Articles on this Page
- 12/22/16--14:00: _Roaming cow causes ...
- 12/22/16--14:00: _Principals to expla...
- 12/22/16--14:00: _Stop poaching now!
- 12/26/16--14:00: _Oluno Prison wins t...
- 12/26/16--14:00: _Mbaeva promises fire
- 12/26/16--14:00: _Namibia performed w...
- 12/26/16--14:00: _Neymar loves the so...
- 12/26/16--14:00: _Hulithenipo uukongo...
- 12/26/16--14:00: _Mongolian herders f...
- 12/26/16--14:00: _VW moves into Kenya...
- 12/26/16--14:00: _Graveyard shift
- 12/26/16--14:00: _Temporary board for...
- 12/26/16--14:00: _George Micheal dies
- 12/26/16--14:00: _Russian military pl...
- 12/26/16--14:00: _We are in dire need...
- 12/26/16--14:00: _Shot of the day
- 12/26/16--14:00: _Christmas baby boom...
- 12/26/16--14:00: _Geingob calls for c...
- 12/26/16--14:00: _King seeks to end b...
- 12/26/16--14:00: _St Boniface no long...
- 12/22/16--14:00: Roaming cow causes major crash
- 12/22/16--14:00: Principals to explain poor results
- 12/22/16--14:00: Stop poaching now!
- 12/26/16--14:00: Oluno Prison wins tournament
- 12/26/16--14:00: Mbaeva promises fire
- 12/26/16--14:00: Namibia performed well: Katukula
- 12/26/16--14:00: Neymar loves the soccer game
- 12/26/16--14:00: Hulithenipo uukongo ngashiingeyi!
- 12/26/16--14:00: Mongolian herders facing disaster
- 12/26/16--14:00: VW moves into Kenya, Rwanda
- 12/26/16--14:00: Graveyard shift
- 12/26/16--14:00: Temporary board for Meatco
- 12/26/16--14:00: George Micheal dies
- 12/26/16--14:00: Russian military plane crashes
- 12/26/16--14:00: We are in dire need of facts
- 12/26/16--14:00: Shot of the day
- 12/26/16--14:00: Christmas baby boom in Walvis
- 12/26/16--14:00: Geingob calls for compassion
- 12/26/16--14:00: King seeks to end border dispute
- 12/26/16--14:00: St Boniface no longer dominates
Roughly a kilometre after the Oamites turn-off south of Windhoek, Swartz who was driving a Volkswagen bakkie, hit a cow and swerved into oncoming traffic, hitting an approaching Toyota double-cab bakkie in the process. The accident took place just before 05:00 yesterday morning.
Acting crime coordinator for Khomas Region Freddie Basson said Swartz was trapped in his vehicle and died on the spot. “Two other people were injured and are now in a critical condition in a local hospital,” he said. According to the Namibian Road Traffic and Transport Regulations of 2001, Chapter 8, “a person may not leave or allow any bovine animal, horse, ass, mule, sheep, goat, pig or ostrich to be on any section of a public road where that section is fenced or in any other manner closed along both sides, and a person may not leave that animal in a place from where it may stray onto that section of a public road.”
However, according to Basson, many of the animals which cause accidents along the B1 road are untagged which makes it difficult for law enforcers to trace the owners.
The NamLITS system allows for efficient tracing of livestock owners but the animal has to be tagged.
“These animals are always on this road, you always find them between Omeya Golf Estate and just after the Oamites turn-off,” he said.
This will be done during a performance dialogue from January until March next year hosted by regional offices under the stewardship of deputy directors in the quality assurance department.
According to her, educational regional inspectors will be expected to present data from the worst performing schools and explain what went wrong during the teaching process.
This comes at a time when two schools recorded 0% pass rate while most schools hovered just around 40 and 50% pass rate.
Only about 55% of candidates who sat for the Junior Secondary Certificate examination this year qualified for admission to Grade 11 in 2017.
“The school's management will be held accountable without being threatened, but they need to understand there needs to be consequences. Definite action will be taken if it is found that a principal have not overseen that teaching took place. We will also look at redeploying of teachers,” she said.
