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Tells it All - Namibian Sun

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  • 03/30/17--15:00: Zim seeks hikes in fines
  • Zim seeks hikes in finesZim seeks hikes in finesCash-strapped drivers will have to pay in cash Frustrated Zimbabweans will have to fork out more and in cash, for increased traffic fines. If driving in Zimbabwe wasn't enough of a headache already, here's something more to put you off: President Robert Mugabe has just approved a hike in traffic fines.

    Police roadblocks put off tourists and send local drivers' blood pressure shooting up - not least because of the creativity with which the police appear to invent new offences.

    Reported the Chronicle newspaper: “Motorists will now have to fork out more in traffic fines following the coming into force of a new scale of fines to be imposed by the Zimbabwe Republic Police.”

    “The coming into effect of the new scale of fines followed the signing into law by President Mugabe of the Finance Act last week,” the paper added.

    In many cases that will mean that where traffic police once demanded US$20 for a traffic offence, they can now demand US$30. Four fines of this level grouped together (not unheard of in Harare) will now come to US$120.

    That's on the spot. And sadly, there are normally no swipe machines in sight.

    The Facebook group Dear ZRP, which has managed to amass nearly 30 000 members, carries stories of frustrated drivers fined for obscure offences like “dirty exhausts” or “splayed springs”.

    It's widely believed that police have set targets of money they have to raise.

    Commented one Chronicle reader at news of the increased fines late on Wednesday: “Bribes shall prevail.”

    In February a cop caught demanding a bribe from a driver whose car had been impounded at a roadblock tried to swallow the money.



    NEWS24

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  • 03/30/17--15:00: Condemnation but no action
  • Condemnation but no actionCondemnation but no action The tearing down of shacks erected in Windhoek's 7de Laan is once again hogging the headlines.

    The decision by the City of Windhoek through the City Police to demolish the ten dwellings, housing about 40 people, was frowned upon by many, chief among others, land activists and politicians.

    The matter even ended in court with Affirmative Repositioning leading the way in taking legal steps against the City of Windhoek for what they termed as “unlawful” demolitions since they were carried out without a formal court order.

    While the City of Windhoek and the AR legal team were facing off in court, political parties, including Swapo, DTA and Nudo, rightly so, condemned the latest demolitions. There is nothing wrong with SPYL, DTA and Nudo denouncing the actions of the City Police, because everyone is entitled to a life of dignity, which must be protected and respected. But it is the late and reactive tendencies of some politicians that leave a lot to be desired.This is clearly an attempt to score cheap points, because the same politicians are turning a blind eye to the poor housing conditions in this country.

    They also seem to be largely unperturbed by the growing divide between the rich and the poor. If DTA, Nudo and the SPYL were so sincere in their condemnation of the shack demolitions, they would have already championed the cause for adequate housing and services such as water and electricity to be provided to the poor and destitute residents. The very same people whom we are easily branding as land invaders are old enough to yearn for their own homes and yards. High levels of poverty and scarce job opportunities are all contributing factors to the mushrooming informal settlements. It is clear that policies in place are now inadequate to meet the ever increasing demand for housing by the poor and this has increased problems associated with the informal settlements. Even graduates are unable to afford cheap units to call home these days due to property prices that are excessively high, coupled by a non-existent land release strategy on the side of the local authorities. Unfortunately sitting back with folded arms will not address the situation on the ground.

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  • 03/30/17--15:00: Uncle Japi comes to town
  • Uncle Japi comes to townUncle Japi comes to town If you, like many of us, were raised in an extended family, you will most probably be having countless uncles and aunts – most of them not even remotely related to you. If they visit your place more than once a day and they even get to stay when grand-ma dishes out the food for the family – then you are related, no questions asked.

    I have one such uncle. My uncle Japi, short for ‘Japirukira Ongutukiro’ (resisted independence) is the kind of uncle that is just too sweet for words. He got his name from other villagers who assumed that, because uncle Japi’s family was not open on whom they voted for in 1989, the family was apparently against Namibia becoming independent.

    It may be strange today, but back in the day people would know what party you are more likely to vote for. Yeah, back then there was no secrecy about your support for party X or Y. So when you do not tell who you vote for, fears mount that you could have voted for the enemy!

    Uncle Japi is the kind of person that was always a hero to the kids, as he always sided with them – come rain or high water!

    If we wanted to do something really crazy and still expect to get away with it, Uncle Japi was always our safety net. He would always cover us and stand up for us.

    It was a good thing back then as I was still young and relatively inexperienced in the sciences of life. Now that my beard is starting to show some grey in it, I’ve realised that uncle Japi is not entirely the angelic uncle he’s was all made out to be when we were kids.

    Uncle Japi is the kind of person that never answers a question directly. We thought that was cool as kids, as we loved seeing the expressions on our grandfather’s face every time uncle Japi opened his mouth to speak.

    Ask him a simple question like: “Uncle Japi, my son has taken a liking to sports, but I am not sure about his choice of sport code. Do you think boxing is a good sport for kids?

