Articles on this Page
- 08/21/17--16:00: _Hive of activity
- 08/21/17--16:00: _Robotics
- 08/21/17--16:00: _Cultural festivals ...
- 08/21/17--16:00: _My stance on dating
- 08/21/17--16:00: _Getting tech savvy
- 08/21/17--16:00: _South Asia floods c...
- 08/21/17--16:00: _Shot of the day
- 08/21/17--16:00: _Swapo proposal back...
- 08/21/17--16:00: _Donkey saga: Farmer...
- 08/21/17--16:00: _Kahuure wants Alett...
- 08/21/17--16:00: _National minimum wa...
- 08/21/17--16:00: _Man in brutal hospi...
- 08/21/17--16:00: _Grim weekend: Child...
- 08/21/17--16:00: _Oanob Dax Investmen...
- 08/21/17--16:00: _Govt defends Zim ‘e...
- 08/21/17--16:00: _Corruption at conse...
- 08/21/17--16:00: _PAAB challenge open...
- 08/21/17--16:00: _Resettled San sidel...
- 08/22/17--09:08: _ATM bust open
- 08/22/17--16:00: _NPL rebuffs MTN rumour
- 08/21/17--16:00: Hive of activity
- 08/21/17--16:00: Robotics
- 08/21/17--16:00: Cultural festivals still relevant
- 08/21/17--16:00: My stance on dating
- 08/21/17--16:00: Getting tech savvy
- 08/21/17--16:00: South Asia floods claim over 750
- 08/21/17--16:00: Shot of the day
- 08/21/17--16:00: Swapo proposal backward
- 08/21/17--16:00: Donkey saga: Farmers must submit concerns
- 08/21/17--16:00: Kahuure wants Aletta gazetted as chief
- 08/21/17--16:00: National minimum wage on the cards
- 08/21/17--16:00: Man in brutal hospital stabbing gets 44 years
- 08/21/17--16:00: Grim weekend: Children killed, raped
- 08/21/17--16:00: Oanob Dax Investment back in business
- 08/21/17--16:00: Govt defends Zim ‘experts’
- 08/21/17--16:00: Corruption at conservancies
- 08/21/17--16:00: PAAB challenge opens can of worms
- 08/21/17--16:00: Resettled San sidelined
- 08/22/17--09:08: ATM bust open
- 08/22/17--16:00: NPL rebuffs MTN rumour
While recreation and the environment in which young people spend their leisure time is changing, young people in Namibia are still involved in what is called traditional recreational activities.
These include sport, clubs, music and dance as well as volunteering.
There is a strong focus on organised activities, particularly for younger teenagers.
As they get older, there is also a move towards more casual activities that the youth control themselves.
These more casual activities include skateboarding, biking and browsing the internet, and hanging out with friends. Participating in recreational activities offers many physical, mental and social benefits. Teenagers who participate in recreational activities may experience reduced obesity, reduced depression and stress as well as increased stewardship and volunteerism.
One of the teenagers who have been taking part in recreational activities is Emerson Ricardo, a skateboarder in Windhoek. Ricardo is of the opinion that there is a lack of places where the youth can go and relax in Windhoek. “I think the government needs to do something, there is need for more spaces accessible to young people so that they can take part in activities that can be beneficial to their mental and physical health,” shared Ricardo. He argued that many recreational places that are around are usually not accessible to the youth. “You can already tell that there are a few places where we can go and enjoy ourselves as young people but they are rarely available to us. Some of the youth centres that are there are usually closed and so we cannot access them when we want to use them,” said Ricardo.
The skateboarder said many of the recreational and youth centres around the country are turning into “white elephants” because the youth were not engaged and are not consulted about the kinds of services youth centres have. If you take a look at many youth centres in the country, you can see most of these places are empty. We are no longer going to these places because the service offered there is not appealing to us anymore. The government and other authorities just put up buildings without consulting the youth to find out what they would want at these places and this drives us away from such places, said Ricardo.
He did however acknowledge that many of the youth centres around the country play an important role in the lives of the youth. “Some of these places are areas we go to as young people so that we can relate to one another. We can go there and enjoy ourselves and just ease off the pressures that life exerts on us.
“Youth centres such as the UN Plaza and the Katutura Youth Complex have become hubs of activity providing an array of many sporting events. These places are usually frequented by young people who go out there to relax and participate in various sports activities.”
The Zone visited the UN Plaza where some young people where playing basketball. One of these young people was Alex Ndjarakana and his friends.
Ndjarakana said he enjoys going to youth centres because they are places at which many “hang out” to be “free”.
“I like these places because they offer you freedom. They also create an environment where you can relax and dream about your future. My parents usually tell me about how they used to play outside with their friends back in the days and I also want the same experience and that is why I come to UN Plaza,” said Ndjarakana.
He says places such as UN Plaza foster creativity and make it possible for the youth to develop their talents.
