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Tells it All - Namibian Sun

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    From cleaner to business ownerFrom cleaner to business ownerSheer determination the secret of her success Selma Jonas did not let her humble beginnings as a cleaner stop her from owning a travel and tourism business. Seven years ago, Namibian entrepreneur Selma Jonas started a tourism business named Namibia Express Travel Tours and Information Centre. The story of the sole owner, Jonas, is one of determination.

    Jonass' story is of humble beginnings. Her career in hospitality and tourism started 23 years ago when she worked at a local hotel during school holidays.

    “I started off as a cleaner and then a waitress. When I eventually matriculated from Academia High School, I was offered a fulltime job as a switchboard operator,” said Jonas. She strived for success and was subsequently promoted to banqueting and conference coordinator and later to receptionist.

    “I enjoyed working, but decided to further my experience. I resigned from the hotel and joined a clothing retail group as branch manager in Keetmanshoop and later Karasburg,” Jonas said. With retail experience under her belt, Jonas joined a chain of tourism companies as a reservations consultant for six years. She became an expert in the field of hospitality, travel and tourism.

    “It is my passion and talent,” she said.

    Jonas faced many challenges when she opened her own business in 2010. At the time she lacked financial discipline and proper business planning skills.

    “I have been a Bank Windhoek customer for the past 23 years. I love the bank's culture and customer service. Since I approached the emerging small and medium small enterprises branch, my business has grown tremendously. I am psychologically and financially matured due to the advice I received from the emerging and small medium enterprises team,” said Jonas.

    According to Jonas, obtaining finance is one of the major challenges small and medium enterprises face. “My experience, as the owner of a small and medium enterprise, is that most of us suffer silently because we are scared to fail. We do not want to approach the banks and we also do not have our documents in order,” said Jonas.

    “My advice to entrepreneurs is that they should stand up and approach financial institutions,” she said. Jonas added that business people should know that it is only through good financial discipline and ethics that a business can succeed.

    STAFF REPORTER

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  • 07/04/17--16:00: Paladin under administration
  • Paladin under administrationPaladin under administrationUncertainty about payment to creditor Paladin, owner of the Langer Heinrich mine, is finding the going tough as pressures continue to weigh on its future. Embattled uranium miner Paladin Energy has called in administrators after failing to secure a standstill agreement with France's Electricite de France SA (EDF).

    Paladin was due to make repayments of a US$227-million debt to EDF on July 10.

    The administrators will immediately undertake a financial and operational assessment of Paladin and intend to continue to operate the company on a business-as-usual basis, until further notice, Paladin told shareholders.

    In the meantime, the company said that its management and directors are committed to working with the administrators on a restructure and recapitalization of the company.

    The Australian Stock Exchange (ASX) and Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX)-listed uranium miner has been hoping to divest of its 75% stake in the Langer Heinrich uranium mine, in Namibia, to joint venture partner China National Nuclear Corporation Overseas Uranium Holding, with the transaction still ongoing.

    Paladin previously attempted to negotiate a standstill agreement with EDF under the long-term supply agreement inked in 2012, but a subsequent ruling by an independent expert had found that the security offered by Paladin is insufficient.

    EDF has now informed Paladin that it is not prepared to enter into a standstill agreement, leaving the ASX- and TSX-listed Paladin with only days to repay the debt.

    The miner said on Monday that it was “considering the implications” of EDF's position for the future of the company.

    Meanwhile, Paladin is also working to advance the sale of its Langer Heinrich uranium project, in Namibia, saying on Monday that an expert determination process was in progress to determine the valuation of Paladin's interest in the project.

    A valuation is expected by July 20, after which suitor CNNC Overseas Uranium Holdings would have a 30-day period in which to notify Paladin of its intent to exercise its options over the project.

    MINING WEEKLY

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    Namibia fifth best for businessNamibia fifth best for business The US–Africa Business Centre has ranked Namibia fifth following the recent publication of its first Investor Confidence Indicator.

    It is composed of 13 widely used indicators, such as the Global Competitiveness ranking, Ease of Doing Business, Corruption Index, Ibrahim Index of African Governance and GDP Per Capita.

    Southern African countries were well represented among the top 13 African countries.

    “Namibia performs well in the overall score ranking fifth in Africa and third in Southern Africa behind her neighbours Botswana and South Africa,” the report authored by the US–Africa Business Centre said.

    “Like Botswana, Namibia ranks in the first quartile for all the indicators, while South Africa performed equally well except for the Global Peace Index, where the country is ranked in the third quartile,” the report noted.

    Despite Namibia's favourable ranking in all these indicators, the economy has not benefited from domestic and foreign direct investment to the extent her ranking would suggest, according to the US–Africa Business monitor.

    “Foreign direct investment is to a large extent restricted to natural resource extraction. The lack of investment into sustainable industries also limits job creation and eventually the fight against poverty and income inequality.”

