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Tells it All - Namibian Sun

older | 1 | .... | 153 | 154 | (Page 155) | 156 | 157 | .... | 1152 | newer

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  • 11/03/16--15:00: Bloody September on roads
  • Bloody September on roadsBloody September on roadsMore than 500 people have lost their lives on Namibian roads, while almost 6 000 sustained injuries in over 3 000 crashes this year. Road carnage continues unabated Two people died on Namibian roads every day during September 2016 while October claimed one life each day on average showing an overall decline of 34% in fatalities between the two months.

    Crash statistics provided by the Motor Vehicle Accident (MVA) Fund for the past two months show that in September, 62 people lost their lives while 540 were injured in 321 recorded crashes.

    Over October, the MVA Fund recorded 296 crashes, 461 injuries and 41 fatalities, a decline in road deaths of 8% from the previous month.

    In October, in addition to a decline in fatalities, injuries declined by 15% and vehicle crashes declined by 8%.

    Year-to-date, 562 people have lost their lives on Namibian roads, while 5 813 sustained injuries in 3 396 crashes recorded up to the end of October.

    In comparison to the same period in 2015, there was a decline of 4 % in crashes, 9 % in injuries and 3% in fatalities. The most affected age group impacted by road accidents consistently remains between the ages of 16 and 35, a trend that has taken hold for several years according to MVA Fund records.

    “For a population of 2.3 million, the rate at which lives are lost in motor vehicle crashes is very alarming as this negatively affects the country''s economic-growth targets,” Kapena Tjombonde, MVA Fund spokesperson said.

    She added that “for every loss of life, our nation loses critical skills needed for the achievement of its developmental goals”, referring specifically to the economically active group of 16 to 35-year-olds.

    During September 2016, 44% of fatalities recorded fell into this age group, while in October 41% of fatalities fell into the same age group.

    Regional crash data for September showed the Khomas region continuing to lead in crashes with 42% recorded in the region in September and 43% in October. About 31% of injuries took place in Khomas.

    In September, Otjozondjupa recorded 12% in crashes and 19% in injuries followed by Erongo with 9% in crashes and 12% in injuries.

    Erongo recorded the second highest numbers in October, with 14% of crashes recorded and 9% in Otjozondjupa. Crashes that occurred in Khomas in October claimed more lives (20%), followed by Ohangwena and //Karas regions with 15% each.

    In September, collisions were the cause of most crashes at 29%, followed by pedestrian related crashes (27%) and roll-overs (26%).

    In October, 31% of crashes were rollovers, while collisions and pedestrian related crashes accounted for 27% each.



    JANA-MARI SMITH

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    Experts discuss desalination detailsExperts discuss desalination details Details of how a desalination plant at the coast will operate and pump water to Windhoek were provided at a recent public discussion held to debate the feasibility of such a facility.

    The discussion, with the theme ''Is Desalination a Sustainable Solution to Namibia''s Water Crisis?'', was aimed at bringing a range of experts together to debate the feasibility of a desalination plant at the coast and to help decision-makers arrive at a sustainable solution.

    According to a summarised report of the discussions, the Areva desalination plant cost N$3.6 billion to construct and it would take about three years to build something similar.

    A plant that can produce 25 million cubic metres of water per year would cost about N$2.7 billion, and the size of the plant can be increased as demand increases.

    The report explains that desalinated water will be pumped from the coast to the Von Bach Dam and not straight to Windhoek.

    A plant of this size would require 20 to 25kW of electricity, and an additional 20-35kW would be needed to pump the water to Windhoek.

    It was further explained that during the desalination process, the water extraction point is located about 1 km from the sea at a depth of 10 meters in the ocean.

    Water is extracted from the middle of the ocean and no trawling or surface water is used because the middle water is best quality compared to water at other levels. During the desalination process, no salts are touched and the process simply removes 35% of water and everything else is released back to the ocean in higher concentration and at the same temperature.

    Meanwhile, Dewald Duvenhage from the Swakopmund municipality stressed that the coastal area is in water dire straits.

    He attributes this to increased mining operations in the region that have also resulted in increased water consumption.

    According to him, industries in Windhoek are currently suffering because there is no water and therefore these industries will be enticed to move their operations to the coast.

    He also said the money generated by having industries at the coast can be used for desalination.

    “Since there will be no water without electricity, this problem needs to be resolved first.”

    Andre Burger from the Walvis Bay Municipality explained that the coast gets water from the Kuiseb aquifers and the Omdel scheme, of which 2011 was the last recharge period after the rain. Currently these aquifers are not able to supply the water demanded.

    The Omdel aquifer levels have been declining over the years, and a new reservoir is being developed at Mile 7, its completion expected next year.

    He concluded by saying that the local authority is not yet ready for desalination due to institutional problems. The report also said while the NamWater agreement with Areva is ending in October, the contract is renewable every quarter through a confidentiality agreement and it will definitely be renewed. With the Husab mine coming on board, this means that the water tariff will be reduced. Currently, the water demanded from the desalination plant is significant and the plant is supplying more water than was initially planned. The supply to Husab mine and the other three uranium mines will have a longer term agreement, not just the yearly agreement, as the desalination plant was designed for a 20-year period.