“You can do almost anything that you want at the UN Plaza. If you play soccer or basketball you can come here and do just that. I come here to express my talent as a basketball player,” said Ndjarakana. He says youth centres are good places for young people to meet and engage with one another. “We also come here to talk to one another and just to share knowledge and some of the problems we are dealing with. In a way you can say youth centres are places for us to meet and talk with one another,” said Ndjarakana.
Another basketball player who was at the UN Plaza, Fabio Domingos said youth centres keep the young people occupied and away from crime and joining gangs.
“I think places such as the UN Plaza keep young people occupied as well as busy and keeps young people from joining gangs,” said Domingos.
Manfred Mbazuma warned that youth centres such as the UN Plaza and the Katutura Youth Complex are not the safe havens as the youth would want to believe. He said many young people are being lured into criminal activities and drug use at such places.
“I have been battling alcohol and drug abuse for the past few months now and I picked up some of these bad practices at places such as the UN Plaza and the youth should make sure they do not become victims of drug use when they visit such places,” advised Mbazuma.
Ethan Narib says there are many places where young people can go to relax and thus should choose wisely. “There are enough places I think where the youth can go to for recreational purposes and we should just choose the ones that are relevant and convenient for us,” adds Narib.
Many of the youth The Zone spoke to highlight the importance of recreation and encouraged more young people to go to these centres because they are beneficial to them. Recreation builds stronger people and families by reducing negative, self-destructive behaviours such as smoking, substance abuse and juvenile delinquency.
This positive approach helps to reduce social service and judiciary costs. Recreation has the ability to break down cultural, class and identity barriers, improving the quality of life for all the people.
By bringing these future STEM leaders together in an engaging and collaborative competition that drives home the importance, excitement and applicability of STEM education, the summit inspired learners to learn the skills they will need to make the discoveries their parents and grandparents would consider miracles, impossible or just plain science fiction.
The GGCS was sponsored by the US National Academy of Engineering (NAE), the UK Royal Academy of Engineering and the Chinese Academy of Engineering.
“Each game only lasted for about two minutes and thirty seconds and the objective was to make sure you utilise your robot well to execute different tasks. This was quite different as we had to make sure our robot performed most jobs,” said Mouton.
The team also added that building their robot was also a good experience amongst themselves as they learned to work efficiently as a team and improve on their communication.
“This entire project was established to promote STEM careers as this is what is going to be needed in our country a few years from now. I feel it is very important that we give opportunities to these learners who are interested in these career paths and to make it known to them as they will be able to solve different kinds of issues in future,” said Brendell.
The team also added that they would like to help the next representatives to get ready for the next competition that will take place in Mexico next year, as “we would like to groom them to be ready for the next competition and hopefully to be ranked in the top 30,” Brendell added.
Mbenzi explained to The Zone that other countries have STEM extra mural activities at their respective schools and Namibia can follow suit.
“Here in our country, we only have extra mural activities like debating, choir and sport. The little bit that we have here is simply science fairs and we feel that these are not enough as we need to stimulate the minds of young people from a tender age,” Mbenzi continued.
Besides the learning experience in the world of robotics, the team also established new friendships.
“Our secondary goal was to break barriers among countries. We wanted to unite despite the language barriers and build strong foundations all in the name of technology,” said Lee.
Brendell said she shared a room with girls from Myanmar and Nicaragua and they communicated using Google translate the entire time. “It was very awkward as I would first type what I wanted to say and then translate it. One would not think you would have the same interests as someone from another country, but we made it work.” The team also added that they enjoyed the sight-seeing tour of the country saying it was an adventure.
The future plans for the team include establishing a committee to help them to get ready for next year's competition and assisting them with raising funds and getting sponsorship. “The only problem is that we will be attending university, but we are definitely going to try our best to make sure all learners are moulded well before this competition. We should still invest in STEM projects as we are not all good in subjects like history and geography. That is why it is important to look into this path,” said Lee.
They said this at the launch of Unam's career fair last week.
Law student Amara Chukwu said cultural festivals are relevant because they keep the youth in touch with their traditional practices. “Cultural festivals are still relevant because they help us to practice our cultures. Cultural festivals are also very important because they remind us of who we are in a world where many of us are being influenced by the Western world and European cultures,” said Chukwu.
Lereen Kaijere, a psychology student, said many cultures in Namibia and Africa are losing their practices to globalisation, but cultural festivals help young people to know more about their traditions.
“In today's world, cultural festivals are still very important because many of our cultures are being diluted by what many of us young people follow and through cultural festivals we get reintegrated in our own cultures and get to learn more about them,” said Kaijere. Toivo Akuunda, another Unam student, says that cultural festivals instil pride in many young people especially pride about their cultures and traditional practices.
“These festivals make us proud about whom we are and we also learn about our cultures and through such initiatives we get to retain information about our traditional practices,” said Akuunda.
Sexon Hamutenya, a student from the Unam Khomasdal campus. Is of the opinion that cultural festivals remind the youth about where they come from and can be used as a guideline by the young people to figure out where they are headed in future.
