation (Nanlo), okwa popi kutya epangelo lyaSwapo olya ndopa okukandulapo omaupyakadhi ngoka ga taalela oshigwana, ngaashi okwaahena iilonga nuupyakadhi wevi.

    Pahapu dhaKaaronda, aanangeshefa yaNamibia ya taalela onkalo yanayipala mongeshefa nokweetitha epato lyoongeshefa dhawo omolwa aanangeshefa yaChina oshowo yaSouth Afrika mboka ya kwatako eliko lyoshilongo.



    “Muule owala woomwedhi 12 nenge oomwedhi odhindji komeho, ngele omiyalu ndhoka dha gandjwa koEmployment Equity Commission odhili mondjila otwa kanitha oompito dhiilonga dhi li po 37 000 nomahangano ngoka ga pata ogAaNamibia kutya omatungo nenge oongeshefa.”

    Okwa popi kutya epangelo li li koshipundi itali ningi sha mokukandula po omikundu dhoka molwaashoka olyo lya eta omikundu ndhoka.

    “Pehulilo oshili owala mondjila ngele kwa totwa ongundu yopolotika ompe ndjoka tayi kwatelwa komeho kaanashilonga oshowo aanyasha mboka kaye na iilonga moshilongo. Onkalo yopapolotika oyo owala tayi ka popya oshili kombinga yomaiyuvo gaantu,” Kaaronda a popi.



    Kaaronda okwa popi kutya ongundu ye tayi ka kala ya pyakudhukwa okukutha ombinga momahogololo ngoka taga ningwa momasiku 27 gaNovemba nuumvo.

    Pampango yOmahogololo yomomvula yo 2014, ongundu oya pumbwa okukala yi na iilyo ya thika po 500 moshitopolwa kehe.



    Kaaronda ngoka a kala ita popile omahangano gaaniilonga ga kwtaakanithwa noongundu dhopolotika konima nkene a tidhwa moSwapo, okwa popi kutya okwa tidhwa kwaamboka ya mono uuwanawa okupitila muulingilingi wiimaliwa yoomiliyona 660 yoshiputudhilo shoGovernment Institutions Pension Fund (GIPF).

    Kaaronda okwa totopo ehangano lyoNanlo konima sho a tidhwa mo mehangano lya kwatakanithwa noSwapo lyoNational Union of Namibian Workers (NUNW),s ho a pula opo mboka ya li po iimaliwa yoGIFP ya tumbulwe komadhina nokusithwa ohoni. Lwanima NUNW okwa lundile Kaaronda kutya ita gwanitha po iinakugwanithwa ye na ota e ta etopoko mehangano.

    Sho a kuthwa miilonga Kaaronda okwa fala ehangano kompangu na olya pulwa kompangu opo li fute amushanga gwalyo ngoka oshimaliwa shooN$31 000, oomwedhi adhihe 24 dha thigalako kokondalaka ye.

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    Equipping upcoming professionals Equipping upcoming professionals Three months of genuine skills transfer MTC National Internship Programme will take in 161 interns at various public and private entities. Octavia Tsibes





    MTC launched its National Internship Programme yesterday.

    “The initiative is a deliberate response to address the dire need of interns at various institutions of higher learning who are struggling to find placement to attain the minimum job (experience) required to graduate,” said Elvis Nashilongo, chairperson of the MTC board.

    Nashilongo said business entities have always been subject to the nation’s ability to consistently produce the relevant and requisite skills, therefore corporates need to step up collaborations with academia in order to sustainably gain from this symbiotic relationship.

    “The initiative, which is named the MTC National Internship Programme, is not to promote brand promotion but serves as a national solution to a national challenge,” he said.

    The program will accommodate a total of 161 interns per year who will be placed at various public and private institutions.

    “MTC will pay a monthly allowance of N$ 3 000 per student over the period of three months, and where a student requires a six-month internship, an amount of N$1 500 will be paid,” Nashilongo said.

    Companies such as the Motor Vehicle Accident (MVA) Fund, which is a stakeholder, pledged to add an additional N$2 000 on top of the MTC monthly allowance per intern.

    Selection process

    The programme is directed towards strengthening the collaboration between the Namibia University of Science and Technology (Nust), the University of Namibia (Unam), the International University of Management (IUM) and the Namibia Institute of Mining and Technology (NIMT).

    “MTC, being the facilitator, approached the institutions after potential stakeholders to come on board to take in interns in various departments,” Fikameni Mathias, MTC corporate communication officer, said. He said the institutions of higher learning had to select students whose academic programmes require them to undergo an internship prior to graduation.

    They were asked to send their résumés.

    “Government efforts are underway to engage and establish a policy framework to formalise and implement a work-based learning scheme,” higher education minister Itah Kandjii-Murangi said.

    She said it is the collective responsibility of government and the private and public sectors to provide young people with the right life compasses and survival kits. “Government is urging the private sector, MTC and partners to aim to work in unison and produce highly skilled graduates who meet industry demands, through integrated work-based learning.”

    Kandjii-Murangi urged the selected students to work hard.

    “Your determination to work harder than average will set you apart. Take this very rare opportunity and put it to good use for your own empowerment,” she said.

    The steering committee comprised of MTC personal and representatives of the four participating institutions, and is chaired by MTC executive Tim Ekandjo.

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    Years of lessons and sunshine Years of lessons and sunshine Striving for inspiration in every little thing Vekunda Kakujaha shares his varsity experience at the Escuela Latino de Medicina in Havana, Cuba. Vekunda Kakujaha





    The date is 1 September 2016. As the plane comes to a stop on the tarmac and the rest of my fellow passengers applaud the pilot, the reality of my situation slowly creeps in. This Ovaherero boy from Arminius is far from home.

    The first thing I notice is how relatively old the plane is and then I calm down as I see the excitement and uncertainty of my fellow companions. On this specific plane there is about 40 of us and we will be around 200 Namibian students in total, 150 doing medicine and around 50 doing dentistry.

    We are all here thanks to scholarship bursaries from the ministry of health.

    There’s is light rain outside and we are all taking pictures, as the scenery through the plane window looks quite beautiful, and I remember my mother telling me how much it rains in countries like Cuba. Having grown up as farm boy, with a fear of drought and a love for the rain, I look forward to all the rainy days.

    As soon as I step off the plane I feel like I am hit with a cushion of humid air. I immediately get back into the air-conditioned plane and realise that am literally stepping into a totally different world.

    For those that don’t know Cuba, it has a Caribbean subtropical climate, with rainy hot and humid weather in summer.

    Thanks to my grade 10 geography teacher I can tell you that the air feels warm and wet compared to Namibia’s hot and dry weather.

