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Tells it All - Namibian Sun

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    Free tickets for Cosafa championshipsFree tickets for Cosafa championships Fans hoping to take in the festival of women's football in Nelson Mandela Bay over the next few weeks, will be able to gain free entry to stadiums hosting the senior and inaugural Cosafa women's under-20 championship.Organisers have made entry free in response to the massive support received for the senior championship last year, where the people of Nelson Mandela Bay come out in their thousands to see Banyana Banyana lift the trophy for a second successive year.

    Fans already based in Nelson Mandela Bay, and those who wish to travel to watch the matches, can take advantage of this incredible opportunity and collect their free tickets from selected outlets in Nelson Mandela Bay.

    Senior championship tickets:

    Spar - Daku

    Spar - New Brighton

    Spar - Zonke (Motherwell)

    U Save - Opposite Wolfson Stadium

    Under-20 championship:

    Spar - Gelvandale

    Spar - Espen Heights

    Spar - Algoa

    Spar - Algoa Foods


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    Match administrators to benefitMatch administrators to benefit Cosafa has a history of leaving a legacy wherever it stages tournaments, and this year will be no different, as Port Elizabeth plays host to both the senior and inaugural women's under-20 championship.

    The tournaments are not just a platform for players and coaches to showcase their abilities, but also match officials and administrators, who can hone their skills and gain some vital experience.

    Cosafa will this year be hosting workshops before and during the tournaments, aimed at providing local coaches, match officials and administrators with the tools and qualifications to take their careers forward.

    Some of the events that will take place during the championship include a D-Licence four-day course for aspiring coaches and an emergency medicine course, which will be run by Fifa's tournament medical officer, Professor Efraim Kramer.

    Then there is an administration and governance workshop, which will be presented by former Fifa development officer Ashford Mamelodi.


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    Neshamba back for Mighty WarriorsNeshamba back for Mighty Warriors Zimbabwe have welcomed back striker Rudo Neshamba ahead of the 2019 Cosafa women's championship.

    She has taken her place in the preliminary squad announced by coach Sithetheliwe Sibanda.

    Zimbabwe will be among the favourites for the championship, as it is the only nation apart from South Africa to have lifted the trophy.

    Neshamba last played for the Mighty Warriors at the 2016 Olympic Games, after which she decided to take a sabbatical from football to study journalism and start a family.

    Her return is a massive boost for Sibanda, who will be without star striker Rutendo Makore, the 2017 golden boot winner, with the forward having been overlooked for family reasons.

    The Mighty Warriors have not been active since they were knocked out in the first round of the competition in September 2018, a tournament where they showed plenty of promise.

    Zimbabwe claimed two victories in the pool stage, but a 1-2 loss to East African guest nation Uganda ultimately saw them exit at the first stage.

    Zimbabwe open their 2019 Group C campaign against Angola on Wednesday, which is also the opening match of the tournament at the Wolfson Stadium. They then take on Mozambique on 2 August and eSwatini three days later.

    The Mighty Warriors, who were runners-up on home soil at the 2017 championship, have always been a competitive side, and finally broke their duck in the competition with victory in 2011.

    They reached the final in the inaugural competition in 2002, but lost to South Africa in the decider in Harare.

    They had stormed into the decider with four straight wins in which they scored a staggering 36 goals, including a competition record 15-0 victory over Lesotho in their opener.

    They finished top of their pool again in 2006, after two matches against their only pool opponent, Angola, but came unstuck in the semi-finals this time with a 1-4 loss to South Africa. They were beaten to third place by Zambia, when they went down 1-2 in the bronze medal match.

    The 2008 championship in Angola provided little joy, but they finally lifted the trophy in 2011 on home soil when they proved a dominant force again and beat South Africa 1-0 in the final.

    They could not quite repeat that feat in Bulawayo in 2017, as they took the best runners-up spot in their pool with a victory over Madagascar (4-0) and draws with Zambia (1-1) and Malawi (3-3), before walloping East African guest nation Kenya 4-0 in the semi-finals.

    That set up a final against old foes South Africa, which Zimbabwe lost.


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    Nored boosts vocational trainingNored boosts vocational training Nored has donated some its redundant equipment to the Rundu Vocational Training Centre (RVTC), in order to assist the institution with teaching and learning.

    The donation came in response to a request from the training centre, which lacks some of the equipment needed to do practical training, in order to enhance the skills of the trainees.

    According to Nored executive manager for stakeholder management and electrification, Toivo Shovaleka, a bilateral agreement between the two organisations was signed in 2015. Shovaleka said Nored remains committed to honouring agreement and it was on this basis that they donated the equipment.

    RVTC manager Kornelius Lukas applauded Nored, saying this demonstrates that the agreement was not simply a document.

    Lukas said Nored's commitment to partner with technical and vocational education and training (TVET) institutions is in line with the Namibia's vision of becoming industrialised.

    “This donation shows that you fully understand what the centre needs and are prepared to partner with TVET institutions in ensuring a pool of qualified artisans,” Lukas said.