“Through cultural festivals we know where we come from and we can use that to know what our future looks like. Many of us focus on modernity but cultural festivals are rooted in our own cultural identity,” said Hamutenya.
For Mandela Jason, cultural festivals are significant because they make it possible for people to be aware about each other's cultures and thus fight xenophobia and tribalism.
“Cultural festivals have the potential of teaching us about one another. We can live better with each other and tolerate one another because through cultural festivals we get to learn about other people's cultural and traditional practices,” said Jason.
Unam launched their cultural festival alongside their silver jubilee as the institution celebrates 25 years of existence.
Over the years, I've garnered a new wave of respect for romantic relationships and what they mean. You will soon learn that what you see on TV especially with regard to relationships is very different from the real thing. Love does not have to come with strings attached; it should not be conditional and most importantly, it should not be problematic.
When I get into a relationship with someone, the most important thing and something which I put above love itself is respect. There needs to be a genuine exchange of respect between couples who are in a romantic relationship. To me, that is the only way you grow and build your relationship. You should also be able to laugh and cry with someone you are dating without worrying about what they think of you. You need to date someone who is going to support you and sit with you when you find yourself in a corner and when you need him or her and not just someone who is in your life when it is convenient for them.
I usually do not even participate in these dating rituals that I am seeing taking place among many young people. A lot of people are going into relationships and they do not even know why they are dating one another. Many of these relationships are fickle and meaningless. I am sure we all know of people who have been hopelessly in love but who later jump off after many months. There is nothing wrong with trying to find love or your significant other but, you should not substitute your happiness and well-being while doing so. I know quite a few people who have sworn that they are “hopeless romantics” and keep searching for their significant others even when the searches are futile. Look at your situation and reassess it. For the past few months, eight to be exact; I have not been romantically attached to anyone. It is not possible for me to be romantically attached to any lady right now, based on my situation and the direction my life has taken. I am too busy for relationships; I am too busy for dating and meaningless romantic relationships. I know some of you are thinking that there is no such thing as being too busy for relationships but that is the truth. In between my studies, “me time”, work and my many other relationships, I have no time to be caught up in “I love you toos” with the ladies in my life. I also want to commit myself to a relationship when I am ready to do so, mentally. I do not want to give someone divided attention, I want to date someone and be devoted to them and not have them compete with the many other things I do.
I have taken a very selfish decision I know but, it has been working out very well compared to many peers I know. The kind of dating I see right now is hurtful and spiteful and many young people are tolerating a lot of bad stuff. For far too long, I have seen many young people being cheated on and still continue with their relationships. For far too long, young sweethearts and love birds have been dating conveniently for themselves and in the process have subjected their so called loved ones to a lot of discomfort. Of course there are those in the silver lining who have made a success of their relationships but, they are too small a number to brag about. You need to love yourself first before you can love other people affectionately and wholeheartedly. Unfortunately, many still have to love themselves before they can give love to others. Choose you and just be happy
Until next time. Peri nawa!
The team of Wilbard Mbenzi, Dorian Hovelmann, Anthony Lee, Nicole Brendell, Chauncey Mouton and Isaac Akpokiniovo represented Namibia at the event attended by 163 other nations from around the world.
With the help of a tutoring team from the States, the five were ranked 52nd, beating second world countries like South Korea, Portugal, Japan and Austria.
“This was a very proud moment for us as we were competing against a lot of other countries that are well acquainted with building robots from scratch,” said Lee.
The team members were aged between 16-18.
Lee added the experience was wonderful and they learned a lot from the world of science and technology.
The summit organises an annual international robotics challenge to ignite a passion in teenagers around the world in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM). “We were among the more than two billion youths from across the world who are interested in these subjects so, it was such a great opportunity for us to take part in and experience things first-hand how they work on the other side,” added Brendell.
The human toll is steadily rising across India, Nepal and Bangladesh following the latest in a series of deluges since August 10, as the annual monsoon hits the north and east of the region.
Nearly 50 bodies were found overnight in Bihar, in India's east, taking the number of dead there to 253, a state disaster official told AFP.
In Nepal, 143 people have died and 30 remain missing after flooding that has destroyed close to 80 000 homes.
The heavy rain has also taken a toll on India's wildlife, with rescue teams pulling stranded animals from raging waters in Kaziranga National Park.
The sanctuary in northeastern Assam state, home to the world's largest population of rare one-horned rhinos and other endangered species, has been especially hard hit.
“Our teams have recovered 225 dead animals since August 12. Of those, 15 were rhinos,” Kaziranga director Satyendra Singh told AFP.
“A Bengal tiger also died in a fight with a herd of elephants. He was left injured and later could not walk or swim. It is possible that due to floods, there was a space crunch and it led to a territorial conflict.”
Nearly 200 deer, four elephant calves, four wild boars, two water buffaloes and one porcupine were among the other animals found dead in Kaziranga, which is still 20% under water, said Singh.
