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Tells it All - Namibian Sun

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  • 08/07/17--16:00: No mining moratorium
  • No mining moratoriumNo mining moratoriumMinister backtracks on decision South Africa has withdrawn a plan for a moratorium on mining rights. South Africa's Department of Minerals backed down on plans to freeze the granting and renewing of mining rights and will explore other measures to ensure companies are compliant with new industry rules.

    Friday's court application has been postponed indefinitely after minister of mineral resources Mosebenzi Zwane agreed not to pursue the moratorium, but the minister was criticised by Judge Ramarumo Monama for failing to file a responding affidavit and ordered him to explain his actions in the matter.

    Zwane's conduct “is blemishing the brand” of the country at a time when thousands of jobs are being lost in mining, a crucial sector in the economy, he said. The judge also criticised the department's late-night communication of policy on Twitter, which he likened to postings by US President Donald Trump.

    The legal battle began after Zwane in June published a new Mining Charter, which requires more black ownership of assets and imposes a series of extra levies on the industry.

    Zwane had originally said the proposed licence freeze, announced last month, was necessary to ensure that no rights are approved without being subject to the new charter regulations, which he agreed to suspend pending an initial court judgment after the industry moved to challenge them.

    The public had until Friday to respond to the moratorium notice. Views submitted to the department about the potential impact of the freeze, particularly from junior miners, suggested that alternative means must be explored to ensure companies are compliant with the industry charter, the department said its Twitter posts Thursday.

    “Based on the reasoned submissions made, the department will not pursue the moratorium,” it said.

    An agreement on the moratorium between Zwane and the Chamber of Mines has been made an order of the court, Chamber chief negotiator Elize Strydom said in an interview after Friday's proceedings. Zwane has yet to file a responding affidavit in the Mining Charter case, which is due to be heard next month, she said.


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  • 08/07/17--16:00: Harmony, Ashanti deal on ice
  • Harmony, Ashanti deal on iceHarmony, Ashanti deal on ice Harmony Gold Mining Corporation's long-running talks to buy AngloGold Ashanti Limited's South African assets have stalled because of uncertainty over the country's new mining regulations, according to people familiar with the matter.

    The discussions, which started two years ago, recently hit a snag as South Africa's government and the mining industry wage a court fight over the Mining Charter, according to two people, who asked not to be identified because the proposed deal isn't public. The charter calls for increased black ownership of assets and imposes extra costs on mining companies.

    The assets could potentially be valued around US$500 million to US$650 million, said another person. An alternative option being considered is a partial sale, with Harmony buying AngloGold's Vaal River operations for about US$150 million, the person said.

    When asked about the deal, a spokeswoman from Harmony called it “pure speculation” and declined to comment further. An AngloGold spokesman also declined to comment.

    AngloGold, the world's third-largest gold miner, has been held back by its South African assets for the last three years as their high costs eroded the group's earnings. CEO Srinivasan Venkatakrishnan attempted to spin them off in 2014 but the plan was scuppered after investors balked at an accompanying rights issue.

    Harmony, which has a market value of US$760 million, mainly operates end-of-life mines in South Africa and has spoken often about needing acquisitions to boost declining reserves. Some of its existing mines were previously owned by AngloGold.

    “We have to look for something fairly big,” Chief Executive Officer Peter Steenkamp said last August.

    With the Harmony deal uncertain, AngloGold has started restructuring the mines to stem cash losses. In June, the company said 8 500 jobs, about a third of the total, were at risk.


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  • 08/07/17--16:00: Secret ballot for Zuma vote
  • Secret ballot for Zuma voteSecret ballot for Zuma vote A motion of no confidence in President Jacob Zuma will take place through a secret ballot, announced South African national speaker of Parliament Baleka Mbete.

    Mbete has been attacked by opposition parties for delaying her decision until the last minute.

    She has also been threatened with court action by EFF leader Julius Malema if she does not allow a secret ballot.

    The Constitutional Court ruled in June on whether a secret ballot should be used, saying the decision lay with the Speaker of the Parlaiment.

    The United Democratic Movement (UDM) said a secret vote would allow ANC MPs to vote without fear of intimidation.

    In April, the party asked Mbete to allow a secret ballot in a motion against the president after his controversial Cabinet reshuffle in March.

    Mbete turned down the request and the UDM approached the Constitutional Court.

    Mbete said in June that the decision on whether or not to use a secret ballot in the motion of no confidence must be rational, and therefore required careful consideration.

    She also said the Constitutional Court had not given her a date by which she had to make her decision known.

    The Constitutional Court ruled in June that Mbete does has the constitutional power to decide whether or not to hold a secret ballot during the motion, and must make a “rational” decision on whether or not to allow MPs to vote by secret ballot.

    Delivering his judgment, Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng said: “There must always be proper and rational basis for whatever choice the speaker makes in the exercise of the constitutional power to determine the voting procedure.”


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  • 08/07/17--16:00: Shoprite shares fall 5%
  • Shoprite shares fall 5%Shoprite shares fall 5% NAMPA/REUTERS

    Shares in South Africa's Shoprite fell more than 5% yesterday as investors digested news that Steinhoff through its African spinoff could acquire a controlling stake in the supermarket operator in a share deal worth R35.5 billion.