    Uncle Japi would come up with a strange answer like “If you want to be free, liberate yourself. Shake off the shackles of dependency this instant…”

    I never knew if he actually understood the questions posed to him, or if he was intentionally being a clown. But I must take my hat off to the man – if he was a journalist, he would have won several awards. No one tells a story better than my uncle Japi.

    Uncle Japi would hear something in passing like “…that girl nearly got attacked by a lion for coming home late from the bar…”

    Uncle Japi’s version would be: “Our little girl, Refilwe – the girl with a golden smile, who would not hurt a fly, almost left us to join our Heavenly Father. On that fateful day, she set out along the same path she had been taking for the past ten years from her father’s bar where she works as a bar tender.

    “Little did she know that on this fateful day, as we will later find out, will be her last. A mountain lion, thirsty for the blood of a young girl, stalked her before eventually pouncing on her.

    “She put up a brave fight, but the jaws and claws of the beast were just too strong for her. As she took her last breath, she was heard saying that she forgives the lion as it did not know what it was doing…”

    Eish, that man is a living legend. No wonder he was always the hero in his hunting expeditions. While others hunted lions with riffles and spears, he would apparently track a lion and kill it with his bare hands.

    The only problem with relatives like uncle Japi, is that they do not take kindly to change. For instance, when he was told by my partner that we have given up red meat in the interest of a high fibre, low cholesterol meal – he was livid. He told me I was becoming soft.

    Well that is better than attempting to kill the king of the jungle with my bare hands!

    Until then…

    tjatindi@gmail.com

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  • 03/30/17--15:00: Cartoon
  • CartoonCartoon Here is your weekly cartoon.

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    Fleeing suspect shot and injuredFleeing suspect shot and injured One of the three suspects alleged to have broken into a mini market at Omakokelo village near Eheke in Oshana Region was shot and critically injured by the Ondangwa police when he tried to flee from a roadblock.

    Another suspect was arrested at the roadblock while a third managed to escape with the money.

    Police officers stopped the vehicle the suspects were travelling in at a temporary roadblock mounted on a gravel road.

    Regional crime investigation coordinator Deputy Commissioner Hilja Haipumbu told the media on Wednesday that community members had alerted the police about people loading items into their vehicles in the early morning hours.

    She said that movements were noticed when suspects were suspicious.

    “Community members informed the police that the suspects drove away along the Eheke-Okapya gravel road. We set up a roadblock there and our members saw their car coming. They decided to run away. One was shot and injured, while the driver was arrested, but another one managed to run away,” Haipumbu said.

    Boxes of cooking oil, beer, sausages a welding machine and coins were recovered.

    Haipumbu said that the suspects gained entry into the shop via the roof and used a bolt cutter.

    She also said the injured suspect is admitted in Onandjokwe hospital in critical condition under police guard.

    The mini market owner, Johannes Eelu, said the estimated value of the stolen goods is N$12 000.

    He also thanked members of the community and the police for the cooperation.

    “I am thankful that my items were recovered, despite the fact that the money still has to be recovered. This is all because of the good relationship between members of the community and the police,” Eelu said.



    ILENI NANDJATO

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  • 03/30/17--15:00: Illegal fences pulled down
  • Illegal fences pulled downIllegal fences pulled downRoughly 40 illegal boundaries still to be removed Acting on a High Court judgement, the land board in Otjozondjupa has been systematically removing illegal fences in Tsumkwe. The Otjozondjupa Communal Land Board had by last week removed 22 fences erected illegally as per a judgement handed down by the High Court on 18 August 2016.

    The High Court ruled in favour of the Otjozondjupa Communal Land Board for the removal of 22 fences in the villages of Kano Vlei, Bubi Pos, Kandu and //Ha-du in the Tsumkwe West communal area.

    The director of regional programme implementations in the Ministry of Land Reform, Ndiyakupi Nghituwamata said via e-mail that the communal land board in February this year contracted four local companies to remove eight illegal fences.

    She said nine illegal fences were voluntarily removed by the owners after the High Court ruling, while five others were removed with the authority of the Appeal Tribunal judgement.

    The fences removed stretched over 9 550 hectares of land, said Nghituwamata.

    She added there are still 40 illegal fences in Tsumkwe West.

    “The board is now busy planning to remove them without a High Court order on grounds that the owners were served with notices, but they had failed to remove their fences,” she said.

    She said the removing of these illegal fences in Tsumkwe West is continuing.

    Nghituwamata also urged the people who erected these fences in the communal areas of Tsumkwe to remove it voluntarily in order to avoid legal implications.

    She also said the Ministry of Land Reform can demand that the culprits reimburse the State for the money spent on removing the illegal fences.

    In 2013, the Ministry of Land Reform completed geographical mapping activities on the entire Tsumkwe West communal area.

    It found that 77 fences were erected illegally, covering about 26 000 hectares of communal land.

