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Tells it All - Namibian Sun

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    Advocating conscientiousness since 1926Advocating conscientiousness since 1926 For several decades African Americans have cemented their status in reaching milestones in American culture by potently catapulting themselves as a force to be reckoned with in American history collectively. As pristine as it sounds to the impartial observer, the establishment of this tradition was an aggressive effort, relentlessly fought to defy the norms and values of society to bring an end to the boxing in of the 'negro' from actualising his potential.

    The idea of Black History Month was initially launched as Black History Week by Dr Carter G Goodson in 1926, an early intellectual who received his PhD in History from Harvard. Goodson was disgruntled by the fact that throughout his education, there was very little relevance given to African Americans throughout American history. As such, he decided to permeate the agitation he felt into the public realm in order to make change imminent.

    Carter began work on journal compilation of African Americans aiming to put it into national spotlight, ultimately establishing the Journal of Negro History in 1916. Ten years forward, after extensively compiling data on African Americans, Black History Week became a reality. The theme of Black History Week was intently chosen on the second week of February between the birthdays of Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass, who were instrumental figures in the liberation of African Americans in the 19th century, actively contesting the dehumanising nature of the norms and values held towards the black man. Black History Week was only the beginning. It was a revolutionary time-bomb detonated to provoke public conscientiousness of not only White America, but also the African American.

    From the time of its inception, the black community became more aware of the depth of their influence. Achievements in the black community suddenly began to culminate quite rigorously in a myriad of occupations ranging from sports, music, entertainment, political activism and academic achievement to name a few. In 1936, Jesse Owens was the fastest person in the world. Katherine Johnson was amongst the first black people to be integrated in a PhD programme in the South in 1939. The idea of proclaiming the African American as an equal was becoming more apparent. This spiked incredible stigma and conflict, instigated by the Civil Rights Movement. Black Liberals were imprisoned and others were unlawfully 'missing' and pronounced dead. The romanticised appeal of 1926 had withered and hostility was in the air until 1968 when the Civil Rights Bill was amended to give African Americans equal rights. In 1976 denying the significance of African Americans in American history could not continue to preside. Black History Week had evolved into Black History Month and was officiated across all states.

    Till this date, the tradition has been preserved and is seen as a symbol of endless possibility for the black man, even beyond American borders. The real question for the reader is whether you are a perpetual spectator or are you making history?

    *A Bachelor of Journalism and Media student at Namibia University of Science and Technology (Nust), James Jamu is a firm believer in Pan-Africanism and black empowerment.

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  • 05/22/17--16:00: Time management
  • Time managementTime management Have you ever read a line which eventually becomes a quote that you will live with and eventually subscribe to? I once read one from a book written by a prominent and prolific writer and motivational speaker, Dr David Molapo which says: “Procrastination dilutes the urgency of a task and gives a false sense of fulfilment.” What this quote basically denotes is that procrastination renders the urgency of a task less relevance whilst, giving an illusion that you will still have ample time left to successfully finish the job.

    Yes, the urgency of tasks differs; hence proper prioritisation is necessary. The ability to prioritise and commence on a task at the right time and complete it within the prescribed time frame is quite significant because it enables you to move on onto the next task and that eventually translates into increased productivity. When you have a pile of files stocked up on your table, prioritisation and time management is encouraged, whilst procrastination should be done away with.

    One should learn how to manage his or her time as it accords one the ability to focus. When you work with no pressure and worries emanating from the fear of not being able to meet the due date, focus is guaranteed, which consequently improves efficiency. Besides, it becomes an advantage when you finish your work on time, because in the end you have ample free time for yourself. There is only 24 hours in a day, seven days in a week, four weeks in a month, and twelve months in a year. This clearly tells us that time is limited. Time is a limited resource and the productivity and success of an undertaking is determined by how well we manage this resource.

    Time is limited and that is why it is indeed essential and effective management of it is imperative. Never waste time on activities which will prove futile. Time is precious. Time lost is irrecoverable. Hence, make every second of it meaningful. Attain that goal (personal or work related) which you have set within the time-frame set. Finish that task on time.

    *A graduate from the University of Namibia with a public relations degree. Erasmus is a blogger who writes about youth related issues.

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    Changing modelling misconceptionsChanging modelling misconceptionsLocal model says catwalk is not a cliché Kenneth Qayiso a modelling devotee speaks about his struggles as a model to The Zone and how he wants to change negative perceptions people have about the modelling industry and his future aspirations. When people usually see models they think they live a flashy lifestyle and that they are famous and have it all. For some reason we usually think models have it easy and that they do not deserve the success that comes with their career choice. What people fail to understand is that modelling is a job just like any other. You just do not get paid to stand around and look beautiful or handsome.

    For Kenneth Qayiso, modelling is a lifestyle and a career that he is passionate about. He describes himself as a visionary, no-nonsense individual who demands people to see his potential and how beneficial he can be to the modelling industry. “I am a dreamer, hard-headed and I refuse to be stepped on,” shared Qayiso. The Katutura resident says that the capital city Windhoek has moulded him into a strong and confident black man who can achieve whatever he sets his mind on despite where he comes from. “I grew up in Single Quarters in Katutura where I have learned that your surrounding doesn't define you or your future,” shared Qayiso. The model says he's always wanted to model as a child and that it is something that is second nature to him. “For as long as I can remember modelling has always been a part of my life, and its effect on me started when I took part in a kinder garden pageant. But, it was only in 2014 when I had my first social media photo shoot that cemented its presence in my life,” shared Qayiso. Qayiso also studies business management at the Namibia University of Science and Technology (Nust). He is also a part of the business management society on campus and says he spends most of his time assisting other students with their studies. “Besides modelling, I am an executive member in the business society at the university where we extend a helping hand to our fellow business management students to assist with whatever problem they face surrounding the course,” shared Qayiso.

