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Tells it All - Namibian Sun

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    Capricorn acquires Cavmont, Bank Gaborone Capricorn acquires Cavmont, Bank Gaborone OGONE TLHAGE

    Capricorn Group Holdings, owners of Bank Windhoek, this week announced the conclusion for the purchase of Zambian bank Cavmont Bank.

    This follows a cautionary issued on the Namibia Stock Exchange News Service recently. Commenting on the transaction, Capricorn said in a statement: “The board of directors of Capricorn Group is pleased to announce that all conditions precedent has been fulfilled and that the transactions have become effective.”

    Capricorn will now take full control of Bank Gaborone and Zambian-based Cavmont Bank.

    “With effect of 1 January 2017, Capricorn Group holds 65% shareholding in Capricorn Investment Holdings Botswana, which in turn holds 100% of the share capital in Bank Gaborone, and with effect of 1 January 2017, Capricorn Group holds 97.9% effective shareholding in Cavmont Capital Holdings Zambia, which owns 100% of the share capital of Cavmont Bank,” Capricorn said.

    “The transaction is seen as a key enabler towards achieving Capricorn Group's aim to diversify the business interests of the group and expand its footprint outside Namibia. This transaction will also strengthen the already close collaboration and alignment between the entities in the three countries through the shared interest held by Capricorn Investment Holdings,” a recent statement by the group said.

    Capricorn was also recently commended for its good financial run of late by ratings agency, GCR which affirmed AA status.

    “Capricorn’s leading operating subsidiary, Bank Windhoek, is the largest locally owned bank and second largest commercial bank in Namibia. Bank Windhoek contributed 98.2% (Financial Year End 2015: 98.1%) of the Capricorn consolidated assets at Financial Year End 2016 and 86.6% (Financial Year End 2015: 88.9%) of pre-tax profits. Other non-banking subsidiaries contributed the balance. As such, the Group’s ratings largely replicate the banking subsidiary’s ratings.

    “The ratings also reflect the high probability of support from the Namibian authorities, if required, based on Bank Windhoek’s high systemic importance, stemming from its substantial market shares.”

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  • 05/11/17--16:00: Inflation increases slightly
  • Inflation increases slightlyInflation increases slightlyHousing shows biggest increase Inflation increased slightly by 0.1% for the month of April according to the Namibia Statistics Agency. The agency is expecting a downward trend to start showing. OGONE TLHAGE

    Inflation showed a slight increase for the month of April, increasing by 0.1% on a month-to-month basis, according to the Namibia Statistics Agency, with the annual inflation rate increasing to 6.7%.

    The increase in the general price levels over the year emanated mainly from housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels (9.4%), hotels, cafes and restaurants (8.3%), education (7.8%), recreation and culture (6.9%), transport (6.9%) and miscellaneous goods and services (6.1%).

    “On a monthly basis the inflation increased from 0.1 % recorded in March 2017 to 0.3 %in April 2017. The monthly and annual inflation rates for goods were estimated at 0.3 and 5.6 %respectively, while those for services stood at 0.3% and 8.2% respectively. This gives an indication that on annual basis the average prices of services continued accelerating faster than those for goods during the period April 2016 and April 2017,” the agency said.

    The downward trend for the annual inflation rate since January 2017 is continuing and April 2017 annual inflation rate figure is the lowest in the past 9 months according to the NSA.

    “The April 2017 annual inflation rate happened to be equal to the average annual inflation rate of the calendar year 2016,” it said in its assessment.

    On a month-to-month basis, the inflation rate increased to 0.3% compared to 0.1% registered during the previous month.

    “The annual inflation rate for housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels category continues to drive annual inflation rate, which stood at 9.4% in April 2017 as compared to 7.5% recorded during the same period a year earlier,” said the agency.

    “This increase emanated from the increases registered in all the sub-groups comprising the housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels group except for the electricity, gas and other fuels sub-component which decelerated to 8%from 9.5% recorded during the same period a year earlier,” the agency concluded.

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    Hollande nears exit as party falls apartHollande nears exit as party falls apartFrench Socialists fight for life Hollande said he had not decided what to do after he leaves office. French President Francois Hollande chaired his final cabinet meeting Wednesday before handing over the reins to Emmanuel Macron, while the governing Socialist Party began to splinter.

    Macron will be inaugurated on Sunday and the centrist's victory over far-right leader Marine Le Pen is threatening to rapidly re-draw the French political map.

    The bruising contest left the traditional parties on the sidelines, and Hollande's ruling Socialist Party is in disarray after the two-round election.

    After former prime minister Manuel Valls shocked the party by saying it was “dead” and he wanted to be a parliamentary candidate for Macron's year-old “Republique en Marche” (Republic on the Move) movement, another leading Socialist struck out on Wednesday.

    Benoit Hamon, who as the Socialist presidential candidate finished fifth in the first round of the election, said he planned to launch a new leftwing movement.

    Hamon vowed to “rebuild the left” with a new “broad-based movement”, while saying he intended to remain a member of the Socialist Party.

    Leftwinger Hamon beat centrist Valls to secure the Socialist nomination for the election after an ideological battle within the party.

    But he won just 6.4% of the first-round presidential vote on April 23 after being overshadowed by Communist-backed firebrand Jean-Luc Melenchon.

    Hamon said his movement would be launched on July 1, after legislative elections in June that will be crucial to Macron's ability to pursue his agenda.

    Macron, 39, has promised to rejuvenate France's jaded governing class by bringing more people into parliament who, like him, have never held elected office.

    The incoming president has said half of Republique en Marche's candidates for the 577 seats up for grabs in the June 11-18 elections to the National Assembly will be new to politics.

    The rest will be from the centrist Modem party or rebels from the Socialists and rightwing Republicans - and he will likely need to form a coalition to govern.

    The candidates were announced yesterday but Macron's movement said Wednesday that Valls had “not yet” fulfilled the criteria.