    Steinhoff said on Friday it had established a single holding company, Steinhoff Africa Retail (STAR), and would list it on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange.

    It also said it had entered into call-option agreements with Titan Premier Investments, a company ultimately controlled by a Wiese family trust, as well as the Public Investment Corporation (PIC) and Lancaster Group under the terms of which STAR could acquire economic and voting interests in Shoprite.

    A trader at GT247, Paul Chakaduka, said investors were positioning themselves for STAR in anticipation that it will have a much bigger market capitalisation than Shoprite.

    "A lot of the smart money is selling out of Shoprite in anticipation of this move," Chakaduka said.

    "It's pretty clear to the market that the PIC would rather reduce their holding or participation in Shoprite and would rather put more emphasis on the new listing."

    Once the call options are exercised and implemented, STAR will hold approximately 22.7% of the economic interest and 50% of the voting rights in Shoprite, Steinhoff said.

    The PIC, is the second largest shareholder in Shoprite, with a holding of 10.55%, Reuters data showed.

    Steinhoff abandoned plans to merge with Shoprite in February, but billionaire Christo Wiese, who is the largest shareholder in both companies and their chairman, has said he wants to consolidate his holdings.

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  • 08/07/17--16:00: More accountants needed
  • More accountants neededMore accountants neededDistinct shortage noted Academic institutions are not addressing the backlog sufficiently, a professional body says. The Namibia Institute of Professional Accountants' (NIPA) chairperson, Amanda Rossouw, has warned that the country is in dire need of more accountants. This is despite the perception outside the profession that accountants are in abundance.

    “Businesses, even smaller entities, and financial institutions, require qualified and experienced accountants. As the Namibian economy continues to grow, there is a distinct shortage of qualified personnel to deal with the taxpayers and business clients in need of professional accounting services.

    “Namibian accounting institutions are already battling to fulfil the need, and as an Institute, we encourage entry to the profession towards membership as part of a managed and measured process, with the intent to achieve a membership profile reflecting the demography of the Republic of Namibia,” Rossouw said.

    She made the remarks at the graduation of 30 trainee accountants who recently finished their four-year programme.

    “Although Namibian universities produce graduates, many are unable to secure employment due to the lack of experience. The training programme allows students to acquire knowledge and experience, placing them in a better position to secure employment or venture into their own business,” added Rossouw.

    The programme was created with the objective of training the next generation of accountants, partly by transferring practical experience and knowledge from practising accountants to those coming through the ranks.

    Since 2013, a closer working relationship has been established between the Principal, the trainee and NIPA via the use of monitoring officers. In partnership with approved training centres, practising members offer training and employment, which is monitored by NIPA's officers.

    These officers have contributed to the success of the programme by ensuring that regular visits are undertaken and that feedback is transferred effectively between trainees and principals. Once the programme has been completed trainees not only become full members, but they will also have the opportunity to continue as employees. Further opportunities await them, including the chance to further their role in academia, work independently, or become entrepreneurs.


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    Kapofi, Simataa not exoneratedKapofi, Simataa not exonerated Presidential spokesperson Al

    bertus Aochamub rose quickly to defend his boss following reports that President Hage Geingob had exonerated SME Bank chairmen George Simataa and Frans Kapofi following the closure of the government-controlled bank.

    This follows a media conference held at State House last Monday at which the president spoke about the SME Bank saga.

    According to Aochamub, Geingob never said Kapofi and Simataa were off the hook following the demise of the SME Bank.

    “Some reports hold, in part, that the president exonerated Frans Kapofi, minister of presidential affairs and former chairperson of the SME Bank, and George Simataa, the secretary to cabinet and most recent chairperson of the SME Bank, from any responsibilities with regards to state of affairs at the bank. Such reports are false and do not reflect the true letter and spirit of statements the president made at the said media conference,” Aochamub said.

    According to Aochamub, neither Simataa nor Kapofi has been found guilty by a court.

    “President Geingob emphasised the fact that all Namibians are innocent until proven guilty in terms of our constitution. To that end, Kapofi and Simataa cannot be found guilty by media or any stakeholder group without a proper due process being followed in terms of the laws of the land and a guilty verdict reached,” said Aochamub.

    The presidential spokesperson added that Geingob acknowledged that the two had fiduciary responsibilities for the SME Bank.

    “The president accepted that the directors of the SME bank have fiduciary responsibility over the affairs of the bank and the laws of the land prescribe appropriate sanctions where a breach of the relevant laws is proven,” said Aochamub.

    “The administration will not, under any circumstances, interfere with the judiciary processes of the country as the president respects the constitutional provisions of the separation of powers between the various branches of the state.”

    Geingob had in the past distanced himself from the SME Bank, saying that it was never his project.

    “The SME Bank was never a 'Hage' project. It came about as a result of a cabinet resolution. I am not quiet on the SME Bank. Action is being taken and the courts are going to deal with that,” Geingob said in July.