    These farmers had driven their animals into Tsumkwe in 2013 because of drought in their areas of origin.

    Most of them originated from the Ohangwena, Oshikoto, Omusati, Kavango East and Kavango West, Omaheke and Otjozondjupa regions.

    During the removal of the fences in February and March this year, no livestock or residential structures were found on the alleged illegal farms.



    NAMPA

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    Pedestrian killed on Walvis roadPedestrian killed on Walvis road A pedestrian died on the spot after he was hit by a car late afternoon on Tuesday at Walvis Bay.

    Deputy Commissioner Otillie Kashupuulwa confirmed the incident and identified the victim as 32-year-old Pius Shihangeni. According to her, he was a construction worker, busy at the new port development in the vicinity of the old road block between Walvis Bay and Swakopmund.

    “He was dropped off along the road, but we assume he failed to look to see if there were any oncoming vehicles, and was subsequently hit,” said Kashupuulwa.

    A case of culpable homicide and reckless and/or negligent driving was opened against the driver.

    “The driver is a foreigner, who is originally from Zimbabwe, but is working in South Africa and was in town for a meeting.”

    Police investigations are continuing and once finalised, the docket will be sent to the prosecutor-general to decide whether to proceed with the matter or not.

    Kashupuulwa warned both pedestrians and drivers to be on the lookout for each other at that specific stretch of the road. “Pedestrians should look both ways before crossing the road and drivers should adhere to the speed limit when entering Walvis Bay which is 60 km/h.”







    Leandrea Louw

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  • 03/30/17--15:00: Tourism feels the pinch
  • Tourism feels the pinchTourism feels the pinchIndex contracts by 7.5% Global and local economic factors, coupled with drought, lack of quality staff and service have caused a slight slump in the tourism index. The tourism industry in Namibia is feeling the impact of the cutbacks made by the government due to the slowing economy.

    Most tourism operators in Namibia are feeling the impact of the slowing economy and particularly businesses that rely on government for conferences, seminars or workshops.

    This is according to the latest FNB/Fenata Travel Index which says these activities often supply consistent revenue streams, but with government cutting back, several businesses have, and are expected to, experience a slump in operations.

    Also, delayed payments from the public sector exerted pressures on business cash flows with government departments failing to meet their financial obligations on time.

    According to the report, other challenges that the industry is experiencing include the uncertainty surrounding the New Equitable Economic Empowerment Bill (NEEEB) and the Investment Promotion Act.

    Hunting operators are particularly concerned about outdated regulations and the notably long turnaround times to issue new hunting quotas and permits.

    According to the report, general staff related problems continue to feature as a major bottleneck in the sector with high staff turnover, inexperienced staff or poor service delivery by staff employed at the various institutions.

    “The problem stretches from the point of first contact to management level, where a general lack of competency and customer centricity is eroding the customer experience. Training institutions and schools have been singled out as one of the reasons for the weak customer centricity, as they fail to prepare the graduates for the sector,” says the report.

    Furthermore, tighter liquidity within the financial sector and economy at large has made it difficult for some respondents to access finance for construction geared at expanding operations, or for simple renovations.

    This has resulted in a general shortage of accommodation capacity, at preferred locations, especially during the peak season.

    The report says that other pertinent challenges faced by the industry are poaching, increased crime levels across various establishments and the persistent drought, which has increased the chance of bankruptcy for some operators in the industry.

    The report reveals that real growth in the index contracted by 7.5% for the final quarter of 2016. Despite improvements in the bed occupancy levels, load factors remained dire, contracting by 6.7% quarter on quarter.

    It says that the increase in flights did not have a corresponding increase in passenger numbers and hence load factors contracted.

    Furthermore, the Namibian dollar appreciated during the quarter, hence pushing the index lower, since 54% of the bed nights sold, were sold to non- Common Monetary Area residents and a stronger domestic currency erodes their purchasing power in Namibia.

    On an annual basis, the index grew by 1.6%, supported mainly by the growth in the third and second quarter. Nominally, the growth was much higher at 11.3%, with hospitality inflation making up the difference. High food, utilities, fuel and transport costs have pushed up hospitality inflation to 9.6%.

    ELLANIE SMIT

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    Murder accused unfit for trialMurder accused unfit for trial A resident of Outjo facing eight counts of rape and a charge of murder was found unfit to stand trial following a psychiatric evaluation.

    The head of the psychiatric unit at the Windhoek Central Hospital, Dr Hileni Ndjaba, found that Johannes Hausiku is incapable of understanding the court proceedings and cannot make a proper defence.

    “At the time of the commissioning of the crime, the accused was mentally ill which makes him incapable of appreciating the wrongfulness of his act,” Ndjaba explained in her report which was submitted as evidence this week.

    However, prosecutor Ethel Ndlovu requested that the psychiatrist be called to court to explain her findings.

    She is of the opinion that the accused went through the trial and gave instructions to his lawyers and that he appeared to be normal.