    “The nation's industrialisation aspirations can only be realised through the involvement of industries in TVET. Your gesture today shows your commitment towards the realisation of the dream of making this country an industrialised one.”

    Lukas explained the training centre's relationship with Nored is a comprehensive strategic partnership that has grown stronger over the years, adding that over 100 trainees have received offsite training at Nored through work-integrated learning. He said those trainees are today qualified artisans and are contributing to the development of the country. Lukas assured the equipment will be put to good use and will be taken care off.

    “These items will add value to our training,” he said.

    Lukas also called on other stakeholders to emulate Nored in terms of partnering with TVET institutions.


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  • 07/28/19--16:00: Zim dry port inaugurated
  • Zim dry port inauguratedZim dry port inauguratedWalvis Bay facility a game-changer Zimbabwean president Emmerson Mnangagwa says he and his nation are indebted to Namibia. Zimbabwean president Emmerson Mnangagwa inaugurated his country's dry port facility in Walvis Bay on Friday.

    This formed part of his official state visit to Namibia.

    Mnangagwa said the new facility will assist in the economic development of Zimbabwe, as well as further integrate SADC countries.

    “We are indebted to the government and people of Namibia for granting us this rare gift of land to enable us to be part of Namibia's grand plan to make the Walvis Bay port a regional logistics hub in the SADC region,” Mnangagwa said.

    “This has enabled our imports and exports from the United States and Europe to reach Zimbabwe, without having to take the Vasco da Gama route.

    “This broad network, through this facility, offers Zimbabwe plenty of opportunities, options and access to vast markets and destinations.

    “It will further deepen the prospects of our companies to increase trade within the context of the African Continental Free Trade Area, by promoting intra-Africa trade.”

    Mnangagwa added that Namibia and Zimbabwe should now work on improving the land connection between the two countries. “The biggest possibility for this is a railway line.”

    In addition, Mnangagwa said this gesture shows the fraternal bond between Namibia and Zimbabwe, which formed an alliance many years ago.

    “My wish is that those who will lead after us should continue to cherish, consolidate and deepen this relationship.”

    This facility will not only serve Zimbabwe, but Botswana, Malawi, Zambia and possibly the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

    Currently, Zambia, Malawi, Zimbabwe and the DRC are accessing markets through the Durban, Maputo, Beira or Cape Town ports, which are extremely congested. Mnangagwa urged officials to work tirelessly to ensure that people, businesses and investors alike realise the immediate benefits of the dry port facility.

    Namport board director Nangula Hamunyela said “through this strategic partnership we are confident that the Zimbabwean dry port facility will become the ultimate one-stop shop solution provider of seamless logistics services, needed to facilitate the easy flow of goods to and from Zimbabwe via the Port of Walvis Bay”.

    The construction of the dry port started on 31 March 2015 and was completed this year.

    Leandrea Louw

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  • 07/28/19--16:00: No stone unturned
  • No stone unturnedNo stone unturnedGladiators to pull out all the stops at Cosafa Cup Brave Gladiators coach Uerikondjera Mamie Kasaona is adamant that the team will perform exceptionally well at the Cosafa championship in South Africa. Former Brave Gladiators captain and current coach, Uerikondjera Mamie Kasaona, says she did the groundwork in terms of fitness way before the group draw took place for the upcoming Cosafa women's championship, which begins in South Africa 31 July and ends on 11 August.

    She said the squad will be out for blood, when the tournament starts.

    Kasaona who played over 90 times for the national team, is assisted by former Brave Warriors player Robert Nauseb.

    “We started with fitness training some time back. I'm very happy with the response from the players, because not only did they comply with the early morning long jogs, but overall they really put in work,” Kasaona said.

    The player-turned-coach, who was busy putting the final touches to the squad at the NFA Technical Centre, said she was disappointed with the results at last year's tournament. The Gladiators exited the tournament in the group stages last year, despite showing incredible character.

    They lost 0-1 to Zimbabwe in their first match. That encounter was followed by a disappointing 0-0 draw against Uganda. In this match they had opportunities to score, but lady luck was not on their side. In their third match, the Namibians surprised by fighting back from a goal down to register a 4-1 victory over eSwatini.

    “I could not travel with the team as a player, due to personal commitments, but the opportunity to coach the side has come and I will use my experience to guide the ladies forward.

    “This year is different. This time around I have a full house, with the likes of Annoushka Kordom, who plies her trade in the US, Zenatha Coleman who plays in Spain and German-based player Vewe Kotjipati, who is still to join the team,” said Kasaona.

    “We cannot depend on one player, but we have to work as a unit; after all, football is a team sport.”

    The Gladiators will be participating alongside hosts and defending champions South Africa, Angola, Botswana, the Comoros, eSwatini, Madagascar, Malawi, Mozambique, Seychelles, Zimbabwe and Zambia.

    The Namibians are drawn in Group B, where they will face the likes of Zambia, Botswana and Mauritius.

    The teams are split into three groups with four sides each. The top team in each pool will advance to the semi-finals, along with the best-placed runners-up.