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    Fishcor adds value to horse mackerelFishcor adds value to horse mackerelProcessing plant for local beneficiation A groundbreaking ceremony was held in Walvis Bay over the weekend to herald the start of construction at Fishcor's new canning factory. Fisheries and marine resources minister Bernard Esau says the National Fishing Corporation of Namibia (Fishcor) should be regarded as a partner of the private sector in fishing and not a competitor.

    “We are just complementing and are partners of progress. We have more horse mackerel to process than our total installed capacity, hence we need investors starting with government.

    “Fishcor exists to fulfil specific governmental objectives of developing the fisheries sector and was established to undertake fishing, fish processing, capacity building of Namibians venturing into fishing or fish processing, assisting government with research and financing of government projects in the fishing sector.

    “It is mainly government owned and profits generated via it flow directly to the people of Namibia,” the minister told fishing industry representatives attending the groundbreaking ceremony of the new Fishcor horse-mackerel processing plant and canning factory in Walvis Bay. Esau said that the ministry of fisheries and marine resources commenced with a process of scrutinising corporate governance issues in all rights holders to ensure that companies which are entrusted with fishing rights on behalf of Namibians adhere to sound corporate governance principles and that their benefits are shared with as many Namibians as possible.

    He gave the assurance that Fishcor, as a special-purpose government vehicle entrusted with a fishing right, will be scrutinised even more closely in order to ensure it adheres to its objectives.

    The minister further pointed out that it was necessary to establish Fishcor due to the ministry having had to manage the transition into the Namibianisation of fisheries after independence and that government needed a special-purpose vehicle to work in partnership alongside companies that were willing to achieve Namibia's objectives.

    “I am happy to note increased participation of Namibians, particularly from previously disadvantaged groups, in the marine fisheries sector. I am also pleased by the fact that several Namibians acquired vessels, are fishing and that the country have sufficient capacity in Namibia to sustainably harvest living marine resources.”

    He reiterated that his ministry was committed to NDP5 launched in June this year and said the ministry envisioned adding value to 70% of horse mackerel landings, starting with at least 40% in the next four years.

    The fishing sector is however facing a challenge of mobilising enough champions in the private sector to invest in processing infrastructure to meet this target.

    In conclusion Esau called on fishing companies to open up equity participation in factories and vessels in order to allow workers to participate and benefit from all aspects of the industry.


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    Celebrating 40 years of community and local newsCelebrating 40 years of community and local news Newsprint Namibia, previously John Meinert Newsprint, was the first pioneering newspaper printing company in Namibia. Newsprint Namibia printed its very first newspaper, Der Kriegsbote, in 1917. It became the Allgemeine Zeitung in 1918 and after 100 years this newspaper is currently still printed by Newsprint Namibia.

    Newsprint Namibia has grown and developed along with printed media through the years, to become the well-established web offset printer it is today, employing 100 people, most of whom have been trained in-house. Newsprint Namibia is committed to produce printed products of the highest standard and continues to invest in the technical and human resources necessary to maintain and ever improve this status quo.

    Newsprint Namibia aims to provide innovative products and printing solutions to their clients, to continue to train people and to create employment in order to improve and develop our local printing industry.

    We print a number of daily and weekly newspapers. We also print commercial inserts, flyers or pamphlets for various commercial and retail clients. Newsprint Namibia also prints and produces specialist products such as A4-type booklets that are trimmed and stitched.

    Printing is done in a variety of formats and sizes, from broadsheet to passport size. Most of our work is done in the tabloid or A3 size. All printing is done on newsprint grade paper that varies between 48.8 and 60gms.

    Newsprint Namibia also incorporates a mailroom and distribution function. We package the products that we print according to the client’s specifications and needs. We also distribute papers to all four corners of Namibia on a daily basis.

    Currently Newsprint Namibia is located in Eider Street 2-4 in the Lafrenz Industrial Area in Windhoek, Namibia.

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  • 08/07/17--16:00: Dream less and do more
  • Dream less and do moreDream less and do more With the world slowly moving towards addressing issues affecting youth and in attempting to foster a better culture of pro-activity and usher out the era of a spoon-fed generation; I attempt in no few words to address the controversy probably caused by the title of article.

    “Dream less and do more.” If someone had told me this at any other point in my life besides this moment, I would have punched them, if I had the training. Or, I would have been so offended and made speechless. But this is a truth I have learned the hard way and thought over many a silent moment while taking a shower. The more time you spend dreaming, the less time you are spending actually doing anything about it.

    No amount of written work and philosophical debate can undo the fact that is, until we put in the work. Dreams remain just dreams: in your mind, in your diary, on your Pinterest boards, the list goes on. Why though? It is because dreams do not work unless you do. Realities are built on the substance of dreams and the evidence of the sweat of your forehead and maybe even your armpits. We are all equally guilty of spending way too much time dreaming and daydreaming, planning, wishing and envying, but never actually implementing those plans to make those dreams become real. Dreaming is not bad, but it should only inspire and motivate you for the real thing, not hold you back because you are spending all your time living in a world that only exists when your eyes are closed.