Steenkamp pointed out that the ministry will investigate whether the high failure rate is connected to the fact that some teachers are assigned to teach subjects in which they have no speciality.
“This is not to punish them but to see whether someone who studied social sciences is assigned to teach English in which they did not specialise,” she said. “Hard questions will be asked, we will not shy away from the reality.” Steenkamp said historic support to these poor performing schools will also be under the spotlight as well as other key contributing factors.
Ironically this is exactly what the Hardap and //Karas regions have been doing in the last three years and yet, their rankings in the national examinations remained the same. In 2015, //Karas held a three-day principals' meeting to discuss the 2014 Grade 10 examination results, but subsequently, they still dropped one place in the 2015 examinations.
This year's results showed no improvement as the region came second last. Meanwhile, Hardap has for the last three years ended up on the wrong end of the table despite several interventions such as the first-ever education conference held in 2013 under the stewardship of the education minister Katrina Hanse-Himarwa who served as regional governor at the time.
The conference, which ran from 27 to 30 June, investigated the poor performance of the Grade 10 learners of that region.
At the time Hanse-Himarwa said they need to “do soul-searching on why the Grade 10 examination results in the region have remained so poor”.
Although the region has after this conference moved up three spots from 13 to 10 on the Grade 10 performances national ranking list, it now finds itself at the very bottom of the ladder.
The letter is written by CEO of the Namibian Chamber of Environment Chris Brown who claims the Chinese have caused an initial estimated N$800 million loss to Namibia's wildlife and ecosystems.
The letter follows only a week after the Chinese business community and the Namibian police held a meeting in Windhoek in which they discussed the fact that an increasing number of Chinese nationals are involved in poaching activities in the country.
Brown said Namibians are frustrated by the apparent lack of action by the Chinese embassy in Namibia, and the Chinese state, to stop the unlawful actions of their nationals involved in criminal activities.
“Quiet behind-the-scenes diplomacy has failed to have any discernible impact,” he said.
Brown pointed out that during the past few weeks several Chinese nationals have been arrested and charged with wildlife crimes including illegal possession of rhino horn, ivory and pangolin skins and scales.
He said too many Chinese nationals have abused Namibia's environmental laws, and this is causing growing resentment and anger amongst locals.
“By their criminal actions, some Chinese nationals have drawn attention to themselves and their nationality through their blatant disregard of Namibia's legal and environmental values,” he said.
“We are concerned by an apparent total disregard by some Chinese nationals for Namibia's wildlife, conservation, and animal welfare laws and values.”
He said that Namibia as a nation has worked hard to protect and nurture its natural assets. He added the country's wildlife management provides an international example for good conservation and sustainable use and that the country has not made these investments so that some Chinese nationals, or anyone else, can pillage them.
He said that although they recognise that not all Chinese nationals are involved in wildlife crimes, Namibia's environmental community believes that the situation regarding Chinese nationals committing wildlife crimes in the country is far more serious and broad-based than have been acknowledged by the Chinese embassy. He said as Chinese nationals moved into all regions of Namibia, setting up businesses, networks, acquiring mineral prospecting licenses and offering payment for wildlife products, the incidence of poaching, illegal wildlife capture, collection, killing and export has increased exponentially.
He claims Chinese nationals have been involved in or are the commercial drivers behind the escalating poaching of rhinos and elephants in Namibia and the illegal export of rhino horn and ivory, the capture, trade and export of pangolins, and the import of Chinese monofilament nets in industrial quantities via Zambia to the northeast of Namibia, which are destroying the fisheries of the Zambezi, Chobe, Kwando and Okavango rivers.
According to him, they are also aware of long-standing interests by some Chinese in illegal commercial interests. Brown said that the recent announcement by the Chinese business community that it is contributing N$30 000 to counter rhino poaching, while acknowledging that Namibians are deeply concerned about the situation caused by some Chinese nationals, totally fails to understand the economic scale of the problem. This is an insult to the environmental sector in Namibia and the environment, he said.
According to him, an initial, very conservative, estimate of the extent of the losses to Namibia's wildlife and ecosystems caused by Chinese nationals is about N$811 million. On Wednesday when the letter was sent, around 100 Chinese business people marched in Rundu against poaching and appealed to both governments to deal with the culprits involved in wildlife crimes.