“The toll could rise further,” he added.
The mighty Brahmaputra River, which runs through Assam, often breaks its banks during the monsoon leaving marooned animals scrambling to higher, dryer ground.
The farmers have also been asked to indicate whether they would be interested in breeding donkeys for commercial purposes.
Quivertree Consulting, the company that was hired by Fu Hair Trading Enterprise to conduct an environmental impact assessment (EIA) on the impact of the abattoir, has approached the Namibian Agricultural Union (NAU) for input.
Farmers have been urged to give feedback on how the proposed abattoir may impact the industry, what economic impact it may have on the individual farmer and also farmworkers.
“I have been commissioned to conduct the socio-economic impact assessment of the project and I would value the opinions and views of NAU members,” Svenja Garrard of Quivertree Consulting said in a letter to the union.
According to Quivertree Consulting, the Chinese market values donkey hides and hooves for medicinal purposes as well as its meat for human consumption.
“Approximately 70% of Namibia's 150 000 donkeys live in the northern communal areas while the rest are scattered throughout other parts of the country, on both communal and commercial farms,” the company said.
It further informed the NAU that the abattoir's business model will include having holding pens on farms in the north, outside Outjo and possibly in other areas while it plans to slaughter a maximum of about 70 donkeys per day.
A fulltime government veterinarian will need to be on site to meet stringent export requirements to ensure complete isolation of the slaughter of donkeys and cattle to take place, Quivertree Consulting said.
Farmers were requested to provide information on how the establishment of a donkey market in Namibia could impact them and their workers.
They have also been asked if they would consider breeding donkeys for commercial harvesting purposes.
Furthermore, the union was also asked what the social and economic impact on farmers and their workers would be should the donkey population in Namibia decline sharply, as this has happened in other countries.
The company also wanted to know whether there would be any impact on grazing.
“What mitigation measures do you suggest to ensure a sustainable off-take of donkeys from the regions to prevent people losing a key transport, carrying, ploughing and meat asset?” the company wanted to know.
Further farmers were asked to provide information on any other socio-economic issues of concern.
In a background information document (BID) drafted by Quivertree Consulting, on the impact of the abattoir,
The aim of the development would be to build a state-of-the-art export abattoir to slaughter both donkey and cattle for the local Namibian market as well as for export to China. Outjo was identified as a strategic town ideally located between the source of donkeys in the north, cattle from surrounding commercial farms and the export port at Walvis Bay.
The document says that the animals would need to be collected from surrounding areas and held on farms prior to their transport to Outjo.
Here the animals would be kept and allowed to range freely, until ready for transport to the abattoir.
Only donkeys and cattle sourced from Namibia would be slaughtered.
The frozen meat and hides would be placed in refrigerated containers and transported to the Walvis Bay harbour for export.
Most meat waste, offcuts, bones and offal would be packaged, frozen and sold locally.
Condemned meat products would be disposed of within an approved area within the Outjo municipal waste site.
Members of the public and other interested parties have until the end of August to highlight their concerns and questions on the proposed donkey and cattle export abattoir in Outjo.
Issues already raised by numerous members of the public in Outjo and elsewhere include groundwater and soil contamination, and a business model that has been described as unsustainable based on the fact that it intends to slaughter around 70 donkeys every day. Studies indicate that Namibia has no more than 160 000 of these animals.
Ovambanderu senior traditional councillor Erastus Kahuure on Sunday pledged the community's support for their queen in her quest to be gazetted as leader of her clan.
He was speaking during the commemoration of fallen Ovambanderu leaders at the Okeseta cemetery on Farm Groot Kunichas, some 15km south of Gobabis.
He said they will use all resources and avenues available to make sure their case for recognition is heard and accepted by government.
Kahuure noted that their call for recognition of Nguvauva is legitimate, as she has been leading her subjects over the past few years and therefore needed to be officially recognised as such.
“Every peaceful means available to us will be exhausted to make sure the queen is recognised,” he said.
The senior traditional leader also used the platform to call on his subjects to remain calm and respect others who may hold different views.
“I want us to remain calm and peaceful in all our dealings. We are not making war, we are a peaceful people,” he noted.
Kahuure said he longed for unity of purpose and common understanding amongst Ovambanderu people in the spirit of 'One Namibia, One Nation'.
Nguvauva, on her part, told those gathered that she will continue leading her community with pride despite not being officially recognised by government.
“Recognition will come on its own time, but that will not stop me from leading you, as we are a community that holds historical significance,” she told her subjects.
About 300 people converged on Okeseta to pay homage to their fallen heroes as per the annual commemoration rituals.
Traditional cavalry and infantry troops performed at the event, with warrior songs and battle chants complementing the traditional event.
The ministry is currently consulting with labour stakeholders. One of the issues being discussed is whether a new law is required for setting a national minimum wage.