    “At what stage is he now supposed to be mentally incapable?” she enquired.

    In March last year, Hausiku’s former lawyer Mbanga Siyomunji withdrew from the trial after informing Judge Nate Ndauendapo that his client changed his instructions on the charges he is facing.

    He is now represented by Hipura Ujaha on the instructions of the Directorate of Legal Aid.

    Siyomunji had earlier doubts about Hausiku's mental state after he changed instructions during consultation after the prosecution had closed its case in the trial.

    Hausiku had denied previous instructions he had given, and gave new instructions to his lawyer.

    The lawyer then requested the court to order that the accused be examined by a psychiatrist to determine if he is still fit to continue standing trial.

    Initially the judge turned down the application but later conceded to the request.

    Hausiku is standing trial on 15 charges emanating from three incidents which took place at Outjo during 2012.

    He has denied guilt on all of the charges.

    The prosecution is alleging that he kidnapped, raped and attempted to rape a woman who was in a state of extreme drunkenness at Outjo during the night of 30 May 2012, that he murdered the woman's two-year-old boy, and that he hindered the police investigation by telling the woman to report to the police that she had been attacked and her son killed by four men.

    Hausiku is also accused of kidnapping, raping and robbing a woman at Outjo while she was walking home from a shebeen during the night of 28 January 2012, and that he tried to rape another, who was also attacked after she had visited a shebeen at Outjo on the night of 29 January 2012.

    Ndauendapo postponed the matter to 4 July to allow the psychiatrist to testify on the findings of her report.

    FRED GOEIEMAN

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  • 03/30/17--15:00: All eyes on 7de Laan
  • All eyes on 7de LaanAll eyes on 7de LaanHigh Court hears application by evictees Fifteen applicants, who were left homeless on Monday when the Windhoek City Police demolished their shacks, are petitioning the High Court to restore their corrugated-iron homes. The issue of poverty and landlessness will be in the spotlight again today when legal teams for the City of Windhoek will square off against Affirmative Repositioning (AR) lawyers acting for 15 7de Laan residents whose shacks were torn down on Monday during a City Police operation.

    The fate of the 7de Laan residents has been a hot topic over the past week, with many Namibians condemning the actions of the police and questioning the treatment of some of Namibia's poorest citizens.

    On Wednesday the AR lawyers, whose co-founder Job Amupanda questioned the legality of the demolitions when he visited the scene, were granted an urgent application at the Windhoek High Court.

    This week the AR offered to spearhead, and fund, the legal proceedings.

    Lawyers Kadhila Amoomo and Henry Shimutwikeni are acting on behalf of the 15 applicants, who were left homeless on Monday and who are petitioning the court to restore their corrugated-iron homes.



    Roof over their heads

    Late on Wednesday the High Court ordered the City of Windhoek to provide “suitable accommodation” to the first applicant, Christine Lukuwa and her children, as well as ordering the City of Windhoek to cease the demolitions until further notice.



    The matter continues today.

    Following the court order instructing the city to provide accommodation to Lukuwa and her three young children until court proceedings are finalised, Amupanda wrote on social media:

    “Last night they slept in the open! They are now going to sleep in this guesthouse with air conditioning, a nice bed, shower and everything for free. “Tomorrow they will wake up they will have bacon and eggs for breakfast and the City of Windhoek will pay.”



    Legal battle

    The legal battle will at least partly focus on the issue of time, and on proving how long the shacks that were torn down had stood there.

    City officials defended their decision this past week, saying the shacks were erected late on Sunday and had not been there for long.

    A police official was quoted in media reports saying that the police had been monitoring the area closely and could prove that the shacks were erected very late on Sunday or early on Monday and that it was not a case of demolishing long-term illegal structures.

    The courts have emphasised in at least two judgements handed down in the past five years, that a structure, whether illegal or not, may not be demolished without a court order.



    Threats & insults

    In an affidavit filed by the first applicant, Christine Lukuwa, this version is disputed.

    “I have been living in the area which has come to be known as 7de Laan for a period of more than three years. All the shacks that were unlawfully demolished by the City Police, as far as my knowledge is concerned, have been in existence for a period of more than three years.”

    She told the court that she and her three children, the youngest who is only four months old, had been preparing for school when police arrived early on Monday morning. Lukuwa's affidavit contains a number of allegations that describe the police as aggressive during the early morning operations, claiming that they threatened her and “insulted my womanhood” when they demanded she open the door.

    She also claimed that police damaged and soiled some of her belongings, including a microwave and fridge, when they began removing them from the shack.

    “After witnessing and experiencing the horrendous eviction, I look around the neighbourhood and saw how the other people were being treated, in the same or worse manner in which I was thrown out.”

    She told the court the police were unable to produce a valid court order and said they did not need one.

    JANA-MARI SMITH

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  • 03/30/17--15:00: Double murder trial stalls
  • Double murder trial stallsDouble murder trial stalls Mathias kaShindinge Kalunga (47), accused of a double murder in 2013, contradicted himself in the Oshakati High Court this week.