    Policymakers have been advised to improve the ease of doing business though.

    “It is therefore important that Namibia continues with initiatives such as improving the business environment through the creation of the one-stop portal NamBizOne, but also designs and implements forward-looking, innovative policies that encourages and supports investment and job creation in order to reap more benefits from the favourable rankings,” the report said.

    Namibia was given a score of 58.82/100 for ease doing business by the World Bank and scored 4.02/7 in terms of competitiveness by the World Economic Forum while it rated fairly high on the Ibrahim Index of African Governance, achieving a score of 69.8/100, all based on 2016 data.

    STAFF REPORTER

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  • 07/04/17--16:00: Harvest king named
  • Harvest king namedHarvest king namedHoba boss comes out tops The annual top harvest figures have been listed and the so-called maize triangle has delivered the year's harvest king for Namibia. Gerhard Engelbrecht (photo) of the farm Hoba in die Grootfontein district was selected as harvest King for 2017 with a fantastic 9.7 tonnes per hectare.

    In the second place was Cobus Brand from the farm Valparaiso with an equally fantastic 9.6 tonnes per hectare.

    The associated annual harvest festival hosted by the Grootfontein Farmers' Association (on behalf of the winner, Engelbrecht) will take place on 19 August this year at the Grootfontein showgrounds.

    As in the past, guest speakers will provide some colour to the day, such as Johan van den Berg with a seasonal weather forecast for 2017/18 and Annelien Pienaar with a cooking and gardening programme for the ladies and entertainment for the children, like a treasure hunt and paint ball.

    Delicious snacks and meals will be on sale during the day.

    The traditional Ms Harvest Festival will also be selected and the day will be concluded with a steak braai and dance.

    STAFF REPORTER

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  • 07/04/17--16:00: Farmers in NCA empowered
  • Farmers in NCA empoweredFarmers in NCA empowered A total of 145 363 hectares in the Northern Communal Areas (NCA) have been improved under rangeland management through a project of almost three years.

    This was done through the Rangeland and Marketing Development Support Action (RMDSP-NCA) facilitated by the Meatco Foundation and through funding from the European Union, that came to an end on 15 March 2017.

    Since its inception in September 2014, the programme focused on five main components, namely rangeland and livestock management, livestock marketing, conservation agriculture (CA), governance of cooperatives, and grazing area committees (village committees) in the Northern Communal Area.

    Through a partnership between the Meatco Foundation, Conservation Agriculture Namibia (CAN), Meatco and the six regional livestock marketing cooperatives, various projects were streamlined.

    According to Meatco 30 grazing areas were targeted and by the end of the project, an over achievement was recorded, covering 34 grazing areas with a total of 145 363 hectares was improved under rangeland management. Furthermore, the programme benefited 4 354 direct household beneficiaries and approximately 10 000 indirect household beneficiaries.

    Additionally, gender equality was promoted with a 27% involvement of women subsequently improving their livelihoods by generating business opportunities for communities.

    Cooperatives were also endorsed by increased memberships from the surrounding farmers through mobilisation, interaction and collaboration for the provision of specific services such as fodder, seed and the selling of offal as well as the organising of marketing opportunities at auctions.

    According to Meatco, the project is one of the best ever integrated agricultural models in the communal sector.

    “If it can be up scaled up, it will enhance the livelihoods of farmers and the communities of the NCA,” says Meatco.

    The Meatco Foundation will continue to engage with the six cooperatives in the regions in order to oversee the planning and implementation of short-term and long-term activities. Through these projects the Meatco Foundation strives towards the commercialisation of communal livestock farmers in Namibia.

    STAFF REPORTER

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  • 07/04/17--16:00: Inside Meatco's tannery
  • Inside Meatco's tanneryInside Meatco's tannery The leather industry in Namibia contributes hundreds of millions to the country's economy and a major role player in the industry is Meatco's Okapuka Tannery.

    The leather industry exists as a by-product of the meat industry, with products including wet blue tanned hides, shoes and other exotic products. According to Meatco, major players in the local market are Nakara, Okapuka and Brukarros along with traders like ANPRO and LIBRA, contributing between N$500 million and N$600 million to the national economy.

    Meatco's Okapuka Tannery employs 38 people, but the sophisticated automated methods used require minimal human intervention to process fresh and salted hides to the wet blue stage. Wet blue is the first stage of leather processing and this is exported to Europe for manufacture in countries like Italy.

    Okapuka supplies 90% of its wet blue hides to the European Union while the remaining 10% goes to the local market. Hides are sourced throughout Namibia from Meatco and other abattoirs, as well as from South Africa and Mauritius.

    Once they have been processed, these are destined for Nakara locally and to Italy and China internationally.