The tournament took place over two days, 22 and 23 December, and with football being the main attraction the tournament saw a total of 16 teams participate.
Volleyball, one of the sport codes that was introduced this year, had four participating teams, and was won by Nakagreen Champs Volleyball team which walked away with N$600 in cash prize.
In the netball event, which was also a first to feature in the tournament only had two participating teams and was won by Nine Eleven Netball Club.
The third edition of the tournament this year saw players competing in netball, volleyball and football.
Since its inception in 2014, the tournament mainly featured football games, but this year the organising committee also added fun games such as 'tug of war'.
According to the founder Batie Shifotoka, “This year's edition of the X-mas cup was by far the biggest of all of them, and the biggest sporting event to ever take place in Onayena.”
“During the first two years we only had one sport code which was football but this year the decision was taken to add three more sport codes,” he said.
According to Shifotoka, 'tug of war' was introduced to add to the excitement and fun of this annual event.
“There was no prize money and medals to be won but that did not stop anyone from trying it out, as it saw a lot of friends put together small teams and compete against each other to the amusement of the crowd. Some competing teams challenged each other for small amounts of money and some just for the fun of it,” he said.
The organising committee was delighted with the way the event turned out to be, especially the number of people who attended the event. “This year we had a fantastic X-mas cup that drew so much attention from people in all northern regions.
“The X-mas cup means a lot to our people and this is why we are always happy when it goes successful and peaceful.
“On behalf the organising committee, I would like to thank all the people who supported us in making this year's edition a big success, without your support we wouldn't have made it this big,” he said.
Winners: Oluno Prison - 18 gold medals, a trophy and N$2 000
Runners-up: Nine Eleven FC - 18 silver medals + N$1 500
Third place: Kamikaze FC - 8 bronze medals + N$1 000
Fourth place: Oshaango Rangers - N$400
Winners: Nine Eleven Netball Club - 12 gold medals, trophy and N$600
Runners up: Onayena Youngsters - 12 silver medals
Mbaeva, who came to Namibia for the Christmas holiday, says he is proud of the way he has been performing in the South African Premiership. The keeper however believes he can continue where he left off in 2016 to help his team secure famous victories in the campaign.
“I have always dreamed of playing for a big club and now I am living that dream with Golden Arrows, since I am the first-choice keeper.
“We have been doing well in this season and I hope that the team will continue to improve as the season goes on.
“My wish is for me to keep more clean sheets this season as it is one of the most important things a keeper must do to help his team win trophies,” Mbaeva said in an interview.
Golden Arrows are currently sixth in the premier league after having won five games with five draws and five loses.
Mbaeva's side has however conceded 18 goals while scoring only 15 with 15 matches played so far.
The club is also just five points behind log leaders Super Sport United who are cruising on 25 points from 14 games.
Mbaeva has so far played 11 games for Arrows in the premier league, receiving two yellow cards in the process.
Jesse Jackson Kauraisa
“This year, we had budget cuts and we did not have enough funds to prepare the teams the way we wanted to,” Katukula told Nampa on Thursday.
This was due to blanket budget cuts by the government recently.
Namibia collected 40 medals (five gold medals, 19 silver and 16 bronze) at the 2016 African Union Sports Council (AUSC) Region Five Under-20 (U20) Youth Games held in Luanda, Angola from 9 to 18 December.
The team of 125 able-bodied athletes and some with disabilities competed in women’s football, track and field, boxing, basketball, netball, swimming, and tennis against nine other southern African countries.
The chef de mission said Namibia has a lot of talent that needs to be mentored.
“I hope we will have people monitoring the progress of these young athletes after these games as we don’t want them to just disappear in the system without showing their full potential at senior level.”
South Africa were the overall winners with 125 medals of which 63 were gold, followed by Botswana with 35 medals (14 gold); Zimbabwe third with 76 medals (12 gold); and Angola fourth with 33 medals (12 gold).
Lesotho finished off the top five with 16 medals (six gold).
Mozambique ended seventh with 22 medals (four gold); Zambia eighth with 15 medals (four gold); Malawi ninth with nine medals (no gold) and Swaziland 10th with one bronze medal.