    The ramifications of Macron's victory are also being felt in Le Pen's National Front (FN), following the announcement that her influential niece Marion Marechal-Le Pen is quitting politics - for now.

    Marechal-Le Pen, 27, who has been tipped as a future leader of the party, told a regional newspaper in southern France she would resign her parliamentary seat because she wanted to work in the private sector and spend more time with her two-year-old daughter.

    Behind her decision though is a battle for the far-right party's future between the more socially progressive wing led by her aunt and the more Catholic, conservative branch based in the south of France represented by Marechal-Le Pen.

    She was openly critical of Marine Le Pen's score of 33.9% against Macron, reflecting the opinion of many critics of her aunt that any score below 40% was a failure.

    Marine Le Pen, a mother of three, tweeted that “as a political leader I deeply regret Marion's decision but, alas, as a mum, I understand it”.


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    New S. Korean president in calls with China, Japan leadersNew S. Korean president in calls with China, Japan leaders New South Korean President Moon Jae-In spoke to the leaders of China and Japan yesterday, hours after a telephone call with his US counterpart Donald Trump, officials and reports said, as he began shaping his approach to the nuclear-armed North.

    In a 40-minute conversation with Chinese leader Xi Jinping, the two agreed denuclearising Pyongyang was a “common goal” between them, Moon's office said.

    Ties between Seoul and Beijing have soured over the South's deployment of a controversial US anti-missile system aimed at guarding against threats from the nuclear-armed North.

    Moon also had a telephone call with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, Japanese news agency Jiji reported.

    Seoul is embroiled in a diplomatic dispute with former colonial power Japan over wartime history, but fellow US ally Tokyo is also targeted by the North.

    China sees the deployment of the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) system as a threat to its own military capability and has slapped a series of measures against South Korean businesses seen as economic retaliation.

    In their first phone conversation, Moon and Xi “agreed that denuclearising the Korean peninsula is the two countries' common goal”, the South Korean president's spokesman Yoon Young-Chan told reporters.

    Moon, who took office on Wednesday, favours engagement with the North - whose key diplomatic backer is China - to bring it to the negotiating table over its nuclear and missile ambitions.

    Moon also called for “dialogue along with sanctions and pressure” on the North to push Pyongyang to talks, Yoon said.

    Moon has previously expressed ambivalence over the THAAD system and told Xi he was “well aware” of Chinese concerns about it, calling for bilateral talks to “increase understanding over the issue”.

    The two leaders agreed to exchange special envoys “at an early date” and Moon proposed sending a separate delegation to Beijing that will “exclusively discuss the THAAD and the North's nuclear issues”, Yoon said.

    Echoing the United States' line, Moon also suggested that China - the North's sole major ally and economic lifeline - should do more to tame Pyongyang, saying “solving the THAAD problem would be easier if there was no more provocation by the North.”

    Xi officially invited Moon to visit Beijing, Yoon added.

    The phone conversation came a day after Moon and US President Donald Trump agreed on “close cooperation” in dealing with the North's nuclear ambitions in their first conversation Wednesday night.

    The North has staged two atomic tests and dozens of missile launches since last year in its quest to deliver a nuclear warhead to “imperialist enemy” the US.

    Tensions have been running high with Washington calling for more sanctions and warning a military option was on the table, but Trump recently softened his posture, saying he would be “honoured” to meet the North's leader Kim Jong-Un.


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  • 05/11/17--16:00: Why I am no soccer fan
  • Why I am no soccer fanWhy I am no soccer fan I have a confession to make; I am not much of a soccer fanatic. I mean, I love soccer and would watch the big games and tournaments such as the World cup et al. I would scream at the top of my voice, kick my dear dog 'Danger' in the rib case, and shout profanity each time 'my' team score - or attempt to. If my wife asks me about that expensive pair of shoes she wanted during that moment, I would gladly smile and say “Yes honey. Of cause…go ahead. I love you too darling…”

    But what I would not do is run home from a dinner night out to catch the last fifteen minutes of a Barcelona versus something-something team! Nah, am not that type. Perhaps it is because I was never much of a soccer player in what was supposed to be my hey-days. I mean, I could kick the pig skin around and probably manage tuo dribble past one or two players - but that was it.

    Well, anyone can dribble past his own players and feel good about it - which is what I did. No wonder I always manage to run fast with the ball; I had no competition as my own team players were probably watching in awe as I waltz past them with blizzard speed, smiling from ear to ear.

    Ja, those were the days when the game of soccer had a totally different set of rules. For instance, the fat kid in any soccer match was always made the goal keeper. There were no bathroom scales to weigh them up - we just look at them and decide: “You are fat. You are now officially our goal keeper.”

    As for the line-up of the two teams; only the owner of the ball had the power to decide how both teams will look like. In other words, if you never gave him a piece of your vetkoek, or never laughed at his jokes - you are out, my friend. The guy who was never picked for any team will be the one to run around and fetch the ball from a tree when it got stuck, under a car or even on the roof!

    Eish, those were the days when the match only ended when everybody was tired, or when somebody's Ouma decides to be a party pooper and calls the boy home to take a bath before 'Papa' arrives from work. Ja, those 'Papas' could beat the living hell out of you for not saying 'thank you' to 'Mama' for washing your school uniform.

    The game will also end automatically when the ball owner gets annoyed. No one dare annoy him - he is the owner of the ball for heaven's sake!

    There were usually no corners during our soccer matches, but if you keep making comers up to the count of say three; its a penalty… no questions asked!

    Interestingly, the person to take such penalty will be the one who caused it. You could be the worse penalty taker in the world, it does not matter. It is your time to shine - go on and do a Roberto Baggio in 1994 on your teammates!

    That is how the beautiful game of soccer was played in our days.

    Until then.