    According to Meatco maximising market opportunities remains a major consideration. Due to the market volatilities including exchange rates influencing the industry, it was decided that no lower-grade hides will be purchased in future but only high-grade hides to supplement a shortfall.

    Also, no sheep and goat hides will be bought.

    According to Meatco, it was also decided that both international and local economic conditions will be taken into consideration when attempting to reduce the corporation's vulnerability to fluctuations in those markets.

    “A strategic decision was taken to 'right size' production in the tannery to increase returns.”

    Most exported hides feed the fashion industry which is inherently sensitive to currency fluctuations on international markets, and due to uncertainty of the water supply in Windhoek, it is prudent to adjust production accordingly. A full spectrum of computer controls is used to achieve environmentally favourable processing and consistent quality.

    According to Meatco cattle hides are exported in wet blue or processed on order in dyed crust upholstery leather suitable for the furniture and automotive industries. Thorn bushes and branding can cause defects. Therefore, hides of Namibian origin are classified as corrected or heavily corrected grain-type leather. Splits are finished with the Helcor process for automotive and shoe upper leather of a high quality. Bovine hides are the most important raw material used in the leather industry globally. The current contribution of wet blue to the Namibian GDP is larger than that of locally produced value-added products, making it worth considering as a standalone product, says Meatco.

    STAFF REPORTER

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    Small sheep exported under schemeSmall sheep exported under scheme Sheep producers who are affected by the drought are reminded that the sheep marketing scheme makes provision that sheep that are “too small or too lean” may be exported.

    This includes sheep that weigh less than 36kg and are classified as fat grade (0).

    To be able to market sheep under this condition of the sheep marketing scheme, sheep producers must apply with the Meat Board livestock agent.

    The agent and abattoir representative or a Meat Board representative will then certify whether the sheep qualify under the “too small or too lean” condition and are not suitable for slaughter. In case of a dispute, the Meat Board will make use of a carcass classifier to determine whether the sheep comply with the set conditions. Should the abattoir representative not be available, the Meat Board representative will certify whether the sheep qualify as “too small or too lean” and may be exported or not. Similar terms and conditions apply to the export of fat tail sheep.

    The Meat Board, at its latest board meeting on 18 May this year approved an additional condition to the sheep marketing scheme.

    This condition stipulates that in the case where a producer sells sheep to an abattoir for slaughtering, and the producer does not get paid by that particular abattoir within seven working days for the sheep delivered, that producer will get an additional sheep export quota, equal to or less than the number of sheep delivered to the abattoir.

    This additional condition is effective immediately until the upcoming board meeting of the Meat Board on 10 August when this condition will be re-evaluated.

    Furthermore the Meat Board said the Directorate of Veterinary Services approved the compulsory application of individual small stock identification ear tags for the import and export of small stock to and from inter alia South Africa, for implementation as from 1 September. The small stock identification ear tags consist of a set of visual ear tags for placement on the right ear and a set of electronic ear tags for placement on the left ear of small stock.

    The Meat Board currently has 96 000 small stock identification ear tags in stock and producers are requested to purchase these soonest possible for any planned exports of small stock as from 1 September 2017. The cost of the ear tags is N$10.75 per set and they are made available on a subsidised basis to producers only at the Meat Board.



    STAFF REPORTER

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  • 07/04/17--16:00: Value-addition the way to go
  • Value-addition the way to goValue-addition the way to goGrowth at home strategy a challenge Agriculture minister John Mutorwa has urged producers to sell their products locally, both meat and agronomic farmers. The growth at home strategy is one of the major challenges the agronomic and meat industry are still faced with as Namibia is still not a country that consumes what it produces.

    This is according to the agriculture minister John Mutorwa who said that Namibia is still facing a problem within both sectors regarding government's strategy of consuming what you produce.

    Mutorwa said real meaning should be given to this strategy and Namibia should become known as a country that produces what it consumes and not a country where the contrary applies.

    He also said in especially small towns, women can be seen working and producing on the fields and therefore a programme is needed for these people to get their produce into the market and to the mainstream consumer.

    Mutorwa made these remarks at the announcement of the new Namibia Agronomic Board (NAB).

    He further elaborated about the restriction of importation and the export of controlled products.

    “When there is a good harvest within the country we need to make sure that grain is bought by local millers and the government before we import.”

    According to him, despite the drought that Namibia experienced over the last few years, good rains have been experienced over several parts of the country since last year.

    “Farmers and producers have taken advantage of these conditions and produced good harvests for this year.”

    Mutorwa specifically mentioned that he paid a working visit to the Zambezi Region last week where he was briefed about the bumper maize harvest produced in that region.

    He said that maize must be bought by both the country's millers and the government's Agricultural Marketing and Trade Agency (AMTA) to fill the government's national strategic food reserves (silos) with grain from both the government's green scheme irrigation projects as well as from individual farmers who wish to sell to AMTA.