    The modelling enthusiast says he has faced quite a number of challenges since he started modelling in 2014 and says he had to develop a thick skin and character to survive the modelling industry sceptics. “Challenges I face with modelling are such as being rejected and told no, really sets you back and lowers your self-confidence. Also being tough skinned and hard-headed is the only way to overcome these challenges,” said Qayiso. Qayiso says as a male model, people have a perception about him that is not accurate. “People always assume that I am abrasive and intrusive but I'm actually really laid back. Being involved in the industry made me aware that I am more than what I see and that I am kind, smart and important,” said Qayiso. He says he is grateful for the support his mother has given him throughout his modelling journey even though she was not privy to the kind of work he does. “My mom is not quite familiar with the modelling industry but she is supportive of what I do and backs me up in everything I do,” said Qayiso.

    He says that male models are usually treated unfairly by some people because they think male models are gay, a perception Qayiso says is an inaccurate reflection of the modelling industry. “Being a model makes people assume that you are gay or either your masculinity is deflated and people body shame you calling you skinny or short when that is not necessarily the case,” shared Qayiso. Qayiso also says he is trying to challenge the negative stereotypes people have about models in the country and that models are also intelligent people and that it is just not about how they look or what they wear. “I am naturally a skinny guy and I really don't see the importance of being muscular. People should just accept you for who you are,” said Qayiso. He says he usually does run-way modelling but is trying to tap into the other various forms of modelling to gain more knowledge and to build more relationships with other models. “I do run-way modelling but I am trying to be more of a photogenic model right now,” said Qayiso.

    He also says he tries to watch what he eats but is not too strict on himself and usually has a diet to make sure he keeps a good physique. “I try to keep track of what I eat because whatever you take is reflected on your body and can affect how your skin looks and so, it is important to watch what you eat,” shared Qayiso. He says he is not concerned about what he wears as a model because it comes to him and only wears his clothes based on the mood and how he feels on a certain day. “Clothes are not a big deal for me because it is all about the confidence you give have and the presence you have,” said Qayiso. He says he does not try to wear flashy things and keeps it simple with a “chilled out” look. “A Denim jean with a T-shirt that is not too busy is fine for me,” said Qayiso. He says the industry he finds himself in is very busy and demanding and consequently he always has to prove himself. “Modelling is not easy because competition is way too tough and you have to prove yourself and stand your ground to be accepted in this industry,” said Qayiso. The model says he is different from most models because he is driven and wants to grow and excel in the modelling industry. “I am driven and I want this. I feel I have the African look and my melanin and facial features set me apart from most of the models in the industry,” shared Qayiso. Qayiso says he is inspired by Cheeze Uahupirapi another model he feels is representing the country well. “Cheeze is not really muscular and he is an established model in Namibia and is also very down-to-earth,” said Qayiso. The model has hopes of becoming a successful model locally and says he knows he will be celebrated as an international model one day. “I see myself within a year working at three South African shows and one day being part of America's top models show,” said the assertive Qayiso.

    Shona Ngava

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  • 05/22/17--16:00: His dream is in his hands
  • His dream is in his handsHis dream is in his handsTiling all the way to Abu Dhabi A floor and wall tiling trainee from WVTC will showcase his tiling skills at this year's global WorldSkills competition. Sakaria Ndaningina, a trainee at the Windhoek Vocational Training Centre, shares with The Zone how his hard work and lowly perceived trade is now taking him to international platforms.

    The Zone caught up with Ndaningina who is one of the vocational trainees that will represent Namibia at this year's WorldSkills Competition. “Being a WorldSkills competitor means a lot to me. Every trainee in his profession dreams about such a lifetime opportunity where you showcase your skills at an international platform and I intend to make the best of it and make my country proud,” Ndaningina said.

    He shared with The Zone that he has been a tiler since 2014 and decided to take it up as a course at the Windhoek Vocational Training Centre in order to sharpen his skills. “I want to be one of the best tilers in Namibia because then I will be sought after in the industry,” he said.

    He said accuracy is important in his trade because even the smallest mistake can cost a project a lot of money and waste of time. He said it is important to always ensure that the work is done correctly. Ndaningina said creativity is very important and a critical element in his trade and therefore, it becomes hard to please clients. “When it comes to wall and floor tiling, the way your work is perceived is very important because my work is visual and thus, it has to be visually appealing,” he said.

    Ndaningina describes himself as a people person, stating that given the diverse cultures in Namibia, he enjoys meeting and working with people from different backgrounds. “I am popularly known for being a great listener and clear communicator, whether I'm engaging with my instructors at school or a client that needs my services,” he said.

    Ndaningina grew up in Katutura, adding his father was very supportive as well as other members of his family who encouraged him to chase his dream. He also said growing up in Katutura presented him with opportunities and challenges associated with township life such as peer pressure. But, because he had a good environment and good family, he was inspired to remain focused. “I'm happy to say that where I grew up, is where I draw my inspiration from and one day I trust that I will make my family and community proud.”

    He also shared his main sources of inspiration, his father and two of his instructors who always encourage him to focus on his career. Ndaningina also said he draws inspiration from all people who are hardworking, smart and selfless.

    Despite specialising in wall and floor tiling, Ndaningina is also a seasoned brick layer. “I like challenging myself and thus do not confine myself to just one trade,” he said. He also said one of the challenges that he faced when he started majoring in his trade was the preparatory work done before laying the tiles. Ndaningina said cutting tiles was one of the challenges that vexed him, adding that slowly but surely he started to find solutions to the grey areas of his proficiency. “I practice a lot and learn from the best in the industry such as my instructors and I find time to visit big companies to learn how they execute the problematic processes.”

    Ndaningina maintains that he cannot pinpoint a specific defining moment that made him to choose the trade that he finds himself in but states that he was inspired by the number of employment opportunities in the construction industry. “The fact that there will always be construction projects as the country develops comes the need for tilers and therefore my services will always be needed,” he said.

    Ndaningina advises prospective tilers to remain focused and do the tasks with a passion. “I believe it is easier for anyone to thrive when they venture into careers that are aligned to their passion. Do not just do something because the next person is doing it. Rather do what you love,” he said.