    All the participating countries are wary of South Africa's capabilities, as they beat Cameroon last year in the final, and will be among the favourites again. The South Africans are going for a hat-trick of titles, after also lifting the title in 2017 in Zimbabwe.

    They are the team to beat and have just returned from the Fifa Women's World Cup held in France will a bag full of confidence.

    “We are not in the same group as them, but of course everyone knows the healthy but competitive rivalry we have.

    The ball is round and we will take each match as it comes,” Kasaona said. As prepared as the Gladiators are, they will be without Emma Naris, the vice-captain, who is suffering from a groin injury. “Naris never missed training. She would always come and cheer on the other players from the sidelines.

    That's real teamwork. It's really a pity that we will be without her.

    “She is a true leader on the field. She's really hardworking and commands the other players.

    The girls need to also go out and play for her,” Kasaona added. The 23-woman squad is expected to leave for the tournament today.


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    Reusable pads for 400 schoolgirlsReusable pads for 400 schoolgirls More than 400 girls from various schools in Kavango West will no longer be absent from school when they menstruate, after receiving free sanitary pads from Good Samaritans.

    Girls, especially those from poor backgrounds, cannot afford sanitary pads and miss approximately four days of school each month, which has a negative effect on their education. Apart from missing out on school, they also resort to harmful practices when they menstruate, which could compromise their health.

    This includes using mattresses, pillow stuffing, dried leaves and cotton cloths when they menstruate, simply because they cannot afford sanitary pads. The Esba Pendukeni Foundation, the Pinnacle Metropolitan Empowerment Trust, Gondwana Trust and Ann Pads visited Kavango West recently and donated hundreds of washable sanitary pads to the schoolgirls from the Kanuni Haruwodi, Nkurenkuru, Ncagcu and Ncamagoro combined schools. The washable pads have a lifespan of up to four years and is ideal for those who cannot afford disposable products. Speaking at the handover ceremony that took place at Ncagcu Combined School, Kavango West Region education director Teopolina Hamutumwa thanked the donors. “We recognise and appreciate the efforts of the different stakeholders and the private sector, who have indicated their willingness to embark on availing different sanitary products, which is a great assistance to our schoolgirls,” Hamutumwa said.

    Hamutumwa also used the opportunity to speak on the importance of developing policies to address the issue of the stigmatisation of girls and women when they menstruate, including myths and traditional beliefs that have no scientific backing. She also called on parents to show support when it comes to menstruation, by providing girls with sanitary pads.

    “We need to develop policies and guidelines that will do away with stigma and encourage school communities and the public at large not to shy away from menstruation, but rather approach it and handle it in a respectful manner,” she said. “We further request our dear parents to continue ensuring the continuous provision of sufficient sanitary pads to the girls.” Hamutumwa also advised boys and men to understand and respect the dignity of women. “To our young boys and men at large, menstruation is a normal process in a woman's life, which requires respect and privacy. It helps our young girls to thrive and grow into productive women, and into the future mothers of the nation. It therefore requires us to embrace it with dignity and respect. Stop shaming them for undergoing this normal life process,” she said. Ann Pads founder Hermine Bertolini spoke about the importance of sanitary pads and how they should be used.

    Bertolini said washable sanitary pads are meant for anyone and not simply for those from poor backgrounds.



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  • 07/28/19--16:00: Namdia hunts for new board
  • Namdia hunts for new boardNamdia hunts for new board Namibia Desert Diamonds (Namdia) is hunting for a new board to replace the one currently headed by Walvis Bay-based lawyer Shakespeare Masiza. The parastatal recently advertised for new board members.

    The founding board consisted of Masiza, Development Bank of Namibia (DBN) board chairperson Tania Hangula, government chief legal advisor Chris Nghaamwa, Nampost portfolio manager Lorentha Harases, Namcor executive Bonifatius Konjore, geologist Venondjo Maharero and HR specialist Florentia Amuenje, who later resigned.

    It was tasked with the responsibility of establishing Namdia, its CEO Kennedy Hamutenya told New Era last year November.

    “The minister [of mines and energy] appointed a team of directors who had certain competencies, whether it is information technology, human resources and others, and he then asked them at the inception that they were appointed to help me set up the company,” Hamutenya said at the time.

    “It was then agreed and acknowledged that these [board] directors were going to spend a disproportionate amount of their time sitting with me, trying to set up the company.”

    The current board also drew criticism over earning excessive board fees, the media reported last year. The board had since the establishment of Namdia earned N$8 million over a two-year period.

    Masiza earned N$1.4 million in board fees, while Nghaamwa, Maharero, Konjore and Harases earned N$1.2 million each over the last two years.

    Hangula earned N$1.1 million and Amuenje N$745 000.

    The new board members will be required to amongst others, hold bachelor's degrees in marketing, business management, economics or law or hold master degrees in human resources or accounting.

    The advertisement also called on those with five years' senior management experience at senior or executive management level to apply.