    As a point of reference, just think of how the steam from boiling water feels when you are making pap; come to think of it, I haven’t had pap and omaere for almost three years now.

    Back to Cuba. During our ride from the airport to the campus where we will be doing our pre-medicine and Spanish courses, we marvel at how different everything is from back home, even the way the neighborhoods are setup. It looks like a scene from those 80s or 90s movie.

    Over the course of six months we are taught Spanish as our entire medicine course is done in this language. On a weekly basis they take us to visit the different important sites, museums and markets.

    The medicine curriculum we are doing is divided among different campuses that cater to specific levels. We did Spanish for six months and then pre-med for another six months on a campus in Cojimar, Havana; then we moved to the Escuela Latino Americano de Medicina, where we did our first and second years. We will then be allocated to different hospitals (all based in Havana) where we will complete the course from the third year onwards.

    Before I go on let me quickly explain a few things about Cuba.

    First and foremost, without going into the finer details of it, Cuba is a socialist country which basically translates to the government owning and running everything from top to bottom.

    The production and assimilation of goods is need-based and not profit-based. One of the earliest rules we picked up within our conversations with Cubans is that as a foreigner, stay away from anything and everything to do with Cuban politics. Also Cubans have a very high sense of respect for their historical figures and we were taught about the effects that the United States embargos have on the Cuba as a nation.

    Even though geographically we are right above the US and close to European markets, because of the embargos imposed by the US on Cuba, everyday services and products that we take for granted back home are way more expensive and scarce.

    For example, if someone goes to town and finds a certain face wash in a specific shop, and you go the next day to that exact same shop, there’s a high probability you won’t find it and they will tell you they have no idea when they will have it again; and that applies to anything and everything. This is unlike in Namibia, where you know exactly in which shop to go to find which product.

    So it was a bit of a struggle to learn to use whatever is available and most of the time there’s not a choice in terms of brand, unlike at home where we have an abundance of everything, as long as you can afford it.

    Another huge adjustment was internet access, which is relatively a new thing here in Cuba and is quite expensive. In 2014 you paid US$10 for a Wi-Fi card that gives you access to the internet for one hour at specific Wi-Fi spots in town.

    By the time we got here it was US$2 for a one-hour Wi-Fi card, but the Wi-Fi locations had increased. Last year in September they finally made mobile data available, which is still extremely expensive but at least more convenient. We also had to adjust our consumption of media and the latest music, videos and movies are not as quickly accessible as they are back home, but through the resourcefulness of the Cubans we still get the latest of everything, probably just a few days to weeks later than the rest of the world.

    Another glaring difference is the extremely low crime rate. Petty crimes rarely occur, to the point where it sometimes makes me feel like being here has made me a little bit “soft” or less cautious. When crime does occur it is handled very swiftly and you never hear about it.

    As we are at the same university and share classes with students from the Caribbean and the Pacific Islands, a number of fellow African countries, Middle Eastern countries (Arabs), Asian countries and Latin American countries, it is expected from us to respect the customs of our fellow students and it also gives us an opportunity to learn and share ideas with people who come from places with world views that are totally different from our own.

    This exposure, I feel, is one of the most important aspects of studying abroad, even though you’re far away from home, your friends and family and it sometimes feels like life back home is going on without you. The flipside is that you should never forget home, your family values and why you are here in the first place.

    Another piece of advice I would give aspiring young students, wherever they are in the world, is that as much as you should always remember what your main objective is (obtaining that education), it’s also just as important to get to know yourself and find the things that excite you, because that will eventually help define who you are.

    Medicine can be quite a taxing course and you need to find your own hobbies that will help you relax and feel whole as a human. For me that has become poetry and learning about the transformational power of entrepreneurship. Recently we have been brainstorming about starting a bunch of podcasts.

    Being far away from home, but still feeling the effects of decisions made at home and by world entities, you learn to become critical and analytical about what is going on in the world and how all these different concepts affect and can be applied to your corner of the world, in our case Namibia.

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    Man kills girlfriend, injures momMan kills girlfriend, injures mom A 48-year-old man handed himself over the police after he allegedly slashed his girlfriend to death with a panga and injured her mother.

    The mother is in a critical condition in hospital.

    According to the police the incident occurred at a homestead at Okashopashopa village in the Etayi constituency on Sunday night. Hambeleleni Ndahafa Absalom, who was in a relationship with the suspect, died at the scene.

    Her 72-year-old mother sustained serious injuries.

    The elderly woman is currently admitted at the Oshakati State Hospital in a critical condition. The suspect was arrested after he surrendered himself at the Omungwelume police station.

    In another incident on Friday at the //Ereres informal settlement in Keetmanshoop's Tseiblaagte location, a 34-year-old man was stabbed to death with a kitchen knife, allegedly by his 37-year-old girlfriend. Selestinus Kawalu was stabbed in the chest after an argument and died at the scene. The suspect was arrested.

    In another incident, a 16-year-old girl was raped by a 20-year-old man this weekend at Nkurenkuru.

    It is alleged that the man followed the girl from V6 Bar and together with his friends pulled her in his room. The suspect pushed the girl on his bed, undressed himself and raped her. It was not specified when the incident occurred.

    In a separate incident, a fire started at one of the shacks at Moshitila Apartments in Swakopmund and spread to eight others in the same yard on Friday.

    All nine shacks were completely destroyed. Members of the police and the Swakopmund fire brigade extinguished the fire and no loss of life or serious injuries were reported. The cause of the fire has not been determined yet, but it is suspected that the owner of the shack where the fire started forgot to switch off the stove when Swakopmund experienced a power outage earlier that morning.

    On Saturday at Mondesa in Swakopmund a 22-year-old man died in the hospital after he was stabbed for grabbing a bottle of wine from two men.

    It is alleged that Henry Henrico

    //Goagoseb and his friend were on their way to Hero's Bar when they came across two unknown men sitting on the pavement near the bar with a 750ml bottle of Monis Granada wine.

    //Goagoseb and his friend allegedly asked for some wine, however, the man holding the bottle refused and pulled out a knife.

    //Goagoseb grabbed the wine and ran away. In the process of grabbing the bottle he was stabbed. His friend also ran away, but in a different direction. According to the police, when he returned he was told that //Goagoseb had been taken to hospital. Upon his arrival at the hospital he was informed that //Goagoseb had died. The suspect is not yet known and police investigations continue.

    On Saturday at Stop 'n Shop in Okuryangava, a security guard shot a man who was allegedly caught stealing from the premises together with two other intruders who fled the scene. According to the police the man was shot in the stomach with a shotgun. The security guard is employed by Independent Security Company. The victim is in a critical condition at Windhoek Central Hospital.