    Furthermore, Mutorwa advised the board revise the Agronomic Industry Act.

    According to him the act was gazetted and signed into law in 1992 and for all intents and practical purposes, it is 25 years old.

    “It is a good law and it has assisted us for 25 years, but it needs to respond to realities and changes. The board needs to study the law and look at the dynamics and see whether amendments are needed.”

    These amendments should strengthen both the existing law and its regulations.

    According to Mutorwa these would be in addition to amendments made four years ago particularly when dealing with the clear delineation of NAB, AMTA and Agribusdev's mandates and responsibilities.

    The amendment bill was cleared and approved by the Cabinet committee on legislation in early 2015.

    “I do not know why it is taking that long for to finalise the amendment bill,” said Mutorwa.

    He pointed out that there are for instance several definitions within the law that are too vague such as agronomic crop and controlled product.

    The newly appointed board chairperson, Michael Iyambo said the board is honoured to accept the critical role to lead this vibrant industry during the next three years.

    “This is a time with many challenges that the people and the economy are facing, but there are opportunities that we need to capitalise on. We are ready to overcome these challenges with the support of the ministry.”

    He said one of the main challenges facing the industry is the fiscal strains that the country is faced with.

    He added that the buying power of neighbouring countries such as South Africa and Angola is also very low which is impacting the agronomic sector as large volumes cannot be moved. Furthermore he stressed that production levels in the country need to be such that rural people are taken out of poverty and hunger.

    ELLANIE SMIT

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  • 07/04/17--16:00: Black empowerment essential
  • Black empowerment essentialBlack empowerment essential There is growing debate on the topic of black economic empowerment in both Namibia and in South Africa. Our neighbours in particular are getting stick for pursing a radical economic transformation agenda. Some sections of the media and commentators alike, have termed it a controversial programme, which is championed by both the ANC and the Economic Freedom Fighters. South African leader Jacob Zuma has said his party is not apologetic in pursuing radical socio-economic transformation “vigorously” to improve the lives of the majority of his people. Namibia as a country still grappling with high levels of inequality, it is practically impossible to ignore the debate around the empowerment of the previously disadvantaged. The Namibian economy is still not yet inclusive. It is not transformed and still reflects the entrenched the legacy of colonialism, which certainly does not augur well for the majority poor and less privileged. Previously disadvantaged Namibians have made peace with the fact that there were oppressive policies that excluded them from access to capital, to infrastructure and to build industries, compared to white-owned businesses that greatly benefited. At least government has succeeded in introducing free primary and secondary education, but challenges still exist in the sector. The land reform programme has spectacularly failed and this is well documented. Given the status quo, do we really expect previously disadvantaged Namibians to sit with folded arms and pretend that all is well? The economic legacy of segregation must be tackled and there is a need to come up with fundamental and radical transformation measures that must be embraced by all Namibians. It is sad that there are a few Namibians who are determined to defend and protect the status quo and those who still refuse to nod in agreement that the economy remains firmly skewed in favour of whites. Empowerment legislation should not be ignored and government must not be apologetic for demanding economic transformation. If we are serious about redistribution and inclusivity we must acknowledge that only a radical plan is a foremost and necessary empowerment tool.

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  • 07/04/17--16:00: 73 spots for 1 000 learners
  • 73 spots for 1 000 learners73 spots for 1 000 learnersSwapo Khomas leaders retain positions Parents at the coast are at their wits' end with no space for their little ones to do Grade 1 next year. The Special Reserve Force of the police had to be called in after chaos ensued at the Kuisebmond Community Hall in Walvis Bay on Monday where over 1 000 parents jostled to register children for Grade 1 at !Nara and Tutaleni primary schools. The two schools only had 73 places available.

    !Nara Primary School can only accommodate 38 Grade 1 learners while Tutaleni Primary School can take only 35.

    Parents Joel Shaningwa and Frans Shiimi said they had arrived at 03:00 and 05:00 respectively, to queue and hopefully register their children. Some of the parents had slept in front of the community hall to ensure that they would get a place for their children. Parents grew agitated and refused to stand in queues and hence the summoning of the police to restore order. Currently, Tutaleni Primary School has an enrolment of 1 435 learners from Grade 1 to 7, including learners attending afternoon classes.

    “We can only take 35 learners. Those who remain will be placed on a waiting list and this will be forwarded to the Walvis Bay circuit inspector's office for record-keeping purposes. We cannot accommodate afternoon classes as we already have afternoon classes for Grade 3 learners who will be in Grade 4 next year and they will remain in the afternoon class,” said Josef Damaseb, the principal of Tutaleni Primary School.

    “There is a lack of accommodation for all the learners due to the influx of people from other places, placing extra strain on us.”