    Kalunga is accused of shooting his wife, Selma Imbili (30), and her alleged lover, Matheus Yuye (39) with a 9mm Makarov pistol on the evening of Valentine's Day at Omafo in the Ohangwena Region.

    According to the post-mortem report, Imbili died as a result of six bullets that struck her while Yuye died as a result of two shots.

    Imbili was a mother of five and worked at a salon in Oshikango at the time of her death while Yuye was a businessman from Angola.

    Kalunga has pleaded not guilty. He maintains that he acted in self-defence after the two victims tried to kill him by running him over with a vehicle.

    Kalunga, represented by Alvine Samuel, appeared before Judge Herman Januarie on Monday. His testimony contradicted a sworn declaration made shortly after the killings.

    On 20 February 2013 Kalunga gave a confession at the lower court in the Ohangwena Region where he indicated that while he was working in Walvis Bay a woman whom he identified as Hilya Haifeni contacted him and informed him about an alleged affair between his wife and Yuye, allegedly the lover of Haifeni.

    According to the court record there is no document which indicates that Yuye was married.

    In his confession, Kalunga said he promised to call and meet Haifeni once he travelled to the north, as he was employed at Tunacor, a Walvis Bay-based fishing company. “I then promised to call and meet her when I come to Ovamboland,” Kalunga confessed. However on Wednesday, Kalunga told the court a different version, saying Haifeni was the one who applied the pressure to meet and harassed him to that effect. When he finally met her in December 2012, he said she instructed him to tell his wife to stay away from Yuye. Following his confession in 2013, he pleaded not guilty in July 2015 in the Oshakati High Court.

    Court documents show that his legal representative at the time, Grace Mugaviri, on 28 July 2015 indicated to the court that Kalunga wanted to change his plea from self-defence to guilty for both murders.

    Surprisingly, two days later Mugaviri informed the court she was withdrawing from the case because her client continued to change his instructions.

    Kalunga was expected to continue with his testimony yesterday but the trial was postponed to 15 May because his lawyer was ill.

    Lucius Matota is representing the State.





    KENYA KAMBOWE

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    Otjiwarongo woman kills loverOtjiwarongo woman kills lover A 51-year-old man died after he was stabbed allegedly by his partner at the Ombili informal settlement in Otjiwarongo in the early hours of Wednesday.

    Spokesperson of the Namibian police in the Otjozondjupa Region, Warrant Officer Maureen Mbeha said yesterday the deceased has been identified as Werner Noabeb.

    “His relatives have been informed of his death,” she said.

    Mbeha said the couple had lived together for nearly 10 years. The police were made to understand that they fought regularly.

    It is alleged that Noabeb and the 50-year-old woman were on Tuesday seen at a bar in Ombili.

    She said neighbours heard screaming shortly after 02:00 Wednesday morning.

    Preliminary investigations by the police indicate that the woman had gone to a family member's house in the same informal settlement, where she allegedly informed them that she stabbed Noabeb during a quarrel.

    They then went to her house where they found Noabeb's body, with a stab wound in his neck.

    The woman's family members alerted the police and she was arrested. She is expected to appear in the Otjiwarongo Magistrate's Court today.

    Police investigations continue.

    NAMPA

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    Principal accused of beating pupilsPrincipal accused of beating pupilsCorporal punishment in spotlight again Jan Möhr principal Clement Kloppers denies a parent's allegation that he beat unruly pupils who were sent to his office. JEMIMA BEUKES



    A principal of a Windhoek school has been accused of dishing out corporal punishment.

    Jan Möhr Secondary School principal Clement Kloppers allegedly summoned an entire Grade 10 class, for being noisy, at his office and out of frustration threatened them.

    According to a parent, who spoke on condition of anonymity, Kloppers started beating the learners on Wednesday.

    “I have a child in Grade 10 who told me that the kids were making noise and then they were sent to the principal's office who told them that he would kill them,” said the parent.

    The use of corporal punishment is not permitted in Namibian schools.

    Kloopers, however, denied hitting the learners, but admitted uttering the words that he “would kill someone”.

    He quickly explained that it was merely an expression out of frustration and he has no intention to commit the act.

    Kloppers further said he was frustrated by learners who still fail Grade 10 after they are given an opportunity to repeat.

    According to him, many parents only get involved in their children's academic affairs when it is too late. “I must from time to time pull in the reins to try and scare them into getting serious and to study hard for their examinations,” he said.

    He also denied claims that he would not register learners for external examinations.

    “I told them that if they do not pull up their socks and get serious, I have a right to inform the ministry that they are not ready for these examinations. How can I recommend a learner who has only 5% in this (school) examination? How will they fare in the external examinations? On top of this, some of these learners have failed before,” he said.

    Kloppers blamed the attitude of some parents saying they only complain and criticise teachers' efforts instead of encouraging their children to study hard and pass.