    In another incident, a 66-year-old woman and a 24-year-old man were arrested at Gibeon on Friday for allegedly being in the possession of 1 040 grams of pure cannabis valued at N$10 400.

    Two men, both 25 years old, were also arrested for trying to sell a pangolin skin to police officers in Okahandja on Saturday. The skin is valued at N$50 000 and was recovered.







    ELLANIE SMIT

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    Bid to evict land-grabbers failsBid to evict land-grabbers failsNo urgency in Gobabis matter Despite the urgent application being heard on a Sunday, the Gobabis municipality failed in their bid to convince the court of the urgency of the matter. On Sunday, High Court Judge Marlene Tommasi struck an urgent application by the Gobabis municipality to interdict a group of land-grabbers from the roll due to lack of urgency.

    The municipality brought the matter against Peter Kazapua, Sara Pietersen, Wallace Finnies, Moses Mberira, Matheus Brandt, Cynthia Araes, Roger Mberira, Peter Goagoseb, Robiath Kazenkondjo, Kuvee Kangueehi, Uaonga Kaapona, Chris Nguapia and Veronia Kuzeeko. The last three respondents were listed as the Gobabis deputy sheriff, the regional police commander for Omaheke and the inspector-general of the Namibian police.

    In his founding affidavit, the CEO of Gobabis municipality Ignatius Thudinyane told the court that the first to 13th respondents “are some of the people who are occupying the land” at six sites at the town, including the “open space next to Nossobville Primary School”.

    All the areas, Thudinyane said, are under the control of the municipal council of Gobabis, save for three sections still held by government grant.

    He asked the court to evict the first to 13th respondents from the land within five days, and moreover, asked for an order to prevent them from occupying the land again. Those who do not move, he asked, should be removed by the Omaheke police.

    According to Thudinyane, he returned from Windhoek on 3 June and the next day learned “that a number of persons have occupied the aforesaid land and have started allocating and demarcating land for their own use without the consent” of the municipality. The police, he said, had attended to the scene on 3 June but their instructions to vacate the land were ignored.

    By the Wednesday, 10 shacks had been erected and roughly “100 people were busy demarcating and clearing land for themselves”.

    An emergency meeting was held that day, attended by roughly 20 people led by Peter Kazapua and Matheus Brandt. They told the council that “they have occupied some municipal property in Nossobville due to their frustration with the pace of delivery of land”. They were instructed to remove their structures but Thudinyane told the court they “vowed not to remove their structures and left the meeting”.

    The structures, he told the court, have since increased in number.

    Thudinyane went to great lengths to explain to the court the danger of these illegal, haphazard settlements, saying the structures were not necessarily safe, and moreover, illegal electricity connections and the lack of sanitation are both dangerous to human lives. “When a fire starts it is not easy to contain and by the time it is put out, the damage to property and human life is terrible”.

    The respondents, represented by Sarel Maritz, all filed a notice of intention to defend. Ileni Gebhardt appeared for the Gobabis municipal council.

    Judge Tommasi struck the matter off the roll due to a lack of urgency and ordered the municipality to pay the costs of the respondents, including one instructed and one instructing counsel.

    YANNA SMITH

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    Ovambanderu want halt in land salesOvambanderu want halt in land sales Ovambanderu Traditional Authority chief Kilus Nguvauva has called on government to stop selling ancestral land to foreigners.

    Speaking during the 123rd commemoration of the battle of Otjunda at Okahandja on Sunday, Nguvauva said despite the second national land conference last year resolving not to sell land to foreigners, there were considerations to sell the Erindi Private Game Reserve to Mexican billionaire Alberto Bailleres.

    “We are against the sale of Erindi and would like to tell the buyer that his investment is not welcomed by the Ovambanderu community. If he loves and respects Namibia, he should please keep his hands off Erindi,” the chief said.

    The farm is currently co-owned by two South African brothers and government has already indicated it does not have the funds to buy the property.

    Nguvauva urged Bailleres to consult traditional communities for advice on where he could meaningfully invest his billions, which would be welcomed by these communities.

    The chief added the Ovambanderu were the first to lose lives, land and movable and immovable property to the German colonialists.

    According to the chief, the eastern parts of the country from Windhoek resorted under the jurisdiction of the Ovambanderu.

    “Places such as Okangondo (Seeis), Otjinjaamauua, Okatjekondo, Otjihanena, Okazeva, Omitara, Witvlei, Gobabis, Okeseta, Epukiro (RC Mission), Omukuruvaro (Olifantsfontein), Okounduve, Otjozondjiuozomaue (Kroonster), Otjunda and many others were all Ovambanderu land. These are areas we as Ovambanderu claim as part of our ancestral land we lost to the Germans and white minority governments of the British and Afrikaner colonisers who succeeded Germany after the First World War,” Nguvauva said.

    The Ovambanderu chief then reiterated that government should stop selling the land in these areas and beyond to foreigners.



    NAMPA

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  • 06/17/19--16:00: A platform for leadership
  • A platform for leadershipA platform for leadershipNew Junior Council inaugurated The City of Windhoek Junior Council was established in 1999 and this is the 20th intake. Michelline Nawatises

    The City of Windhoek Junior Council (JC) provides a platform for leadership potential and exposes learners to local challenges.

    They learn about local issues and connect with local communities.

    It’s a platform for young people to raise their voices, so they can contribute to city planning and participate in decision-making.

    The City has planning consultations where it incorporates the voice of the Junior Council.

    The City prioritises the development of young people and as a result has established a youth development and training section under the social and youth development division to facilitate and co-ordinate Junior Council programmes that aim to develop and empower them.

    During the first year, only 15 secondary schools were represented on the City of Windhoek Junior Council.

    City CEO Robert Kahimise said this is the 20th group of young leaders who have been moulded, groomed and given exposure.

    Kahimise said since the inception of the Junior Council in 1999, the youth development section has empowered many young people through this programme.

    “The JC has implemented various programmes and activities that made a difference in the lives of many vulnerable people in the society,” he said.

    Chief electoral officer of the Electoral Commission of Namibia (ECN), Theo Mujoro, facilitated the election process to bring transparency.

    Outgoing junior mayor Reschelle Beukes mentioned that the purpose of the Junior Council is to equip future leaders by making them more involved in their communities. Grace Mackinza, a grade 11 learner from Delta Secondary School was sworn in as the new junior mayor for 2019/20.

    She said the main focus when choosing projects should be their impact, while also making the council bearers of change.

    “Our key focus will be supporting cancer patients, reaching out to the vulnerable people in the society and to raise awareness on youth suicide prevention,” she said.

    She further added that there has been a staggering increase in youth suicides in Namibia.

    Windhoek mayor Muesee Kazapua said this is the perfect platform where young people can be engaged and prepared.