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    Arsenal sign French teen sensationArsenal sign French teen sensation Arsenal have announced the signing of William Saliba from Saint-Etienne for a reported fee of £27 million (US$34 million), shortly after revealing Real Madrid midfielder Dani Ceballos had joined the club on loan.

    Eighteen-year-old defender Saliba will spend next season on loan at the Ligue 1 club before linking up with the Gunners next year.

    Saliba was the second deal confirmed in the space of two hours by the Premier League club after the capture of Ceballos on a season-long loan.

    Arsenal are believed to have been interested in the teenager for some time and have finally landed their man.

    “Highly rated French defender William Saliba is joining us from Ligue 1 club Saint-Etienne on a long-term contract,” the club announced on their official website.

    “The much sought-after centre-half will spend a season back on loan at St Etienne before joining our squad next summer.” Saliba said: “It's a massive pleasure to sign for a really, really big English club. “This is the biggest club in England for me, so it was an easy decision. I didn't think twice about signing here, so I'm really happy.”

    Head coach Unai Emery added: “We're delighted William is joining us. Many teams wanted him, but he decided he wanted to come to us and be part of our future.”

    Arsenal had earlier announced the season-long loan signing of midfielder Ceballos. The 22-year-old Spain international, who made 23 La Liga appearances in the 2018/19 campaign, helped Spain's under-21s to European glory last month.

    “We're excited to see Dani join us,” Emery said. “He is a talented player with big technical ability, creativity and precision.”

    Ceballos said: “The coach was the turning point in terms of me joining this massive club.

    “He's a Spanish coach and he knows me from my time at other clubs. I'm really happy to be able to help Arsenal achieve their objectives.”


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    Sundhage to coach Brazil women's teamSundhage to coach Brazil women's team Pia Sundhage will take over as manager of the Brazil women's team after quitting as coach to several of Sweden's under-age international teams, the Swedish FA (SvFF) said on Thursday.

    Brazil lost to hosts France in the last-16 at this year's Women's World Cup, prompting an impassioned plea from striker Marta to young girls in the country to get involved in the game.

    Brazil's previous manager Vadao, who also coached the team for two years from 2014, was removed just four weeks after Brazil's World Cup exit. Under him, Brazil had reached the semi-finals of the 2016 Olympic tournament in Rio and won two Copa Americas and a Pan-American Games title.

    “Brazil is a fantastic football nation, full of talented players who I am looking forward to getting to know and work with,” the 59-year-old Swede Sundhage told the SvFF website. “The national team is in an exciting phase at the moment - one needs, to a certain extent, undergo a generational change, and at the same time they have qualified for the Olympics,”

    Regarded as one of the pioneers of women's soccer in Sweden and around the world, Sundhage, who won Olympic gold as coach of the US team in 2008 and 2012, ended a five-year spell in charge of Sweden in 2017, before coaching the under-age teams. NAMPA/REUTERS

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  • 07/28/19--16:00: Welwitschias give back
  • Welwitschias give backWelwitschias give backRugby extends hand to less fortunate Rugby players called up for preparations for the Japan Rugby World Cup have handed over useful items to the less privileged. The Namibia senior national rugby side preliminary training squad for the 2019 Rugby World Cup handed over clothing, blankets and sanitary items to the EM Love Foundation in Windhoek on Thursday.

    The foundation drives the Street Store initiative across Namibia. In its seventh year now, the initiative collects clothing that is cleaned and sorted by the learners from St Paul's College. Street Stores are then set up, allowing the homeless and needy to shop for free. A big part of the foundation's handover process is giving dignity back, while giving the recipients the choice and freedom to shop according to their size and needs.

    Mavis Elias, the CEO of the foundation, said there is a big need for men's clothing in particular.

    This perfectly matched the items from the team, which they collected.

    “Times are hard, the winter is harsh and we as a team decided that we can help and give back to the ones who need it most, and to those who will be supporting us as we go to the World Cup in Japan this year,” said the captain Darryl de la Harpe.

    “When we represent our country, we represent all, from those supporting us from the comfort of their homes, to those that live on the streets and who try to make something of their lives.

    “Meeting some of these recipients today was heart-warming, knowing they have probably never even been to a rugby match. The delight they had when we introduced ourselves was heartfelt, as they wished us well, despite their current living conditions.

    “We need to remember that sport in general is for all, and we have a responsibility to give back to all. We are happy that the foundation can take what we have collected and distribute it all over Namibia.

    “We are based and train in Windhoek, but through this we can touch all parts of the country, which rugby ultimately should,” De la Harpe added.

    Apart from the bulk of the items that were handed to the EM Love Foundation's warehouse, care packages were handed to men in the centre of Windhoek, who are homeless, but wash cars in order to have a meagre income.


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  • 07/28/19--16:00: My Afcon experience
  • My Afcon experienceMy Afcon experience Egypt, with close to 98 million people, is humid. If you have ever been there you would know how overwhelming the heat can get.

    Now coming from a nation with a population of close to 2.5 million people, and varying degrees of temperature across the country, Egypt can get quite overwhelming.