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  • 05/11/17--16:00: Locals
  • LocalsLocals It is completely unacceptable that 27 years after independence Namibia is still lagging behind the rest of the continent regarding the transformation agenda. Whilst other nations have made it a priority to massively transform various sectors of their economies, the same cannot be said about Namibia, because the challenges continue to persist to the detriment of many of our countrymen and -women who remain economic bystanders. Government interventions have not yielded the desired results in many sectors of our economy. It goes without saying that there appears to be skewed transformation happening on the ground, one that opens the way for the personal enrichment of a few elite, while the majority continues to endure suffering. A classic example is in the engineering sector where black professionals continue to complain that the playing field is not level. This is exacerbated by our own government's negligent attitude and its failure to protect our home-grown engineers by roping in foreigners at the expense of locals. It has taken the intervention of a body such as the Namibian Society of Engineers to pressurise government into ensuring the growth of an equitable representation of black engineers. We have the same problem with Namibian dentists and other health professionals who can't find decent jobs after receiving formal education abroad. In some instances foreign doctors are given preferential treatment ahead of our own locals. Namibians are clearly disillusioned with this arrangement, which shows no sign of diminishing even at a time when health authorities are trying to fill vacancies. The government must play an active role in coming up with an enabling environment, which includes allowing training issues to be aired and resolved more effectively. Young Namibians are forever reminded that education is central to the country's transformation agenda in dealing with socio-economic challenges, yet employment opportunities vanish into thin air when they are ready for the job market. We understand the fact that many foreigners originate from countries with struggling economies, but it is nevertheless unfair that Namibians have to play second fiddle to foreign labour all the time.

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  • 05/11/17--16:00: A legacy of selflessness
  • A legacy of selflessnessA legacy of selflessnessBirthday wishes pour in for Nujoma The iconic founding president remains an inspiration and guiding pillar for many Namibians to this day. Namibians have paid glowing tributes to the country's first president Sam Nujoma on the occasion of his 88th birthday today.

    Nujoma's private physician Dr Tshali Iithete praised him for being a visionary and selfless leader.

    Iithete said he has had the honour of looking after Nujoma's health for the past 12 years.

    “The number of years at the helm of the Swapo leadership, of which majority under the very harsh conditions of exile and as a military commander, have shaped him into a remarkable human,” said Iithete.

    “Under normal circumstances, you would have expected such person to wither with time and show signs of bitterness, but the founding president remains steadfast and selfless in his yearn for better life for all Namibians. He pays little or no attention to issues of personal comfort – his aim is betterment of all Namibians (if not all Africans). This he does generously even at 87 – in fact those close to him so often have to slow him down and can't catch up with him. His mind and heart still sits at 40.”

    Nujoma led the struggle for Namibia's independence for about 30 years and was commander-in-chief of the People's Liberation Army of Namibia.

    “It goes without saying that he is a soldier through and through – very disciplined, orderly, and razor-sharp focused. But above all, humble and respectful – traits he always implores the youth to have. So, I think if there is something that Namibian youth should emulate from this youthful 88-year-old icon from the Etunda village, is his traits of humble in dignity, respect and his unwavering love for Namibia.

    “A lifetime commitment to service. May God continue to bless him richly with good health and wisdom.”


    Namibia's ambassador to Cuba Jeroboam Shaanika said Nujoma is a man of unshakable principles with a total commitment to the course in which he believes.

    He said during the struggle for freedom, Nujoma inspired, united and encouraged the nation to fight and bring about freedom and independence.

    “During our difficult days, Nujoma was our moon, which illuminated the darkness by night and he was the sun that warmed us up during the day. We believed in him because we saw him first with a gun in his hand. He promised us freedom and encouraged us to fight relentlessly to make it a reality. We had faith in his leadership to guide us through the desert of colonialism until we attained our most cherished dream, freedom and independence of Namibia. He lit the flame of freedom which remains burning and should be passed to the succeeding generations as a proud heritage. Nujoma exemplifies hope, courage, endurance and unwavering determination to succeed against all sorts of difficulties,” said Shaanika, who also worked as a special assistant to Nujoma in the past.

    Youth leader Elijah Ngurare said looking back, 27 years ago since independence, the foundation has undoubtedly been laid by Nujoma.

    “I remain greatly humbled to have worked with him through our Swapo Party and to have learned so much from him. In particular, we as leaders of SPYL, we shall remain appreciative to the founding president for agreeing to our request that his birthday be used as an embodiment of the legacy of the liberation struggle under the umbrella of 12 May Movement,” said Ngurare.

    Keep legacy alive

    He said as Namibians celebrate his 88th birthday, the young and old, must once again appreciate his vision and celebrate the legacy that has brought freedom and independence.

    “The founding president has led the liberation struggle to its logical conclusion with a majestic sense of purpose. The unfinished work that lies ahead can be achieved if we follow in the footsteps he has laid for us all. The equitable distribution of the economic wealth of Namibia to all shall be achieved if we adopt and emulate his patriotic virtues of hard work, dedication and a deep sense of self-reliance. I wish therefore to use this occasion to call on all young people to remain united in waging the second struggle of economic independence and empowerment in all 121 constituencies,” he said.

    Anna Anghuwo, a deputy director in the ministry of agriculture, said when she thinks of Nujoma, her heart goes into a place that has the most utmost respect and she just wants to crown him with glories and praises.

    “He is a true gentleman, the way he walks, he is not like others, he walks like he is floating, he is a man that I adore and respect with all my heart, Sam Nujoma is a man of few words and many traits. His actions speak volumes and you can't ignore that. He was born a leader… his sacrifices show his love that he has for his people and this country, what a honour that he is my first president,” said Anghuwo.

    Anghuwo, who spent her formative years in exile during the liberation struggle, added that it is her wish that next generations should know and remember him as an unselfish man who sacrificed his life for the liberation of the country.

    “It is because of his leadership that we are a free nation today and we are enjoying the peace, and stability. Peace comes with responsibility and all peace-loving Namibians should jealously guard the peace we are enjoying today in our beautiful country,” she said.