    “We must involve the young people to be the custodians from the beginning in order for them to take up leadership positions,” he said.

    During the first year, only 15 secondary schools were represented on the City of Windhoek Junior Council and the number has now increased to 39 high schools.

    The objectives of the Junior Council are as follows:

    · To provide a vehicle through which senior learners may obtain knowledge on civic affairs;

    · To report back to schools on all information pertaining to the Junior Council and civic affairs; and

    · To create a liaison between Windhoek school learners and the City of Windhoek.

    Former junior mayor Emma Theofelus urged young residents to continue to govern with the cities best interest at heart.

    Theofelus, who occupied the post in 2013, said: “It is important for young people to become an integral part of developing their cities.”

    She added that the role that junior councils play in towns is vital, as they are in essence part of the leadership.

    The importance of youth leadership:

    1.Young people are best poised to advocate for their needs in creating and implementing policies and programmes to ensure youth-friendly sexual and reproductive health services that are free from coercion, discrimination, and violence.

    2.Young people are more receptive to change and have a large stake in creating a strong future. Youth involvement facilitates positive social change, including structures, policies and procedures that are demand-driven to address the health needs of their communities and countries, now and in the future.

    3.Meaningful youth participation at all levels of government results in responsive health systems that take advantage of new innovations and technologies.

    4.Investing in young people increases their knowledge and practical skills, strengthening their social interest, and nurturing long-term commitment to entrepreneurship and creative health solutions.

    5.Investing in youth leadership not only ensures that the future generation is equipped with the competencies necessary for strong leadership, but enhances young people’s understanding of how to be accountable and be inspiring leaders.

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    Houses, drought relief food not campaign strategyHouses, drought relief food not campaign strategy People should not see houses built for them as a way for the ruling party to campaign for the upcoming election, but rather as development brought by government for its people, Berseba constituency councillor Dawid Boois has said.

    He made the remarks at the handover of two houses built under the House of Hope initiative, established by the local business community at Bethanie, on Friday.

    “Even the drought relief food is not a way of campaigning for the upcoming election as many see it, but is for the betterment of our people. Houses are built for the restoration of our people's dignity,” he said.

    Earlier in an interview with Nampa, Boois said his office will build 16 houses for elders at Snyfontein near Berseba which will cost N$836 000.

    Boois said there are plans for the construction of a rural development centre at Snyfontein which will serve as a multipurpose structure for the inhabitants of the settlement and surrounding areas.

    “The centre will be used for youth to acquire skills, there will be accommodation just like at other youth centres and halls,” he added.

    Sixty toilets will also be constructed at Berseba and 30 at Kosis under the Harambee Prosperity Plan.

    The Berseba constituency is blessed with underground water and land, he further said, adding that the youth can use these natural resources to benefit themselves and others.

    “There is enough land for every person in the constituency to own a portion, the youth can use this to start a garden or even farm with chicken or goats,” he said.

    Boois suggested to the youth to get into the business of making coffins as there is no one doing it within the constituency and getting it from elsewhere is costly.

    “Coffins really drain us, we have to get them elsewhere and transportation is very costly, we can assist with the start-up capital,” said Boois.

    He further condemned the impression by some from his constituency that he only helps those of the same party as him (Swapo), or from the same clan, saying he was voted for “by the people, for the people” to bring change to them.

    “Many say do not go to Boois because he is of a certain political party or from a different clan, he will not help you, but I am here for the people so people must approach my office,” he added.

    NAMPA

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    40 000 to benefit from agri project40 000 to benefit from agri projectHalf of Kunene's residents to see relief The Environmental Investment Fund is working to improve rangeland management in the northwest of the country. More than 40 000 beneficiaries are expected to benefit from a climate change project in the Kunene Region.

    This is 57% of the total population of the Kunene and 50% of the beneficiaries will be women.

    This is according to deputy agriculture minister Anna Shiweda, who launched the Environmental Investment Fund (EIF) project last week in Kunene.

    The project is titled 'Improving rangeland and ecosystem management practices of smallholder farmers under conditions of climate change in the Sesfontein, Fransfontein and Warmquelle areas'.

    It was formulated through a number of meetings and consultations with the agriculture ministry as the implementing institution and the environment ministry as the nationally designated authority to the Green Climate Fund, and with key stakeholders in Kunene.

    According to Shiweda the main targeted areas were selected based on equitable development distribution and vulnerability to climate change, as Kunene is one of the most drought -prone areas in Namibia.

    The project will particularly address the impacts of increasing temperatures and higher water evaporation on crop production, bush encroachment on land productivity, and improving rangeland and ecosystem management practices of smallholder farmers in the region.

    “These will be achieved by introducing climate-resilient agricultural practices in the three green scheme projects of the Sesfontein, Fransfontein and Warmquelle areas as learning sites,” said Shiweda.

    The project further aims to reduce the vulnerability of smallholder farmers under climate-change conditions, by safeguarding natural capital that generates ecosystem services to sustain agricultural production.

    This will be done by implementing climate-proofed mechanisms that will support a combined 500 hectares of drip-irrigation systems in the region.

    It also aims to rehabilitate at least 80 000 hectares of rangeland through supporting appropriate ecosystem management plans at local levels that will improve grazing areas.

    The project will also support the rehabilitation of two green schemes facilities at Sesfontein (11 hectares) and Warmquelle (seven hectares), which will be used as a learning centre for climate-resilient agricultural production for local smallholder farmers.

    A community-based green scheme at Fransfontein (40 hectares) will be established to transfer lessons learned from the other facilities, said Shiweda. Furthermore, capacity-building for the nine farmers' associations in the Kunene Region will be undertaken by mainstreaming disaster risk management and climate change adaptation in their operations.

    Shiweda said as a direct result of climate-induced vulnerabilities, household food security and nutrition situations have been compromised. This is compelling households to supplement food deficiencies with government drought relief.

    “Drought relief, while desirable as a relief measure in the short-term, is neither a sustainable option nor a long-term adaptation option. Climate change is here to stay and our farmers should be prepared to adapt and be resilient in all possible ways.”

    Shiweda pointed out that Namibia is a net importer of most agricultural commodities such as grains, livestock feeds, and horticultural commodities, amongst others.

    She, however, said there is great potential for the production of most of these commodities in Namibia if climate-smart agriculture strategies are deployed by farmers.

    “It is for this reason that the government is currently implementing a conservation agriculture programme according to which each farmer is expected to adopt at least one climate-friendly technology.”

    Shiweda expressed concern with regard to the low level of youth involved in agricultural activities.

    According to her statistics show that about 37% of the population is made up of young people under the age of 15 years, while the average Namibian farmer is 68 years old. She said this scenario is worrisome in terms of the future of the agricultural sector, and she therefore urged youth to engage in agricultural activities and pursue entrepreneur opportunities that exist in the sector.