    I was fortunate enough to travel for the third-place play-off, as well as the final match of the Afcon 2019 tournament, courtesy of MTC.

    First things first; when I arrived at the airport, it was the usual security check - nothing friendly.

    I wasn't in Cairo to work, so I guess only carrying a camera was not too much of a hassle. The hotel check-in was okay. I guess presenting papers helps a lot, because having a conversation in Arabic was obviously impossible.

    But of course there was a tour guide and bodyguard guiding us along the way. I wasn't sure if this was the case for all tourists visiting the country, but I later learnt that there is quite a lot of unrest, after a bus carrying 25 South African tourist was bombed at the Pyramids of Giza a month before the start of the Africa Cup of Nations, so authorities were on their toes, trying to make sure that visitors are protected.

    I understand this, because not only is Egypt trying to bring back glory days to the cradle of civilisation, luring visitors to their museums and such through the tournament, it is also trying to warn its citizens that fights and conflict only cause harm in the long run.

    Things are truly different around there. With so many people, it is quite difficult to drive home a message of peace, integrity and of zero racism; you see, everyone has their own idea of how things should be.

    I'm not sure if security activities will continue for the rest of the visitors planning on travelling to Cairo since the tournament's end. All I know is that with Egypt comes a huge culture shock. However, that is a story for another day.

    Nigeria match

    We got though the first gate at Al Salam Stadium on 17 June, after being searched thoroughly by female guards. Security was so tight that I had to switch on my camera, so they could make sure it wasn't a weapon.

    It was the same story with my power bank. I had to take it back to the bus, because according to them, it could be a possible bomb.

    Yet another thorough search happened at the second gate.

    If you comply, everything runs smoothly. The third-place playoff was exciting. With the five other Namibians who were travelling with me, we managed to group ourselves with the Nigerian supporters.

    Nigerians bring a certain type of atmosphere to any stadium they enter. They are not difficult to miss, with their attire, drums and chanting.

    These guys were on their feet for the duration of the match, blowing vuvuzelas and beating drums. It is very important to have support as a team. I think they have successfully managed to own that space.

    I think as Namibians we need to learn a thing or two about organising a support base for our national teams. We don't have an identity when it comes to that. I think as trivial as it seems, it is important to bring that element to any stadium.

    We can achieve this if we organise ourselves and form a national supporters' club.

    The final

    We arrived at the Cairo International Stadium three hours before kickoff. We found the gates closed. Of course we didn't know what was going on. Football fans we met outside one of the gates told us there was some sort of fight between fans, and the gates had to be closed.

    Another fan told us the president of Egypt was in the stadium, hence the lockout. I don't know which version was true.

    We decided to wait with the rest of the crowd, as they gathered. At that time I had forgotten that we didn't have a bodyguard with us. It was Friday, which is devoted to prayer in the Muslim faith. We forgot that it wasn't safe to be an unguided woman in this foreign land.

    We just joined the rest of the fans from Sudan, Algeria, Tunisia and Cameroon to watch the final.

    There was a certain kind of togetherness, because we were all strangers united by the love of football. For about three hours we waited with growing impatience to be allowed through the first gate, blocked by armed police.

    A couple we met was divided by the fence. The guy managed to get through the barrier before it was locked. But because the crowd was pushing, his girlfriend ended up behind the metal barrier that was now separating them. He then decided not to proceed, but stand in solidarity with his girlfriend. I think they said they were from Benin.

    The first half started and one guy - Stephane, pulled out his phone and we watched the half on his phone, as we stood outside. Algeria scored.

    Eventually a few minutes before the first half ended we were then allowed to enter the gate. “Order, order,” they screamed. We had to hold hands so that we didn't lose each other in the crowd as we entered.

    When we saw people running, we instinctively wanted to do the same. We ran to the second gate. The last checkpoint also had metal detectors and security guards. Everyone was shoving and pushing to get through, but the security officers held firm, as they needed to search everyone.

    After spending some time at the second gate, we eventually entered the huge, packed stadium. Close to 70 000 people gathered to watch the final. Shoving our way through, we found seats, but away from the colourful Senegalese supporters, because they too didn't want to dilute their presence.

    We joined the Tunisians, who are not really known to be loud fans. So we decided to dance and sing, and a few joined in, with others giving some awkward stares.

    At some point the supporters lit up their cellphones in commemoration of the 72 fans who were killed in the Port Said Stadium disaster.

    Algeria eventually won, and throughout the night I could hear supporters screaming and singing, as a new day broke.


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  • 07/28/19--16:00: Urikhob relishes Yanga trek
  • Urikhob relishes Yanga trekUrikhob relishes Yanga trekHard work set to propel striker Sadney Urikhob is relishing his move from Indonesia to Tanzania. LIMBA MUPETAMI

    Hardworking and speedy striker Sadney Urikhob is settling in well at his new Tanzanian club, Young African, affectionately known as Yanga.

    The 27-year-old Urikhob joined the club on 1 July as a free agent on a two-year contract, after being released by Indonesian Liga 1 club PSMS Medan.