    Hilma Ekandjo, who spent close to 20 years in exile during the liberation struggle, says Nujoma was the one figure that kept her and many others going strong and encouraged them to fight for the independence of the country. She said he was always an exemplary and charismatic leader who never gave up on the dream to be in a free Namibia one day.

    “Happy birthday to our Founding Father and may God bless him with many more healthy years so that he can continue to guide us and lead as he has done for many decades. He did his part indeed and not it's now time for all Namibians to continue and follow in his footsteps to continue and do what we can do that can contribute to Namibian nation. We have many business people, very rich, but fail to build even a small clinic where it is needed,” said Ekandjo.

    Nujoma's granddaughter Ujama described her grandfather as an influential figure.

    “Obviously he is a source of strength and stability for me, as well as many Namibians. But what I love most about him is his warmth, sense of humour, positivity, and above all, his kind and generous heart. Happy birthday Tatekulu and may God continue to bless you in abundance”.


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  • 05/11/17--16:00: Excessive drinking a concern
  • Excessive drinking a concernExcessive drinking a concern The Namibian police's spokesperson in the Oshana Region, Thomas Aiyambo, has warned against excessive alcohol consumption.

    “People sometimes drink to a point where they are unable to control their emotions, which is absolutely uncalled for,” Aiyambo said this week.

    He told Nampa that many of the violent incidents the police had to deal with recently involved alcohol.

    The call for lower levels of alcohol consumption has been echoed by most law enforces and the Motor Vehicle Accident (MVA) Fund with many of the unnecessary deaths on our roads and violence, domestic or otherwise, being linked to drunkenness.

    According to the northern crime report of the weekend, a 44-year-old man was stabbed at a bar in Okandjengedi.

    The deceased has been identified as Jeremia Alberto Kandanga. Preliminary police investigations suggest Kandanga was stabbed after he allegedly attempted to pickpocket a man.

    This man allegedly grabbed an empty bottle, smashed it and stabbed Kandanga once in his chest. He died at the scene.

    The suspect, the 34-year-old Lucas Ismael Kamati, was arrested the same day and made his first appearance in the Oshakati Magistrate's Court this week.

    He remains in custody while police investigations continue.

    These incidences are far too common, the police say, and have become everyday incidences across the country.

    Aiyambo also advised the public not to carry weapons in public spaces.

    He added that whoever is found with a weapon in their possession in a weapon-free zone, and unnecessarily, will be dealt with by the law as per the Namibian Arms and Ammunition Act 7 of 1996.

    The Act states that carrying an exposed firearm in public place is prohibited, while owning an unlicensed firearm can lead to prosecution.


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    There's joy and anxiety in Nigeria - ShipohThere's joy and anxiety in Nigeria - Shipoh Namibian High Commissioner to Nigeria Peingeondjabi Shipoh said the release of 82 schoolgirls, after years in captivity of the Boko Haram terrorist group, has brought joy to many people in the West African nation.

    The more than 80 girls were released last week Saturday in exchange for five Boko Haram commanders in a deal that was mediated by the International Committee of the Red Cross and the Swiss authorities.

    While the nation is celebrating the return of the girls it seems that there is also scepticism in the air about the swop of terrorists for the girls and what it will cost in the end.

    Describing the general feeling of the public, Shipoh said it is one of celebration.

    “It is especially the families that are rejoicing, but there are still more than 110 girls that are missing and that we are praying for,” he told Namibian Sun this week.

    The news of the release was a joyful occasion for the anguished families whose daughters had been kidnapped by the militant group in 2014.

    A total of 276 girls, aged between 16 and 18, were kidnapped from their boarding school in the country's north-eastern Chibok province.

    As many as 50 girls escaped in 2014 in a raid and an additional 21 girls were released in October last year after negotiations with the International Committee of the Red Cross.

    The new release comes after several months of negotiations.

    According to Shipoh, the more than 200 girls were spilt into two or three groups. This is however pure speculation as nobody knows precisely how many groups the girls were divided into.

    What is known is that the 21 and 82 girls were kept separate from the others - for the purposes of negotiating. They were 'untouched' by the commanders of the Boko Haram.

    The remaining missing girls however, are believed to have been married off to the commanders and converted from their religious beliefs.

    Shipoh said that some of the girls are refusing to come back because they are now married and they do not want to leave their children behind.

    It has been announced by a Nigerian presidential spokesperson that they were actually negotiating for the release of 83 girls, but that one did not want to return home and said that she is happy with her husband.

    The girls who escaped Boko Haram shortly after the 2014 mass kidnapping said some of their classmates had died from illness.

    Others did not want to come home because they have been radicalised by their captors, they said.

    Human rights advocates also fear some of the girls have been used by Boko Haram to carry out suicide bombings as part of the group's insurgency.

    Shipoh said that the nation is also worried about the terms and conditions regarding the swop of the commanders for the girls and some are very unhappy with this.

    “There is some scepticism in the minds of the public why terrorists were swopped,” he added.

    While some of these girls were only teenagers when they were abducted more than three years later, some are now as old as 20 years and have to be reintegrated into society.

    The newly-released girls will be put on a similar rehabilitation programme set up for the 21 girls who were released in October last year.

    The programme is tailored to meet each girl's specific needs of counselling, to help overcome the trauma endured after being held under captivity for years.

    It includes, among others, access to quality education to bridge the learning gap created during the abduction, access to reproductive health care for their sexual well-being and rehabilitation support, and a skills-acquisition programme to ease their re-integration into their society.

    An emergency team of psychosocial counsellors and health professionals has also been deployed to assist with the profiling of the girls, so their critical needs can be met.

    The Namibian government this week welcomed the release of the 82 girls and called for the remaining captives still held by Boko Haram militants, to be released.

    “The people in the northern part of Nigeria have suffered unimaginable distress caused by militants. The Chibok girls underwent trauma of insurgencies as they have been held under difficult conditions,” a statement issued said.