    Start by doing more. My employer at the time would always say to me about design, “if it is not on paper, it does not exist”. In other words; even if you have thought of it, if it can't be seen or interacted with, nobody cares. Nobody will be excited to see or make investments in you. Get it done, because talk is so cheap, it's free. Continue by being better than yourself yesterday. Some smart man somewhere once said, “It doesn't become easier, you become better”. This, I stand by and preach to anyone who would listen, as the missing rung in the ladder to a better national youth culture and an improved equal opportunity playground for all.


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  • 08/07/17--16:00: Study smart, not hard
  • Study smart, not hardStudy smart, not hardHow to boost exam performance When it comes to examinations many students do not perform up to scratch because of mistakes made due to a simple lack of awareness. Once these mistakes are rectified, the results are always positive. One of the biggest mistakes made by students is failure to deal with exam stress or anxiety. Stress and anxiety works as a shortcut to failure as they hinder the brain's performance levels. One of the best ways to deal with anxiety and stress is to work out regularly. Working out improves memory and thinking skills and prevents examination errors by reducing stress and anxiety. Plus, you pass while looking good so it's a win-win. Sleeping for at least seven hours is believed to have a positive effect on memory and cognition, making it easier to remember answers during the exam.

    Other measures that can be taken are eating healthily and drinking sufficient water. This is beneficial in stress reduction, improves concentration levels and memory, prevents headaches and promotes sleep. Paying attention in class also plays a crucial role in examination performance. This is due to the fact that often a teacher will provide information which one will not necessarily obtain from a textbook. This information can mean the difference between passing and failing and thus it is essential that you remain present and punctual for class and always pay attention.

    Figuring out your best studying method can also prevent unnecessary failure. Some people read, some write down notes and all others need to do is listen in class. It is also important that you find out whether or not you are comfortable studying with music as it can be a comforting medium for some and a distraction for others. Studying beforehand is extremely important as you do not limit yourself to the amount of information you can take into an exam due to a shortage of studying time. Studying a few notes everyday makes it a lot easier to study in the future for an exam as the brain has a tendency to store information and release it when reminded of it.

    Lastly and probably most importantly, do not over-study. Over-studying tends to make one live a drab and antisocial life which can lead to unhappiness. Take out weekends to focus on you, loosen up and have fun. This can be taking part in sports, hanging out with friends or using art to express yourself, basically anything that makes you happy.

    *Titus Shitaatala is a 19-year-old studying Architecture first year at the University of Science and Technology. He enjoys designing, drawing, writing poetry, reading, playing soccer and engaging in social media

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  • 08/07/17--16:00: The State of the Nation
  • The State of the Nation The State of the Nation The nation is facing difficult times and it is about time that we are brutally honest with ourselves.

    Government debt is at an all-time high. The state cannot meet its expenditures and our sports industry is in tatters. Our SOEs are in shambles and depend on yearly government bailouts. Youth unemployment is skyrocketing. The evils of tribalism are at play every other day. The calls from civil society for land expropriation and radical economic transformation are becoming increasingly vocal yet the state is dwindling around policies like a headless chicken.

    We are indeed facing very turbulent times. Politicians and pro-government activists try to paint a rosy picture over our challenges but that only serves to deepen the problem and stir up more frustration amongst the general population and civil society. Years of reckless government spending and ineffective policies have caught up to us.

    The Harambee Prosperity Plan (HPP) is a horrendous disaster. Our national debt doubled almost instantly after the Geingob administration came into power. Our national debt went up from N$30.7 billion in 2015 to a shocking N$56.3 billion in 2016. One year down the line the debt is now standing at a staggering N$66.2 billion. Our debt now accounts for 48% of our gross domestic product (GDP). Never in the history of this country have we faced such dire times. Indeed the factors that contributed to this huge bill are no secret. The irrational and ill-advised expansion of our Parliament from 72 members to 104 members, the appointment of six advisors with no clear job specifications, the creation of the vice-president and deputy prime minister positions, the creation of ministries that have no link to the larger Namibian problem - the list goes on.

    What is even more irritating is the absolute lack of honesty and accountability from the Geingob administration about the current troubles of the country. The president simply does not want to admit that he made critical policy errors that are now costing the economy and functionality of the country dearly. The president has made it quite clear and noticeable that his administration really has no idea on how to pay off our national debt. Corruption is becoming rife in Namibia. The institutions that are supposed to perform checks and balances on the state and corruption are simply not doing their jobs. Our watchdogs, in the form of the Office of the Ombudsman and the Anti-Corruption Commission are sleeping.

    We don’t have a Thuli Mandonsela in Namibia; we don’t have a Julius Malema in Namibia. Civil society must start influencing public discourse. Our old, serial politicians must go nurse their grandchildren. We simply cannot afford the presence of Jerry Ekandjo and company in our government for another five years. We need young fresh blood in our parliament. All in all, the nation is angry. The ball is in the president’s court.


    *Maximalliant T. Katjimune is a first-year BA (Hons) Political Studies and Sociology student at Unam

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    Celebrating 40 years of community and local newsCelebrating 40 years of community and local news On 1 December this year Republikein will celebrate 40 years. Over the past four decades of publishing national and community news, the country's only Afrikaans daily newspaper has undergone many exciting changes and periods of renewal.