    He said he will prove his worth in the upcoming season, adding he will work hard in order to find a place in the fans and club’s hearts.

    If things go well, the Namibian can establish a name for himself at the club, because they have a great record, having won 27 titles.

    They finished second in the Tanzanian Premier League last season behind current champions Simba SC.

    The team has an upcoming friendly against the Kariobangi Sharks of Kenya on August 4 in Dar es Salaam.

    The former Vodacom champions were scheduled to play DR Congo's AS Vita, but the match was cancelled due to logistical issues.

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  • 07/28/19--16:00: ECN happy
  • ECN happyECN happy200 000 register during supplementary period The ECN is happy with the supplementary voter registration period that ended on Saturday. OGONE TLHAGE

    Approximately 200 000 people have registered during the supplementary voter registration period.

    This is according to Electoral Commission of Namibia (ECN) chief electoral officer Theo Mujoro.

    Mujoro said the ECN was happy with the supplementary registration period that ended on Saturday.

    “By the end of the registration process we captured approximately 200 000 voters. Of this figure we need to process the data so that we can tell how many of those are new voters. We will also need to determine how many voters had their original voter cards replaced,” said Mujoro.

    The ECN would now be analysing the information to draw a comprehensive picture, he said.

    “We will also need to look at the data, so that we can see how many registered voters moved from one constituency to another constituency. In the coming weeks we will share the preliminary results,” he said.

    The registration of voters turned out well, Mujoro noted.

    “We are extremely happy with the way things turned out. We performed well. We are happy with the way in which the public responded. I am grateful to the colleagues who have been in charge of the process. They have performed well.”

    According to Mujoro, the national register of voters currently stands at 1.2 million. According to him, this was about 50% of the population and bodes well for the country going forward. Mujoro also said that Namibia was in line with the SADC benchmark for registered voters.

    “Our register is healthy and we are therefore happy,” Mujoro said.

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  • 07/28/19--16:00: End political arrogance
  • End political arrogance End political arrogance Public office-bearers have the moral obligation to serve the interests of ordinary citizens first and foremost, when they assume office. As the direct voters of those serving us, the expectation is that elected politicians will conduct themselves as servant leaders at all times. Given the countless problems befalling our beloved country, we are all yearning for good leadership. Present-day patriotism means struggling against poverty and social injustices. And that is why a great leader is first seen as a servant to others. However, things are different on the ground. We have observed that a huge band of elected representatives are betraying their constituencies and voters alike, considering the shocking lifestyles that many are leading 29 years after independence. 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 to the minority few, while those elected into power are continually spending public money on luxuries. Disappointingly, those elected into power have now given themselves an inflated and undue degree of importance and they do not want to be questioned about the state of affairs. There is nothing untoward about ordinary citizens expressing themselves strongly against the government of the day and using their constitutional rights to demand openness and accountability. The primary responsibility of public officials is to serve the interests of ordinary citizens, first and foremost. Ordinary citizens too have the right to demand fiscal accountability and need to how their hard-earned money is being spent by those elected into power. The citizenry have every right to demand change, especially when it comes to matters that directly impact their lives and other priorities that needs attention, like quality education, proper healthcare, food security and employment creation. They are also more than entitled to be able to influence government policy, in a bid to make sure that they are served, and not taken for servants.

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    Suspensions plague Air NamibiaSuspensions plague Air NamibiaOne first officer, six cabin crew members at home The airline says it has to keep a tight leash on staff, otherwise it will become “ungovernable”. Air Namibia has point-blank denied allegations that it has embarked on a number of “wildcat suspensions” of first officers (FOs) and cabin crew members, who are allegedly, more often than not, being sent home for protracted periods for minor infractions or on spurious charges.

    Insiders preferring anonymity, for fear of being suspended, said the human resource policy and guidelines of the company are carelessly being sidestepped by some “incompetent” and “corruptible” heads of department, anxious to leverage unhealthy power over their subjects.

    They said none of those currently on suspension have received suspension letters. They have also not been subjected to a disciplinary process.

    They are, however, being paid their full salaries and benefits for the duration of the suspensions.

    Moreover, they said, suspensions often last for close to a year or even longer. Some of the suspended have allegedly been “sent home” or are “lying at home” for close to three years.

    “This is a complete wastage of the company’s money, a company that struggles to keep its head above water,” one source said.

    Another said: “The fires are burning at home!”

    A displeased public has also reacted to the rumours of questionable suspensions at the airline, as encapsulated in a recent SMS sent to newspapers that reads: “Is it true that you employed 8 Embraer first officers who have not qualified, as they can’t pass their rating and (you) have been paying (them) full salaries as qualified FOs for two years and they are sitting at home at the expense of the taxpayer?? Un-flippen-believable!! Heads should roll and CEO should be made to pay back the money out of his pocket!!”

    Inside sources claim that the FOs “sitting at home” have been asked to do so because they are “untrainable”, as they did not make the grade after having received full training.

    It is understood that the Namibian Cabin Crew Union (NCCU) is engaging the new Air Namibia board on the suspensions.