    Regarded as one of the most organised attacks, the Boko Haram militants launched operations in 2009 and soon joined the Islamic State. The eight-year long insurgency has claimed over 20 000 people and driven 2.6 million out of their homes.

    It has also destabilised politics and security in the region.


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    State concedes it erred in ammo caseState concedes it erred in ammo case Testimony by a firearm specialist that the 201 cartridges found on a machine gun belt on a farm last year can be fired from a .308 rifle legally owned by the accused led the State to concede they had not led sufficient evidence to prove his guilt on a charge of illegal possession of ammunition.

    A public prosecutor at the lower court in Otjiwarongo, Colleen Yisa, told the court during final submissions on Wednesday that the state conceded that Norman Alexander Campbell owned a licensed firearm capable of firing the 7.62x51 bullets found clipped to an ammunition belt in a storeroom on his farm last year.

    According to the Act, any person found in possession of ammunition must prove it can be fired from a legally owned firearm.

    Campbell is facing four counts of illegal possession of ammunition, with the first three related to a total of 15 loose cartridges found in his house, six on top of the gun safe and the rest in a gun cleaning bowl.

    The fourth charge was the illegal possession of the 201 cartridges that were found on a 'machine-gun belt' in his storeroom. Earlier this week Campbell testified that he had not been aware of the ammunition belt and that it could likely have been his late father's.

    Yisa on Wednesday said the State did not dispute and conceded the testimony led by a State witness earlier this week, the police's head of firearms division Ignatius Nangombe, that the cartridges could be fired by Campbell's .308 rifle.

    “Whether it was from a belt or not, it is capable of being fired from that firearm,” Yisa told Magistrate Toini Shilongo.

    Another concession made by the State on Wednesday was related to a number of trial exhibits consisting of camouflage jackets, boxes and military canvas bags confiscated by the police during the raid last year.

    Yisa told the court the exhibits were irrelevant to the charges against the accused.

    “They are irrelevant. The State concedes they ought not to have been lawfully confiscated from the accused.”

    Yisa argued that the State had proven beyond reasonable doubt that Campbell should be found guilty on the first, second and third charges.

    Slapdash police work

    Advocate Danie Small on Wednesday slammed various elements of the “slapdash” investigation that led to and followed Campbell's arrest in April last year.

    During final submissions Small told the court that the evidence led by the State was tainted by the way the investigation had been handled.

    He referred to the manner in which the search warrant was issued, arguing that the warrant was issued on the basis of inadmissible hearsay.

    Small argued that the police had confirmed on the stand that the search warrant was issued after an informant had claimed there was illegal ammunition and possibly firearms on farm Capricorn, the farm owned by Campbell.

    He argued that the search warrant was issued on inadmissible evidence as a warrant could not be issued on mere suspicion or speculation. He described the raid on the farm as “a fishing expedition” which infringed on his client's rights.

    He said no witness statement or statement under oath from the informant was presented to prove the need for a warrant.

    Small also referred to Campbell's testimony that he had not been informed of his rights on the day of his arrest, especially his right to legal counsel.

    Small argued that had Campbell been informed of his rights before the raid began, the warrant would likely have been set aside if legal steps were taken against the manner in which it was issued.

    “We know today that the warrant should not have been issued on the so-called evidence placed before the magistrate.”

    He asked that the court rule out any statements made by Campbell before and after his arrest, noting that police officers have a duty to explain the rights of the accused in detail.

    “How police officers still think that they can explain away deliberate inadequate explanations to suspects or accused and then present evidence of explanations or admissions baffles the mind,” Small said.

    In reference to the four charges against Campbell, Small argued that the term “possession” comprises two main elements, namely a physical element as well as a mental element.

    He argued that the State had not proven that Campbell's possession of the ammunition was intended as an illegal act.

    Judgment will be delivered on 24 May at the Otjiwarongo Magistrate's Court.


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  • 05/11/17--16:00: Highly respected judge dies
  • Highly respected judge diesHighly respected judge diesLegal fraternity remembers Mtambanengwe Retired High Court Judge Simpson Mtambanengwe has died in Windhoek. Retired judge Simpson Mtambanengwe has died.

    The Zimbabwean-born Mtambanengwe died in a Windhoek hospital on Wednesday evening after battling high blood pressure and diabetes for some years.

    He was 87.

    His son, Victor, confirmed his father's death to Namibian Sun yesterday.

    Mtambanengwe was admitted to a Windhoek hospital last week Thursday. He had served as an acting judge of appeal of the Supreme Court before his retirement.

    He had also served as judge of Namibia's High Court and acted as chief justice of Namibia between 2003 and 2004.

    Retired state advocate Danie Small recalled Mtambanengwe as a dignified judge.

    “He was one of the most dignified and calm judges I have ever had the privilege of appearing before,” Small said.

    “I remember his deep voice that immediately demanded attention and demonstrated his utter authority in the court. He had an incredible courtroom manner. He embodied what a judge should be.”

    Others agree, including court reporters, saying he was very gentle but had an air of authority.

    According to Small, Mtambanengwe made several rulings that changed the course of justice in the country.

    In one of these, Mtambanengwe and Judge Bryan O'Linn had found that the prosecution is not an entity on its own but acts for the State itself and as such, has a responsibility to “act to divulge to the court matters favourable to the accused and, as such, they not only have to attempt to ensure that a guilty person does not escape punishment but that an innocent person is not convicted and punished. The prosecution in our criminal law and procedure is not the all-powerful, specialised, competent, and even evil entity with all the means at its disposal, bent on the conviction and punishment at all costs of a hapless and helpless innocent.

    “The prosecution should rather be seen as the representative of society, of the people and of the victims of crime.”

    In another judgment, along with judges Johan Strydom and Nicholas Hannah, Mtambanengwe ruled that arrested persons have the right to apply for bail within 48 hours after their arrest.

    Such a right includes applications outside of normal court hours, provided the matter is urgent.