    !Nara Primary School, has an enrolment of 1 652 learners, and has only three Grade 1 classes. “We can only accommodate 38 Grade 1 learners as we already have two pre-primary classes that will move up to Grade 1 next year. We also need to accommodate those learners who might fail Grade 1 this year,” Ronald Visagie, department head at !Nara Primary School said.

    “We don't need more classes; we need an entirely new school that will cater for the junior primary phase.”

    The inspector of education for the Walvis Bay circuit, Monica

    /Gawises said only 550 learners in Grade 1 were registered at different primary schools in Walvis Bay.

    “For 2017, we enrolled 1 649 Grade 1 learners. To accommodate everyone we opened afternoon classes at the primary schools, and also had extra classrooms built. However, for next year, if we go with the 2017 enrolment numbers, 1 100 learners will not be in school next year. We cannot ask for more schools to accommodate afternoon classes, as they are already full,” Visagie said.

    “Previously, we had tents erected to accommodate the learners before we introduced afternoon classes but the wind blew the tents away.”

    /Gawises also emphasised the need for more schools to accommodate the growing number of learners.

    Leandrea Louw

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    Swapo Khomas leaders retain positionsSwapo Khomas leaders retain positions All Swapo Party Khomas regional leaders on Saturday retained their positions in a regional election.

    Swapo Party Regional Coordinator, Elliot Dhimbulukwa Mbako won with 55 votes and will be in that position for a second term after taking over from Godhardt Kasuto in 2015.

    Contenders Liinekela Tsoubaroko garnered 27 votes while Moses Shikwa got four votes.

    Regional Information and Mobilisation Secretary, Meriam Onesmus retained her position with 37 votes and has been in it since 2015 after Sacky Shanghala.

    Cornelia Engelbrecht and Matilde Ukeva lost the position with 24 and 23 votes respectively.

    Regional Treasurer Martha Namundjebo-Tilahun also retained her position for the third term, with 52 votes.

    Contender Martin Kaali Shipanga lost with 33 votes.

    The ruling party's regional leaders will serve for the next five years.

    NAMPA

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    Online child porn watchdog launchedOnline child porn watchdog launched In an effort to stop the spread of online child sexual abuse material, Namibia last week joined the ranks of countries globally by launching an online whistleblowing tool aimed at taking down and preventing the distribution of child pornography online.

    “The emergence of online child sexual abuse images and videos, also called 'child pornography', is a scourge of our time and a reality in any country. Namibia is not immune to online child sexual abuse material,” said Unicef representative, Marcus Betts at the launch.

    According to a study done in 2016 on knowledge, attitudes and practices of ICT use and online protection risks, found that 29% of respondents had seen child sexual abuse material online.

    These findings bust the myth still prevalent in Namibia that children do not access the internet on a large scale and are not at risk of online violence and exploitation, Betts said.

    “The global, and now also nationally available, evidence has accelerated the engagement of the highest levels of government, including law enforcement and criminal justice partners, to collaborate to creating a safer environment for children,” he said.

    “Namibia, like many other countries, is concerned with child online protection as the number of online users increases rapidly, resulting in online risks for children and requiring adequate responses to address child online protection,” Linda Aipenge from the information ministry said at the launch.

    Against this background, the UK-based Internet Watch Foundation (IWF) launched a national online reporting portal for child pornography in collaboration with Lifeline/Childline Namibia and several ministries last week, to help identify and remove the material.

    The IWF is a non-governmental organisation that works globally to help victims of child sexual abuse worldwide by identifying and removing online images and videos of their abuse.

    The portal has been set up on the Lifeline/Childline website and provides users with the option to identify themselves or report content anonymously.

    IWF's director of policy and public affairs, Kristof Claesen said the portal has already been set up in 16 other countries.

    “It brings together police, governments, child protection organisations and other key stakeholders to create awareness of the importance of reporting child sexual abuse images,” he said.

    Namibia's portal will be hosted on the website of the organisation LifeLine / ChildLine.

    With the click of a button, one will be able to report by sharing the respective web link with the abusive content. The portal can be accessed on Life Line/Child Lines website (www.lifelinechildline.org.na).

    STAFF REPORTER

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    Kosis teen gets wheelchair from Ombaye FishingKosis teen gets wheelchair from Ombaye Fishing The Ombaye Fishing company from Walvis Bay responded to the plea of a disabled young man from the Kosis settlement in the Bethanie District who asked for a wheelchair.

    Ombaye Fishing chairperson, Libolly Haufiku and managing director Lukas Uutoni drove down to Keetmanshoop over the weekend, and handed over the wheelchair and groceries to the mother of 19-year-old Desmond Kaffer.

    The paraplegic young man and his unemployed mother, Sara Kaffer who cares for him full-time, were featured on national television last week, sharing how they navigate through life's troubles.

    Desmond made a plea for a wheelchair at the end of the Namibian Broadcasting Corporation (NBC) news insert, stating it will help him sit up and move around.