    He, however, commended parents who play their part.

    “We spend so much time on disciplining children and a job that should be done by a parent. We generally have well-mannered learners but I am worried about certain groups that refuse to do their part. They are disrespectful towards younger female teachers and instead of taking good advice they run home with stories. We struggle to maintain a good standard,” he said.

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  • 03/30/17--15:00: Long Beach access chaos
  • Long Beach access chaosLong Beach access chaosResidents up in arms over unruly behaviour Rowdiness and general noise at Long Beach are causing consternation for residents, who have been implored not to control the way of life of beachgoers. Long Beach residents are urging authorities to take a firm stance against the unruly partying and the unbecoming behaviour of some beachgoers.

    It emerged that non-residents are the cause of several challenges experienced by a group of unhappy Long Beach homeowners. Disturbances and other challenges intensify over holiday periods and according to a Walvis Bay resident, the property owners are placing the blame wrongly on locals. “People are going crazy. They speed, disturb the peace by playing loud music from vehicles, have parties, shine spotlights into our homes in the middle of the night and simply make it extremely difficult for us to enjoy a decent night's sleep,” a resident said.

    “We have nothing against people on the beaches but are against vehicles on it. Some misbehave while intoxicated drivers drive along the beach to avoid the roadblock in the vicinity of Afrodite Beach,” added another. “We do not want parking areas, toilets and crowds between our houses. Closing off the beach is not the answer since it was always open to the public,” he said.

    These details emerged in a discussion facilitated by the Walvis Bay municipality on the possible closure, or not, of the beach at Long Beach where holidaymakers apparently show no respect for existing municipal bylaws.



    Holidaymakers figured

    The discussion at the Narraville Community Hall on Wednesday provided an opportunity for stakeholders to register concerns and suggestions on how to deal with the issues. According to a resident, holidaymakers are the main culprits and are guilty of speeding, generating noise pollution and causing disturbances at the expense of residents.

    However, Long Beach residents concur that a lack of control, the absence of law enforcers and bylaws not being enforced further aggravates the situation. Tension erupted when residents put up signs preventing quad bikes and off-roading by erected a barrier fence with concrete railway sleepers without municipal consent last year. They also roped in the services of a lawyer to present their case to the municipality.

    The municipality subsequently established a task team headed by general manager Andre Burger to address the issue and find a solution. “It is a challenge to keep beaches open for the enjoyment of all without a detriment to others.

    The public was promised during the sale of land that the municipality will not compromise the quality of life. Speeding on the hard road in the area is problematic and something must be done about it. We should also revise the regulations to rather prevent people from driving close to the houses,” Burger said. He also suggested that access from the south of Long Beach be restricted and that people should enter from the direction of Dolphin Park.

    “The quad bike issue has been resolved with new bylaws. Closing off some areas actually contributed to the problems we are experiencing today and we should focus on areas where access is possible and safe.”



    Control is key

    The manager for community development at the municipality Piet van Niekerk said the municipality was trying its best and acknowledged it was not doing a satisfactory job. “Exercising control is very difficult and makes it almost impossible to handle the problem. It is clear that a bigger force is needed to police the area.”



    A representative from the Namibian Coast Conservation and Management project (Nacoma) was adamant that developers should not be allowed to control the way of life of coastal residents and suggested that an environmental audit be conducted.



    Driving the only way

    “There are no parking facilities at Long Beach and the only way of accessing the beach is by driving. Closing the Long Beach area will set a very bad precedent. If this happens, residents of Dolphin Beach and the Afrodite development will follow suit and demand the same be done for them,” he cautioned.

    David Uushona from the municipality explained that an increase in notice boards regulating and prohibiting driving of quad bikes and 4x4 vehicles were seen at the beach area and this led to concerns.

    A petition was submitted against these restrictions and it gathered more than 500 signatures. The signatories also called on the municipality not to personalise the pools commonly used for crayfish diving in the area.

    Other recommendations tabled included the removal of barrier fences preventing access, the possible revision of existing bylaws in the long term and increased policing of the area.

    Homeowners called for the deployment of additional law enforcers to ensure adherence to bylaws and suggested the establishment of a body corporate and the possible introduction of a levy to enhance policing. A suggestion was also tabled calling on the municipality to look at constructing car parks, ablution facilities and a walk way to facilitate proper access. The task team will meet and evaluate suggestions and a second meeting is set to be held.

    OTIS FINCK

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    BoN insists on SME Bank suspensionsBoN insists on SME Bank suspensions The governor of the Bank of Namibia, Ipumbu Shiimi, on Wednesday wrote a letter to suspended board members of the beleaguered SME Bank in which he stated that the central bank “did not resolve to order” their removal but that they had been “disempowered”.

    Shiimi added that the BoN would in due course revert to the deposed board members regarding their positions as directors of the SME Bank.