    The ruling added that where prosecutors refuse to work overtime police officers can assist magistrates.

    Zimbabwean veteran journalist Geoff Nyarota said Judge Mtambanengwe was a humble man.

    “His contribution to Zimbabwe's liberation struggle was immense, yet he chose to speak very little about it. He served on the bench with distinction,” Nyarota said.

    Mtambanengwe, who was in the legal profession for over 50 years, is survived by his wife, three sons and three sisters.

    Funeral arrangements will be announced in due course.

    Mtambanengwe was born at the Old Umtali Mission in Eastern Rhodesia (today Mutare in Zimbabwe) in December 1930.

    He attended school at Mutambara Mission and Goromonzi School, after which he worked as teacher for one year at Old Umtali Mission.

    From 1979 on he worked as a lawyer in independent Zimbabwe until 1986 when he was appointed as high court judge. In 1994 he was appointed to the Namibian High Court.


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    Ovitoto Game and Hunting denies allegations Ovitoto Game and Hunting denies allegations Responded with winning bid The company says there is nothing untoward about its registration. CATHERINE SASMAN

    One of the directors of the Ovitoto Game and Hunting Safaris, which was awarded the disputed resettlement farms Osema and Gusinde in the Otjozondjupa Region, has denied charges that the company’s registration was “dubious”.

    Ovaherero Traditional Authority (OTA) chief Vipuira Kapuuo of the Ovitoto communal area, as well as the chairperson of the Ovitoto Conservancy, Lisias Tjeripo Tjaveondja, had claimed that there was something untoward about the registration of the company that could raise legal issues.

    Kapuuo claimed that Ovitoto Game and Hunting Safaris evolved from Hallie Investment Number Three Thousand One Hundred and Seventy Four (Pty) Ltd after an application for a name change was made to the Ministry of Industrialisation, Trade and SME Development and was approved on 24 April 2017.

    This alleged approval came after the Ministry of Land Reform had announced that the game farms were awarded to Ovitoto Game and Hunting Safaris on 12 April.

    Not so, said one of the directors of the company, Josephine Kasheeta.

    She said the company was duly registered as per the law and the records of that were available from the industrialisation and trade ministry. Kasheeta said the name change, the change of shareholders and the registration were done on 11 October 2016.

    Kasheeta further denied the allegation that the industrialisation ministry had allowed the name Ovitoto Game and Hunting Safari to be reserved and was thereafter not renewed.

    “[In] terms of [the] name reservation application [on 11 August 2016] and the company being duly registered on 11 October 2016 then surely it makes no legal sense or otherwise to apply for name registration extension if the registration was finalised (on 11 October 2016) before the expiry date of reservation,” said Kasheeta.

    Kapuuo also claimed that Hallie Investment was not a hunting business and that if the “evolved” Ovitoto Game and Hunting Safaris were to conduct tourism-related business, it first had to acquire an authorisation letter from the Namibia Tourism Board (NTB) before the trade ministry could go ahead and effect the registration of the company.

    Kasheeta said there was no requirement in the advert of the lands ministry that called for expression of interest in the farms that applicants had to register with the NTB prior to submitting applications for the game farms.

    “Additionally, the company has not started to use the farm for tourism-related purposes as yet due to the fact that the necessary paperwork is yet to be finalised with the [lands ministry]. Once this process is completed and before the commencement of the farm operations, all necessary approvals for NTB and other bodies will be obtained,” Kasheeta said.

    She added: “The ministry in question [lands ministry] made a public call in the local newspapers for expression of interests from all interested parties. Our company responded to the call and submitted a winning bid.”

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    Government secures N$10 billion loanGovernment secures N$10 billion loan The government has secured a N$10 billion loan from the African Development Bank (AfDB) and intends to use the money to fund the fiscal deficit while also attending to infrastructure projects.

    With the boost in funding, finance minister Calle Schlettwein stressed that the facility did not add to Namibia's debt woes.

    “This is not an additional loan over and above the budget and Medium-Term Expenditure Framework. It is also not a budget support facility that enhances the budget per se; rather, it is a financing mechanism to partially fund the budget deficit as projected in the budget and Medium Term Expenditure Framework,” he explained.

    “Namibia approached the African Development Bank, a 'triple A-rated' multilateral development finance institution, early this year for a partial budget deficit financing instrument for the current 2017/18 fiscal year and the 2018/19 fiscal year.”

    Namibia had benefitted from AfDB programmes in the past, suggesting that there was nothing untoward the arrangement.

    “This is not the first time that Namibia is benefiting from the AfDB financing arrangements. Key infrastructure projects such as the Walvis Bay container terminal, oil storage facility and some of the road infrastructure projects are also being financed through an AfDB loan,” said Schlettwein.

    “The AfDB, as the African development finance institution, was established to finance developmental and socio-economic needs for its members,” added Schlettwein.

    The loan will be split two ways, with 60% of the total geared towards addressing the deficit while the rest will address infrastructure needs.

    “The envisaged combined total amount of the operation over a two-year period is up to N$10 billion, to be split in a ratio of 60:40 to support the general budget deficit financing and for targeted financing of development projects.

    “The total combined amount for two-years comprises N$6 billion, to be equally split into equal tranches of N$3 billion each over the two-year period. Of course, deficit financing includes some of the development spending which supports infrastructure development. The N$4 billion that will support infrastructure financing is significant from the point of view of supporting long-term economic growth and job creation objectives.”

    Allying anticipated market jitters in the wake of a possible downgrade, the finance minister said: “This funding arrangement is a programme-based policy operation support, alternatively referred to as the Namibia Economic Governance and Competitiveness Support Programme (EGCSP). This will be a South African rand-denominated instrument, thus naturally hedging against exchange rate risks.”

    Schlettwein stressed that the government would continue seeking funding in the domestic market.