    Initially the newspaper was called Die Republikein and then later Republikein 2000 – around the time of the new millennium, and now just Republikein.

    Although the paper came into being as a political mouthpiece, it has worked hard since independence to establish itself as an independent news publication, free of editorial interference or political bias.

    From the beginning Republikein has consistently worked with great dedication to reach all communities in Namibia and has broadened its distribution network across the country significantly. Supplements such as Erongo, a weekly and free regional supplement of Namibian Media Holdings (NMH), Noorderlig, Suiderland as well as others supplements have been established to engage specific groups of people and industries. The weekly agricultural supplement, Die Boer, is one of our greatest success stories.

    A great deal of the newspaper's success can be attributed to the impact it has as an advertising medium. New developments online and our multimedia products have become important features as part of our identity.

    Some of our other strong focal points include reporting on environmental, financial and sport news.

    Republikein looks forward to serve as a platform for Afrikaans journalistic voices in Namibia for many decades to come.

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    Editorial Designer: Jazine FischerEditorial Designer: Jazine Fischer Jazine Fischer an editorial designer at Republikein. Editorial design refers to the process of taking text and images and placing them together in the pages of the paper in an appealing way. This may be done for print or electronic forms of visual communication.

    Fisher chose a career in graphic design because he always wanted to do something where he can use his creative abilities. Working for a newspaper, Fischer specialises in the editorial design of news pages and features.

    He shares that his duties as an editorial designer at Republikein is primarily to make sure pages for the newspaper are designed according to the style guide of the publication and to ensure the print deadlines are met.

    His everyday job also entails checking completed advertisements from their marketing department and agencies and to ensure advertisements are correctly placed.

    “I have to make sure that the photos we print are of good quality and have to make some colour adjustments from time to time,” he says.

    Skills required include effective ccommunication skills, creativity, time management and the ability to think outside the box. “It is important to have good communications skills because graphic designers communicate ideas through text and images, and it is also essential to be creative,” said Fisher.

    Fisher shares that some of the highlights of being an editorial designer is designing the front page of the newspaper or working on special supplements.

    An editorial designer should:

    1) Be creative

    2) Be able to work under pressure and meet strict deadlines

    3) Be able to follow the chain of command

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    Sub-editor at Republikein - Karin Eloff  Sub-editor at Republikein - Karin Eloff The sub-editors of publications are responsible for the language and grammar of all text that will be published in the paper or online.

    As a sub-editor Eloff makes sure that journalists stick to the grammatical rules and style guide of a specific publication, edits articles and sometimes, has to re-write them. “My typical day consists of sitting down and focusing for almost nine to 11 hours. Being a sub-editor requires a lot of concentrating, focusing and toying with words and ideas,” says Eloff. She says her curiosity and the search for truth is one of the main inspirations as to why she joined the media industry.

    “I love knowing what's happening in my immediate environment and in the rest of the world. The media acts as the world's watchdog. Without us writing about crime, corruption and politics, we would all succumb to an ignorant hell,” says Eloff.

    “I have to rewrite copy, correct language and spelling errors, sometimes proofread pages and make sure the style of the publication is adhered to,” says Eloff.

    She says the most satisfying thing about her job is the fact that she gets to experiment with words and enjoys being creative. “I love getting the news first and I love playing with words” she says.

    People who have a passion for writing and who are very curious should work in the media industry. “You have to be curious about the world and notice detail,” says Eloff.

    A sub-editor should:

    1) Be passionate about language and writing

    2) Be able to focus for extended periods of time

    3) Be curious and inquisitive

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    Editor of Republikein - Dani BooysenEditor of Republikein - Dani Booysen Dani Booysen, editor of Republikein says his job requires him to manage the newspaper content as well as supplements, along with managing a team of dynamic journalists. As much as being editor deals with the content, it is also Booysen's responsibility to deal with advertising revenue, circulation figures, the financial wellbeing of the publication and managing his team.

    “An average day entails planning content together with the editorial team, not only for the next day but also discussing special features, managing the production and deadlines of the newspaper, attending meetings and events, approving content, answering inquiries and calls from readers and clients and completing administrative tasks,” says Booysen.

    He says he is motivated by his passion and will to “inform, educate and entertain fellow-citizens of the country and the world at large.” Booysen adds that a passion for the truth and experience in writing will help you to excel in the media industry.

    Booysen says one needs to have an eye for interesting stories and be able to fully understand the readers of your specific publication in order to be a successful editor.

    One of the highlights of his job is “when the newspaper and editorial team are complimented on their work and when the content that they create stirs a debate among readers,” says Booysen. He says that a person needs to have a love for language and writing, must get good marks for their language subjects and must be willing to learn new things every day.

    The editor of a newspaper should:

    1) Love news, information and knowledge in all its forms

    2) Have an open ear for suggestions as news comes the community

    3) Be able to manage a team of journalists

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  • 08/07/17--16:00: Kasi vibe fever
  • Kasi vibe feverKasi vibe feverFestival promoting local businesses The Kasi Vibe Festival a youth entrepreneurship and empowerment event brought 30 young entrepreneurs together recently at Sam Nujoma Stadium. What do you get when a bunch of young and vibrant Namibians come together for two days of entrepreneurship and empowerment? You get the Kasi Vibe Festival.