    Shiweda added that the ministry values and appreciates the unprecedented support it receives from the EIF, more especially for making resources available amidst the slow economic growth experienced by Namibia.

    She said the fund had so far demonstrated leadership, as the only nationally accredited entity to the Green Climate Fund, having accessed about N$560 million in total aimed at addressing climate change in the past three years.



    ELLANIE SMIT

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    Improving Africa through constructive debateImproving Africa through constructive debate Ester Kamati



    The 2019 Day of the African Child Debate and Public Speaking Championships knockout rounds were held at the St George's ­Diocesan School on 14 June. Sixteen schools from the Khomas Region were hosted, with the Namibia Debate Union playing a key role.

    With the Day of the African Child as a motivator, tournament director Jonas Nekomba who is the debate coordinator at St George's decided that this would be a good platform for Namibian scholars to openly discuss matters affecting children in Africa.

    The debate championship was ­established in 2018 under the notion that Africa's transformation lies in the hands of the youth.

    Nekomba deemed it vital for scholars to speak and argue on issues affecting not only the youth in Africa but the continent as a whole.

    The debate motions were specifically chosen to relate to an African context when it comes to the economy, social welfare as well as women and youth empowerment, according to Nekomba.

    “The idea also involved trying to find solutions to these problems in society,” he added.

    In its first year, the competition had 32 teams participating, which was a large number for the school to accommodate.

    “This year we reduced them to only one team per school and we have 16 schools participating this year,” said Nekomba.

    One of the debaters, Rou-Ché Kahiieke from Windhoek ­Gymnasium, said platforms such as these are vital as they allow youth to voice their opinions on matters that affect them, as well as develop their speaking skills.

    The adjudicators for the tournament comprised of university debaters, as well as teachers who have received adjudication training. The cash prize for the winning team is N$5 000, while second place nets N$3 000 and best public speaker receives N$1 000 at the finals scheduled for this week.

    Shoki Kandjimi, the vice-chairperson of Namibia National Students Organisation (Nanso) in the Khomas Region delivered the opening remarks at the tournament.

    Kandjimi emphasised the potential children have to enrich decision-making and participate as actors of change, and that this should be recognised as we observe the Day of the African Child.

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  • 06/17/19--16:00: Feeling the momentum!
  • Feeling the momentum!Feeling the momentum!Battle of the blues The Momentum Rugby Board's Trophy League is back and the competitive spirit is alive and well among all the participants! Ester Kamati

    Windhoek High School’s Vegkop stadium is home to many memorable games when it comes to rugby and this year was no different. The stadium hosted two rugby games on Saturday as part of the Momentum Rugby Boards Trophy League and the tension on the rugby field could be felt from a mile away.

    The first game saw the second rugby team of Windhoek High School and that of Moria go head-to-head, with WHS taking the win 47-5. WHS scored seven tries and Moria one.

    In the second match, the WHS first team led throughout the entire game and won 70-0 against De Duine Secondary School’s first rugby team.

    According to William Cookson, the captain of De Duine’s first rugby team, this was the first time they participated in a “super rugby match”, adding his side will work towards doing better in their next match.

    “I learned today that my team should work harder on our defence and attack. To my team, thank you for all your hard work boys, I really appreciate it and I’m proud to be your captain,” he added.

    One of the spectators, Sinead Nicole Daniel, said De Duine played well and were great competitors, but WHS are a strong team who practice every day and their hard work paid off.

    James van der Westhuizen, the manager of the WHS second team, described his team’s win as a step in the right direction. “It is adding momentum to get us closer towards the quarterfinals and semi-finals and we’re working towards taking the under-19 league this year,” he said, adding that sticking to the game plan and supporting each other is what led the team to a success in the tournament.

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  • 06/17/19--16:00: New name for Etakaya
  • New name for EtakayaNew name for Etakaya Justicia Shipena



    Etakaya Primary School, situated at Etakaya village of Etakaya in the Ohangwena Region, was recently renamed Sakaria H Nghikembua Primary School.

    The school accommodates 142 learners from the grades zero to seven, with two permanent classrooms.

    The rest are makeshift classrooms made with zinc roofs and traditional poles. The school has a total of seven teachers, inclusive of the principal.

    During the renaming ceremony various corporates announced sponsorships for the school. The Development Bank of Namibia will make available N$350 000 for the building of a classroom block to be called the DBN block, while Metropolitan Swabou announced a sponsorship of N$156 000 to bring electricity to the school.

    Standard Bank will make available N$50 000 for fencing the school, while the FirstRand Foundation, through First National Bank (FNB), made available a sponsorship worth N$55 600 for school stationery, two water-purifying containers and 20 refurbished computers. Together with contributions from individuals and those present at the ceremony, a total of N$630 000 was raised for the school.

    Deputy education minister Ester Anna Nghipondoka said the sponsorships have the potential impact to the school’s academic progress, which should grow to be closely aligned with Sakaria Nghikembua’s lifelong commitment of uplifting and empowering fellow Namibians and forging a spirit of care and support, togetherness and teamwork.

    Nghipondoka added that the education ministry has an initiative called the Friends of Education in Namibia Special Initiative (FENSI).

    This initiative aims to advocate and garner support in various forms towards education, arts and culture from various stakeholders in their various forms and capacities.

    “The ministry faces a backlog of challenges that government alone will not be able to solve in a short period of time, especially given our current economic difficulties that we as a nation are faced with,” she said.

    She further stressed that FENSI is an education support basket into which the numerous “Friends of Education” pledge various forms of support, which will assist the ministry to attend to and solve the numerous challenges that the basic education is facing without being stalled by government administrative bottlenecks

    School principal Junias Nghishoongele said the idea to rename the school came from a parent at a parents’ meeting five years ago.

    “Since then, the school has been busy with the various procedures involved in the renaming process, culminating in approval of the name change towards the end of last year,” he said.

    Nghishoongele added that in renaming the school they looked for someone who could serve as an inspiration to both learners and teachers; and who could also advise the school on how it could improve to enhance the quality of teaching and learning, thus Sakaria Nghikembua emerged as the natural choice amongst the many that were considered.

    Nghikembua touched on the value of education in development.

    He urged parents to take an interest in their children’s education by asking them about what they were taught at school, giving them time to do their homework and study for tests at home and by keeping in touch with teachers to find out how they are doing.

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  • 06/17/19--16:00: Mushelenga under fire
  • Mushelenga under fireMushelenga under fireHambukushu accuse minister of turning a blind eye The Hambukushu says they are disappointed that the minister chose to pronounce himself on the Ondonga kingship dispute, while ignoring their issues. The committee established by members of the Hambukushu tribe, which wants Chief Erwin Munika Mbambo to relinquish his power, has accused urban and rural development minister Peya Mushelenga of turning a blind eye to their issues.