    “The domestic market remains the government's primary source of funding the budget deficit. This programme-based operation is thus a time-bound measure to supplement what the domestic market could provide, while liquidity conditions improve.”

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  • 05/11/17--16:00: Meatco suspends Rukoro
  • Meatco suspends RukoroMeatco suspends Rukoro The Meatco board has placed the cooperative's CEO, Vekuii Rukoro, on administrative leave pending an internal investigation.

    Board chair Martha Namundjebo-Tilahun confirmed to Namibian Sun yesterday that Rukoro had been placed on administrative leave for an indefinite period.

    The company's chief financial officer, Ingo Schneider, will act as CEO in the interim.

    Rukoro has vowed to challenge the suspension, saying it was unlawful as he was not afforded an opportunity to appear before a disciplinary hearing as prescribed by the Meatco Act. Administrative leave is similar to a suspension whereby an employee is authorised absence from duty with full pay and benefits.

    “This (suspension) will allow for internal investigations. We had to do what we have to do and there is nothing personal,” said Namundjebo-Tilahun, who declined to divulge further details.

    The outspoken Rukoro yesterday claimed that he was a victim of a political witch-hunt by the Meatco board.

    In an interview with Namibian Sun, Rukoro said he was called in on Wednesday and notified of his so-called administrative leave.

    “This is blatantly unlawful. The Meatco Act requires that before you decide to suspend an employee, he or she must first be subjected to a disciplinary hearing. He must be given an opportunity to be heard,” he said.

    “When I enquired this from the board they confirmed that they were not obliged to actually give me an opportunity to be heard. And this came from Silas Kishi-Shakumu who is the lawyer on the board.

    “The minister of public enterprises has on various occasions sent out directives discouraging the wholesale suspensions of CEOs at parastatals and any suspension cannot be done without his permission.”

    Public enterprises minister Leon Jooste yesterday told Namibian Sun that he had heard about Rukoro's suspension, but had not received written confirmation.

    Rukoro believes his suspension stems from a recommendation to appoint a certain Annanias Katjomuise as a Meatco livestock agent. Rukoro claimed this issue was investigated by Ernst & Young, who submitted their final forensic report this week.

    “This issue has been investigated for more than two years. I don't sit on the interview panels. I have senior managers who are the ones who found him suitable.

    “He was never managed by me and he does not report to me. This is a pure political witch-hunt as instructed by their political masters, which is against the good corporate governance, the Labour Act and the Namibian constitution.

    “What kind of Namibia are we leaving behind? Until when will we stop wasting taxpayer's money with unlawful suspension,” said Rukoro.

    He added that his lawyers would write to the Meatco board, demanding his immediate reinstatement.

    “Otherwise I will appropriate action through the High Court,” he said.

    The Meatco board and Rukoro have been involved in a bitter feud for quite some time now. Last year in August he survived an attempt by the board to suspend him. It was widely reported in the print media that the Meatco board had failed to get permission from Jooste to go ahead with the suspension.

    Instead they opted to institute an investigation against Rukoro.

    Apart from Namundjebo-Tilahun, other members of the board include Charles /Urib, Ronald Kubas, Sophia Kasheeta and Israel Ngangane.

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  • 05/11/17--16:00: Fear grips SPYL
  • Fear grips SPYLFear grips SPYLYouth leaders told to leave weapons at home Unprecedented security measures are in place for tomorrow's SPYL central committee meeting. For the first time ever tight security measures have been put in place for tomorrow's Swapo Party Youth League (SPYL) central committee meeting, which is expected to be a highly charged affair.

    The youth leaders have been told by the acting league's secretary Veikko Nekundi to leave their cellphones and weapons at home.

    There are deep-seated differences among youth leaders, with those loyal to Elijah Ngurare often squaring off against the Nekundi-led leadership.

    In fact, Ngurare has already indicated that he is taking over the reins of the youth league until the elective congress in August.

    He has also indicated that he will chair all SPYL meetings leading up to the congress, while he has also advised Nekundi to hand over the SPYL office keys.

    Yesterday Ngurare said he was skipping Saturday's meeting because of personal matters that he had to attend to.

    Some central committee members told Namibian Sun this week they would not honour the request to attend the meeting for fear that it would descend into further chaos as evidenced during the 18 February meeting. Tomorrow's meeting is slated for the Parliament Building at 08:00 and Nekundi has warned members that a security screening system is in place to detect weapons and cellphones.

    When contacted, police chief Sebastian Ndeitunga said he did not receive any request to deploy police officers at the meeting.

    He added that should there be such a request, the police would be deployed to maintain law and order. The youth league normally holds its meetings at the Swapo headquarters.

    Ngurare decried the tight security measures being put in place for the meeting, saying youth league members were not elected by the police.

    “The disunity you see in the SPYL is not caused by the youth league members but by some party leaders. The youth league did not expel youth league members but those party leaders who violated the constitution of the SPYL,” Ngurare said.

    “What needs to be done is that the wrong needs to be corrected, and not by continuously using some youth league members as it's just fuelling the disunity among the youth. Where are those that engineered our expulsion?”

    Job wants in

    While some members have indicated that they will boycott the meeting, former SPYL spokesperson Job Amupanda this week bemoaned his exclusion from the meeting. Amupanda, through his lawyer, wrote to Nekundi demanding to know why he had not been invited to the meeting.

    Amupanda argued that he was a duly elected member of the central committee at the last SPYL congress in 2012.

    Amupanda, Ngurare and youth leaders George Kambala and Ndimbulukweni Nauyoma were expelled from the ruling party in July 2015 for their involvement in the Affirmative Repositioning Movement, which had presented land demands to the government.

    The four took the ruling party to court, claiming that it had not followed the correct disciplinary procedures before dismissing them.

    They were reinstated on 23 April 2016 after Acting Judge Collins Parker found that the party had circumvented its own constitution and disciplinary code when it expelled the four.

    Nekundi declined to comment on the infighting within the youth league, saying his duty was simply to send out invitations for members to attend.