    The initiative saw many Namibians from different backgrounds come together to support one another's business ideas and it was also a platform for the young business owners to connect and engage with one another.

    Despite technical issues such as poor lighting at the stadium, the Kasi Vibe Festival was a well organised event.

    For an event full of young and active youth and contrary to what many expected, the atmosphere and the mood at the event was very peaceful. There were no reports of fights and break-ins during the two days.

    Thirty exhibitors showcased their business ideas at the festival. The exhibitors who comprised of small and medium enterprises and private companies showcased engineering, beauty, arts, fashion and food companies to mention some sectors.

    The event organisers and exhibitors spoke to The Zone about how the event went.

    One of the exhibitors who were excited about taking part in the festival was 264 Online, Namibia's only online fashion boutique. Loide Amadhila, owner of 264 Online and Laimy Ipinge, the online manager of the boutique said online shopping in Namibia is still rare mostly because some Namibians do not believe in e-commerce shopping and the digital divide also plays a huge role in motivating the people to buy products online.

    “We have to understand that Namibia is not yet fully digital and many of the consumers do not believe in buying something online before they receive it and when they have not seen it,” said Amadhila. Amadhila said although the concept of online shopping is new to some Namibians, their business has been welcomed.

    “The consumers in Namibia are more receptive and they are flocking to our website to order their products,” said Amadhila. Ipinge says they rely heavily on social media to promote and create awareness about their business. “Before we went online, we used to operate in our shop.

    We use social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter for people to know about our business and drive them to our website so that they can order products online.

    “It is very difficult to convince male buyers to shop online but hopefully soon we can accommodate them as well as sell products for guys in future. We also want to make it possible for people to send us pictures of the type of clothes they want and we source them,” said Amadhila about their marketing strategy.

    Customers who usually buy clothes using the website can pay using various cell phone banking methods offered buy their banking institutions. Ipinge said events such the Kasi Vibe Festival made it possible for entrepreneurs to assess the impact their businesses and to allow the business owners to promote their business to a range of people. “The festival is really important because it provides a platform for us to introduce our businesses to many other people who did not know about our businesses. It is also a good way for us to get to know other businesses,” said Ipinge.

    Another exhibitor, Peter Nangolo who is the owner of Artiflex engineering company, dealing in renewable energy, said the event was a good place to promote his business. “This is a great event and it really helps SME's to build their brands and to connect with many people,” Nangolo said.

    He also said his business deals mainly with renewable energy because the company plans to bring another face to the renewable energy industry.

    “We want to improve solar energy generation so that people in rural areas can also have access to electricity. Solar energy is such an important element in Namibia and our company decided to tap into that market,” said Nangolo.

    Laria Endjala who attended the event was impressed by the tranquillity at the festival and said she had come to support local entrepreneurs.

    “I think the fact that the attending the festival have not been fighting or having issues, shows you how well behaved Namibian youth can be if they are focusing on things that can build them and improve their future.

    I'm really captivated by the event and the way it was organised because it went smoothly over the two days,” shared Endjala.

    Salmi Shigwedha who was a part of the event organisers said it was challenging to organise the event but they were happy the event was successful.

    “We did have a great turn out as anticipated. However, we want more SME exhibitors and more sponsors for the next event,” shared Shigwedha.

    She said they did not have sponsors for the event and it was challenging for them to put the event together.

    “We did not have a lot of sponsors for the event and also the fact that the exhibitors did not apply on time was an issue,” said Shigwedha. The next Kasi Vibe festival will take place on 3-4 November 2017.

    Shona Ngava

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  • 08/07/17--16:00: Ploughing back his skills
  • Ploughing back his skillsPloughing back his skillsMaking a tangible difference in his community A young Civil Engineer opens up about his experience in the civil engineering and how he plans to transform his community with his skills. Ama Rildo Paulo is a young civil engineer who works at Lithon Project Consultants in Ongwediva. The University of Cape Town graduate shared with The Zone that he opted to do civil engineering because of the critical shortage of civil engineers in Namibia and also driven by the fact that he has always wanted to make a perceptible impact in his community. “I wanted to be an architect at first but I realised I would have more impact in the community if I became a civil engineer,” said Paulo.

    Paulo graduated in 2011 and started working in 2012 at Lithon Project Consultants in Windhoek. “Although I am still relatively young in the industry, I have travelled quite an interesting journey thus far and I have worked for Lithon Project Consultants in three different towns, including Swakopmund,” said Paulo.

    “Working in these different towns allows me a platform to learn new and different things about my line of work which at the end of the day fuels my passion.”

    For Paulo being a civil engineer entails having the zeal to transform his surroundings with his work. He said that primarily, the duties and responsibilities of civil engineers are designing, drawing and working on various construction projects at hand and for him, designing infrastructure to meet the specifications of the people in his community is his priority. “I just want to make life easier for Namibian people with my work,” he said.