“The preliminary indication appears to suggest that the current legislation is adequate and what is needed is the composition of the wage commission because that is the institution for wage setting,” said Shinguadja.
“It is the policy of this ministry that whenever it embarks upon on an activity that might have national impacts, it has to consult its social partners which include the state, employers and employees as well as their organisations plus interested parties,” Shinguadja explained.
He said consultation had started already, but he could not give a time frame for the introduction of the new minimum wage.
The minister of labour, Erkki Nghimtina, formally gave notice of a planned wage commission at the beginning of the year. It will investigate and make recommendations on proposed minimum wages and conditions of employment for domestic workers.
Nghimtina named former deputy prime minister Libertina Amathila as its chairperson. Other members are former media ombudsman Clement Daniels, former acting statistician-general Liina Kafidi, Valeria Muchero of the Namibia Employers Federation, and Barbara van der Westhuizen representing the labour unions. Minimum wages are already in place for security guards, farmworkers, construction workers and domestic workers.
Hendrick !Nowoseb, 25, was sentenced by High Court Judge Christie Liebenberg after the same judge on 15 August 2017 found him guilty on a charge of murder in respect of the brutal stabbings that claimed the life of then 19-year-old Wilhelmina Tsauses on 6 December 2014.
On this charge, !Nowoseb was sent to jail for 40 years.
!Nowoseb was also sentenced to eight years in prison on the second charge of attempted murder in connection with a cut wound that Tsauses's new boyfriend had sustained to his cheek during a scuffle with !Nowoseb earlier that day before he stabbed Tsauses to death.
Four years of this sentence was ordered to run concurrently with the punishment imposed in respect of the murder count.
Evidence presented during trial show that !Nowoseb first stabbed Tsauses on her head, neck and left arm at around 23h00 at her family house in Etoshapoort, injuring her severely before fleeing the scene.
He then launched the brutal stabbings on Tsauses the following day while she lay in a hospital bed during visiting hours.
Nurses found the deceased bleeding from a fresh and deep wound to the chest. She died shortly afterwards.
A few minutes after he was found guilty, !Nowoseb apologised to the deceased's family and rest of Namibia and asked for forgiveness.
He told the court he had no intention to kill Tsauses and only wanted to injure her.
Employed as a construction worker in the Outjo distict, !Nowoseb grew up with his grandmother and attended school up to Grade 6.
He will serve his prison term at the Windhoek Central Correctional Facility.
Natji Tjirera defended Nowoseb, while advocate Martino Olivier appeared for prosecution.
According to the police the 34-year-old man picked up his nephew and threw him on the ground.
Hausiku Alberth sustained serious head injuries and died at Rupara clinic. The suspect was arrested.
In the Oshikoto Region two girls, aged eight and six, were allegedly raped by their neighbour. The incident occurred on Friday afternoon at Iindongo yaKeelu village near Omuthiya.
According to the police the man lured the girls to his hut, undressed them and raped them. Their grandmother called the police and the suspect was arrested.
In another incident on Saturday morning a nine-year-old girl was allegedly raped by her uncle at Onakalunga village in the Eenhana area.
It is alleged that the suspect called the victim to his room where he raped her. The suspect is still at large.
At Onambaladi village near Eenhana the police are investigating the death of a one-year-old boy. It is alleged that Festus Mayoo drowned in a pond on Friday.
Also on Friday a mother found her four-month-old baby dead on a bed at Okanyandi village near Okongo. A post-mortem will be done to determine the cause of death.
Two Namibian men, aged 29 and 32, were arrested at the Onhuno police checkpoint in the Ohangwena Region on Saturday morning after two rhino horns were found in their car boot during a routine search.
According to Bernard Mumbashu, a 30% shareholder in the venture, they transferred N$5 million to the council on Friday, 18 August.
“We are now just waiting for the township board to approve the layout, then the biggest project in Rehoboth will kick off,” Mumbashu said yesterday.
Rehoboth chief executive officer Christophe /Uirab yesterday said he was only aware of a “guarantee” from Standard Bank, and could only confirm payment today as he was in Windhoek on official duty yesterday.
“I only called the bank to see whether the guarantee was legit and they confirmed it but I cannot at this point confirm whether payment was in fact made,” he said.
By the end of 2013, Mumbashu and his partners promised that the development would consist of more than 100 new chalets and a waterfront development on the southern edge of the Oanob Dam.
The partners are Alfred Dax, who serves as special advisor to Hardap governor Esme Isaak, and Hendry Dirks.
In an official offer to purchase the land dated 2 July 2014, Mumbashu stated that the close corporation would do the land surveying, build service roads and supply services such as sewerage, water and electricity at their own cost.
They also committed themselves to pay for the land within 60 days of signing the contract.
Dax said the development would boost the standard of living at the town as it would provide decent jobs for local people. He complained about the delays caused by bureaucracy.
