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Tells it All - Namibian Sun

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    Ghost stadiums sell women's football games shortGhost stadiums sell women's football games short The 2017 Cosafa Women's Championships under way in Zimbabwe is a spectacular event. In a sense that it provides opportunity for women footballers especially the Brave Gladiators who have for some time not taken part in any championships or a home league for that matter to showcase their skills.

    The drought in terms of lack of football activities has really not been great for these athletes who are seeking any possible opportunity to make it out of their impoverished situations and to use their skills to better their situations financially or otherwise.

    An event of this magnitude provides a chance for the ladies to play their hearts out and hopefully be scouted to play internationally.

    The only disappointing factor is the empty stadium. There are only a handful of spectators since the games kicked off.

    I am concerned about this because as an athlete, the total number of spectators affects your ability to play. I also say that spectators act as an extra player, giving that much-needed boost to the team to carry on.

    We have seen this so many times when a team is a goal down, but come back to score and even win a tournament because of the extra support from the crowd.

    It's very disappointing that a championship of this calibre is played on a weekday. How do we plan on promoting the women's game if nobody sees them play?

    We have players who ply their trade in Germany and USA taking part in this championship. How do we motivate them to travel all the way from their respective clubs to represent their country if the very people they play for are nowhere in sight?

    No matter how hard the cameramen tries to focus on the small pockets of fans, every wide shot of the pitch revealed the cavernous empty space that condemned game after game to near silence.

    It's really underwhelming how as organisers we sell ourselves short. Is it the lack of lack of enthusiasm from fans to turn up also a contributing factor or what might be the case? How do we sell women football to African people?

    The low turnouts at matches are a serious embarrassment to the country and must be improved on, if we are to demonstrate to the world our passion for football regardless of the fact that it is played by women or men.

    Football is truly the favourite sport among Africans so when a championship like this comes up, let us market the tournament well. Yes, we cannot force anyone to sit down and watch a game but we can try to get school learners, church groups to fill the stadiums. We can even ask local choirs to turn up and sing a song or two for cheer.

    Let's camouflage the stadiums and sell hope and football dreams to nations. I know there are a lot of girls if not boys who want to someday play a match in a full stadium and be cheered by local people to perform better and to score a goal.

    Let's give the youth those hopes by planning better. I know that it is easier said than done but if I as a journalist see the need to address the problem I believe you as a fan has the duty to turn up when the is a football match and cheer your team on.

    While we are at it. Let's push our girl child to better in sport. Let us accord them the opportunity to excel, whether they choose to play football, netball, hockey or whatever else. We owe it to ourselves to turn up when they have a match and to support them to do better. If you don't, who will?



    limba@namibiansun.com

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  • 09/17/17--15:00: SA runners light up Navachab
  • SA runners light up NavachabSA runners light up NavachabMarathon exceeds expectations South African runners dominated the fourth edition of the Navachab half-marathon at Karibib on Saturday. Joel Mmone from North West Province came first in a time of one hour, three minutes and one second (1:03:01), and was followed by Thabang Mosiako, also from North West, in 1:03:02, and Lucky Mohale from Gauteng in 1:04:03.

    Reinhold Thomas was the first Namibian over the finish line in 1:04:04 to end fourth, while Reonard Nampala took fifth place overall in 1:04:05.

    Mmone set a new course record, breaking the previous record of 1:06:01 set by Kefas Kondjashili of the Nampol Athletics Club in 2016.

    A total of 276 men and women took part in the race; an increase from 246 participants last year.

    The three South Africans started like a house on fire and created a big gap after just six kilometres of the 21.1km race.

    The trio increased their pace with just three kilometres to the finish line. That was when Mmone broke away from the pack, leaving behind Mosiako who had led the race for about 19km.

    Namibia's Lavinia Haitope won the women's race, clocking 1:14.01.

    South Africa's Mapaseka Makhanya ended second in 1:17:03 and Janet Dlamini, also from South Africa, third in 1:18:02.

    Speaking to Nampa after the race, Mmone said the route was easy and he was happy with the win.

    “The route was so flat, we only had two hills and I knew my teammate Mosiako would not keep the same pace for 21km, that is why I started attacking from the three-kilometre mark,” he said.