    ELLANIE SMIT

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  • 11/03/16--15:00: WINNERS
  • WINNERSWINNERS REWARD: Bro Mathew Niikondo received his prize from Doris Gabone of Protea Hotels after winning a WhatsApp competition run by Namibia Media Holdings in collaboration with Protea Hotels. About 460 photo entries for the competition were received. Readers were requested to take a picture with any NMH daily newspaper of Friday, 28 October and send the photo to 51500. Niikondo won a one weekend stay at any of the Protea establishments in the country.

    Photo: SHONA NGAVA

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    Rainfall prospects increase as temperatures dropRainfall prospects increase as temperatures drop JANA-MARI SMITH

    Prospects for rain are picking up again over many parts of the country, with moderate to heavy storms expected over parts of the central high ground tonight.

    Rain was expected over parts of the central areas last night too.

    Many people in the northern regions were celebrating the first noteworthy rains of the season in the past few days.

    Namibia weather bureau chief forecaster Odillo Kgobetsi says rain and thunderstorms are expected elsewhere in the country as well.

    “Rain will persist in the central-north, parts of the northwest, central high ground and the east over the weekend,” he said.

    He explained that a deep low-pressure system was developing in the west and would result in rain and thunderstorms.

    Overcast weather has dominated much of Namibia over the past two weeks, with the first rains falling in parts of the country, accompanied by intense heat.

    Kgobetsi said temperatures are expected to drop slightly in most parts of Namibia today and over the weekend due to the rain.

    Last Friday, the weather bureau received rainfall figures from Omuthiya, where 4.4 millimetres of rain fell. At Khorixas, 0.7 millimetres were recorded and in Windhoek 1 millimetre.

    Otjiwarongo residents reported up to 16 millimetres of rain last week, which fell in the span of an hour.

    On Wednesday this week, rainfall figures improved, with Katima Mulilo reporting 5.2 millimetres, Otjiwarongo 1.4 millimetres and Gobabis 1.8 millimetres.

    At Hosea Kutako International Airport 3.6 millimetres of rain was measured.

    A lodge owner in Kavango East yesterday reported 16 millimetres of rain, saying it came in three storms, accompanied by lightning and thunder.

    “Everything smells wet, clean, fresh and cool,” the delighted Namibian said.

    In the South, the Namibia Meteorological Service seven-day outlook forecasts partly cloudy and very hot weather in the Keetmanshoop area until Sunday, followed by a few showers on Monday.

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    Windhoek street kids return homeWindhoek street kids return homeFamilies not overjoyed to see them Klein Windhoek’s young street beggars have once again been returned to their homes in Gobabis after previous attempts by the authorities failed. JANA-MARI SMITH



    Fifteen street kids who have been begging at several Windhoek intersections were taken back to Gobabis on Wednesday following the intervention of a private anti-crime organiser.

    Sean Naude, the founder of a group calling itself Namibian Marshall Rangers and member of another group called Public Against Crime (PAC), said he decided to help the street kids to return to their homes in Gobabis following numerous complaints against them.

    Naude emphasised that the decision to take them home was not based on an anti-crime initiative, but a humanitarian effort to help the children, whom many in the country criticise but refuse to help.

    He told Namibian Sun the street children “are here, because they have nothing there”.

    He said he was determined to assist the children in the long term to improve their lives in Gobabis and to get them off the streets, even if he had to rely on his own funds.

    Naude said before dropping them off at home on Wednesday he bought them new clothes and shoes at a Gobabis shop because “I just couldn’t let them go home like that”.

    Dropping them off at their homes was troubling however, and brought new insight into their plight.

    “It was sad to see. Many of the parents or caretakers were not very excited to see their kids back. It looked as if they were annoyed, and didn’t care that they were back. The root of the problem of street kids is their parents,” he said.

    Naude said he is determined to find a solution, one of which is to build a hostel for the children where they can find a safe haven and receive training and education.

    One of the most hard-hitting issues he encountered in his efforts to return the kids home, has been the indifference of the public in response to his calls for help.

    In the end, he received an N$2 000 donation, consisting of a van and fuel money, from the Rocky Crest Supermarket to enable him to transport them. Darine’s Pizzeria donated pizzas and Emmanuel Church donated bread.

    The street kids, varying in age from eight to 18, had become a familiar sight on the streets of Klein Windhoek in the past few months, begging at intersections and shopping centres.

    Many of the children have sustained injuries of various degrees during their months on the streets.

    One boy, approximately eight years old, was treated for a head wound last week following a hit-and-run by a taxi driver. Another girl’s lower leg showed deep abrasions and bruises, also sustained during a hit-and-run.

    Efforts by social workers and police to place them in care or send them back to Gobabis have failed.

    And despite numerous complaints by the public, Naude yesterday said requests for funds and assistance have mostly been ignored.

    “I will say this. I am sad and disappointed at the response from the public,” Naude said on the PAC Nam WhatsApp group yesterday.

    According to Naude, the girls have reported cases of rape to him, allegedly perpetrated by truck drivers who stop at filling stations.

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    Army general in court for corruption Army general in court for corruption KENYA KAMBOWE

    The Rundu Regional Court in the Kavango East Region on Tuesday postponed a case of corruption and fraud involving a Namibian Defence Force (NDF) army commander to August next year.

    Thomas Hamunyela is accused of using a government official and property for private use.