    The committee chaired by Casius Mukenah says the minister is not dealing with dispute, which has been with his office for months.

    It is accusing the chief of blocking much-needed development.

    According to a letter dated 19 November 2018, Mushelenga wrote to Mukenah promising he would look into their matter and make a pronouncement in due course.

    “By way of this letter I hereby acknowledge and note your letter dated 12 November pertaining to the above subject matter. My office will study the content therein and will respond to you in due course,” the letter reads.

    In February Mushelenga was quoted saying the parties should wait and will hear from him.

    However, the committee says it was disappointed to learn that Mushelenga recently decided to make a pronouncement on the Ondonga Traditional Authority throne dispute a few months after the death of Omukwaniilwa Immanuel Kauluma Elifas.

    “This clearly shows you that the minister does not have time for the Hambukushu Traditional Authority issue,” Mukenah told Namibian Sun.

    Mukenah said he even went to the extent of texting Mushelenga on the day he pronounced Fillemon Shuumbwa Nangolo as the new king of the Ondonga, in order to remind him of the Hambukushu matter.

    Mukenah said he received no response from the minister.

    When contacted for comment, Mushelenga told Namibian Sun his ministry only has the power to inform the president about the removal of a chief, if the process under section 8 of Traditional Authority Act, Act 25 of 2000 is complied with.

    Section 8 states that if there is sufficient reason to warrant the removal of a chief or head of a traditional community from office, the chief or head may be removed by the members of his or her traditional community, in accordance with customary law.

    “First, the petition from the Hambukushu requested the minister to settle their disputes in terms of section 12(1) of the Traditional Authorities Act, No 25 of 2000,” Mushelenga said.

    “Following their petition, the community has been informed in writing on 21 August 2018 by the executive director that the aforesaid provision in the Act is for chieftainship succession disputes and that removal of chiefs falls under section 8 of the Act.

    “Accordingly, they were informed to follow their customary law on removal. Section 8 clearly states that the minister only comes in to notify the president of the removal - see section 8(3) - but the minister doesn't remove chiefs,” Mushelenga said.

    He said the ministry did not receive a letter from the committee saying how they followed section 8 of the Traditional Authority Act to remove Chief Mbambo and its on that basis he cannot make a pronouncement.

    The minister even cited the national broadcaster's footage of a meeting held on 10 December 2018 in which some Hambukushu community members rejected the removal of the chief.

    “Further, what we know is that there was a meeting reported on NBC TV news, with visuals of the community, which rejected the removal of the chief.”

    Mukenah says it is impossible that Mushelenga did not receive their letter, as he had responded on 19 November 2018.

    “If we did not inform the ministry on how we followed section 8, to what letter did he respond to on 19 November 2018? What document was he studying? Where is the response he promised?” Mukenah asked.

    Mukenah explained that on 7 November 2018 the committee conducted a referendum in the Hambukushu district, where out of 2 931 people who participated, 2 705 cast their votes against Mbambo. He said a day later he informed the ministry, Mbambo and Kavango regional governor Samuel Mbambo what had transpired and which procedures were followed.

    KENYA KAMBOWE

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    Pathetic voter turnout 'unsurprising'Pathetic voter turnout 'unsurprising' Commentators are unsurprised by the pathetic voter turnout that was recorded during the David vs Goliath showdown between Swapo and 27-year-old independent candidate Angelina Immanuel that played out at Ondangwa at the weekend.

    Over 15 000 people were expected to vote, but only 3 792 votes were cast.

    Swapo candidate Leonard Negonga is the new Ondangwa Urban constituency councillor after receiving 1 936 votes, while Immanuel garnered 1 402 votes.

    Popular Democratic Movement (PDM) candidate Johannes Martin received 326 votes, while All People's Party's (APP) Asser Vincent got 97 votes.

    Mandume Tuhafeni of the Congress of Democrats (CoD) could only muster 31 votes. Swapo's vote dropped significantly from 92% in 2015 to 51% this time around.

    During the 2015 election, 4 267 votes were cast, with Swapo receiving 3 918, the Rally for Democracy and Progress (RDP) 117 and the PDM 232.

    According to political analyst Graham Hopwood there is really not much to read into the low voter turnout in the Ondangwa Urban by-election.

    He pointed out there is always a very low voter turnout in regional council elections, adding that this weekend's turnout was not unusual.

    “I think the voters have a sense that regional councillors are not that important. They are not like national elections, therefore they do not go out to vote. There are two factors maybe; one would just be the general state of the economy. If most people are just trying to survive and get by, and are not really that interested in party politics, they would not necessarily be enthusiastic to go out and vote,” he said.

    Hopwood said another factor could be that many people living in the Ondangwa Urban constituency right now probably do not have voters' cards because they are not from that town.

    “Ondangwa Urban probably had quite a movement of population in the past five years. And others who have their voters' cards may have moved away from the town, so that could have also affected the turnout,” he said.

    Electoral Commission of Namibia (ECN) chief electoral officer Theo Mujoro emphasised their mandate is to conduct voter education and that the low voter turnout cannot be blamed on the ECN.

    He said ECN's voter education is an aggressive campaign, but there is a need for Namibia to determine why voters are willing to register but not cast their votes.

    He added that voter education should be a collective task by all stakeholders, in order to ensure that people come out and participate and perform their civic duty.

    “So as Namibians are pondering on this issue, trying to seek answers, they must understand that some people go and register but for some reason they decide against voting. Nobody can say that the polling stations were too far, therefore I could not go. So political parties must explain to the nation whey we observe voter apathy,” he said.

    When contacted for comment Swapo secretary-general Sophia Shaningwa said: “I do not have time now.”

    JEMIMA BEUKES

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  • 06/17/19--16:00: It’s not that serious!
  • It’s not that serious!It’s not that serious! Ester Kamati

    This may be a worn-out topic but the need to talk about it is quite strong. Lately romantic relationships among youth have simply become about physical compatibility and attraction and less about whether a pair like each other enough to stay together despite the negatives. Although this is something that we do not want to hear, or read about, a relationship is not always perfect, it’s not always smiles, and yes, you will argue and that is okay. Ultimately you live for the happy times but it is unnatural for people to always agree on everything. Misunderstandings are normal, but are not something that can’t be resolved.

    Now despite this, there are bad habits that each individual has and if you like somebody enough, these are things that you would have to put up with. A wise man once told me that relationships are about partnership and not ownership and that makes a lot of sense. In essence this means that as much as your partner is yours because you are committed to each other, they are not your property and you cannot control their every move.