In an interview published on the official La Liga website on Sunday, Neymar said he was unconcerned at not being named as one of three finalists for football's highest individual award this year.
“It's obvious that [the Ballon d'Or] is a source of motivation, but I'm not going to die if I don't win it,” the 24-year-old Brazilian said.
Neymar was a Ballon d'Or finalist for the first time last year, eventually missing out to teammate Lionel Messi, who claimed the prize for a fifth time.
The 2016 award will be contested by Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo and Antoine Griezmann, with the winner to be announced next month.
“Above all I want to be happy and at Barcelona I'm happy,” Neymar said. “If I don't win the Ballon d'Or nothing will change. I don't play football for that. I play to be happy. Only one player can win it.”
Neymar said Barcelona are upbeat about their chances of winning La Liga this season, despite being three points behind Real Madrid, who also have a game in hand.
“There is still a long way to go,” the former Santos prodigy said. “We are just focused on our matches. We can't be worried about Real Madrid. Last year we were 11 points ahead of second but we only won the league in the last match of the season. It's a tough competition and every game is difficult.”
Of his relationship with fellow Blaugrana forwards Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez, Neymar said: “We are creating history and we are getting better. We want to be happy on the pitch and stay together.
“It's a big pleasure and a little bit strange because we are Brazilian, Argentinian and Uruguayan. We're rivals in international football but we have a great friendship. We're always joking around with each other. It makes me very happy to have people like that in football.”
The Barcelona No. 11 also had the highest praise for teammate Andres Iniesta, who he believes is peerless in world football.
“Andres [Iniesta] is the best midfielder I have ever seen, for his quality, for everything,” Neymar said. “He's incomparable because he's very, very different. Andres has an elegance and a classiness that distinguishes him from the rest.”
Omukanda ngoka ogwa shangwa kOmunambelewa Omukuluntu gwoNamibian Chamber of Environment, Chris Brown ngoka a popi kutya Aachina oya etitha ekanitho lya thika poomiliyona 800 koshikondo shiiyamakuti oshowo omidhingoloko moshilongo.
Ombaapila ndjoka ya shangwa oya shangwa konima owala yoshiwike shimwe sho aanangeshefa Aachina ya ningi nomutumba nOpolisi yaNamibia nokukundathana onkalo kombinga yomwaalu onene gwaakwashigwana mboka taya kutha ombinga muukongo waali paveta.
Brown okwa popi kutya Aanamibia oye uvite nayi molwaashoka Ombelewa yomukalelipo gwaChina oshowo Epangelo lyaChina inaya katuka oonkatu dha sha okuya moshipala onkalo ndjoka.
Brown okwa popi kutya muule wiiwike yapiti, aakwashigwana yaChina oya tulwa miipandeko na otaya tamanekelwa iipotha yi na sha nuukongo waali paveta, mwakwatelwa okukala nooniga dhoompanda oshowo iiyamakuti yilwe inayi pitikwa. Okwa popi kutya Aachina oyendji otaya yi pondje ompango yomidhingoloko yaNamibia naashoka otashi e ta ongeyo mokati koshigwana shaNamibia.
Okwa popi kutya nonando kaye shi Aachina ayehe taya pogola ompango yegamenenepo lyiiyamakuti yaNamibia, oye wete kutya onkalo yaChina mboka otaya pogola onene noonkondo. Okwa popi nonando kutya Aachina otaya yi konyala miitopolwa ayihe moshilongo nokutotapo oongeshefa dhawo nokwiimonena oomikanda dhokuminao onzo dhopaushitwe, onkalo yuukongo waali paveta mboka tawu ningilwa iiyamakuti moshilongo kaaChina oya londa pombanda.
Okwa popi kutya Aachina otaya kutha ombinga muukongo mboka tawu etitha edhipago lyoompanda oshowo oondjamba moshilongo, nokutuma pondje yoshilongo ooniiga dhoompanda nomayego goondjamba.