    According to a media release by the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC), it investigated the allegations against Hamunyela and submitted the case file to the prosecutor-general, who decided that he should be charged on three counts.

    Hamunyela was summoned to appear before court on Tuesday but did not turn up.

    A warrant of arrest was issued but will be held over until the next court date on 4 August 2017.

    Hamunyela faces three charges of fraud and corruption for using an NDF vehicle and a soldier to transport building material to the construction site of his private home at Sivaradi village.

    He is also facing a case of attempting to defeat the course of justice by allegedly falsifying a letter dated January 2015 in which he claimed that he had permission to make use of the NDF’s water tanker, tents, blankets and a grinder during the construction of his house.

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    Alleged killer sought forgivenessAlleged killer sought forgivenessVictim was stalked by ex-girlfriend Text messages between theology student Gofaone Motlamme and her alleged murderer were read in the High Court yesterday. A man accused of killing his student girlfriend had pleaded with her not to end their relationship just three hours before she was murdered.

    A forensic expert yesterday produced records of cellphone messages that André Castro Friedel Dausab had sent to 33-year-old Gofaone Motlamme, who was a trainee pastor at the Paulinium Theological College in Windhoek.

    Motlamme was stabbed nine times and her throat was slit on 22 February 2014.

    The evidence presented yesterday in the Windhoek High Court by forensic expert Dr Paul Ludik showed that the cellphone messages sent by the accused sought forgiveness.

    “It is visible and obvious that you seek another soul by your side. I will do what I have to do then,” a text message retrieved from Dausab''s cellphone and sent to the deceased on 22 February 2014 around 12:19 read.

    Motlamme replied: “And whether I seek another soul or not is none of your business. You are free to move on also.”

    According to the police Motlamme was found dead in her room at the college three hours and 40 minutes after this communication.

    Dausab testified yesterday that Motlamme had dumped him before she was killed. Dausab said he met her at Paulinium when he went there to fix his a computer for his sister, who was also trainee pastor.

    He further claimed that Motlamme had two abortions and that led him to question their relationship.

    He admitted that Motlamme became uneasy about the relationship in late 2013 after his former girlfriend, whom he only referred to as Florence, would visit his room in his absence.

    Dausab added that Motlamme at one stage told him that Florence was stalking her.

    “Florence did not give up on me as she still wanted me as her boyfriend,” he testified.

    The trial continues before Acting Judge Belinda Christiaans. State advocate Ethel Ndlovu is prosecuting while Brownell /Uirab appears for Dausab.





    FRED GOEIEMAN

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  • 11/03/16--15:00: 'Shifeta had no choice'
  • 'Shifeta had no choice''Shifeta had no choice' The legal action taken after environmental clearance was granted for marine phosphate mining will not be withdrawn, while commentators say there is still a long way to go to make sure phosphate mining is not allowed in Namibia.

    This was confirmed yesterday by the chairman of the Confederation of Namibian Fishing Associations, Matti Amukwa, who spoke to Namibian Sun after the decision by the minister of environment and tourism, Pohamba Shifeta, to set aside the environmental clearance certificate that had been issued to Namibian Marine Phosphate.

    The environmental clearance was issued by environmental commissioner, Teofilus Nghitila, for NMP''s proposed Sandpiper Project located about 120 km southwest of Walvis Bay.

    The granting of the environmental clearance caused a public furore. The fishing industry in particular said it was not given an opportunity to make submissions.

    Amukwa told Namibian Sun even though the environmental clearance was set aside there are too many questions that remain unanswered and therefore they will continue with the court challenge.

    The application that was filed in the High Court this week did not only seek for the environmental clearance certificate to be declared illegal, but also wants NMP''s mining licence declared unlawful because it has apparently expired.

    The legal action was launched by the Confederation of Namibian Fishing Associations, the Namibian Hake Association, the Midwater Trawling Association of Namibia and Omuala Fishing.

    The application will be heard on 29 November.

    “We have been preaching from the start that things should be done the right way the first time around,” Amukwa said.

    Asked whether the confederation considered the withdrawal of the certificate as a step in the right direction, he said: “The minister did not have a choice. There were many flaws.”

    He said he could not comment on the fact that the fisheries ministry was blamed for not giving feedback to the environmental commissioner on the final report.

    “It is not good to play a blame game,” Amukwa said.

    He said they would wait for the High Court to pronounce itself on the application.

    The chairperson of the Economic and Social Justice Trust (ESJT), Herbert Jauch, welcomed the decision by the environment minister to grant more time to consider the possible dangers associated with marine phosphate mining.

    “We believe that further consultations must lead to the rejection of the mining application,” Jauch commented.

    The trust had also called for the environmental clearance to be revoked.

    Jauch said the trust was not certain whether all the procedures were followed as outlined by the environment minister.

    “Other versions were presented by other stakeholders and thus it is critical to very carefully consider the implications of marine phosphate mining. The available evidence clearly suggests that such mining would have devastating and long-lasting negative effects on the marine ecosystem and the fisheries sector. Thus we want phosphate mining to be prevented.”

    Jauch added that the blame game between the ministries of environment and fisheries must not deflect from the bigger picture, which is the potentially huge damage phosphate mining could cause Namibia and the marine ecosystem.

    He said the phosphate mining case is a critical example of how the country deals with its natural resources.

    “It pits short-term, profit-driven interests against long-term economic and ecological sustainability.”