    He also said he is very happy and feels honoured and proud to be one of the chosen trainees to represent Namibia. “I am overwhelmed by this wonderful opportunity and I will strive to give the best of my ability in this completion,” he promised.

    Ndaningina is urging other young trainees to show interest in international competitions of this nature, saying such competitions are beneficial to vocational trainees. “The local WorldSkills competition take place bi-annually and vocational trainees should keep themselves informed by following WorldSkills social media platforms for the next selections,” he said.

    Ndaningina who will be completing his studies next year, shares that his future looks promising and cannot wait to make his parents and Katutura community proud. “The sky is the limit. Most importantly, I will continue to sharpen my skills because with every trade, technology is advancing and I want to keep myself abreast of the latest trends in my trade,” he said.

    Ndaningina is also passionate about entrepreneurship and would like to gain enough experience in the construction industry, specialising in bricklaying and plastering because he hopes to open his own business one day. “I believe entrepreneurship is the way to turn around the unemployment crisis,” he said.


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    Have an interest in your cultureHave an interest in your culture In this modern world, not everyone feels connected to their culture and not many people find their cultures interesting anymore.

    However, when we value cultural heritage, there are many benefits that bind people together.

    I believe that taking an interest in your culture can connect you with other citizens through social values, beliefs, religion and customs. One is able to identify oneself with other people who share similar mind-sets and backgrounds. In a society where people are divided by varying norms, cultural heritage can be a unifying tool. As young people, we should never lose interest in preserving our cultural heritage. I know that there are young people who do not think that their language, traditional clothes, cultural attire and traditional food are fascinating, but that is who you are and should embrace it. You do not necessarily always have to eat traditional food or wear traditional attire, but just acknowledge and appreciate your culture.

    In large urban areas like Windhoek is easy to feel lost and alone among so many people from different cultures and backgrounds. Windhoek for example is a huge meeting point for people from different parts of the country. So it is important for people to take an interest in their culture and know who they are and where they come from. I urge young people to read up on their culture and be aware of who they are. Young people should also do more research on culture and document their culture. We should strive to have a lot of literature and even documentaries on our different cultures.

    Parents should also acknowledge that children benefit from learning to value their roots and their culture. Parents must teach their children that we are all different and that differences must not only be accepted, but also celebrated and that their culture and language is something they have to take pride in. One way of helping children appreciate diversity is to teach them about different cultures and that all of them are different, but equally important and valuable. Moreover, I believe that respecting others begins by respecting ourselves and our heritage, this is why I think that when children communicate with their grandparents and their extended families who can only speak their home languages, family bonds are strengthened. People from rural areas who maintain their cultural and linguistic connections with their places of origin from an early age learn to speak English better and adjust more easily to their new culture, thus there is no need to force children to only express themselves in one particular language.

    I am not saying parents should discourage their children from socialising with kids from different backgrounds, as every day the population in our country is more diverse and speaking more than one language opens doors for our children in future. I also do believe that people who are bilingual have a great advantage over those people who only know English, so keeping your home language will give your children more and better opportunities for studying, working, travelling and in succeeding in their professional lives. I applaud the young entrepreneurs that are doing business that have to do with preserving their cultures. It is by being authentic to our roots that we attract others to being interested in knowing more about us.

    Being in touch with where you came from is tremendously helpful in getting to know yourself. People always ask questions like “What are you?” and it is actually so comforting to have an answer to that question, that most people consider being simple. As a young person you are bound to feel secure and grounded when you know where you come from and you know your people's struggles and it's almost humbling to know that you can live a better life, because of them and their struggles to make the world a better a place for the coming generations.

    Lastly do not be afraid to tell people where you are from. Your values and cultural practices may be enormously different, but you will grow as a person once you are secure in yourself and are able to accept yourself for the uniquely shining star that you are. We are all different, as we are meant to be.


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    Wildlife conflict becoming more severeWildlife conflict becoming more severe The Minister of Environment and Tourism, Pohamba Shifeta, says human and wildlife conflicts in Namibia have become more frequent and severe in recent years.

    This is as a result of increased human population growth, wildlife population growth, unplanned agricultural activities, drought and the expansion of agricultural and industrial activities that have led to increased human encroachment on the wild and uninhabited areas.

    Shifeta said competition for the available natural habitat and resources has increased and the effects of climate change are exacerbating these conflicts.

    Shifeta raised the concerns during the 2017/18 financial year address to staff employed by the ministry.

    According to the minister, one of the most difficult challenges that the ministry is faced with is human-wildlife conflict.

    Shifeta said it has also been observed that the prevalence of these conflicts has frustrated people, in particular farmers, to the extent where they have resorted to taking the law into their own hands when they find themselves in threatening human-wildlife conflict situations.

    “I urge therefore that our esteemed farmers and the public at large work closely with the staff members of the Ministry who are deployed nearest to them to handle this problem. In the same spirit, I would like to encourage our staff members to be prompt in responding to issues of human- wildlife conflict.”

    He said that delayed responses could worsen the situation.

    “As we have seen in the past, some frustrated farmers have hunted and killed predators that have caused damages to their properties without the consent of the ministry.”

    Furthermore Shifeta said farmers and agencies that intend to set up development programs in the wildlife habitats should comply with the law (Environmental Management Act).

    He reiterated that the setting up of livestock farming units or large scale agricultural development in a wildlife habitat or close to national parks requires an environmental clearance certificate by the Environmental Commissioner.

    Shifeta said that the Environmental Commissioner is under instruction to strictly apply the EMA without fear, favour or prejudice.

    Any project which does not comply with EMA should be issued with a compliance order without delay and failure to comply must result in the closure of that project without delay, said Shifeta.

    “I have noted that there are still some development projects in defiance with the EMA.” Sand mining, waste disposal sites by different authorities, agricultural projects, construction, and transportation of dangerous toxic materials are some that are notorious for being defiant of the law.