    The civil engineer did his primary education at Bet-El Primary School in Katutura and completed his matric at Deutsche Höhere Privatschule Windhoek (DHPS). He shared that growing up, he was passionate about drawing, hence he wanted to become an architect at first, but as he grew he developed the love for engineering. “Even though I had plans of becoming an architect, I am really content with being a civil engineer and I believe I am in the right field. I believe being a civil engineer is my calling in life,” said Paulo with conviction.

    As a civil engineer, Paulo shared that the most satisfying aspect about his work is completing a project. He explained that during the period between commencement and completion of a project a lot transpires and being able to complete the project is always rewarding. “As a civil engineer, the positive feedback you get not just from your supervisors but from members of the community as well is very gratifying,” said Paulo.

    He also said the most infuriating and challenging thing about his profession as a civil engineer is the workload. According to Palo, at some point, the work load is a challenge but said he has figured out a way to address this challenge by managing his time properly. “Time management skills are pivotal in this industry,” said Paulo. According to Paulo, another challenge a civil engineer faces is addressing issues on-site when a civil engineer is still in his or her prime. He advised that to overcome this problem, young civil engineers need to have mentors and must listen to their mentors. “It is important to listen to the guidance and direction of your seniors because they have the adequate experience that will catapult you as a young civil engineer to the next level of your career,” Paulo said.

    Detailing the “must haves” of his profession, Paulo said civil engineers need technical skills, project management skills, communication skills and creativity. “To those who aspire to become civil engineers, a good civil engineer should have good project management skills and contract administration because you will often be responsible to carry out such duties,” he said.

    Paulo further stated that that being focused and being self-driven are some of the pertinent character traits that one must possess in order to blossom as a civil engineer. “In this game you must not be easily distracted and you need to be focused because when you are doing your designs for instance, you need to be focused,” Paulo said.

    Paulo maintains that it is crucial for young people to choose a career in civil engineering because the profession offers you the opportunity to serve their communities and touch people's lives. “For me, the greater part of being a civil engineer is ensuring that I keep people in my country safe and that is one of the reasons that enticed me to take the career route I have taken,” said Paulo. He also said being a civil engineer presents world of opportunities because every country in the world needs civil engineers and this means by having a qualification in civil engineering, one can go anywhere in the world and stands a good chance of getting a decent job. “For me, I advocate for civil engineers to plough back in their communities because no one is going to uplift your community and it is very important to acquire your qualification and come back to make a tangible impact in your own country,” concluded Paulo.


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    Pulling the plug on social mediaPulling the plug on social media Individuality has always been based on partial truths and generalities, but for those of us brought up with social media this has never been truer. If, in the past, we were our careers, relationships, favourite band or car brands, we are now also a part of our Twitter, Instagram and Facebook accounts. Our self-esteem may vary with each follow, favourite or like. If we didn't post a picture it may not have happened, or at least, might as well not have.

    We may have anxiety deciding whether we're happy or just popular, sitting at home looking at photos of friends who appear convincingly satisfied, experiencing a more exciting, significant existence. You might even wake up one morning to find you've been hacked and who you thought you were; is now someone else.

    I was surprised by how people have let social media take control of their lives… I mean some of us are addicted and committed to social media but we are not controlled by it, at least that's the excuse. I was working this past weekend but instead I was sending support requests, changing passwords and overall despairing.

    Not that you couldn't lose your job in the past, your lover or any other elusive element of self but at least these were physically tangible. Now we spend hours a day taming symbols of ourselves we don't even own, strategically illuminating and hiding from behind a screen. Ironically, in striving for endorsements by our social accounts and in seeking a distinctiveness that enables us to stand out in the densely populated cyberworld, we unsuspectingly sacrifice our true self-identities and shape our identities to conform to what the digital world views as acceptable. And, in doing so, we surrender the specialness that we hold so dear.

    Personal stuff has always been for the taking but now it's your identity that's up for grabs, scattered across the web like pieces of a puzzle presented to poachers.

    In my pre-Twitter days I would write in a journal and I would meditate in silence.

    Now I propel my thoughts into the chasm of social media and my meditation is entering a dead zone.

    After almost half a decade year of the digital life, I word my ideas as tweets, texts, 140-character bites. I expect a treat, or re-tweet, for every shrewdly worded announcement, like a dog awaiting his owners' authorisation.

    But where was my Twitter audience when I am not tweeting? I am usually alone with myself, melancholy at the wasted hours occurring in the vacuum of my residence, feeling like the victim of my brain instead of the curator of its content.

    If social media is great for bold, provocative statements it's not conducive to deep thought, extended arguments and nuance.

    I recently also took a back step on how I interact on social media. The pain of my forced digital blackout has brought into interrogation my capability for an eloquent, lengthy ceremony of self-reflection. I am afraid that I no longer follow my thoughts to assumption, only finish half of what I begin with.

    My Twitter account has been a very good way for me to express myself and has improved how I interact with people on social media. It has become a great tool for me to crowd source ideas on a few projects I'm working on. I've taught myself to detach myself from this digital lifestyle I keep finding myself in. Do not let social media get hold of your life, I tell myself every time.