    According to the trust they are encouraged that various organisations and individuals, including the founding president, have taken a clear stance against phosphate mining.

    Jauch said the trust is also encouraged that the environment minister was willing to consider the bigger picture and did not just base his decision on legal arguments.

    “However, there is no doubt that there is still a long way to go to ensure that phosphate mining will not be undertaken in Namibia. All parties involved and opposed to it must remain vigilant.”

    Local businessman Knowledge Katti is a minority shareholder in the phosphate mining project spearheaded by Omani tycoon Mohammed Al Barwani through his company Mawarid Mining LLC, which owns 85% of NMP. Katti''s Havana Investments owns the remaining 15% stake in NMP.

    Questions sent to NMP remained unanswered.

    However in a recent statement the company said that since 2008 shareholders had invested more than N$780 million on the development of the exploration and mining licences issued by the government.

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    Security guards threaten Christmas strikeSecurity guards threaten Christmas strikeShameful wages, working conditions Security guards staged countrywide protests yesterday in a demand for better pay and working conditions. Security guards yesterday threatened to spoil the Christmas holidays of wealthy security company customers by calling a countrywide strike if their demands are not met.

    John Kwedhi, general secretary of Namibia Transport and Allied Workers Union (Natau), told hundreds of security guards at a peaceful demonstration in Windhoek that they “protect the life, the property and indeed the economy of the country”.

    He warned security company owners that “if they don''t want their clients'' Christmas holiday to be spoiled, they must pay us. If they fail to pay us, then they must know their clients can cancel those hotels in Swakopmund, Cape Town and Dubai and wherever else they go.”

    He said the unions would not strike before 29 November, the day set aside by the labour commissioner for conciliation talks between the unions and the Security Association of Namibia (SAN) for improved wages.



    More money for pets

    However, should the outcome of those talks not be in line with the union''s demands, Kwedhi said a strike would be called.

    “For you to strike will be a disaster for them,” he told guards.

    Namibia Independent Security Union (Nisu) general secretary Simon Kandondo told the demonstrators that security company owners and customers spend more food on their pets than on their employees.

    “The money they spend is so much, but they fail to pay you guys. They get huge salaries, but they sit in the office doing paperwork, while you are the one sitting on the site where the money is coming from.”

    At least 1 000 security guards took to the streets in Windhoek and several towns as part of the peaceful demonstration.

    “We are here today to demand N$12.50 per hour minimum wage. We demand that they pay us more so that we can gain benefits, housing allowances, transport allowances and so that we can pay to educate our children,” a female security guard told Namibian Sun. She did not want to give her name.

    Another female security guard claimed that some of the sites she has worked at did not provide toilet facilities and when toilets were available, money was deducted from her salary for the privilege.

    The lack of toilets and water for guards on duty, in addition to substantial wage deductions for a variety of reasons, are common complaints.

    “Then also, when they find you sleeping they charge you N$100. I work for N$7 per hour, but they fine you N$100.” She furthermore claimed that she had been charged bank fees of N$150 per month, even when paid in cash.





    T Shikwambe, a female security guard working in Windhoek, said the issues she is frustrated about include “no pension or medical aid and we receive no double pay on Sundays. Some people don''t have access to a toilet or water when on duty. They don''t pay us according to the law.”

    She said she was in agreement with many of her fellow workers that she would strike if not satisfied with the outcome of the conciliation.

    Aaron Setunga said he receives no paid sick leave, but is required to hand in a doctor''s note regardless. He claimed that when security guards are asked to work overtime, they aren''t paid extra.

    “We sometimes have to stand for an extra five or six hours, no pay. And they can force you to work overtime, and even then they don''t give you food or water.”

    Some of the security guards at yesterday''s demonstration alleged they had been warned by their employers not to join in the demonstration.

    “They threatened people, called us in and said we should not come here. We have no freedom of speech, and are not allowed to give our views.”

    A petition handed to the labour commissioner highlighted grievances related to low wages, unclear and at times illegal working conditions, and pay deductions.

    The petition listed numerous demands, including a request that labour inspectors conduct an immediate inspection of all registered security companies in order to find out “how and when they pay salaries and wages to security guards.”

    Furthermore, the petition demands that the labour inspectors determine whether all security companies adhere to the provisions of the labour and social security laws.

    In addition to Natau and NISU, the Namibia Security Guard Watchmen Union (NASGWU) was represented by its secretary-general, Andreas Hausiku, at yesterday''s event.

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  • 11/06/16--05:40: Mom stabs newborn to death
  • Mom stabs newborn to deathMom stabs newborn to death A 21-year-old woman was arrested last week Thursday after she allegedly killed her baby by stabbing the newborn with a sharp object in the neck. A police crime report today said that after killing the new-born, she went to the Katutura State Hospital for treatment. Medical staff there realised she had given birth quite recently and informed the police. The suspect is currently in hospital under police guard. It is expected that she will appear in court on charges of murder once she is discharged from hospital. – Nampa

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    It will not be my house alone, says ShikongoIt will not be my house alone, says ShikongoStandard Bank to build a house for Paralympic medallist Two months ago, Namibian Sun published the inspiring story of visually impaired Ananias Shikongo, who lives in a shack in Windoek''s Goreangab informal settlement. Paralympic gold medallist Ananias Shikongo says the house that Standard Bank Namibia is going to build for him will be open to his Paralympic teammates.