    Haufiku and Uutoni brought the gifts worth N$5 000 to the regional office of the NBC on Saturday, also meeting with the station manager Cheryl Coetie, who donated adult nappies to Desmond during the same occasion, and reporter Natangwe Jimmy.

    Sara was accompanied by Kosis settlement clerk Etienne Boois and well-known activist at the settlement, Anna Joseph.

    “We saw the touching story on NBC and decided to help out,” Haufiku said.

    Sara said she told her son that she was travelling to Keetmanshoop to collect his wheelchair and he could not hide his joy.

    “I know when we go back he will sing and laugh all day. He says he will go to school now; we are so happy,” she said.

    Joseph expressed gratitude to Ombaye, adding though that it was a shame that local companies were not doing more for residents in the //Karas Region.

    “We have multi-million dollar mining, agricultural and fishing companies in the region, but the [response] after this story was aired came from a company on the other side of the coastline; it is sad,” she said. Joseph urged local companies to invest in the region, especially in the rural areas “that are always left behind”.

    Before the donation to the family, Ombaye donated N$36 000 towards the medical costs of two children of an Otjiwarongo family afflicted by disabilities, also featured in the same news bulletin.

    NAMPA

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    Okakarara-Ongwediva twinning worksOkakarara-Ongwediva twinning works The mayors of Ongwediva and Okakarara have hailed the cooperation agreement between them, saying their unity has benefitted both councils to realise development goals in strategic areas of cooperation.

    Last week the two sister towns extended their cooperation agreement that they signed in 2008. The agreement focuses on key development areas including cultural heritage, capacity development, economic development and tourism.

    During the renewal ceremony held in Ongwediva, the mayor, Angelina Angula, highlighted the achievements realised from the cooperation. Angula said Ongwediva assisted Okakarara with the establishment of Okakarara Agricultural Show, as well as on the Build Together programme. Ongwediva in return, received material support to help flood victims. “It has been nine years since the friendship and cooperation agreement between the two towns was signed on 15 February 2008. This is clear evidence the two towns meant business then and now, and that nine years is not enough to realise the mutual needs of the two towns. The review of the cooperation agreement informed us that there is need for a continued mutual understanding between Ongwediva and Okakarara towns,” Angula said. “Over the past years, Ongwediva received a donation from Okakarara towards flood affected communities. Ongwediva visited Okakarara to aid with their strong agricultural show and Build Together programme. This time around, I would like to see more networking platforms being created in order to further strengthen this friendship.”

    Okakarara mayor Olga Tjiurutue-Katukundu said the two towns decided to foster and promote the friendly relations existing between them to benefit their inhabitants and grow their respective urban localities.

    “Our two local authorities are herewith signing of an agreement and cooperation to strengthen the friendly relations and focus on the following key strategic areas and guided by development plans in: cultural and heritage trails, capacity development, local economic development and tourism,” Tjiurutue-Katukundu said.

    She also said both Okakarara and Ongwediva have acquainted themselves with the needs, challenges, strengths and opportunities in the two authorities prior to the signing of the agreement.

    “Okakarara is delighted to be associated with an older sister town, Ongwediva, and believes this twinning agreement will culminate into a mutual long-term friendship and benefits for the both towns.”

    ILENI NANDJATO

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  • 07/04/17--16:00: CEO meddled with probe
  • CEO meddled with probeCEO meddled with probeRundu Town Council suspends chief under investigation Amid allegations that the suspended CEO not only interfered with a probe into his activities, but also allegedly wrote to the line minister. Rundu's CEO Romanus Haironga was slapped with a suspension letter some weeks ago following allegations that he had interfered with an investigation lodged against him.

    Haironga is under investigation for alleged gross insubordination, poor performance and his alleged involvement in corrupt practices.

    This is according to the suspension letter of 9 June signed by the chairperson of the Rundu Town Council management committee, Annastasia Antonio.

    Haironga is on a three-month suspension with full pay while Matheus Naironga, the council's strategic executive for technical department is the acting CEO.

    In the letter seen by Namibian Sun, council states that Haironga's suspension and removal came as a result of his interference in the investigation against him which he was informed about, but, according to the council, he did not adhere to instructions from the investigation

    officer.

    The interference is alleged to have come from his communication in the form of a letter he wrote to urban development minister, Sophia Shaningwa, in which he requested the minister to intervene. According to council, this communication with the minister contravenes the grievance procedure as laid down in the Local Authority Act.

    “The investigation arose out of perceived lack of progress with regard to council matters, alleged misconduct and failure to execute duties diligently and competently. The resolution taken to investigate suggested that a decision to suspend will be imminent in the event of interference, as already decided at that meeting when it was read in context of the notice informing you, the CEO, of the investigation,” the letter read.

    Haironga allegedly wrote another letter allegedly challenging the authority of the mayor, Verna Sinimbo.