    “I call upon all those involved to comply in order to avoid disappointment and inconvenience which may be caused by the sudden closure of their programs.”

    Shifeta said that there will be no further warning.

    He called upon the public to report any suspicious listed activity undertaken anywhere to the environmental commissioner for investigation.

    Shifeta said the impacts that stem from a disturbed environment can be catastrophic and therefore much more needs to be done to educate the public and ensure compliance by the of the Environmental Management Act.

    He said that monitoring of the Act is crucial there has been progress in this regard.


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    China calls for dialogue after N.Korea missile testChina calls for dialogue after N.Korea missile test China called yesterday for dialogue to ease tensions on the Korean peninsula after North Korea carried out a new missile test.

    “The (UN) Security Council has clear stipulations prohibiting DPRK against using ballistic missiles and China opposes this as well,” foreign ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying told a regular press briefing, using the initials of North Korea's official name.

    “The situation on the Korean peninsula is complex and sensitive. We urge all sides to avoid provoking each other and continue on the right track of dialogue and consultation,” she said.

    North Korea yesterday declared its medium-range Pukguksong-2 missile ready for deployment after a weekend test, as it seeks to develop an intercontinental rocket capable of striking US targets.

    China, Pyongyang's main diplomatic and economic ally, has come under pressure to use its influence to compel North Korea to rein in its missile and nuclear programmes.

    The UN Security Council will hold an emergency meeting today in response to the latest ballistic missile test.

    The US ambassador to the UN, Nikki Haley, said last week the United States was working with China on a new sanctions resolution.

    Meanwhile, North Korean state airline Air Koryo has abruptly halted its new route between Pyongyang and the Chinese border city of Dandong, local airport and ticketing officials told AFP.

    It was not clear when the suspension started or the reason for the decision. North Korea's state news agency had announced the new service on March 28.

    A woman at a local air ticketing company confirmed the suspension, saying that they “informed us to stop selling tickets about one month ago. They didn't tell us why.”

    Air Koryo flights on older routes, between Pyongyang and the Chinese cities of Beijing and Shenyang, were still available online. No one answered the phone at the airline's Beijing office.


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    Apartheid troops battle to surviveApartheid troops battle to surviveAngolan ex-soldiers suffering in SA The soldiers fought on the South African government side in Angola and Namibia. Angolan soldiers recruited by South Africa's apartheid government to fight against their homeland now live in squalor, forgotten and unwanted.

    Without healthcare, jobs or basic services, at least 3 000 Angolan-born men call home the town of Pomfret on the edge of the Kalahari Desert.

    Dilapidated buildings crumble by the side of the town's sun-baked main road, water and power are cut off, and the asbestos factory that once sustained the region was abandoned long ago.

    Former soldier, 69, a black Angolan, pointed to yellowing photos of “32 Battalion” - his elite and much-feared South African unit - in action in Angola against communist government forces.

    “We didn't fear anyone, we were the best unit in the world,” he said in his shabby home, one of the few still standing in the town.

    In the 1980s, while still living in Angola, he joined the apartheid-era unit that had been formed to fight communism across southern Africa, including in Namibia and Zambia.

    It was a cause that meant taking up arms against his mother country, but Lourenco remembers that time with pride, saying he fought in a close-knit, professional unit that won great battlefield honours.

    Souvenirs of those years cover the walls and a sniper rifle rests on his dining table “to hunt birds”.

    A television sits unused in the corner, covered in a white sheet - a reminder that Pomfret is cut off from the rest of the rainbow nation.

    'Why are they punishing us?'

    “The government should tell us what we did wrong? Why are they punishing us like this?” he said, speaking in Angolan Portuguese.

    “There was no apartheid in 32 Battalion. Where the whites drank, we drank, where the whites slept, we slept,” said Lourenco as he gestured to the unit's uniform patches, emblazoned with a stylised black and white buffalo.

    When the Cold War ended and as Pretoria ceased its shadowy regional wars against supposed communist threats, 32 Battalion was relocated to Pomfret with the promise that its members would be integrated into the regular South African army.

    Life was initially good in the extreme northern outpost.

    The town had its own public swimming pool, tennis courts and a large, well-stocked supermarket. Despite its remote location, the community functioned well.

    “Here there was a club where the senior men partied. There was even a ballroom,” said Makamba Tchimoco, the son of a former battalion member, pointing to a derelict complex of buildings.


    But the whirlwind political change of the 1990s swept away the white-minority government, brought Nelson Mandela's ANC to power and shattered the town's sheltered existence.

    The battalion was disbanded in 1993 and a number of the soldiers left Pomfret along with their families. Many of the men of Angolan heritage waived their right to be incorporated into the reformed army in return for a significant cash handout worth US$32,000 (30 000 euros) in today's terms.

    Gradually families who had contributed to the small community began to drift away and the town started its slide into decline.

    By the 2000s, the government signalled its intention to close the base in Pomfret and to relocate the remaining families. But a hard core of ex-servicemen refused to budge.

    “We arrived here with many promises. Then the new government wanted us to go, leaving us without a future. Why should we leave our homes?” asked Lourenco.

    The police service left the town, homes were ransacked and the hospital was trashed.

    The modest graveyard, which stood as a reminder to the men of 32 Battalion lost in South Africa's “border wars”, became overgrown.

    'Staying is useless'

    Finally in 2014, authorities cut the power to the town. Water is only supplied once a week.

    “The biggest challenge for Pomfret is that it's 200km from the first city,” said a white South African, who served in 32 Battalion and now helps Pomfret's remaining residents.

    “There's no economy,” he said, declining to be named. “Most of the shops have closed and buildings have been destroyed to prevent people from staying there.”

    Just one school remains open to serve the entire town, educating students up to the age of 18.

    Antonio Isaac, an 18-year-old relative of a 32 Battalion fighter, said: “Staying here is useless for me. It's not a good place; after school, I will go.”

    Many of those who opted to remain feel stranded between South Africa, where their service is scorned, and Angola, where they are seen as traitors.