    Some sources said the NCCU might even consider a “class action” to counter the “shady suspensions”.

    NCCU officials would not comment on this.

    Air Namibia response

    Responding to questions, Air Namibia’s spokesperson Paul Nakawa said there is currently only one FO on suspension for reasons that cannot be divulged in the media.

    He said only six cabin crew are now on suspension “for various offences”. Nakawa said two of these are grounded for medical assessments, effective from 17 July.

    Nakawa further said all those suspended have been subjected to a disciplinary process. He said the disciplinary process against the FO and three cabin crew members will soon be finalised.

    “And (as) for the remaining crew, suspension letters have been presented to them and the disciplinary process will take its course,” Nakawa said.

    Another allegation put to Nakawa is that “office-bound” cabin crew management have allegedly been accused of flying more than the actual cabin crews, which allegedly cost the airline about N$5 million (on S&T’s and accommodation) during the 2018/19 financial year.

    Such flying, said insiders, has been dubbed “cheque flying”, because it greases the palms of those using their entitlements.

    “No so,” countered Nakawa.

    “The office-based staff are cabin crew members by profession. They are allowed to fly for minimal times,” Nakawa said.

    The reason for these “minimal” flights, he said, is because it is part of their job descriptions, as they are required to check flights once a year with every cabin crew member.

    Equally, he said, they have to fly to “remain current and assure the validation of licence to operate once every three months on all aeroplanes”.

    “They also operate when the need arises for operational technicalities (sic),” Nakawa said.

    He denied the so-called “cheque flights” cost the airline N$5 million, as is alleged.

    “That is incorrect and untrue. The cabin crew management are three and conduct at least one long-haul flight per month,” Nakawa said.

    Sources said there are 140 cabin crew members employed at Air Namibia, many of whom currently fly only once a month, because of the airline’s financial and technical woes.

    Nakawa said the cabin crews constitute 20% of Air Namibia’s staff complement.

    As a final remark Nakawa said: “Aviation is a highly-regulated industry. Our national airline, Air Namibia, is a three-star airline that abides by the rules and regulations of the industry. We have to ensure discipline and professionalism in carrying out our duties. In an event that we allow staff that breached the terms of their employment not to account for their infractions, Air Namibia will become ungovernable. This is the year of accountability and we all need to account for our actions.”


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    Same-sex couples contemplate joining cases Same-sex couples contemplate joining cases JANA-MARI SMITH

    Three couples, who are suing government separately for equal marriage rights in Namibia, have been given a chance by the court to indicate whether or not they agree to join forces before a full bench of High Court judges.

    The cases all relate to Namibian citizens who tied the knot with their spouses in countries that legally recognise their marriage vows, irrespective of gender.

    Each of the couples has since returned to Namibia and eventually decided to sue government, following a number of setbacks, including discrimination at the hands of immigration officials, which has created numerous obstacles to their attempts to settle in the country.

    In June, it emerged that a directive had been given by Judge President Petrus Damaseb that a full bench of three judges be constituted to hear all pending cases in which same-sex marriages are an issue.

    In July, the court postponed the three cases in question to 4 September for an initial case management conference hearing, to allow the parties to engage with the court on the way forward.

    Each party was instructed to address the court on whether their cases should be consolidated with the two other matters relating to same-sex marriages.

    They have been instructed to inform the court whether or not the constitutional issues relating to same-sex marriages, as raised in the three cases, lend themselves to be heard by a full bench of three judges.

    Moreover, the court is also asking the parties to state whether or not any of the constitutional issues require a full bench of judges or whether these cases, or anyone of them, can or should rather be determined without the necessity for a full bench.

    The couples are South African national Daniel Digashu and Johann Potgieter, German national Anita Seiler-Lilles and Anette Seiler and South African Julia Susan Jacobs and her spouse Anita Grobler.

    Potgieter, Seiler and Grobler are all Namibian nationals.

    Legal experts note that the questions asked by the court are not unusual, and simply provide an opportunity for the parties to consent as to whether their cases should be consolidated, which could lower costs as well as be more effective.

    Moreover, if the cases are heard separately by different judges, this could result in different conclusions and lead to further confusion and complications around the issues at stake.

    The Legal Assistance Centre (LAC) also explained that while the consolidation of the cases should be agreed to by the parties in question, the court can decide at its own discretion whether to institute a full bench or not.

    Namibian Sun recently reported that in the cases where the parties named various government ministries and institutions as respondents, only the ombudsman has declined to oppose the application.

    Ombudsman John Walters said: “As a human rights defender, how can I oppose the right for marriage to be recognised in this country? I have at all times defended and tried to protect and advance the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) persons.”

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  • 07/28/19--16:00: China hungry for more
  • China hungry for more China hungry for more Chinese ambassador to Namibia Zhang Yiming says Namibia has all the mineral resources China is seeking, giving it a good reason to want to invest more in the country.

    He also said there should be no fears that because China now owns strategic stakes in Namibia's uranium mines that a monopoly could arise.