    In addition to that, communication is key. In a relationship you need to understand what means of communication appeals to your partner. You may be communicating but if the person you are trying to communicate with is not receiving the information in the manner intended, then this is equivalent to not communicating at all.

    Communication is not about arguing, it is not about making the other person feel bad for their slip-ups, nor is it about who is right at the end of the day. It is strictly about solving the problem that exists; it is about putting an end to the unease, and most importantly, it is about understanding why the other person is uneasy about a particular thing, how you may have made the other person feel and understanding that despite the problem, there are still some great times to come. Communication is putting the problem to rest and tackling it in such a manner that it should not come up in the next argument.

    I get the feeling that we put way too much thought into relationships and always want them to be perfect, so we sort of lose the whole essence being a relationship, which is not about being romantic. Learn each other’s habits, get to know what the other person likes and go on adventures. That is how you keep not just the romance but the entire relationship alive.

    There are certain people that always discard the idea of new adventures with negative shutdowns, such as “I can drink tea at home”, when asked to go on a tea date for instance. But what they don’t know is that it is not about the tea, it is about the experience. It is about the fact that next time you think of tea, you will picture that moment. It is about the conversation at the tea table, and lastly, it is about the time spent together.

    Speaking of time, it is a busy world and everybody is on a different mission, trying to “secure the bag”, get an education and care for a family, etc. But come to think of it, we create time for the things that are important. It’s not about dedicating the entire day to this person, it is about those 20 minutes that you use to take a walk, hold hands and have a completely random conversation. It is those small things that count. It is about that single red rose that you give her that leaves her thinking of you every time she looks at it; it is about that random letter you write him that leaves him smiling from ear to ear.

    I am a 90s kid and those are just some of the things I think of. That is my idea of romance, and quite frankly, it is not as stressful and as draining as people make it seem. It is that people overthink it and have a different picture in their heads that keeps them from enjoying and truly experiencing the moment. That is what complicates it, but other than that, it honestly is not that serious!

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  • 06/17/19--16:00: The weight of expectation
  • The weight of expectationThe weight of expectation A huge weight of expectation will undoubtedly rest on political leaders vying for office later this year. While there is a sense that the current political dispensation perpetuated disillusionment among the youth, the country will nevertheless be abuzz with election fever when the right time comes. For years the youth, who constitute over 60% of the national vote, have persistently complained about being left out, especially when it involves decision-making roles. Most of these eligible voters are at the moment without jobs and are languishing in abject poverty. The government of the day is also facing increasing criticism and challenges over high levels of inequality, corruption and unemployment, even though our country is blessed with enormous resources and great wealth. The country’s unemployment rate is estimated at around 38% by the Namibia Labour Force Survey (NLFS) of the Namibia Statistics Agency (NSA), while almost 44% of the youth population remain without jobs. The high jobless rate, which has now reached a crisis of epic proportions, is just one of many social issues that Namibians grapple with on a daily basis. Thousands are still without places to call home and have to put up with a problematic healthcare and education systems. Voters also feel betrayed by their current leaders who are clearly failing to deliver social justice. The sad reality is more and more people are wallowing in need and this backlash has the potential to threaten our collective sense of humanity. The glaring inequality between rich and poor is there for all to see. In fact, it is a gap that continues to widen, with many previously disadvantaged Namibians still living in squalor, compared the minority. There is without doubt a massive weight of expectation on political leaders to deliver on electoral promises, while reinventing themselves to be relevant in the eyes of the voters. Many young people remain disengaged and disillusioned with politics for the mere fact that they are not taken seriously by those that they elect into power.

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  • 06/17/19--16:00: Sky is the limit for Megan
  • Sky is the limit for Megan Sky is the limit for Megan Teen flies from Cape to Cairo in an aircraft she built At the age of 17, Megan Werner is showing youngsters across the globe that with the right mindset, anything can be done. Ester Kamati



    Megan Werner, an experienced model and published author, recently finished building an aircraft along with 20 other youth, which they plan to fly across the continent.

    Werner is not only moving mountains, but is serving as an inspiration to other teens; showing them that they are capable of anything.

    She grew up in Rhenosterspruit in Lanseria, South Africa and loves fishing, hiking and being outdoors.

    She published her first book titled ‘It’s up to me’ at the tender age of 13. She brought together a group of youth who have successfully built an aircraft through the U-dream project.

    This aircraft, a Sling 4, will be flown across the continent throughout the month by Werner and her co-pilot Ntando Makwela.

    They will be joined by a support plane directed by reputable pilots with aviation experience.

    According to Werner, the idea of flying a plane from Cape to Cairo came to her while she was studying, after which she discussed it with her parents.

    Thereafter, the decision was made to include up to 20 other African teenagers, so they could build the plane themselves and then fly it across Africa.

    Both Werner’s parents are in aviation, so the phrase “the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree” comes to mind. And it is not surprising that she developed a major interest in aviation.

    She is self-inspired and likes to prove to those who don’t believe in her that she is capable of great things.

    “When I really believe that I can do something, I don’t mind going the extra mile to show people that I can do it,” she said.

    She is currently completing her private pilot’s licence and learnt how to fly planes at Aeronav Academy at Lanseria.

    She lists flying as one of her hobbies and hopes to fly commercially in the future. In her free time she enjoys listening to music and taking long, hot baths when she gets the chance, although preparing for the trip has occupied most of her time lately.

    The young author has plans to continue with her journey of inspirational talks and mentioned that this project has sometimes been difficult for her, because many people did not believe in her. “They say you are too young but that is the time to show them how it’s done,” she said.

    Describing the process of working on the project as amazing and uplifting, she explained that despite the challenges, it was worth every second. She advised young individuals take action and just do it. “Take massive action and keep going until it is done,” she added.

    Megan fact Box:

    1. She likes practical jokes.

    2. She is naughty.

    3. She is currently completing her pilot’s licence.

    4. She doesn't think she fits into the school system, but that's okay.

    5. She finds school really boring and old-fashioned.

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    Tobacco critics ‘misinformed’Tobacco critics ‘misinformed’Amukwiyu defends Chinese-backed project The Cancer Association of Namibia has called on cabinet to “rethink” its approval of the controversial Chinese-backed tobacco project. KENYA KAMBOWE





    Swapo Oshikoto regional coordinator Armas Amukwiyu says the objections to the N$1 billion tobacco and maize project that has finally been given the green light by cabinet are the result of people being misinformed.

    Among the objectors are former health ministers, the Affirmative Repositioning (AR) movement and the Cancer Association of Namibia (CAN), which has called on cabinet to “rethink” its approval.