    “Angolans say we killed them. The ANC here think that we killed their fighters,” said Alexander Joaquim, a 74-year-old veteran of 32 Battalion. “What are we supposed to do?”


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  • 05/22/17--16:00: Shot of the day
  • Shot of the dayShot of the day DISPLACED: An Iraqi girl carries a baby in a backpack turned into a baby carrier as displaced Iraqis from western Mosul's al-Islah al-Zaraye neighbourhood flee their area during government forces military offensive to retake the area from the Islamic State (IS) group fighters. Photo: NAMPA/ AFP

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  • 05/22/17--16:00: Tackling spatial apartheid
  • Tackling spatial apartheidTackling spatial apartheid Black Namibians have endured a painful history.

    The scars of apartheid, with all its brutality are still fresh in the memory of many Namibians, who have shared those memories with their children.

    It is no secret that we are a country that hasn't fully dealt with our troubled past, this is why racial relations are so fragile.

    We still have skewed wealth distribution and the majority of black Namibians, still struggle to access economic opportunities and languish in seemingly endless poverty, much of it a direct result of our segregated and unequal past.

    As such, we should guard against provocative activities, the kind that some neighbourhood watches around our more affluent neighbourhoods continue to make themselves guilty of.

    We continue to hear horror stories about the kind of treatment mostly black Namibians are subjected to – in the neighbourhoods they call home – in an independent Namibia.

    Many Namibians have shared experiences of how they have been asked to explain what they are doing in a certain neighbourhood at a certain time of day or night.

    This may as well have something to do with fighting crime, but for older Namibians, it reeks of what was previously known as 'die swart gevaar'.

    This is largely because the blackness of people still means “danger” to some.

    What needs to be done?

    We need to strengthen law enforcement and public protection in this country and if we insist on having community watch groups, then we need to have them as inclusive as possible.

    In affluent areas, they need training on race relations; they need to know that racial issues are sensitive and emotional issues.

    What we should not allow, is for people to be treated like sub-humans in their own country or neighbourhood for that matter – or allow people's skin colour to equate to thievery or criminality.

    Black people are no threat to any life in Kleine Kuppe, Avis, Eros, Pioneerspark or Ludwigsdorf, but thieves and criminals are.

    Black people are no threat to life and wealth in Swakopmund or Henties Bay, thieves and criminals are.

    What we need is neighbourhood watches that will unite people across racial lines to bring about positive change.

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  • 05/22/17--16:00: State wants 40 years
  • State wants 40 yearsState wants 40 yearsProsecution seeks lengthy sentence for murder conviction Convicted murderer Paulus Ruben could get a lengthy jail term if the prosecution gets its way. The prosecution wants the High Court to impose a 40-year jail term on a man convicted of murder.

    The state and defence lawyers on Friday in the Windhoek High Court concluded arguments for sentencing of a 52-year-old man who was found guilty of murder on circumstances.

    Magritha Beukes (41) was found dead in the house she was living in with the accused, Paulus Ruben, at Bahnhof close to Rehoboth.

    The murder took place between 3-4 January 2012. Earlier Judge Nate Ndauendapo had found that the state had proven beyond reasonable doubt that Ruben was the person who murdered Beukes.

    The accused was not at home but was arrested eight days later at a farm about 50km from Bahnhof.

    The accused bludgeoned his lover to death with an unknown object and ran away.

    She died due to internal bleeding as a result of a blunt force trauma.

    State prosecutor Ethel Ndlovu stated Ruben assaulted the victim and caused her death.

    The accused has been in custody for the murder in the past five years but this cannot be counted automatically in his favour.

    She asked the court to impose a 40-year imprisonment and emphasised that mercy depends on the circumstances of each case.

    “The moral blameworthiness of the accused is that he has never been remorseful throughout the trial,” Ndlovu argued.

    She stressed the accused did not show remorse and thereby did not take court into confidence and argued that is why it would be difficult for court to consider mercy in his favour.

    “Mercy should go both ways. The accused did not show any mercy to the deceased,” she maintained.

    Ndlovu further stated that even though previous convictions of the accused are more than 10 years it is relevant in this case.

    “It has an element of violence towards another person. Some weight has to be considered on the aspect of violence as it is currently prevalent in domestic setting,” she said.

    She submitted that the Prevention of Domestic Violence Act was enacted as far back as 2003, but it appears people do not heed and urged courts to continue imposing severe sentences.

    “The manner in which the deceased was killed, she was unarmed and that he is not open to court. When he is not open to court as to what happened he leaves the court in dark and this is a sign that he is not remorseful,” she argued.

    State-funded defence lawyer Hipura Ujaha on behalf of his client informed the court that the accused has been in custody for five years as his application for bail was refused.

    According to him, a lengthy custodial sentence will break his client who is now 52 years old.

    “With custodial sentence must be an element of mercy,” he pleaded and added that sentence above 30 years will amount to life imprisonment.

    He pleaded for a custodial sentence, which is partially suspended.

    Ndauendapo postponed the matter for sentence to 20 July.


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    Matjila urges pensioners not to gambleMatjila urges pensioners not to gamble The chairperson of the National Pensioners Association of Namibia (NAPAN), Andrew Matjila has urged pensioners to find meaningful means of keeping themselves busy after retirement, and avoid squandering their pension in gambling houses.

    Matjila, who was speaking at a post-retirement meeting, last week for the Government Institutions Pension Fund's (GIPF), said retirement does not spell doom and gloom for retirees.

    “To retire does not mean to go and sit down and do nothing,” he told senior citizens who gathered at the Roman Catholic Hall.

    Instead, he said, retirement should be looked at as a change of regime, a re-orientation and a change of mind set, while for those religiously inclined it ought to be viewed as a re-examination of one's conscience.

    “Although retiring can be very trying for those who have been in employment for decades, there is enjoyment out there too that should make the great change from the humdrum life of office work,” he said.

    Matjila called on senior citizens to be involved in communities they live in especially in activities they enjoy doing.