    The council also alleges that Haironga attempted to change the composition of the investigation team. It is said he sought the support of the regional governor's office and certain other individuals, which council sees as an attempt by Haironga to go against the team endorsed by the town council.

    The suspension letter also alleges that Haironga refused to provide documents requested from him, was ignoring emails and not being available at the office when he was needed.

    “The council was merely expressing its view at that stage when it notified you, the CEO that the suspension ought to consider the basis of any interference with the progress of the investigation. You are refusing to carry out lawful and reasonable instructions that are consistent with your contract of employment,” the letter read.

    Some of the accusations are failure to implement resolutions in terms of his performance agreement, unauthorised and fully funded trips, gross failure to comply with local authorities tender board regulations and failure to comply with directions under Section 63 of the Local Authorities Act involving the purchase of erf 1608 in Rundu.

    When contacted for comment yesterday, Haironga refused saying he is not allowed to talk to the media.

    KENYA KAMBOWE

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  • 07/05/17--16:00: Civics drawn against Magic
  • Civics drawn against MagicCivics drawn against Magic Namibia Premier league (NPL) sides Tura Magic and Civics FC have been pitted against each other in the quarterfinals of the NFA Debmarine Cup.

    The last eight teams in the competition will battle for a place in the semi-finals at Gobabis on 29 July.

    Gobabis-based Young African FC avoided tournament favourites Tura Magic and Civics, but were drawn against Rundu Chiefs.

    Mighty Gunners of Otjiwarongo will face Try Again FC in what is expected to be a great encounter.

    Eastern Chiefs of Gobabis have a date with Oshakati's Young Chiefs in the other quarterfinal match.

    The Gobabis home teams will be hoping that the crowd can cheer them to memorable victories on home soil.

    Arguably the biggest game of the quarterfinals will be between rivals Tura Magic and Civics FC.

    The two clubs have played against each other in the league over the years and will now have to battle for a place in the last four.



    The stakes for the Windhoek-based clubs remain high as they will attempt to eliminate each other in order to earn bragging rights.

    The teams were presented with new playing kit courtesy of Debmarine Namibia at the draw yesterday.

    The last games of the competition at Mariental and Walvis Bay produced a total of 36 goals.

    The last eight clubs in the Debmarine Namibia Cup will receive an increased amount of N$20 000 to prepare for the matches. The same amount will be given in the semi-finals.

    The two finalists will each get N$30 000 to help prepare for the title-deciding match on 25 November.

    JESSE JACKSON KAURAISA

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  • 07/05/17--16:00: Hope for Para-athletes
  • Hope for Para-athletesHope for Para-athletesParalympians receive funding Namibia's Para–athletes will travel to London next Tuesday to compete in the Para Athletics World Championship. Four Paralympic athletes will travel to London next Tuesday to take part in the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) World Championships slated for 14 to 23 July.

    The athletes were initially told that there was no money due to budget cuts by the sports ministry but Michael Hamukwaya, secretary–general of the Namibia Paralympics Committee (NPC), confirmed that Disability Sport Namibia (DSN) had agreed to pay some of the costs.

    He said the Olympic Committee bought flight tickets for the travelling team, “a gesture worth mentioning”.

    Initially the team needed N$700 000 for travel and accommodation but at the moment they only need N$470 000, “something which I am happy about as we are slowly closing the gap to get all the funds we need.

    “We are happy with the progress we are making in order for the team to represent the country at the competition even though we have not secured the whole amount needed to cover travelling and accommodation expenses for the athletes, guides as well as the officials.”

    The travelling athletes are Ananias Shikongo, Johannes Nambala, Lahja Ishitile and Aino Mushila. Johanna Benson, who was supposed to travel with the team, is injured and has pulled out of the competition. This has brought down the cost of the trip.

    Shikongo, one of the athletes, expressed joy at the news.

    “We can finally travel and compete as we have been training despite the fact that we were uncertain about the journey. We will work hard and bring the medals home,” he said.

    Participation at the world championship is not only an opportunity for the athletes to defend their titles and records but will serve as a reward for their daily efforts.

    The participation is also vital for their qualification for future international events such as the next Commonwealth Games, All-African Games and the 2020 Paralympic Games in Tokyo.

    LIMBA MUPETAMI

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  • 07/05/17--16:00: Belt to honour top boxer
  • Belt to honour top boxerBelt to honour top boxerPound-for-pound belt on the cards for Indongo A win against Terence Crawford would present new hardware in the form of an extra belt for Julius Indongo. Namibian boxer Julius 'Blue Machine' Indongo will take on Terence Crawford from the US in a historic undisputed world title fight on 19 August in Lincoln, Nebraska at the Pinnacle Bank Arena.