    This has sparked an assertion that the BoN has made a “dramatic U-turn on its resolution to strip” the SME Bank's directors of their powers on 1 March. “[This] development does throw light on the rumblings in the corridors that governor Shiimi may not be acting in the name of the taxpayers of Namibia as he claims but could be nurturing an unhealthy obsession with the takeover of the SME Bank, an obsession that may cost the Namibian taxpayer far more than the alleged N$200 million invested in South Africa,” asserted a critic of the BoN's action against the SME Bank. Lawyer Eben de Klerk said this assertion was outrageous since the BoN was merely acting within its mandate. In accordance with Section 56(2)(b) of the Banking Institutions Act of 1998 the BoN can “assume control of the entire property, business and affairs” if it is satisfied that a banking institution is conducting its business in a manner that is detrimental to the interests of its customers and the general public.

    According to De Klerk, the BoN did not even have to take a board resolution on the powers or control of the directors.

    “Once BoN took control in terms of the Act the officials automatically lost control. This is in terms of Section 56 (4),” said De Klerk.

    Section 56 (4) states that an officer removed “shall cease to hold the office” in the banking institution or in its affiliates or associate and “shall not be entitled to payment of any remuneration from the bank” or its affiliates or associate.

    “One would have preferred judicial oversight but this Act provides such powers,” commented De Klerk.

    He added: “The letter cannot be seen as a U-turn; it is a confirmation of what the law says.”

    In their court challenge against their “disempowerment”, SME Bank board and management members George Simataa (chairperson), Enock Kamushinda (vice-chairperson), Ozias Bvute (director), Tawanda Mumvuma (CEO), Joseph Banda (financial manager), and Alec Gore (GM: treasury and investments), claim that the SME Bank is “currently being run unlawfully by a purported interim board of directors appointed by the BoN”.

    The other members of the board, Milka Mungunda and Petrina Nakale, have not challenged their removal in court. The interim board consists of Road Fund Administration CEO Ali Ipinge, Dennis Khama, Melani Tjijenda and Fanuel Kisting. Benestus Herunga was installed as the acting CEO.

    The suspended board members and executives claim that they were “removed unlawfully” and that the BoN should instead have required them to take certain action “which may not include removal or appointment of directors and officers”.



    The BoN recently removed the entire board of the SME Bank as well as three executive committee members, including suspended SME Bank boss Tawanda Mumvuma. The disgraced commercial bank was placed under curatorship when Mumvuma, Bunda and Gore were found wanting when questioned on funds invested in suspicious financial instruments in South Africa.



    According to the BoN, between N$181 million and N$196 million is believed to have been invested dubiously, leading to the removal of the board and the three exco members. It was also recently reported that the SME Bank funds were deposited into the Venda Building Society (VBS) Mutual Bank. Money was also placed in a cash management company called Mamepe Capital.



    The report claimed there were major withdrawals after the funds had been deposited into the accounts of the two South African institutions. Despite the request to have the board reinstated, BoN refused to budge, and recently insisted that the action of central bank taken on 1 March was still in force.

    CATHERINE SASMAN AND OGONE TLHAGE

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     Skorpion, MUN reach settlement Skorpion, MUN reach settlement The prolonged labour battle between the Mineworkers Union (MUN) and Skorpion Zinc was finally concluded, paving the way for mining contractor Basil Read to continue with work on the site.
    As a result, Skorpion Zinc’s lifespan was further increased by three years as a result of the agreement.
    Making the announcement today, Skorpion Zinc and the MUN both said in a statement: “The conclusion of this redundancy agreement is part of a Skorpion Zinc narrative which is premised on the extension of the Life of Mine. The project will create an additional 170 jobs through Basil Read.”
    MUN acting president Desley Somseb was very happy at the outcome of the negotiations. “A very important milestone has been reached and we have demonstrated that Namibia comes first. We have sacrificed salary increments for the next two years to allow the expansion process to continue. It brings a stable environment to our country.”
    According to Skorpion Zinc general manager Irvin Simataa, Skorpion Zinc will retain and second 192 employees while 43 positions have become redundant as a result of the re-structuring. The affected 43 employees will be retrenched on a Last-In, First-Out basis he explained.

    OGONE TLHAGE

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     Judgment reserved in 7de Laan evictions case Judgment reserved in 7de Laan evictions case High Court Judge Shafimana Ueitele this afternoon reserved judgement until next week Friday in a case involving 15 applicants who were left homeless on Monday after the City Police demolished their shacks. They are taking on the City of Windhoek and the municipal police for destroying their corrugated-iron homes. The judgement will now be handed out on 7 April. Legal teams for the City of Windhoek squared off against Affirmative Repositioning (AR) lawyers acting for the 15 7de Laan residents whose shacks were torn down on Monday during a City Police operation. Lawyers Kadhila Amoomo and Henry Shimutwikeni are representing the 7de Laan residents, while Boris Isaacks is instructing Advocate Thabang Phatela and Sylsken Makando on behalf of the City of Windhoek and the City Police in the matter.
    STAFF REPORTER

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  • 04/02/17--16:00: Kapuuo was a towering giant
  • Kapuuo was a towering giantKapuuo was a towering giantVenaani pays tribute to former OvaHerero chief The assassination of the late OvaHerero chief Clemens Kapuuo on 27 March 1978 was commemorated at Okahandja last week. DTA President McHenry Venaani has described former OvaHerero chief Clemens Kapuuo as a towering political giant and unsung hero who contributed to shaping modern Namibia.