    Giving himself as an example, the 84-year old Matjila said he was a choir conductor of the Cathedral Church in Windhoek and did this because of his love for singing and music in general.

    He urged other senior citizens to travel, particularly within the country and to towns they have never seen before.

    Many of the senior citizens told him that they had not seen towns such as Oshakati, Keetmanshoop or Katima Mulilo.

    Many had not seen State House or even parliament building.

    A trip to Windhoek for the senior citizens will soon be planned, Matjila said.


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  • 05/22/17--16:00: In search of change
  • In search of changeIn search of change As the Arab Spring raced through the streets of North Africa in 2011, the world watched in disbelief at how young people gathered the courage to challenge the status quo in what later become known as the Arab spring. Africa has for the past 6 decades since Ghana first became independent in 1957, always suffered from the absence of visionary leadership, consequently failing to be truly independent. This has been been coupled with a helping hand from well-meaning countries who always came to the rescue of the continent.

    So many people are not able to see change and sometimes rightfully so, because to change is difficult, it requires collective sacrifices. Young people of the continent of Africa must step forward and help provide clear direction of the paths they want to take. The creation of strong civil societies can be the beginning of that long journey towards youth emancipation.

    Africa may never reach its full potential if young people are afraid to stand up and be creators of a brighter future. We get lost when we talk tough, about how we wish to see radical economic transformation on the continent, yet we are not willing to face the consequences of our radicalism. In this column of the Astute Conversation, regular writers Farai and Jeisn explain the need to make Africa great using its resources, providing hope to the hopeless, those denied the right to choose the future they want – Joseph Kalimbwe.

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  • 05/22/17--16:00: Let’s Make Africa Great
  • Let’s Make Africa Great Let’s Make Africa Great Africa has for long been a continent with countless types of minerals shipped out of the continent for the development of other continents - the continent deemed as the motherland and the cradle of mankind, Africa, has a population of just over 1.2 billion people with growth still emerging. It is home to 54 countries with vast traditions and cultures that hold much depth in African history.

    A continent deemed to possess vast potential in terms of raw materials and human capital, it sees its potential being submerged by both internal and external factors in the international system.

    The platform for an awakened generation has risen and shall continue as long as African leaders and their respective countries are able to invest in the present and future generations to come. In order to make immense and positive changes, it is necessary to look at the past in order to impact the future.

    The rise of radical politicians on the African continent has received much criticism, especially from the political elders that held our African governments at ransom forever.

    Shall we take note and realise that the rise of the phoenix called independence was brought about by radical politics, which brought about change to social structures, brought by our current and deceased leaders.

    It is time for the youth to make Africa great by changing the inequalities that face African countries on the continent and in their mother countries. The international system is flawed, with Africa continually receiving the shortest end of the stick, changing this conundrum will lead to Africa being great again.

    The international system is not entirely to blame, we as Africans have played a role in the demise of our continent by losing touch with our roots from whence our cultural and social identity is derived. The migration and search for greener pastures have diminished the term “charity begins at home”.

    The migration of African intelligentsia abroad is a matter of great concern to the African continent.

    The efforts, successes and failures of our African leaders are noted and documented immensely, it is therefore time to rise up and bring about the necessary change needed to take Africa to the pinnacle where it needs to be.

    The need for transparency in the politics of the international system will lead us a step forward, as the awareness and inclusion of civil society is lacking on the African continent.

    The Brexit vote is something that should be incorporated to the African continent in order for societies to determine their fates instead of the political elite. Self-determination must be incorporated into African civil society.

    Change is not achieved overnight, it is a process that needs constant and consistent backing for it to excel and overcome all odds. Industrialization in the international system is a major of concern to the African continent. The advent of Chinese investment on the African continent has brought about head-way for industrialization, which has brought about worries to the West who initially tapped into the raw resources of the continent in the 19th century.

    Africa can be made great again if the continent will be able to extract, refine, produce and export to the rest of the World.

    This will allow Africa to have considerable footprint on the international market and system. This aspect of the developed world came at the cost of the developing world (Africa) and it remains the same to date, they are still fuelling their economies with the raw materials of our beloved continent.

    The tired and weary, yet wise, have done their part and it is time for this generation to take the reins and deliver to its promised land.

    The imminent voices of the youth must be heard in order to make this continent great again.

    The day we as a continent are able to determine and define our fate, is the day that many look forward to. It cannot be said that Africans have not been given the chance to have a firm grip on the paths of our futures, but sadly we succumb to pressure as if we have no intellectual know-how of the international system works.

    The debate at the International Criminal Court is an illustration of this, the Rome Statute of 1998 saw superpowers such as China and the USA refuse to be part of this new international order.

    Sadly, 34 African countries signed and 19 years later the African Union has called for the mass withdrawal from the ICC, but the damage has been done.

    Is it that our leaders are blindfolded when these agreements are presented? The fact that the United States of America is a notable absence should have raised questions in the minds of our African leaders. This questions whether African countries have literate and knowledgeable leaders to govern civil society and to propel the entire African continent to greater heights.

    *Farai Munoriarwa is a student studying towards a post graduate degree at the University of Namibia's Military Science.

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    Transforming hope to supreme logic                              ...Transforming hope to supreme logic ... In 2004, a fairly young unknown Barack Obama stepped onto the steps of the Democratic Party's National Congress (DNC) to give a key note address to the delegates who gathered in a hall in Denver, Colorado. His main task was to give democrats hope to vote for John Kelly in the run up to elections against republication George H.W Bush.

    He said, “hope is not a blind optimism. It's not ignoring the enormity of the task ahead or the roadblocks that stand in our path. It's not sitting on the side lines or shirking from a fight.

    Hope is that thing inside us that insists, despite all evidence to the contrary, that something better awaits us if we have the courage to reach for it, and to work for it, and to fight for it”, in a speech that also served as an introduction into American politics.

    Supreme logic is the logic we need to use to make sure that young Namibians can one day rise to the challenge and build a better future for themselves.