    Indongo is the current IBF and WBA world champion while Crawford holds the WBO and WBC and Ring Magazine world titles. Next month all the titles will belong to one boxer, making it the first time the super lightweight title will be unified and only the fourth time in the modern era that a unification title fight will take place.

    This will also be the first time in 11 years that more than three world title belts are on the line, making this a mouth-watering fight in boxing history.

    In addition, the winner of the fight will receive a sixth belt from Ring Magazine, which underscores his pound-for-pound status in the boxing world. A pound-for-pound belt is given to a boxer as a show of excellence in his weight class.

    “All the best boxers in their respective divisions or in the whole world receive the belt. It is to honour them and their achievements,” says Nestor Tobias of the MTC Nestor Sunshine Tobias Boxing and Fitness Academy.

    Tobias says the value of the belt depends on the promotion of the respective boxer which includes the number of sponsorships and television rights for each fight.

    As it stands Indongo has an undefeated record of 22 victories (11 by KO) and no losses. Crawford has an undefeated record of 33 wins (22 KOs) and no losses. Whoever wins the fight next month will join boxers on Ring Magazines current Top Ten Pound for Pound list which consists of: Andre Ward, Light Heavyweight-Undisputed WBA/IBF/WBO champion, Gennady Golovkin, Middleweight- Super WBA/WBC/IBF champion, Roman Gonzalez, Super Flyweight, Terence Crawford, Junior Welterweight, WBC/WBO champion, Vasyl Lomachenko, Super Featherweight, WBO Super champion, Guillermo Rigodeaux, Junior Featherweight, Super WBA Super Bantamweight champion, Sergey Kovalev, Saul Alvarez, WBC Diamond and WBO Super champion, Shinsuke Yamanaka, WBC Bantamweight champion and Naoya Inoue, Super Flyweight WBO champion.

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  • 07/05/17--16:00: Cycle Classic launched
  • Cycle Classic launchedCycle Classic launched The annual Namibian Pick n Pay Cycle Classic 2017 was launched in the capital on Tuesday.

    Speaking at the launch, president of the Rotary Club Windhoek (RCW) Heide Beinhauer said for the first time a five-kilometre fun walk and run and a ten-kilometre competitive run would be part of the event.

    “I suppose that makes the Namibian Pick n Pay Cycle Classic, Namibia's largest competitive cycling race, the leading family biking fun and biggest recreational event ever,” said Beinhauer.

    Funds raised at the event are expected to increase from N$ 118 000 in 2011 to over N$ 330 000 this year.

    “As a result, many community projects worthy of support [will] benefit,” she said.

    RCW is a group of professionals in the public sector who aim to provide humanitarian services and advance goodwill, and work towards high ethical standards in all vocations.

    The cycling race has become RCW's main fundraiser and community service event since 1999.

    The organising partner of the Namibian Pick n Pay Cycle Classic, Windhoek Pedal Power (WPP), collects entry fees from the event and ploughs it back into cycling sport development. It also sponsors Namibian cyclists' participation in international competitions.

    “The Namibia Cycling Federation needs money to develop our sport to get our young cyclists out there, to get our elite cyclists to events and to put Namibia on the map,” said WPP chairman Pierre du Plooy.

    This year's event will take place on 14 and 15 October.

    Competitors will enter different classes and distances of road bike and mountain bike races.



    NAMPA

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    Pacquiao backs call for reviewPacquiao backs call for review Manny Pacquiao has backed a call asking the World Boxing Organisation (WBO) to review the controversial points decision that saw Australia's Jeff Horn capture the Filipino great's welterweight world title in Brisbane on Sunday.

    Horn improved his unbeaten record to 17-0-1 after the judges scored the bout 117-111, 115-113 and 115-113 in the 29-year-old's favour but many observers questioned the outcome, saying the officials had made a “hometown decision”.

    While Horn dismissed criticism of his win, the regulatory body of professional sport in the Philippines, the Games and Amusement Board (GAB), requested a “thorough review” of the fight on Monday and Pacquiao has backed their demand.

    “WBO should take appropriate action on the letter sent by the Games and Amusement Board (GAB) so as not to erode the people's interest in boxing,” eight-division world champion Pacquiao said in a statement on Wednesday.

    “On my part, I had already accepted the decision but as a leader and, at the same time, fighter, I have the moral obligation to uphold sportsmanship, truth and fairness in the eyes of the public.”

    “I love boxing and I don't wanna see it dying because of (an) unfair decision and officiating.”

    On Tuesday, the WBO said that the decision could not be reversed and highlighted the rematch clause in both fighters' contracts.

    “The discretion of a referee or judge cannot be reversed, except in a case of fraud or violation of laws which is not the case in Pac vs Horn,” the organisation said on their Twitter account.

    “The contract for Pac vs Horn provides a rematch clause, which the WBO is in accordance if the promoters decide to move forward.”





    NAMPA/REUTERS

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