    “Anything beyond that remains an internal issue,” he said.

    The central committee meeting is set to discuss a number of issues, including arrangements for the much-anticipated SPYL congress in August.


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     Another lion killed in the North Another lion killed in the North Human-wildlife conflict continues in the Omusati Region, with some members of the Ongandjera community putting down one of the four lions that have been killing their cattle at Omusati gwaShiningu since April.
    Some community members on Thursday tracked down the four lions and managed to kill one, leaving the other three at large.
    A resident identified only as Mathias used a 375 rifle Thursday afternoon to kill the lion whilst it was lying in the thick grassland near the cattle post area of Omusati gwaShiningu.
    Members of the community went after the lions after they killed about eight cattle from different posts in the area since the previous day.
    Andreas Ndakukamo said the lions killed four of his cattle, while Petrus Shapumba, said he had lost eight cattle to these lions.
    “I lost a lot of my cattle killed by the lions since 1999,” Ndakukamo said adding that he had lost 18 cattle in the past few years.
    The Ongandjera community say the lions escape from Etosha National Park, while officials of the Ministry of Environment and Tourism say they are unable to drive them all back to the park.
    Two lions were also killed in the same area last month after attacking several cattle.
    Ongandjera traditional norms require the body of a killed lion to be brought to the palace, hence the Omusati gwaShiningu community brought the lion they had killed to the palace at Uukwandongo village on Friday.
    Meanwhile, the Amaupa village in the Omusati Region’s Uukwaluudhi Traditional District are facing a different problem of some 20 elephants destroying their crops in the past month.
    The Public Relations Officer at the Ministry of Environment and Tourism, Romeo Muyunda, was not immediately available for comment.


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     Meatco board settling personal scores – Nudo Meatco board settling personal scores – Nudo Nudo has criticised the suspension of Meatco CEO Vekuii Rukoro, claiming the board was being used to settle personal scores. Rukoro was placed on administrative leave last week pending an internal investigation. The company’s chief financial officer, Ingo Schneider, will act as CEO in the interim. “We are of the opinion that this suspension is a result of some board members having personal scores to settle with Advocate Vekuii Rukoro and their inflated egos refuse to see beyond that, as their mission is to get rid of Rukoro irrespective of the harm that will befall the company,” said Nudo’s presidential spokesperson Joseph Kauandenge. “It is regrettable that some board members suffer from amnesia as they have conveniently forgotten too quickly in what shape and form Meatco was before Rukoro was appointed as CEO. When he took over he completely transformed Meatco into a flourishing entity.” Nudo yesterday said it was Rukoro who initiated the empowerment programme for farmers in the North, which has since become popular. The party also said that the Meatco quota for meat products export to Norway increased under Rukoro. “Meatco become the first African country to qualify for beef exports to China and America still under his management. Still under his management Meatco become the first abattoir to introduce a mobile slaughter unit (MSU) to the Northern Communal areas (NCAs) and under his leadership Meatco beef exports for the 2015/2016 financial year was N$1.285 billion.” Board chair Martha Namundjebo-Tilahun last week told Namibian Sun that there was nothing untoward regarding the suspension of the company’s CEO.


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     SPYL still wants Nujoma’s birthday declared a public holiday SPYL still wants Nujoma’s birthday declared a public holiday The Swapo Party Youth League has reiterated its call to have 12 May declared as a public holiday in honour of Namibia’s Founding President Sam Nujoma. Nujoma was born on 12 May 1929 and at the weekend celebrated his 88th birthday at his Etunda farm outside Otavi. SPYL acting secretary Veikko Nekundi said the youth league’s central committee meeting held on Saturday recommended that 12 May should be adopted as an official public holiday “in order to acknowledge the contribution of Dr Sam Shafiishuna Nujoma, Founding President and Father of the Namibian Nation to the development and progress of Namibia.” This is not the first time that the SPYL is making such calls. In 2015, youth leader Elijah Ngurare pleaded with President Hage Geingob to consider declaring 12 May as a national holiday. “If we do not honour our heroes no one will do it for us. You can worship all others over the world but there is only one leader that has freed and liberated us,” Ngurare was quoted as saying.

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  • 05/14/17--07:24: Welwitschias thrashed
  •  Welwitschias thrashed Welwitschias thrashed The Windhoek Draught Welwitschias have been trashed 64 – 8 by the Steval Pumas this afternoon.
    The Namibian team have lost all their matches since the SuperSport Rugby Challenge kicked off.
    The Steval Pumas ran in 10 tries to 1 as they claimed a comprehensive 64-8 (halftime 31-3) victory in their SuperSport Rugby Challenge encounter against the Windhoek Draught Welwitschias at a wet and cold Bill Jardine Stadium in Johannesburg.


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  • 05/14/17--16:00: Hard work pays off
  • Hard work pays offHard work pays offMountain bikers bring medals home Namibian mountain bikers brought medals home after competing against highly rated competitors from across Africa. Elite woman mountain biker Michelle Vorster scooped the gold medal in the elite women's category at the 2017 African Continental MTB Cross-country Championships in Mauritius on Friday.

    Her two compatriots Tristan Vorster and Alex Miller also put their names on the winning list. Vorster walked away with a gold medal in the under-23 category, while Alex Miller took bronze in the junior category.

    The championship was a three-day event aimed at giving mountain riders the opportunity to showcase their talent.

    Vorster was happy with her win and dedicated it to Costa Seibeb, a cyclist who died recently in a car accident.

    “Thank you God for giving me this moment in my life, my husband for your unwavering support, Herman Davin and Davin Sport Trust for making this all possible, and DaviDuck, Rock and Rut Mountain Bike Club, Scott2luvit and PowerBar Namibia. In memory of my late friend, Raul Costa Seibeb, who also wanted to be here, and Elroy King Beukes, who passed away while cycling. In memory of Costa - bikes and smiles,” she said on her Facebook page.


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