    The fight for a better Namibia will not be given to us by anyone, but by us, by the men and women who are not content to settle for the world as it is and who have the courage to remake our country as it is intended to be.

    It's only how we play the game that may see us lose.

    Change will not come if we wait for some other person or some other time.

    We are the ones we've been waiting for; we are the change that we seek.

    Where you are right now doesn't have to determine where you'll end up, together we resolve that a great nation must care for the welfare and equality of everyone and uplift people from life's worst hazards and misfortunes, if not, we might approach a blind spot.

    The Harrambee Prosperity Plan is the most far-reaching weapon to fight in our modern time, but individuals are mercilessly using this plan against the masses.

    It can add fear and hopelessness in the psyche of the people. It means that what the enemies of progress cannot do, individuals are doing.

    You can understand what trust and hope will you have in people, who made you suffer from fear and hopelessness. How fortunate for the government that people don't trace the main problem.

    There is no critical thinking except in giving and executing commands. If it were otherwise human society could have exist. Nelson Mandela taught us, “If u want to shine like a sun, first you have to burn like it.”

    For we have always understood that when times change, so must we, that fidelity to our founding principles require new responses to new challenges and that preserving our individual freedoms ultimately requires collective action. To avoid being mistaken for a sell-out, choose your friends carefully.

    The more politically and educationally minded, black or white, the more you get closer to solutions.

    The time to fix our broken system is now. We need stronger enforcement in the state and at the workplaces. But for reforms to work, we also must respond to the long lasting problems that hinders our development.

    When we have available serviced land, we must give it to our nationals for housing before foreigners receive a single square metre of that land for investment.

    From the day I understood our situation, I've been told that it's too ambitious to address our challenges; and effort would be too contentious and that we should just put things on hold for a while. For those who make this claim: How long should we wait? How long should we put country's future on hold? You might be locked in a world not of your own making, but you still have a claim on how it is shaped.

    You still have responsibilities.

    What if we focus on the needs of the entire population? Let us not only eliminate the challenges hanging over our heads, but help all the people groaning under the yoke of poverty.

    I have high regard and respect for those men who erased the disgrace from the foreheads of our nation, the likes of Dr. Elijah Ngurare, Prof.

    Diescho and many other unforgettable leaders and activists. A once famous quote states, “democracy is beautiful in theory; in practice it is a fallacy.

    If I advance; follow me. If I retreat; kill me. If I die; avenge me. It is better to live one day as a lion than one-hundred years as a sheep”.

    *Jeisn.S. Ashimbanga is second year Bachelor of Education (Honours) student at the University of Namibia

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    State withdraws charges against 3 PakistanisState withdraws charges against 3 Pakistanis FRED GOEIEMAN

    A Pakistani complainant in a shooting that happened two years ago at a mosque in Windhoek West has withdrawn a charge of attempted murder against three countrymen.

    Windhoek-based businessman Sayed Kamran, along with fellow complainants Fazal Rahman and Mohammed Ashraf, withdrew charges of attempted murder and assault with intent to cause grievous bodily harm.

    The court granted an application by the State for the withdrawal of the charges against the accused, Noveed Tahir, 47, Muhammed Usman, 27, and Muhammed Khan, 38.

    It was alleged that they had fired several shots at the complainants at the mosque in Windhoek West on 18 May 2015. A further allegation was that the three accused had hit Rahman on the head with an unknown object at the same place and on the same date.

    Tahir is a Namibian national of Pakistani origin. He is married to a Namibian woman, has a child with her and owns a shop in Windhoek.

    Kamran, when asked by prosecutor Rowan Beukes why he was withdrawing the complaint, said he was a businessman and wanted peace.

    “I compromised after I was called by my family from Pakistan and now do not want to continue with the case. I want to live in peace,” he said.

    During cross-examination by defence lawyer Bradley Basson, Kamran said he had not been threatened or offered compensation for withdrawing the case.

    The other two complainants, Usman and Khan, also said they withdrew the charges voluntarily.

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    Southern, central REDs in 2018 Southern, central REDs in 2018 ‘No better alternative to regional electricity distributors’ Regional electricity distributors are expected to take over electricity supply to southern and central Namibia before the end of next year. OGONE TLHAGE

    The Electricity Control Board (ECB) is pushing ahead with plans to finalise the formation of two new regional electricity distributors (REDs).

    ECB chief executive Foibe Namene says the southern and central areas can expect REDs as soon as next year.

    “It is expected that the Southern Regional Electricity Distributor (SORED) will be established by early 2018 and the Central Regional Electricity Distributor by end of 2018,” Namene said recently.

    She ascribed the delay of the formation of the two regional distributors to several issues, which included a perceived loss of revenue by local authorities and the lack of a binding legal framework.

    “The delay in the formation of SORED and Central RED was caused by several factors comprising of the perceived loss of revenue made from electricity, shareholding issues and lack of a binding legal framework on the establishment of REDs. However, developments in the industry for the past 10 to 15 years have shown that there is no better alternative to the REDs business model,” she said.

    “During a national stakeholder summit held in 2014 there was consensus that the establishment of the two remaining REDs has to be finalised,” she said.

    Currently, the greater Windhoek area, Dordabis and Gobabis all procure electricity directly from NamPower while the Keetmanshoop town council has been engaged in a protracted battle to sever ties with its electricity supplier, the Southern Electricity Company (SELco).

    Highlighting the advantages of regional electricity distributors, Namene said: “REDs have been effective at refurbishing and replacing aged assets and managed to contain and reduce network losses. Yes, they are fulfilling their purpose. The REDs’ contribution to the supply of electricity throughout Namibia has undoubtedly been a success.

    “RED business operations are viable and shareholders receive dividends. For local authorities and regional councils it further means that they can be assured that their electricity functions are performed by a competent entity, with the capacity to provide good quality electricity services at required standards to their consumers.

    “The REDs leverage economies of scale and harmonised tariffs and service delivery. They are self-sufficient and therefore do not need government financial bailouts as was the case in the past and currently with certain local authorities, village councils and regional councils.