“It is now four years since we submitted the proposal. Imagine how many people could have benefitted from this development already? Rehoboth is a place of artisans. This kind of development can really create jobs and decent incomes for our people,” he said.
Following a public outcry by Namibian graduates over the continued employment of Zimbabwean architects and quantity surveyors, the cabinet has directed that the Ministry of Works and Transport consult with the Namibia Council of Architects and “perhaps” the Engineering Council of Namibia “to gauge the continued need for expatriates in the public service”.
But in the same breath the minister of information and communication technology, Tjekero Tweya, warned against xenophobia.
“Namibia is a product of international solidarity and we are proud that many citizens of the world would like to come to live in Namibia and help us build and expand this Namibian house. Namibians have their homes and careers all over the world. Others too should feel at home in Namibia, whilst we ensure that Namibians themselves feel at home in their own country, side by side,” Tweya said in a statement issued yesterday.
The government spokesman acknowledged that the push for the registration of Zimbabwean architects and quantity surveyors with professional bodies here was aimed at allowing them to “set up shop” in the private sector after their contracts with the works ministry lapsed.
Tweya said although the economy was on the mend, many contracts had been put on hold. In the meantime, he advised, the situation “cannot be cured by reliance on xenophobic mantra”, saying people should instead “multi-skill” and “do more with less”.
Ironically, Tweya also painstakingly explained the long, difficult road for local graduates to get registered with professional bodies.
He explained that graduates must register for in-service training that can last between three and seven years, or even longer. That is then followed by written and oral examinations.
Works minister Alpheus !Naruseb on 17 March gazetted a notice exempting 29 Zimbabweans from registration with the council for architects.
!Naruseb on 28 July wrote a letter to the president of the Namibia Council of Architects and Quantity Surveyors, Kerry McNamara, in which he wrote that he “had been advised” that the 29 Zimbabwean must be exempted from registration.
In that letter !Naruseb urged McNamara to “expedite the process of including on your register” the names of the exempted Zimbabweans.
!Naruseb further wrote to McNamara: “Considering that the registrations are in force for the duration of each person’s contract of employment, I hereby direct council to facilitate for those on the list who in future will satisfy council requirements to sit for Assessment for Professional Competence (APC) examinations.”
Nevertheless, in yesterday’s statement Tweya said the letter to McNamara did not motivate their exemption from the registration requirements of the Architects’ and Quantity Surveyors’ Act of 1979 based on a lapsed agreement between the Namibian and Zimbabwean governments.
Tweya said neither was the employment of persons in the public service on contract conditional upon the existence of an agreement between any government and the Namibian government.
“As a matter of fact, with the agreement in question having lapsed, there was no bar upon the minister [!Naruseb] and the administrative authorities to have appointed the Zimbabweans,” Tweya said.
Tweya said taking into consideration that the Zimbabweans were employed here to supervise projects of the works ministry and the government, as well as to train young Namibians, the only outstanding issue was the registration of the Zimbabweans “in the normal course of enrolment”.
He further said most of the 29 Zimbabweans were not registered in their own country, yet were registered in the United Kingdom or South Africa.
However, the Namibia Qualifications Authority (NQA) does not recognise qualifications from the National University of Science and Technology (NUST) of Zimbabwe, and that is why the professional bodies here did not register the Zimbabweans, Tweya said.
“However, when these professionals have taken the exam, the APC, some of them are passing and becoming registered in their own right and not only by virtue of the exemption,” Tweya said.
Shifeta said the ministry was investigating a number of complaints about mismanagement and corruption within conservancies.
“I want to send a strong warning to those individuals and all those who have that ambition of corruption, mismanagement and mal-administration of conservancy resources that they are already on the wrong side of the law and that my ministry will leave no stone unturned to bring these individuals to order,” Shifeta said.
Shifeta emphasised that a conservancy is not a tool to divide communities along political, racial or ethnic lines, but an initiative aimed at rural economic emancipation.
“I urge you all to commit yourselves to nation-building and not indulging yourselves in creating conflicts among community members and yourselves as conservancy members. This should be made clear to everyone concerned,” Shifeta said.
Some complainants accused conservancy committee members of misusing and misappropriating conservancy property and finances at the expense of the community.
Others complained about a lack of communication between conservancy members and the people in charge, and the reluctance of committee members to relinquish their positions at the end of their terms.
Namibia has more than 80 conservancies which give communities rights over wildlife, which they are expected to manage and in return generate income from tourism and trophy hunting.
Shifeta called on committee members to be accountable and practice good governance.
“In order for the conservancy to serve the interest of local residents, the conservancy committee needs to be accountable to those residents. Accountability means that the committee cannot take whatever decisions it wants to. It must ensure that its decisions have the support of the majority of the residents,” the minister said.
“Poor management of finances in some conservancies is a worrying concern and needs to improve now,” Shifeta further said.
The minister said conservancy members have a big role to play in the fight against poaching.
“You are on the ground and you can therefore see what is happening and possibly prevent that. It is the responsibility of all of us to fight wildlife crime,” he said.