    The bank announced at an event hosted by Disability Sport Namibia that it would build Shikongo a house worth N$500 000.

    Speaking to Namibian Sun about the donation, Shikongo thanked the media for writing about him living in a shack.

    “I must really thank the media for promoting my story. Had it not been for the media who really went all out to write my story, people like Standard Bank would not have known where I live,” he said.

    Shikongo is overjoyed about moving out of the shack, and also about the fact that the house will be near an athletics track.

    “We''re looking at places such as Academia and Olympia because I am not yet done with sports and I have to be close to a training stadium,” he said. Although it is not yet known as how many bedrooms the house will have, Shikongo said the number of rooms does not matter to him, as long as he is able to accommodate his teammates too.

    “I am there to help and with Nambala, he is my brother and that is why we chose to live together. Because I want him to train hard and also achieve something like I did, we will move to that house together.

    “I am not only targeting Nambala and my guide Even Tjivivu, but all the Paralympic athletes,” he said.

    He said a sport career is not always easy, as one must invest many years of training before achieving success.

    “Because I know the sporting life, I am looking ahead to say that I will not just target one person and leave someone if I see that they have the potential and let them go without accommodation or see them go back to their villages and suffer, I have to help.

    “I know how we struggled with transport to the stadiums so if I get that house it is for us all so that we can all be close to the stadium,” he said.

    Shikongo said he hopes they will soon find jobs too.

    “We''re hoping that we also get jobs because I might have a house but what will I eat and how will I pay water and electricity?” he said.



    Partnership with guide

    After Shikongo and his running guide Tjivivu brought glory to the nation, much has been said about the importance of the guides in sports for the blind. Shikongo and Tjivivu started running together in 2010 and the relationship has been growing, although Shikongo feels that he does not thank his guide enough.

    “At times I feel like I do not thank my super brother Even enough because we have been together for so long and I thank him so much because this achievement was done by us all,” he said.

    He said Standard Bank''s donation has made it easier for the government to reward his guide with a house as well but if that does not happen, his mind is already made up that he is going to live with Tjivivu.

    “I cannot leave Even behind and let him continue renting, we will move together to that house because we are like twin brothers now,” he said.



    Car

    Also having struggled with transport to the stadium, Shikongo was last week given a car by pastor Jackson Babi of the House of Joy Ministries.

    Shikongo said the car came at the right time, as he is preparing for the world championships next year.

    “I am so happy that the prophet gave me the car and he has really changed my life especially since I used to struggle with going to training. Now he has made it easier for me and, even better, the car can take me to my home village. He has shown other churches that it is not just about taking from the community but also giving back to them,” he said.

    Standard Bank has not said whether a plot for Shikongo''s house has been found yet.



    KAINO NGHITONGO

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    Athletes with disabilities honouredAthletes with disabilities honoured Paralympic and Special Olympics athletes, guides and coaches received recognition awards on Thursday last week.

    The event was hosted by Disability Sports Namibia (DSN) and sponsored by the Motor Vehicle Accident (MVA) Fund and NamPower.

    During the event, NamPower executive Nangolo Amunkete reassured DSN that they will continue supporting them.

    “As an organisation we want to empower our communities in any way possible and we therefore want to reassure you that we will continue supporting disability sports as long as our resources allow us,” he stated.

    NamPower contributes N$1.2 million per year towards DSN and the MVA gives N$100 000.

    At the same occasion, the MVA''s chief executive officer also announced that they will continue their partnership with DSN for the next five years.

    The Paralympic athletes who received recognition awards were Ananias Shikongo, Johannes Nambala, Tobias Moses, Elias Ndimulunde, Lahja Ishitile, Johanna Katjikuru, Rosa Mandjoro, Martin Aloisius, Johanna Benson, Tiheyo Kennedy (all athletics), Ruben Soroseb (powerlifting), Gideon Nasilowski, Angula Mateus (both swimming).

    Wheelchair basketball players Agnes Hausiku, Pedro Nghishiwete, Ingo David, Roodly Gawoseb, Ricardo Ndero, Misika Zibiso and Mitch Dewaldt were also recognised.

    The track athletes'' guides, Even Tjiviju, Sam Shimanda, David Ndeilenga and Andre Oberholster, were also honoured for their roles.

    Special Olympics athletes who received awards were Sackeus Shigwedha, Goudesia Johannes and Matilde Shikongo (all for athletics and football).

    A number of coaches were also recognised for their contribution towards sports for people with disabilities. They are Sonja Lindermeier, Richard Goraseb, Pondo Ndeilenga, Bjorn Magg, Ndamien Ndengu, Zikizee Mutenge, Charles Albert, Marius Grabbe and Arne Zitzke.

    NAMPA

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    NPL and Groot Systems sponsorship sealedNPL and Groot Systems sponsorship sealedLeague could kick off in February After a long wait, the Namibia Premier League has finally signed a N$9 million sponsorship deal with Groot Systems. The Namibia Premier League (NPL) has finally signed a sponsorship agreement with Groot Systems and the league is expected to kick off in February.

    The NPL held its annual general meeting (AGM) on Saturday and the league''s spokesperson, Cassius Moetie, said the football programme should start in February 2017, provided that the League secures the additional N$24 million needed for its 2016/2017 football season.