Okwa gedha po kutya etseyitho ndyoka lya ningwa kutya aanangeshefa yaChina oya gandja oshimaliwa thika poo-N$30 000 mokukondjitha uukongo wali paveta, shoka oshi li etukaano koshikondo shomidhingoloko shaNamibia molwaaashoka eyonagulo ya ningwa kaakwashigwana mboka olya thikama lyopoomiliyona 811.
Ombaapila ndjoka oya gandjwa mEtitatu lyoshiwike shapiti, naaChina ya thika pe-100 oya ningi ehololomadhilaadhilo moRundu yeli ompinge nuukongo waali paveta na oya pula opo omapangelo giilongo mbika iyali ga gandje omageelo koonakupogola.
Weather forecasts for next week are predicting temperatures as low as between minus 40 and minus 50 degrees Celsius in northern and eastern Mongolia.
Government officials have yet to declare a “dzud”, but the current climate is ideal for the natural disaster, said Lamjav Oyunjargal, the director for forecasting at the Information and Research Institute of Meteorology, Hydrology and Environment.
“Officially, conditions are very difficult in Mongolia. Mostly we talk about livestock because it's the main income of herder people in Mongolia, but it's also dangerous for humans,” Oyunjargal said.
Dulaamsuren, who works at the National Emergency Management Agency in Bulgan province in remote northern Mongolia, said more than 3 000 local herders did not have enough supplies to last through the winter.
“We have enough hay until February or March, but we really should stock up more,” he said, adding that the region was now under 40 centimetres of snow, four times the usual level.
The dzud of 2009 - 2010, one of the most severe in history, saw a total of 9.7 million livestock deaths. As many as 1.1 million head of livestock died last winter.
Winter began early when Mongolia was hit by a “cold surge” in November, plummeting temperatures to around minus 47 degrees Celsius, she said. By December 11, about 70% of the country was under snow.
“Already affected areas will get even more snow and colder temperatures,” Oyunjargal said, adding the east and north of the country, an area the size of Egypt, were most vulnerable.
Mongolia is one of the most sparsely populated countries in the world, and the extreme cold and snow storms of a “dzud” are a major issue for herders travelling between far-flung towns.
“Overall car sales in Africa are bound to rise by 40% within the next five years, that is why we are expanding our business,” said Volkswagen CEO Herbert Diess.
“It is fair to say that the whole continent has seen a long period of economic stagnation, but just like China in the early 80s Africa offers great business opportunities. That holds especially true for Kenya.”
The inauguration of the assembly plant in Kenya marks its return to the regional hub after an absence of some four decades.
Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta said the investment by Volkswagen was in line with government policy to industrialise his country's economy.
“With the opening of this facility, I expect to see a lot of VW government vehicles. I hope the county governments will also buy Volkswagen cars,” Kenyatta said.
According to a January report by Deloitte Africa Automotive Insights, a rise in incomes in Kenya is driving the sales of motor vehicles - accounting for 1.5% of consumer expenditure in 2015.
Passenger vehicles were Kenya's fourth-largest import in 2014, and the volume of imported cars grew 300% between 2003 and 2012. Many of the imports are second-hand cars from Japan or the United Arab Emirates.
“If the current trend of 10% to 12% growth per annum on vehicle imports is to be maintained, Kenya will have five million vehicles on the road by the year 2030,” reads the report.
Kenya currently only does small scale assembly of motor vehicles at three plants, all of which are operating below capacity, according to Deloitte.
Meanwhile another top Volkswagen executive was in Rwanda to launch a project involving “app-based mobility solutions”.
“What we have in Africa is a lot of need for mobility but in certain regions maybe not the affordability to go in a full ownership of a vehicle,” said Thomas Schaefer, CEO of Volkswagen Group South Africa.
The company had looked at ways to solve this problem and came up with a pilot project that will involve a company owning vehicles and allowing customers to pick them up in one point and drop them off in another - like similar systems in Berlin, London and Paris.
“We will make passenger vehicles not only available for the market to buy but also for the shared service that now is increasingly becoming the trend in many cities of the world,” said Francis Gatare, CEO of the Rwanda Development Board.
Part of the project also involves the construction of an assembly plant in Kigali.
Volkswagen said it was also considering introducing electric cars into the country.
An investigation phase will last until May next year and the company aims to have the first cars assembled in Rwanda by the end of 2017.