    Whether you admit it or not, we all have had a moment where we have considered what people say about us at on social media and it took a hit on our self-esteem. The only way you can get beyond the social media “mess” is when you log off it and log or tap into your own potential and what you are capable of. Only let the opinion of what those who matter to you get to you and do not let the thoughts of others on social media decide how you live your life.

    Until next time, peri nawa!


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  • 08/07/17--16:00: All eyes on Kenya
  • All eyes on KenyaAll eyes on KenyaTension ahead of today’s poll There are fears of post-election violence as Kenya heads to the polls today to elect a new president. An estimated 180 000 policemen and members of the security forces are being deployed across Kenya as the country prepares to vote on Tuesday in a fiercely contested presidential election.

    Voters in the east African nation will either give the incumbent, Uhuru Kenyatta, who has been in power since 2013, a second term or elect veteran opposition politician Raila Odinga.

    The country is braced for widespread unrest whoever wins, after a campaign marred by hundreds of violent incidents – including the murder of a high-profile election official – issues with new voting technology and widespread concerns over fraud.

    A contested poll in 2007 led to more than a thousand deaths, and violence could sweep the country again if the losing party refuses to accept the result.

    Kenyatta, 55, called for calm at a church service near his home in Nairobi on Sunday. “Do not allow anything to drive a wedge between you. You have been good neighbours and I urge you to remain so regardless of your tribe, religion or political affiliation,” the president said.

    Thousands have been leaving the main cities to head to their home towns to wait out the aftermath of the poll in relative safety. Others have been stocking up on provisions in case of trouble. Streets have emptied, and business has slowed.

    “Normally I fill up my matatu (minibus taxi) in 15 minutes but today I’ve been waiting three hours. It’s a disaster. People are fleeing,” said Willy Fiyukundi, a conductor at Nairobi’s central bus station.

    Human rights officials, community leaders and politicians have called on voters to “control their emotions and preserve a peaceful environment” when the final results are released.

    Mbogori said the KNCHR was concerned about “cowardly leaflets” threatening candidates and warning voters “of certain ethnic origins to flee or else” circulating in local campaigns. She also called on security personnel to avoid the use of excessive force. In 2007, many casualties were the result of police using live ammunition against protesters.

    Local contests for appointments as governors, members of the lower house, senators, county officials and women’s representatives involve 16 000 candidates and are seen as potential flashpoints.

    In Mathare, a poor area of Nairobi, several people were wounded and one killed over the weekend as rival supporters clashed with machetes and guns.

    Nineteen million voters, half of whom are under 35, have been registered. Prisoners are able to vote for the first time. Recent opinion polls have not indicated any clear leader in the campaign and turnout will be a key factor.

    Political allegiance in Kenya often reflects ethnic identity. Kenyatta’s Jubilee Alliance is largely supported by Kenya’s larger Kikuyu and Kalenjin tribes, while Odinga has a following among the country’s smaller communities, such as the Luo.

    At a church in a middle-class neighbourhood in eastern Nairobi where Kenyatta prayed and sang on Sunday morning, worshippers said tribal differences were “very small” among Kenyans.

    “We sing here in all the languages of our country. Our pastor has been telling us there will be peace so we are not worried,” said Daniel Mwangi, a church official.

    Observers see the election as the last showdown of a dynastic rivalry between the families of Kenyatta, 55, and Odinga, 72, that has lasted more than half a century.

    Odinga is taking his making his fourth attempt to gain power. He claims that elections in 2007 and 2013 were stolen from him.

    Kenyatta would be constitutionally barred from a third term if victorious this time while Odinga would be prevented by age and previous failures from mounting a further challenge in 2022.

    Both candidates are so certain of victory, that Nic Cheeseman, professor of African politics at Birmingham University, warns they may have “talked themselves into a corner” in which defeat is not an option.

    “The question is not whether or not they will accept the result but what they will do when they don’t accept it,” he told AFP news agency.

    A new biometric system of voter identification and counting was introduced after the 2007 election but partially failed in 2013.

    Odinga claimed there was vote rigging, however he took his complaints to the courts instead of the streets and despite some rioting after he lost his case, the process ended peacefully.

    Fears surrounding the new system were raised last week when the poll commission’s chief IT manager, Chris Msando, was found strangled and tortured in a forest on the outskirts of Nairobi.

    Msando, a high-profile figure who had made frequent media appearances, had access to all the new system’s secret passwords and codes.

    Last week it was revealed that patchy mobile phone coverage means around a quarter of machines will not be able to relay crucial information in realtime. The announcement prompted considerable anxiety.

    Observers say preventing unrest after the poll depends on disappointed voters being confident there has been no vote rigging.

    The Guardian

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  • 08/07/17--16:00: Shot of the day
  • Shot of the dayShot of the day MANY FACES: This combination of pictures created on 5 August 2017 shows some of the various hairstyles sported by Brazilian footballer Neymar. Neymar's world record 222 million euro (US$264 million) transfer fee may look expensive, but it will end up earning a great deal of money for Paris Saint-Germain, club president Nasser Al-Khelaifi insisted last week. Photo: NAMPA/AFP

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