PAAB has charged Hashagen with six counts of misconduct following alleged omissions of crucial documents from a forensic report on alleged shenanigans at the Namibia Financial Services Supervisory Authority (Namfisa) in 2008 and 2009.
Hashagen was then leading the investigation at Namfisa on behalf of auditing firm Ernst & Young (EY).
Former Namfisa CEO Rainer Ritter, who was forced to leave the parastatal following the EY investigation, then lodged a complaint with PAAB, claiming unprofessional conduct by Hashagen over omitted documents and files which he claimed Hashagen had deliberately left out of the report.
Some of the documents allegedly left out of the EY report are explosive testimonies of how Namfisa staff breached security services at the parastatal in an apparent attempt to manipulate or delete evidence.
Namfisa at the time was investigating N$660 million of loans from GIPF's Development Capital Portfolio (DCP) which lenders had defaulted on.
One of the things EY had to do was to verify Ritter's evidence provided to the Namfisa board, which showed that then general manager of investment institutions, Boni Paulino, had removed evidence from a small boardroom at the Namfisa office in the Sanlam building.
This was caught on CCTV, which, according to Ritter, clearly showed Paulino leaving the building on 13 November 2008 with something in his hand.
Although this section of the CCTV data was somehow removed from the Namfisa server, Ritter, suspecting internal corruption then already, used off-site mirrored data to present this evidence.
Paulino had reportedly identified himself as the man in the CCTV footage.
In the summary of its findings EY stated that it could not comment on the validity of the allegation due to the nature of the evidence that supported the allegation.
Ritter reported the tampering with internal CCTV footage storage, as two drives had been deleted.
Furthermore, said Ritter, a full report of South African outfit Babalela Security Services, which did a physical and electronic sweep later that month, was submitted to EY.
Babalela had found “past installation of eavesdropping or covert devices” in the ceiling of the first floor. The wiring of a camera with audio and a connector was also found in the boardroom next to the office of Ritter's secretary, and could eavesdrop on both Ritter's and his secretary's offices.
Ritter said despite sufficient evidence of foul play, Hashagen and EY failed to interview the manager of Babalela, Renier Tredoux, and relied on the inspection of five cables that were in the possession of the Namibian police.
Tredoux reported that the cables were “highly specialised”.
On 15 November 2008 a specialist forensic investigator employed by Namfisa took pictures showing the cables in the boardroom ceiling. However, the Namfisa camera and laptop containing this evidence were later stolen from the Namfisa office.
During that time the investigator was brutally attacked in his home and left for dead; he survived the attack though.
In his testimony to EY Paulino identified himself as the man from the CCTV footage. However, he denied having any knowledge of eavesdropping devices or cables and he said he could not remember if he had removed anything from his office on the night in November 2008.
Ritter's complaint is also that EY did not take any statements from him, the specialist investigator, Lily Brandt (former general manager of corporate services) or the police in this matter despite numerous criminal matters pending and being investigated by the police.
He said from the footage it could be seen that Paulino had spent only one minute in his office while having made some effort to drive to the office at 21:00 at night.
Ritter charged that EY and Hashagen had probably wilfully refused to conduct further investigations into Paulino's late-night visit to the Namfisa office despite having been provided with several pieces of evidence constituting a prima facie case of corruption or dishonest conduct, alternatively illegal interception of private discussions and data, or unlawful invasion of privacy.
The Ministry of Land Reform is yet to pronounce itself on the fate of a Chinese outfit and its fixer, former trade union leader Alfred Angula, who have for all practical purposes settled on Farm Ludwigshafen No. 48, on which San families were resettled.
A high-level ministerial delegation led by permanent secretary Peter Amutenya visited the farm in June to establish the facts after Angula allegedly represented himself as the sole beneficiary of the farm.
The farm was allocated to the Ludwigshafen Worker Trust, which Angula set up after nine San families had been announced as beneficiaries of the farm.
Angula himself is not a beneficiary, although he installed himself as the chairperson of the Ludwigshafen Worker Trust while he was the general secretary of the Namibia Farm Workers Union (Nafwu).
On an earlier occasion Angula said he had become the chairperson of the trust in his personal capacity and not as union leader.
The beneficiaries of resettlement there are nine San families headed by Booitjie Koebeb, Moses Gaeseb, Mathews Kauswoab, Festus Harabib, Johannes Aap, Markus Kamati Sosa, Andreas Kamati, Elifas Haraseb and Jan Tsam.
As chairperson of the trust, Angula in April last year entered into an agreement with Aochen Farming, owned by Chinese national Tao Wang, which started a massive horticultural project on the farm.
The San beneficiaries claim that they had no input in the project.
Insiders preferring anonymity claim that Angula recently represented himself as the sole beneficiary of the farm when he forwarded work permit applications to the Ministry of Home Affairs and Immigration on behalf of Chinese workers employed by Aochen Farming,
The lands ministry was informed of Angula’s claim, hence the high-level visit to the farm in June.