    Cabinet last week announced its approval for Namibia Oriental Tobacco, a company co-owned by Amukwiyu and his Chinese partners, to lease a tract of land for the project earmarked for the Zambezi Region.

    The cabinet resolution said the terms and conditions of the project would be finalised through the Cabinet Committee on Trade and Economic Development (CCTED).

    Amukwiyu told Namibian Sun the reason why various stakeholders are objecting to the tobacco project is because they are not well-informed on what the objectives are.

    He said they have always been aware of objections, including a recent letter by AR addressed to President Hage Geingob, in which it expresses concerns following the recent cabinet approval.

    Amukwiyu called on the public to be patient and wait for Namibia Oriental Tobacco to clear the air and address the misunderstandings that exist regarding the project.

    “We really don’t have much to say about that. To us it’s normal for people to air their views and opinions about anything that they feel they do understand. We hope that one day we are able to sit around the table and remove all the misunderstandings that might be existing,” Amukwiyu said.

    “This project is for the whole of Namibia. At the right time we shall narrate the details and information as to what our objectives are. The nation should just be patient until such a time that we are ready to expose all the nitty-gritty information, including the benefits.”

    For years Amukwiyu and his Chinese partners pushed for the project and were awarded a 10 000-hectare farm at Liselo in the Zambezi Region by the Mafwe Traditional Authority.

    However, the project was greeted by objections from former health minister Bernard Haufiku, who had vigorously campaigned against the initiative, describing it as a “chemical weapons” project.

    He also urged residents of the region to “choose health above toxins”.

    “My plea to the youth, who apparently support the planting of chemical weapons in the name of tobacco in that great region, is: Let us choose health above toxins; choose life above death!” he Haufiku said at the time.

    Haufiku’s predecessor, Richard Kamwi, also objected to the project, citing health concerns.

    Current health minister Kalumbi Shangula said the resolution by cabinet to grant Namibia Oriental Tobacco approval for the project was a collective one.

    “Cabinet took a decision and approved the project and I am part of cabinet, so it’s a collective decision,” Shangula said.

    He said that his predecessors made their views heard outside cabinet.

    Meanwhile, CAN said it had learnt “with great dismay” about cabinet’s approval for the tobacco project.

    It said it had on 2 June addressed an official communication to the offices of the president, prime minister, health minister and land reform minister, in which it had requested that the project be reconsidered and declined.

    CAN said it had cited concerns, such as the severe consequences for the environment and the people of Namibia.

    It said further that the project contravenes agreements concluded with the World Health Organisation (WHO).

    “Not only does such a venture infringe on the heart of the Namibian Tobacco Control Act of 2010 that has impacted our people positively and awarded Namibia great international recognition on this (the global tobacco) front; given the general statistics of tobacco-related health issues, both globally and locally, we remain of the conviction that allowing a tobacco farm in Namibia sets a negative precedent,” CAN said in a letter signed by its CEO Rolf Hansen, dated yesterday.

    Hansen, who is also the national director of the Namibia National Cancer Registry, said the cabinet decision was a health and natural disaster waiting to happen.

    “As gatekeeper of health pertaining to cancer and associated diseases, we beg cabinet that is charged with the task to dutifully investigate and keep the interests of Namibia and her people as their main concern: Rethink this decision,” Hansen added in the letter.

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    Geingob regrets fatal shootingGeingob regrets fatal shooting JANA-MARI SMITH



    President Hage Geingob has reached out to the family of 22-year-old Fambaune Black, who was killed by a Namibian Defence Force (NDF) soldier last week, while also underlining his commitment to continuing fighting crime.

    “This incident is unfortunate and will be dealt with according to our laws,” presidential spokesperson Alfred Hengari told Namibian Sun yesterday.

    The Office of the President said the “loss of life is regrettable” and confirmed the president had sent his condolences to Black’s family. Black, a Zimbabwean national, had been based in Windhoek as a taxi driver when he was gunned down.

    The presidency underlined that following the fatal shooting, an individual was arrested and charged, and the “matter will be dealt with by a competent court of law”.

    “It is a process that should be respected since it is a clear demonstration of functioning institutions.”

    Hengari told Namibian Sun yesterday the president is “committed to fighting crime, which has been identified as a problem in our communities” and added that “the majority of Namibians support initiatives to fight crime”.

    The presidency underlined that “law-abiding citizens should have nothing to fear”.

    In response to calls to remove soldiers from crime-fighting operations, the Office of the President underlined that Geingob is “guided at all times by the constitution” and that deploying members of the army in support of police crime-fighting initiatives is in line with the country’s laws.

    “Fighting crime decisively is central to the efforts of government to create safer cities and communities. More importantly, it is crucial in the drive to attract investors, tourists and visitors to Namibia,” the presidency said.

    During a courtesy call by the National Unity Democratic Organisation (Nudo) of Namibia yesterday morning, Geingob told reporters that for now soldiers will remain attached to police crime-fighting operations until “the situation normalises”. He further condemned the shooting and underlined that soldiers should act as “back-up” to operations and not be in the frontlines.

    Calls grow

    Meanwhile, an online petition demanding a stop to Operation Kalahari Desert had gained more than 7 000 signatures by yesterday afternoon, with the goal of reaching 7 500 signatures before it is handed over to the relevant authorities.

    The petition, which also calls on Swapo to cease a costly renovation of its headquarters, accuses the Namibian government of “unleashing the military on civilians in an uncalled for, aggressive and inappropriate manner”.

    It demands that the president respond to the question: “When your people are suffering and living pay cheque to pay cheque, is military harassment going to make things better?”

    A Namibian who signed the petition said the violence perpetrated by soldiers during the police crime-intervention operation is “inhumane” while another described it as a violation of human rights.

    A Namibian based in Canada, Victor Indongo, addressed Geingob in the comment section, asking if “it is safe to return home?”

    Nevertheless, many Namibians have come out in support of Operation Kalahari Desert, underlining the need for visible a law-enforcement presence on the streets while stressing accountability is paramount as well as training.

    On Namibian Sun’s Facebook page, a reader wrote: “The operation should continue. No one is above the law. If any soldier or law-enforcement officer crosses the line he/she must just face the law too.”

    Another Namibian Sun reader said the operation must continue but suggested soldiers must be trained “on how to deal with the civilians”.

    “If approaching criminals the police must lead and the soldiers should be there as back-up only.”

    Toni Hancox, director of the Legal Assistance Centre (LAC), explained that in terms of the Defence Act, soldiers deployed to assist the police have the “same powers and duties as a police officer”.

    Under these powers and duties, the soldiers are obliged to use reasonable force in the context of an arrest.

    She explained that based on the available information on the shooting it would appeared it did not happen in the lead up to an arrest, “so it would not be reasonable force”.

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