    “REDs are able to raise commercial loans for network development, they are technically oriented and better able to operate and maintain the network infrastructure facilities. As a result, consumers do not experience NamPower cut-offs due to non-payment,” she continued.

    According to her, Erongo RED had paid N$422 million in local authority supercharges, CENORED N$204 million and NORED N$87 million over the period 2006 – 2014.

    Commenting on the implementation of the southern electricity distributor, she said: “The Southern RED will come into effect this year or early 2018 and this is very important to the EDI reform since the process had been ongoing for a very long time.

    “Therefore, the ECB is optimistic that a fourth RED will join the ESI and uphold the criteria it is based upon.”

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    Otjiwarongo tackles bad debt Otjiwarongo tackles bad debt JANA-MARI SMITH

    With more than N$43 million owed to the Otjiwarongo municipality, the local authority has deployed eight debt collectors and begun to suspend services to non-paying customers.

    Otjiwarongo CEO Ismael /Howoseb told Namibian Sun last week that although the latest auditor-general report revealed only a few accounting issues at the town, the town’s “weak point” was the issue of outstanding debts.

    “The non-payment for municipal services is a worrisome issue,” he said. He said otherwise the town’s highly qualified and dedicated financial services department ensured that the town was line with the rest of its accounting duties.

    In order to tackle the bad debt, this year the council approved a request to appoint eight contract workers to act as debt collectors, in an effort to reduce the N$43 million in bad debts.

    In May the team started knocking on the doors of residents with outstanding accounts.

    /Howoseb said the team was also focusing on educating the public on the necessity of paying their municipal rates and taxes.

    “They explain why it is necessary to pay for municipal services. Since they began this month, we have seen a definite response. People arrive at our offices in order to make arrangements for settling their accounts.”

    He said the municipality had also begun to cut services to residents who “act stubbornly.”

    Big praise

    While the outstanding millions are mainly owed by residents and businesses in the Orwetoveni residential area, /Howoseb added that the pensioners in that area were among the municipality’s best customers.

    “We don’t have any problems with the pensioners. They are some of the best clients and pay on time and regularly. We have a problem more with the younger people and some of the government employees. We struggle with them.”

    He said the new strategy of door-to-door debt collection was still being tested but he hoped it would make a drastic difference.

    “I think by the end of June we should be able to see overall results. Then we can say whether it is effective or not.”

    If the strategy proves to be effective, /Howoseb said the council would consider permanently employing a team of debt collectors.

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  • 05/22/17--16:00: More road deaths
  • More road deathsMore road deathsSix die in crashes over weekend Collisions and single-vehicle accidents claimed at least six lives and injured more than 20 people over the past weekend. At least six people were killed in accidents on Namibia's roads this weekend while more than 20 sustained injuries, including some Chinese tourists who were injured in an accident near Walvis Bay.

    Three people were killed in a head-on collision near Grootfontein on Friday.

    According to the police the accident occurred at about 19:00 on the Grootfontein-Rundu road at about 8km out of Grootfontein.

    It is alleged that a black Ford Focus and a red Fiat Uno collided head-on, killing three people. The deceased were identified as Moses Gariseb, the driver of the Uno, Petrus Gariseb, and Saara Garises.

    In another accident on Friday at 17:18 a mineworker was killed when the driver lost control of a Toyota Fortuner belonging to the Chinese Nuclear Engineering Company. The car was carrying four mineworkers to the Husab mine at the coast.

    It is alleged that about 20km from the gate of the mine the 26-year-old driver lost control of the vehicle and it overturned. One passenger, Luise Heigauses, 23, died upon arrival at hospital. The others sustained serious to slight injuries and were taken to the Cottage Hospital in Swakopmund for treatment.

    In another accident on Saturday, a Mazda double-cab bakkie overturned about 40km from Kamanjab. At a small bridge the driver lost and hit the side of the bridge.

    One of the five passengers, identified as Michael Kandi, 32, died at the scene whereas the others sustained serious to slight injuries. The injured were taken to the Outjo State Hospital for treatment.

    A 27-year-old man died in an accident at Onathinge on Friday after he lost control of the car he was driving and crashed into a cuca shop.

    The deceased, identified as Josef Matt Ndilimeke, was the only occupant of the car.

    Ndilimeke was driving a Toyota Corolla sedan from Onayena towards Onathinge when he lost control of the vehicle a few metres before a T-junction.

    He was rushed to the Onandjokwe Hospital by someone who saw the accident happen. Ndilimeke later succumbed to his injuries.

    In another accident on Friday, a white Mazda minibus with 15 occupants overturned on the gravel road between Omaruru and Uis at 22:00.

    About 20km before Uis the rear tyre of the vehicle burst and the driver lost control. Nine passengers sustained slight to serious injuries and they were taken to the Omaruru State hospital for treatment.


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  • 05/22/17--16:00: Rukoro fights suspension
  • Rukoro fights suspensionRukoro fights suspension A dispute has been declared at the Office of the Labour Commissioner over the suspension of Vekuii Rukoro as the CEO of Meatco.

    This was confirmed yesterday by Rukoro's legal representative, Jefta Tjitemisa, who said that no date had been set for the proceedings.

    Tjitemisa said Rukoro would not go ahead with an urgent court application, as he had indicated before.

    Rukoro, who was suspended about two weeks ago pending investigations into financial losses at the company, initially threatened the Meatco board of directors with legal action if they did not reinstate him within a certain time.

    In a letter to the Meatco board, agriculture minister John Mutorwa and public enterprise minister Leon Jooste, Tjitemisa said an urgent court application would be filed if Rukoro was not reinstated.

    In his response Mutorwa advised the board to fairly and impartially complete the investigation into the allegations of misconduct made against Rukoro.

    He said once the investigation was completed the board would be in a better and more credible position to take appropriate decisions.

    Rukoro has maintained that the suspension was unlawful because the Meatco Act requires a disciplinary hearing before an employee is suspended.

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


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