    In his keynote address during the late chief's commemoration last week, Venaani said as a nationalist who believed in the people of then South West Africa (now Namibia), Kapuuo helped many despite their political differences.

    “History has it that he assisted with the case of then Swapo Party vice-president Brenden Simbwaye with the legal counsel of his friend, Advocate Israel Goldblatt, during the illegal arrest of the former in the Kunene Region after he received briefing from the late Levy Karora Nganjone.”

    Venaani said Kapuuo was on various occasions criticised for assisting his adversaries, “but he always rose above pettiness and consistently fought the oppression of his people”.

    Kapuuo was assassinated on 27 March 1978 by two armed men in Katutura. South Africa and Swapo accused each other of the killing.

    He is buried next to another former OvaHerero chief, Hosea Kutako, at Okahandja.

    “Namibia is worth dying for. Indeed you paid with the highest price. South Africa silenced your life because you could not succumb to their short-handedness,” said Venaani in tribute to Kapuuo.

    Kapuuo was elected president of the National Unity Democratic Organisation (NUDO) in 1964.

    The former teacher played an important role in the formation of the National Convention, an alliance of parties, including Swapo and Swanu, against the South African apartheid regime, after the International Court of Justice ruled in 1971 that South Africa's occupation of Namibia was illegal.

    In 1973, the United Nations declared Swapo the sole authentic representative of the people of Namibia, and that soured relations between NUDO and Swapo.

    In 1974 the National Convention broke up and Kapuuo participated in the Turnhalle negotiations, as a result of which NUDO joined the Democratic Turnhalle Alliance.

    Kapuuo was born on 16 March 1923 at Ozondjona za Ndjamo near Okahandja, and obtained education at St. Barnabas College in Windhoek.

    He qualified as a teacher at the Stofberg Teachers' Training College in Transvaal in the Union of South Africa.

    NAMPA

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    Ex-cop found guilty of murderEx-cop found guilty of murder A former Windhoek police officer was last week found guilty of murder and three other charges in the Windhoek High Court after it was found that the State had proved its case beyond reasonable doubt.

    Justin Munsu Simataa (28), who had denied killing Maelfirmino Fabrice, a naturalised Namibian citizen of Congolese origin, was found guilty of murder.

    His attempt to argue that he had defended himself when he was allegedly assaulted by four men was rejected by the court.

    He was further found guilty of attempted murder, malicious damage to property and negligent discharge of a firearm.

    Judge Nate Ndauendapo postponed the matter for submission of arguments on sentencing to 5 April and remanded Simataa in custody. Simataa had been free on N$5 000 bail until last week.

    Simataa shot the deceased with a pistol at a nightclub on 26 October 2012. He further shot and wounded Ricky Likando on the same day.

    Fabrice was shot nine times while seated in a car.

    State Advocate Constance Moyo prosecuted while Siyomuinji Mbanga appeared for the defence.

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  • 04/02/17--16:00: Search for Namdeb CEO starts
  • Search for Namdeb CEO startsSearch for Namdeb CEO starts Namdeb's search for a chief executive officer has finally started, following the exit of former Namdeb boss Inge Zamwaani-Kamwi to State House as one of President Hage Geingob's advisors.

    The diamond giant is currently being led in an acting position by its financial director, Markus Lubbe.

    When contacting previously, Namdeb spokesperson Pauline Thomas said that the appointment was a shareholder issue, subsequently referring Namibian Sun to joint owners Anglo American and the Government of Namibia.

    Asked to expand on the appointment of a new CEO, Namdeb Holdings board chairman Daniel Kali said: “The advert to fill the post of Namdeb CEO has been placed in this week's newspapers. An external human resources service provider has been engaged to assist in the process.”

    Namdeb has been without a chief executive officer for almost close to two years following the resignation of Zamwaani-Kamwi. She had led Namdeb for 15 years.

    In June 2016, company secretary Libertha Kapere informed daily New Era of Namdeb's intentions to fill the position vacated by Zamwaani-Kamwi.

    “Namdeb has strong leadership across all levels of the business. We are confident that we continue to have a very strong business, playing a firm role in contributing to Namibia's economic growth.”

    Meanwhile, Namdeb witnessed a change to its apex leadership structures towards the end of 2016 with the appointment of its new board chairman, Daniel Kali, deputy chairman Chris Nghaamwa and non-executive board members Daniel Motinga, Patrick Lowery, Arthur Hewett, Kauna Ndilula and Craig Coltman.

    OGONE TLHAGE

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