    He mentioned that the AGM welcomed and approved the new sponsor.

    “The annual N$3 million football sponsorship agreement between NPL and Groot Systems was signed and is thus official,” he said.

    Moetie said the AGM also approved the audited financial statements of the 2015/2016 football season and the budget for the 2016/2017 football season.

    “The AGM reappointed the current audit firm, Saunderson & Co, for another term in accordance with the NPL constitution,” he said.

    He indicated that an extraordinary annual general meeting will be convened in January 2017 for the NPL to consider and adopt the draft constitution.

    At the AGM, promoted teams Chief Santos Football Club, Young African Football Club and Life Fighters Football Club were welcomed to the league.

    “The AGM congratulated the trio for their promotion to the top league in the country and granted full membership to Chief Santos Football Club for having complied with the registration requirements of the league.

    “However, Young African and Life Fighters Football Clubs were granted conditional membership and have until close of business on Wednesday, 16 November 2016 to pay their full registration fees to be in compliance with the league,” he said.

    The AGM was attended by 14 of the 16 members, while two tendered apologies.

    NFA president Frans Mbidi and secretary-general Barry Rukoro also attended the AGM.

    “NPL annual general meeting expressed gratitude for the wisdom and leadership they, as the Namibian football controlling body, provided to NPL as its full and substantive member.

    “We have always appreciated the uncompromising support we, as the league, has received from the NFA, especially during the past few months when the leadership of the league was crucified from all sectors of our demanding football community.

    “It is this commitment during our tough economic conditions that further inspire us all in NPL to reach for the stars and hopefully deliver breakthrough outcomes,” said Moetie.

    KAINO NGHITONGO

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  • 11/06/16--14:00: 'Zombie banks' stalk Africa
  • 'Zombie banks' stalk Africa'Zombie banks' stalk AfricaBanks under pressure Africa''s many small and under-capitalised banks, laden with bad debt, are inflicting more pain on already embattled economies. Regulators may have no choice but to force lenders to consolidate or close.

    A third of Nigeria''s 21 banks may be under-capitalised.

    Much smaller Uganda has 25 banks and last month suffered one collapse.

    Kenya has had three failures since August last year and with 40 lenders, boasts almost one bank per million people.

    Angola''s 30 or so banks may need to boost reserves by $4 billion, while a Mozambican lender was rescued by the central bank in September. Ghana is telling banks to combine and raise funds through the stock market.

    “The consequences of inaction will be disastrous,” said Robert Besseling, a Johannesburg-based executive director at business-risk consultancy Exx Africa.

    “Uncontrolled bank failures pose significant contagion risks to other banks, state-owned enterprises and private businesses.”

    ''Zombie banks'', a term coined by Edward J. Kane of Boston College in 1987, are typically all but insolvent save for government support. They have injured economies from Japan to Europe and now it may be Africa''s turn. The continent has been battered by falling commodity prices, an enduring drought, weakening currencies and a slowdown in China, its biggest trading partner. A plethora of lenders edging toward collapse have governments nervous and central banks scrambling to find increasingly scarce liquidity.

    “When banks get in tough times, often initiated by economic slowdown, they hold back capital, reinforcing the economic slowdown which bites down harder on bank performance,” said Adrian Saville, chief strategist at Citadel Investment Services in Johannesburg.

    “In its worst form, this takes the shape of a death spiral.”

    Trying to save them may be an exercise in futility because zombie banks don''t have a reputation for regeneration, said Saville.

    After the Japanese bubble burst in 1990, a raft of zombie banks staggered along for the next 20 years, which hamstrung the Japanese economy, according to Saville.

    By contrast, he said, when US banks were allowed to fail it meant the lenders that emerged from the ruins were able to behave and perform functionally.

    The threat of failing African banks is compounded by the fact that “there are some countries with far too many banks,” said John Ashbourne, an economist at Capital Economics Ltd. in London.

    “Kenya stands out as an example of this. Provided that problems continue to be centred in the region''s smaller banks, I expect regulators will intervene or force consolidation.”

    In the meantime, Africa''s banks won''t be lending as much as they could, stalling consumer spending and curbing business growth.

    “Depositors are afraid of placing deposits with zombie banks, so they don''t get funding to grow their book and grow out of the zombie loans,” said Kokkie Kooyman, a portfolio manager at Cape Town-based Denker Capital.

    “The zombie loans on the balance sheets prevent loans for new projects that will allow the country to grow.”

    While it may save some jobs at the affected banks, keeping troubled lenders alive adds no value to the economy, he said.

    As for what to do with those banks, it may be best to sell them to specialized vehicles that will act like vultures, Kooyman said. “They''ll pick the bones clean and life goes on.”





    BLOOMBERG

    0 0
  • 11/06/16--14:00: Dawn of a new era
  • Dawn of a new eraDawn of a new eraEconomic transformation for African revival The sub-Saharan region''s “growth miracle” of the early 2000s has slumped in the past two years, with growth in 2016 projected at just 1.6%. Economic transformation can revive Africa''s growth rates while promoting development and climate goals, according to a new report from the New Climate Economy.

    The report, Africa''s New Climate Economy, is the first to bring economic transformation together with development and climate change in one comprehensive assessment.