Angula denied vehemently that he had applied for work permits for the Chinese nationals, let alone having represented himself as the beneficiary.
In an SMS reply, Angula angrily wrote: “Please verify your information before you come and make allegations of such nature against me.”
Notwithstanding his denial, one of the commissioners appointed to investigate the agreement between Angula and Aochen confirmed the claim.
The commissioner, who did not want to be named, said the work permit applications had been received but the commission was “not happy” with the agreement Angula and Aochen had entered into. This commissioner would not divulge any further details.
Another commissioner, also preferring anonymity, said the arrangement between Angula and Aochen was “tantamount to a land grab”.
It is understood that Deputy Prime Minister Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah also visited the farm earlier in the year and expressed her unhappiness about the arrangement.
However, Wang claimed during a recent visit to the farm that the high-level delegation in June was “very positive” about Aochen’s presence at the farm.
According to him the delegation indicated that the Chinese outfit merely had to comply with certain stipulations, such as formally applying to the lands ministry to engage in certain activities on the farm.
Aochen is apparently planning to expand its greenhouses on a 30-hectare portion of the farm.
STILL LEFT OUT
“We have been given a cup but we are not allowed to drink from it,” said one of the San beneficiaries, Booitjie Koebeb.
The San beneficiaries still maintain that they are excluded from decision-making in the arrangement between Angula and Aochen.
While the greenhouse project is expanding and Angula’s involvement with the Aochen continues, the San beneficiaries say they have yet to benefit from it.
“Angula is continuing with the agreement [with Aochen] but we do not know if he is being paid or not,” said Koebeb.
A fresh controversy has also erupted between the San beneficiaries and Angula over the latter allegedly allowing neighbouring farmers to cut grass on Ludwigshafen.
Again the San beneficiaries say they know nothing of these arrangements and who is benefitting from it.
Those who tried to stop the grass cutting were served with warning letters from law firm !Naruses and Associates, which was instructed by the ‘Ludwigshafen Trust’.
These letters demanded that the San beneficiaries “stop interfering with activities of Ludwigshafen Trust”. They had allegedly “interfered” by “insisting that no grass be cut and/or preventing the cutting of grass contrary to the instructions of the trust and its management”.
Thieves got away with an estimated N$500 000 after using a blow torch to cut open a First National Bank ATM at the Old Power Station in the southern industrial area in Windhoek during the early hours of Monday morning. According to the police, the robbery took place between 01:00 and 02:00. It is alleged that the suspect gained access to the machine by cutting open the door of the entrance to the ATM using a cutting torch. The alarm was deactivated before the machine was dismantled.
The police say that it appears as though the robbers also took the ATM’s storage device, along with the cash.
According to IT experts, such a device would store information but no detailed data on account or pin numbers and further to this, the material would be highly encrypted and protected.
Elzita Beukes, FNB’s group communications manager, confirmed the incident to Namibian Sun but could not say how much money was taken. She did however confirm that the bank is in the process of increasing and strengthening its security. “Security remains a top priority, especially given the current increase in criminal activities,” she said.
The police could not provide and information on the suspects or number of robbers saying only that investigations continue.
This is after speculation in and around football circles became rife that the leading telecommunications company on the continent will allegedly sponsor the NPL.
The company last month announced that it had acquired 30% shares in Profile Investment [a subsidiary of Profile Investment Holdings] owned by businessman Vaino Hipondoka.
NPL’s Joshua //Hoebeb said: “Yes we are hearing about the rumours circulating, but I can confirm that there is nothing of that nature at the moment.
“All we know about this company is just that it partnered up with a local business, and that is all.”
Meanwhile, the Namibia Premier League officials are expected to endorse the NPL constitution at an extraordinary annual general assembly taking place today at the Safari Hotel at 18:30.
This is after the Namibia Football Association (NFA) completed the rectification process of the new drafted constitution.
At today’s meeting, the league officials and member clubs will hold a congress to formally adopt the draft of the constitution.
After the constitution has been formally adopted by all member clubs, the clubs will propose a date where they will hold the elective congress for NPL’s leadership.
“Everything is in place and the clubs will now have to endorse the constitution today,” //Hoebeb said.
The names of legal practitioner Patrick Kauta and Black Africa chairman Boni Paulino have emerged as frontrunners for the premier league’s top position.
Kauta and Paulino’s economic backgrounds and football knowledge are said to be the reason why many clubs believe they can successfully run the league.
The lack of sponsorship for over a year led to the resignation of NPL leaders and infighting within the football fraternity.
The problems of the league have affected more than 400 players, coaches and referees.
Exactly a year and a day after the league sponsors withdrew their sponsorship, speculation is also rife that the league’s long-term sponsor MTC will be ready to start new negotiations.
This will allegedly be done once the NPL elects new leaders following the adoption of the new constitution.
Jesse Jackson Kauraisa