As in Kenya, the amount of the investment and production capacity have not been revealed.
Most affected are small enterprises such as car wash businesses and wood sellers. Firewood is piling up at petrol stations and grocery outlets, and many car wash businesses have temporarily closed shop due to poor patronage.
In an interview with Nampa last week, 25-year-old Justus Andreas from Okatope in the Ohangwena Region who sells firewood at the Wanaheda bus stop, said his business has dropped since the beginning of December. Before most Windhoek residents went on holiday, Andreas said he would make about N$200 per day but he now only makes about N$60 per day. One bundle costs N$30.
“It is really bad but it is better than staying at home,” he said.
Andreas buys the firewood in bulk from a farm close to Gobabis for N$1 500. Transporting the wood to Windhoek costs him about N$1 000.
“Sometimes you can even come here and sell nothing at all; that is how bad it is.”
Meanwhile, only a few car wash businesses along the usually busy Eveline Street in the Greenwell Matongo residential area are operating.
Car wash owner for the past four years, Thomas Nakale said the number of vehicles washed per day has dropped from the average of 20 to about four or five during the festive season.
“Most cars we wash are taxis. Private cars are not around anymore.”
On the other hand, Kapana vendors are reporting business as usual.
An anonymous Kapana vendor said those spending their festive season in Windhoek appear to be enjoying a binge of the Namibian fast food.
The appointment of the temporary board takes effect as from 4 January next year.
This was announced by the agriculture minister John Mutorwa, who in a statement said that the appointment of the six-member board follows after extensive and thorough consultations with the Minister of Public Enterprises, Leon Jooste, and in strict compliance with the applicable and relevant laws.
The term of the former board expired on 3 October.
The temporary board members are Martha Namundjebu-Tilahun who remains in her position as chairperson. Ronald Kubas has been appointed as vice-chairperson while the other board members are Sophia Kasheeta, Ismael Itamunua Ngangane, Fanie Oosthuizen and Mushokobanji Mwilima.
The transfer of state-owned enterprises from different ministries to the public enterprises ministry earlier this year led to the urgent cancellation of Meatco's special members' meeting which was to take place in August.
The meeting, which was set to nominate Meatco's new board of directors, was cancelled by Namundjebo-Tilahun about an hour prior to its commencement.
However, members went ahead to elect their representatives onto the board.
Following the nomination process, Meatco members indicated that these names would be hand delivered to Namundjebo-Tilahun as well as to the two ministers.
According to a statement issued the appointment of these members is only effective for six months and until new members have been appointed.
Mutorwa said that Jooste and himself as the current portfolio minister for Meatco both express renewed confidence and trust in the ability and fairness with which the temporary board members will be expected to discharge their national duties and legal responsibilities.
Swakara also has a new board appointed by Mutorwa, effective 1 January 2017.
The new board will be chaired by Julene Meyer.
She will be deputised by Johannes Slava Motinga, who will also be the representative of karakul pelts and wool producers.
Other board members are Pieter Hugo as an alternative member, followed by Johannes Kohlman and Chris Baisako.
Arnold Klein will be the representative of persons engaged in the marketing of karakul pelts.
The new board will function until 31 December 2020.
“It is with great sadness that we can confirm our beloved son, brother and friend George passed away peacefully at home over the Christmas period,” his publicist said in a statement. Thames Valley Police said the ambulance service had attended a property in Goring in Oxfordshire, where the singer lived, at 13:42 on Sunday and a 53-year-old man was confirmed dead at the scene. “At this stage the death is being treated as unexplained but not suspicious. A post-mortem will be undertaken in due course,” the police said. Michael was due to release a documentary in 2017 after a period of living as a virtual recluse in which he hit the headlines for a series of bizarre incidents linked to drugs. Earlier this month it was also announced that producer and songwriter Naughty Boy, whose real name is Shahid Khan, was working with Michael on a new album for next year. Michael was best known for his 1980s hits Last Christmas, Freedom, Careless Whisper and Wake Me Up Before You Go Go but his career spanned more than three decades. He won a string of awards including two Grammies and three Brits.
His last album Symphonica (2014) rose to number one in the charts.