    In an effective economic transformation, productivity is boosted within sectors and there is some shift of workers from low-productivity sectors like agriculture to high-productivity sectors like industry and services. Sub-Saharan Africa is still at an early stage, with around 60% of employment in agriculture and only 5% in manufacturing, so the potential is enormous.

    The region''s “growth miracle” of the early 2000s has slumped in the past two years, with growth in 2016 projected at just 1.6%. Recent progress in reducing poverty is at risk, especially considering Africa is expected to be the region worst affected by climate change, with a median loss in GDP of around 4%.

    “The choices that African leaders make in the next few years will have major implications for economic growth, human well-being and climate resilience in the decades ahead,” said Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, former finance minister of Nigeria and a member of the Global Commission on the Economy and Climate. “It''s encouraging to see these three priorities brought together.”

    Initial indicators of economic transformation are positive.

    By one estimate, it has already added about 1% to productivity growth across the region since 2000, rising as high as 4% for Rwanda, and 2-3% for Nigeria, Tanzania and Uganda.

    “Across multiple sectors,

    economic, social, and environmental transformations can reinforce each other and create numerous virtuous circles,” says Milan Brahmbhatt, lead author of the report. “Many of the policy and institutional reforms needed to boost growth and reduce poverty over the next 15 years will also contribute to better management of climate risk.”



    NEW CLIMATE ECONOMY

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    Zuckerberg loses US$3 billionZuckerberg loses US$3 billion BLOOMBERG

    Mark Zuckerberg lost US$3 billion on Thursday, more than anyone else on Earth, after executives suggested Facebook Inc probably won’t be able to keep up with its explosive pace of growth much longer. The sobering comments came on a Wednesday evening earnings call even as the Menlo Park, California-based company reported third-quarter sales increased 56% to $7.01 billion. Zuckerberg is the world’s fifth richest person with a $52 billion fortune, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.

    0 0
  • 11/06/16--14:00: Good growth expected in 2017
  • Good growth expected in 2017Good growth expected in 2017 The Namibian economy is expected to show satisfactory growth in 2017 on the back of improved diamond mining, signs of recovery in the agricultural sector, and an anticipated improvement in the uranium, transport and telecommunication sectors, according to the Bank of Namibia.

    Releasing its outlook for 2017, the central bank said in a statement: “Namibia''s real GDP growth is projected to slow down to 2.5 percent in 2016, before accelerating to 4.0 percent in 2017. The projected growth rates represent a slowdown from the national accounts estimate of 5.3 percent for 2015. This contraction is mainly attributed to a projected decline in construction, diamond mining subsector, electricity and water sector and the planned reduction in government expenditure.”

    On the upside however, the central bank said 2017 held a promise of improvement.

    “Meanwhile, good growth prospects are expected from metal ores mining (copper and gold), uranium mining, as well as, wholesale and retail sector; and thus these sectors are expected to sustain growth at 2.5 percent in 2016. Over the medium term, growth will mainly be supported by anticipated recovery in both agriculture and diamond mining as well as improved growth in uranium mining, manufacturing, and transport and communication sectors.”

    The Bank of Namibia stated that there were still headwinds that could curtail growth, particularly low commodity prices and slowed growth in major economies.

    “Weak global demand, emanating from slower growth in advanced economies and major emerging market economies, coupled with slow recovery of international commodity prices, may slow production at some of the local mines, especially uranium mines.”



    STAFF REPORTER

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    SME Growth Policy document launchedSME Growth Policy document launchedEntrepreneurial winds of change Small and medium enterprises will usher in a new era of local value addition with the help of a new policy document. The Ministry of Trade, Industrialisation and SME Development has launched a new policy document seeking to encourage SME growth and value addition.

    Game meat processing, Swakara wool processing, metal fabrication, seafood, handicrafts and jewellery were among the industries mentioned at the document launch.

    “Industry growth strategies and the new Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise National Policy aim at shaping a new business environment for Namibian businesses but policies and strategies alone do not help if they are not followed by implementation,” the minister of trade, Immanuel Ngatjizeko, said upon launching the strategy:.

    “Any strategy is only as good as its implementation,” he added.

    “It is through the execution of the Ten Industry Growth Strategies as well as the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise National Policy that the Ministry of Industrialisation, Trade and SME Development, in close cooperation with other line ministries, will support local value addition, upgrading and economic diversification.”

    The policy and the Ten Industry Growth Strategies were developed in conjunction with public and private stakeholders.

    “Trust has been built; good working relationships have been initiated. It goes without saying that the Ministry of Industrialisation, Trade and SME Development will continue engaging with the stakeholders in order to steer the implementation process,” the minister said.

    “Only greater cooperation between government and entities from the private sector and civil society will lead us to success, as micro, small and medium enterprise development and uplifting ten industries will require a steady and continuous commitment from all stakeholders.

    “In order to achieve this, the Ministry of Industrialisation, Trade and SME Development is committed to actively promote stronger working relationships between all partners.

    “We can work together towards a successful and result-oriented stance that would ensure sectoral growth and the inclusion of MSMEs in our mainstream economy in order to contribute to increased value addition and sustainable growth of our country. We must work hard and smarter; we must be the jackal that thrives next to the lions of this world.”