    Zhang was speaking during the recent rebranding of Rössing Uranium mine following Rio Tinto's sale of its 69% stake to the China National Nuclear Corporation (CNNC), who are the new owners.

    According to Zhang, the Rössing sale rather marked the deepening of Namibia-China relations, saying this would spur more investment by Chinese firms in Namibia.

    “There are many Chinese state-owned companies just waiting to invest here,” the ambassador said.

    “China is a gigantic country and we need these strategic reserves.

    “The price does not matter.”

    Zhang described uranium as an important resource, saying China's demand for the mineral was insatiable.

    “The need for energy in China is enormous and the country does not have enough uranium to supply its current 45 nuclear reactors under construction.

    “We do not care about the international uranium price. We are the end-consumers and need a supply of raw materials,” he said.

    Zhang added there was no reason to believe that a Chinese monopoly over Namibia's uranium resources would play out in the future.

    CNNC is in direct competition with the China General Nuclear Power Group (CGNPC), which owns the Husab uranium mine.

    “A monopoly is therefore out of the question,” Zhang said.

    Anglo-Australian mining group, Rio Tinto, the former owners of the mine, announced its planned sale of Rössing for a market price of N$1.5 billion in December.

    Erwin Leuschner

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    Teachers locked out of school for coming lateTeachers locked out of school for coming late Mulisa Simiyasa

    Community members at Otjiwarongo ganged up against teachers at Karundu Primary School this past Friday, who are accused of being habitual latecomers.

    This followed 11 teachers being locked out of the school after being late for assembly.

    After the session had dispersed, those residing adjacent to the schoolyard accused the teachers of being habitual latecomers.

    Teachers and learners at Karundu gather for their assembly sessions on Monday and Friday mornings at 07:30.

    School principal Julia Chaka said the school management decided the gates should be locked for assembly.

    “It was during this lockout time that some of the teachers who came late were also seen by community members standing outside,” Chaka said.

    She said 11 teachers, a secretary and two cleaners were amongst those who were late.

    “Yes, we have a problem of coming late and this is not the first time. But I can also say that we are busy addressing the situation,” Chaka said.

    Acting Otjozondjupa education director Nickey Eiman condemned the behaviour of the teachers at Karundu and other schools in the region, who are habitually late.

    Eiman and Otjiwarongo circuit inspector Cornelia Araes-Shikulo later said they visited Karundu on Friday and talked to the teachers.

    Eiman also asked Nampa to drop the story, as it might tarnish the school’s reputation, but community members insisted that the story should be written, as they were “sick and tired of Karundu teachers always arriving late for school”.

    Kennedy Kazonganga said it annoys him to see teachers “strolling into the schoolyard late”, adding this is ironic because these same teachers punish learners who come late.

    Another resident, Selma Magano Tomas, said teachers must set an example for the learners.

    “Coming early and leaving the schoolyard late should be the culture of every teacher at each school in the country,” she said.

    Karundu has 1 387 learners and offers pre-primary to grade 7 classes.

    It has a staff complement of 43, including institutional workers. -NAMPA

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    Golf, cycling and running for charityGolf, cycling and running for charity The His House Care Centre in Walvis Bay hosted its fifth annual tri sport charity event over the weekend.

    The event comprised of a corporate golf day, which took place on Friday, and concluded with cycling and running events on Saturday.

    About 180 runners participated in the 5km, 10km and 21km races, while in cycling 100 participants competed in 10km, 30km and 60km races.

    Running results (first to third place)

    Men's 5km: Festus Diyeve, Stuart McAlphine and Matias Shindjala

    Ladies 5km: Stephane Renecle, Elaine Grane and Nadine van Niekerk.

    Men's 10km: Roelf McCarthy, Samuel Jason and Alpo Mbamba.

    Ladies 10km: Rusuyero Ndjizera, Wilmerie Shaefer and Romy Gros.

    Men's 21 km: Erich Goeieman, Pendukeni Shikesho and Edward Embashu.

    Ladies 21: Dunja Prinzen, Kirsty Brits and Winnie Mukupuki.

    Cycling results (first to third place)

    Men's 10km: Gavin Jonk, Johannes Silver and Joshua Taylor.

    Ladies 10km: Luandrie Silver, Zeandri van Tonder and Landi van Zyl.

    Men's 30km: Dirk Nicolas Kotze, Hennie Rossouw and Fransisco Amambahy.

    Ladies 30km: Gerda Venter, Danika Visser and Wilma Kotze.

    Men's 60km: Tobie Gerber, Koos Blaauw and Leon Krauze.

    Ladies 60km: Jenny Esterhuizen and Marion Himmel. There was no third place cyclist.


    Eight teams participated in the corporate golf day on Friday.

    Guan's Packaging were awarded the His House Tri Sport floating trophy for the second year in a row.

    Water point teams were also awarded, with Gendev chosen as the best-dressed team. Best spirit was awarded to Die Voortrekkers and the best newcomers were The J-Sqaud.

    The His House Care Centre, which is a frail care centre, was established in 2005 in Walvis Bay.

    Leandrea Louw

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