All 84 passengers and eight crew members on the Russian military's Tu-154 plane are believed to have died when it crashed two minutes after taking off from Russia's Sochi. The passengers included dozens of singers in Russia's world-famous military choir.
More than 3 000 rescue workers on 32 ships - including over 100 divers flown in from across Russia - were searching the crash site at sea and along the shore, the defence ministry said.
Transport Minister Maxim Sokolov said in televised remarks on Monday morning that terrorism was not among the main theories, and that authorities are looking into a possible technical fault or a pilot error.
Several experts noted factors that could suggest a terror attack, such as the crew's failure to report any malfunction and the fact that plane debris was scattered over a wide area.
The plane, which originated from Moscow's military airport Chkalovsky and stopped in Sochi for refuelling, was taking the defence ministry's choir, the Alexandrov Ensemble, to perform at a New Year's concert at the Russian air base in Syria's coastal province of Latakia.
Those on board also included nine Russian journalists and a Russian doctor famous for her work in war zones and helping homeless people.
Sokolov said the government sees no need to heighten security measures at Russian airports.
Emergency crews found fragments of the plane about 1.5 km from shore, and by Monday morning, rescue teams had recovered 11 bodies. A plane with bodies from the crash has landed in Moscow where the remains will be identified, Sokolov said. Monday has been declared a nationwide day of mourning in Russia.
The Tu-154 is a Soviet-built three-engine airliner designed in the late 1960s. More than 1 000 have been built, and they have been used extensively in Russia and worldwide. The plane that crashed Sunday was built in 1983, and underwent factory check-ups and maintenance in 2014, the defence ministry said.
But it is difficult to do our job.
Especially so when we are following up on a story or an incident and one is not met by forthcoming public servants.
Two incidences of late will serve as a case in point.
The first, the application to export our marine wildlife to an animal breeding company in Beijing. No information could be sourced from the two line ministries as to how far the applications were – in fact, the minister of fisheries, Bernard Esau has been mum on the issue from the outset. And so we are left to speak to sources who do not want to be named and we have to piece information together. To date, we still have no official word on the vessel Ryanazovka from the relevant authorities and no one, but no one will answer your questions.
The second is the matter of Hangang Zhu, 48, arrested in Ondangwa on Monday of last week, in possession, at this point still allegedly, of billions of Namibian dollars. Doors shut faster in our faces than the time it took to identify ourselves. Runarounds from legal staff who refused to provide information, police who said they were not in the office and did not know when they would be back to be able to look at documents and provide the needed information.
And so we have to piece together information.
In most cases, we have to wait for 48 hours for answers on questions which have to be emailed. That is protocol in many parastatals. So if we require information on an accident, it takes two days.
It is our job to disseminate information and bring news to the public. For that we need answers to questions so we can get the facts. We need the facts.
We are holding thumbs for 2017.
Hilia Kamati and Risto Sigange became the proud parents of a 2.86-kg girl with a length of 46cm at 06:20. A 2.975-kg baby boy with a length of 48cm arrived for Aili Kanjimi and Simon Kala at 07:35. Vistorina Kangolo gave birth to a 3.22–kg baby girl with a length of 50cm at 07:50.
No births were recorded at the Welwitschia Private hospital at the time of going to press with the possibility of more babies due through the course of the day at Walvis Bay State hospital very real.
In his Christmas message, the Head of State noted that things like the spirit of Harambee should continue in 2017.
“Christmas is a time of jubilation. It is a time to come together with our loved ones. Most importantly it is a time Christians celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ.
“As we celebrate with our families and loved ones, let us be reminded that this is the season to reflect on how we treat strangers in our midst.
“There is no purpose to kindness, love or charity if it is only extended to those we know or those who speak our language or look like us,” Geingob said.
The president reiterated that there is no better time of the year that demonstrates the spirit of Harambee than Christmas.
Geingob urged all Namibians to help each other in order to make everyone feel at home in the land of the brave.
“As we reflect on the story of the Mother Mary and her baby Jesus, let us remember and be grateful for our mothers and children.
“Let us respect and honour them and renew our commitment to uproot the scourge of gender-based violence from our communities.