    STAFF REPORTER

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    Pacquiao reclaims WBO title for third timePacquiao reclaims WBO title for third timeVargas loses on points The comeback of Filipino Manny Pacquiao was a success after beating Jesse Vargas to reclaim his WBO title. Filipino southpaw Manny Pacquiao reclaimed the World Boxing Organisation welterweight title for the third time with a unanimous decision victory over former champion Jesse Vargas in his comeback fight on Saturday.

    The 37-year-old Pacquiao systematically dismantled the former welterweight champion despite Vargas''s size and reach advantage.

    He used a short right-handed counterpunch to floor Vargas in the second round en route to a one-sided win in front of a crowd of 16,132 at the Thomas & Mack Center.

    “I feel happy,” Pacquiao said. “I''m trying every round to knock him down but also not be careless.”

    Pacquiao, 59-6 with two drawn and 38 knockouts, showed he still has a lot left in the tank but he failed to get the knockout victory that has eluded him for the past seven years.

    All three judges scored the bout for Pacquiao, two of them by 118-109 and the other by 114-113.

    Pacquiao won the WBO title for the first time in 2010 when he beat Miguel Cotto. He lost it two years later to Timothy Bradley, then got it back by winning the rematch with Bradley in 2014.

    He then lost it last year to the now-retired Floyd Mayweather, who had a front row seat for Saturday''s bout.

    “Yes I invited him to come tonight,” Pacquiao said of Mayweather. Asked if he wanted a rematch with Mayweather, Pacquiao said, “We will see.”

    Pacquiao said he was retiring following his April 9 two-knockdown victory over Bradley in their third fight.

    Pacquiao looked impressive in stopping Bradley, showing that he has recovered from a shoulder injury which hampered him in his mega fight against Mayweather in May 2015. Pacquiao took seven months off to concentrate on his job as a newly elected politician in the Philippine Senate. After serving his first stint as a rookie senator, he says the fire was rekindled and the stage set for a return to boxing.

    On Saturday, both fighters felt each other out as very few punches were thrown in the first round.

    Pacquiao was quicker to size up his opponent as the Filipino learned early on that he could counter Vargas'' left jab with a right to the jaw.

    That''s what happened in the second round when Pacquiao connected on a right counterpunch that sent Vargas stumbling backwards and onto the canvas.

    Pacquiao said he had to respect Vargas'' punching power.

    “I''m very careful to go inside because I knew he would counter me. I felt I could do more but every round I tried to knock him out,” Pacquiao said.

    Vargas started coming on in the middle rounds. His confidence grew after a strong sixth round which turned out to be one of the few times he was able to trade punches with Pacquiao.

    He had a big smile on his face while walking back to his corner after the bell to end the eighth.

    “Fighting Manny Pacquiao is like playing a very fast game of chess,” Vargas said. “You have to be alert at all times. He was very fast but I was able to get in a few counters.”

    Las Vegas boxing fans showed their love for Pacquiao. Even with a hometown boxer in the ring, the crowd was chanting his name and cheering for Pacquiao to get the knockout.

    The two fighters traded heavy blows in the eighth round as Vargas'' face started to show some of the damage from Pacquiao''s potent right hand.



    NAMPA/AFP

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    'Fantastico' Chelsea can get better, says Conte'Fantastico' Chelsea can get better, says Conte Antonio Conte claimed Chelsea can still improve, despite recording his best win as manager of the club so far, describing his side''s 5-0 thrashing of Everton as “fantastico”.

    The Italian had been pressed to offer a word from his own language for the display and, having chuckled about the one he picked, then spoke seriously about how the true value of this victory is how it instils confidence in the system and his ongoing work with the squad.

    “You have to show that you can win with the idea of playing good football. It''s important to put these players in the best situation to exploit their talent,” said Conte as Chelsea moved to the top of the table.

    “I''m very pleased because today there was a fantastic atmosphere with our supporters. We must continue to work together with the players, the club, the supporters and then to improve step by step. We can improve. We can improve.”

    It is difficult to see how Eden Hazard can improve, having put in one of his finest displays for Chelsea.

    He scored twice, opening the scoring after 18 minutes, before driving home the best strike of the game on 54 minutes after a brilliant exchange of flicks with Pedro.

    That makes it seven goals in 11, his finest start to a season since moving to Stamford Bridge.

    “He''s playing fantastic football,” Conte enthused. “He''s showing his talent with all the Chelsea players. But the most important thing is that I''m seeing that Eden is fantastic with the ball and he is fantastic without the ball.”

    Marcos Alonso hit the second to claim his first goal for the club, with Diego Costa then hitting the third, before Pedro completed the scoring.

    Everton didn''t have a chance and, having switched from his own attempt to play a three-man defence as early as the 36th minute, coach Ronald Koeman praised how the Italian has made that formation work.

    “I never saw a team playing so well this system,” the Everton manager said.

    “This system is very difficult to play against, the movement of the players.

    “Chelsea showed us today a very high level of football - in every aspect of football. I did not expect that big a difference on the pitch, but it happened.

    “I think after playing out of this system, five wins in a row, they (Chelsea) score a lot, they don''t concede any goal, it''s enough for them. It''s the best way for them, and of course some key players in that team are showing the highest level of football.”

    “How they work, how they run, how they press - we can learn from them.”

    Despite the rout, Conte was still reluctant to talk of title challenges.

    “We don''t want to send a message to the other teams. It''s important to send a message to ourselves,” he said.



    NAMPA/AFP

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