“God blessed Namibia with a beautiful landscape and wonderful people. Let us treat the natural beauty of our land with the respect it deserves.”
Geingob further added that people must learn to settle their differences and should shy away from judging each other.
The president also lauded people serving the government, stating that he is proud of what they have achieved during the year.
“Please know that we are grateful for your dedication as we are mindful that while many of us are with our families, you continue to ensure that critical services remain available.
“In closing, I would like to leave you with these words by BC Forbes who said, “Christmas is a tonic for our souls. It moves us to think of others rather than of ourselves. It directs our thoughts to giving.”
It is further reported that the governor for Omusati Region Erginus Endjala is failing to solve the dispute after Mupiya wrote a letter to him, requesting his intervention.
It is alleged that some leaders within the Uukwambi Traditional Authority do not want Endjala's intervention in the matter.
The Ongandjera and Uukwambi are in a long-term border dispute over who controls Ondjungulume village.
The border was verbally demarcated by the fore-leaders, but after independence, headmen changed the border.
Endjala has confirmed to Namibian Sun that he received a letter from Mupiya requesting him to intervene in the matter.
He also confirmed that there are some traditional leaders who do not welcome him into the matter, but he could not say from which traditional authority.
“It is true that I received a letter from the king of Ongandjera requesting me to intervene in their border dispute with the Uukwambi. In June this year I held a meeting with representatives of the two authorities at Ondjungulume where a technical committee was elected. I am chairing that committee and we are going to investigate the matter,” Endjala said.
He continued that due to lack of capacity, the committee has met several times but could not reach a consensus to end the problem.
“There are some senior leaders in the traditional authorities who do not cooperate and this is delaying the process. The next step is that the committee is going to meet the two traditional authorities' leaders to hear from them. After all, the committee is going to present its report and findings to be discussed at the highest level of government,”
Endjala also reported the matter to the vice-president Nickey Iyambo when the latter visited his region earlier this month.
Endjala told Iyambo that some traditional leaders requested urban and rural development minister Sophia Shaningwa's audience, but Shaningwa referred it to him.
According to those in the know, the Uukwambi-Ongandjera border dispute at Ondjungulume started in the 1990s after independence when headmen changed the demarcation.
One part of Ondjungulume formed part of Uukwambi's jurisdiction, while the other fell under the Ongandjera jurisdiction.
It is alleged that after independence the Uukwambi Traditional Authority claimed that the whole Ondjungulume village belonged to them and started allocating land without consulting the Ongandjera Traditional Authority.
This angered the Ongandjera and the dispute started.
The two authorities failed to solve this dispute and over the years the rift has deepened. When Mupiya became king last year, he made it a priority to put an end to the dispute.
He confirmed that he wrote a letter to Endjala requesting him to intervene in the dispute, but he refused to divulge more information saying the matter is still under investigation. The spokesperson for the Uukwambi Traditional Authority Reinhold Iita also confirmed that the talks are in progress over the border dispute with Ongandjera, but also refused to provide details.
Speaking to Namibian Sun Shilongo Ndeshipanda, the only learner from the school that made the list, said she believes the school performs well because of the teachers and dedication and hard work from the pupils. “We had a lack of teamwork this year, but we all did exceptionally well individually,” commented Shilongo on why she thinks she is the only one in the top ten this year.
Blessing Chizengeya, one of the top performing Grade 12 students in the country, and who attributes the school's good performance to strict rules that have resulted in the learners being well-disciplined, said “We know when to have fun and when to study.”
He said he wished to have seen more of his peers on top of the log of the JSC top ten list but believes they studied hard and it was just unfortunate, saying other learners from other schools might have worked harder than them.
A former pupil who preferred to remain anonymous subscribes the drop in the numbers to the learners. “I doubt it has anything to do with administration. Maybe the learners did not study hard enough this year,” said the alumnus. Patrick Chipanga, a teacher from the school attributes the school's good performance to teamwork between teachers and learners and the discipline the school principal has managed to instil in learners.
“From our side we are also shocked that only one learner from our school is the top ten nationally. It is something we have to look at and if need be, we need to improve so we retain our status as number one,” said Chipanga.