    South Africa's team manager, Ntathu Gwadiso, said her runners came to compete and they were happy to have dominated the race in the men's category.

    “These are specialised 21km runners, and winning here against good athletes from Namibia, Swaziland and Mauritius shows how hard the team has prepared, and we are looking forward to other competitions in the future in Namibia,” she said.

    The race organiser and regional sports officer in the Erongo Region, Berthold Karumendu, was satisfied with the outcome of the race.

    “In terms of logistics, everything went accordingly, except for Zambia and Lesotho who made commitments but could not join for reasons not communicated to us,” he said.

    Karumendu expressed excitement that the race is growing.

    “We are hoping to attract more international athletes in future,” he said.

    South Africa walked away with gold medals in the men's and women's categories, while Namibia was awarded silver in both categories, and Swaziland bronze in the women's category. There was no bronze medal winner in the men's

    category.

    NAMPA

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  • 09/17/17--15:00: Setback for women football
  • Setback for women footballSetback for women football DEFEATED: The Brave Gladiators, Namibia's senior women's football team lost their third match 2-1 against Lesotho yesterday at the ongoing Cosafa Women Championship in Bulawayo. The Gladiators have to wait for all group matches to conclude tomorrow to find out if they stand a chance to progress to the semi-finals which will be played this Thursday. In another Group C match, South Africa's Banyana Banyana, who had defeated Namibia 3-1 on Friday, played to a 1-all draw against Botswana. Meanwhile, the Young Gladiators also suffered humiliation in South Africa after going down 5-0 in a 2018 World Cup qualifier yesterday. The Under-20 side will next play their South African counterparts on 1 October at the Sam Nujoma Stadium.

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  • 09/17/17--15:00: Kenya poll rerun in doubt
  • Kenya poll rerun in doubtKenya poll rerun in doubtAs acrimony deepens According to Kenya's constitution, the IEBC has until October 31 to hold the new election. Doubts are growing over Kenya's ability to hold a rerun of its presidential election in just one month as key players remain unable to agree on how to conduct a credible vote, analysts say.

    Bickering on all sides and confusion over the process have only increased as the clock ticks down to the October 17 vote, called after the Supreme Court annulled the initial election, citing widespread irregularities.

    The opposition has vowed to boycott the election if its list of demands is not met, including staff changes at the electoral commission (IEBC), which it accuses of rigging the poll.

    “The challenges are pretty extraordinary,” said John Githongo, a prominent anti-corruption campaigner in Kenya, who said he believed the election date “does not seem feasible because we are asking people who have failed calamitously to run an election after such a short time”.

    A key hurdle is that the Supreme Court has yet to deliver its full judgement detailing why exactly it decided to annul President Uhuru Kenyatta's victory.

    Chief Justice David Maraga mentioned only “irregularities and illegalities”, notably in the transmission of election results.

    The court has until September 22 to deliver the full ruling, which would give the IEBC little time to make any necessary changes.

    “It is very uncertain,” said Nic Cheeseman, a professor of African politics at the University of Birmingham in England.

    “We don't know if the Supreme Court is going to say something about technology, we don't know if they are going to directly impugn any of the individuals in the IEBC. Will they have to be replaced? If so, how will that be done in the time frame?”

    In the absence of the judgement, the electoral commission has pushed forward with plans for a new election, dismissing opposition calls to sack its top officials.

    “It was expected that the IEBC would move swiftly to undertake far-reaching reforms. So far this has yet to happen,” the Daily Nation newspaper said in an editorial on Saturday, denouncing a “stalemate which has created paralysis and is confusing the public”.

    Fissures within the IEBC, meanwhile, were exposed when a leaked memo showed chairman Wafula Chebukati outlining a raft of irregularities in the election to the commission's chief executive Ezra Chiloba.

    Kenyatta, for his part, has insisted that the election go ahead as planned, accusing his longtime rival Raila Odinga of seeking to block the vote as a way of forcing the president to accept a coalition government.

    On Thursday, the National Super Alliance (NASA) of opposition parties addressed a letter to the IEBC with a list of demands including the dismissal of certain officials, a change in the procurement of election materials and live media coverage of the declaration of results at tallying centres.

    “We hereby reiterate that there will be no elections on October 17” unless these conditions are met, the alliance said.

    The opposition alleges that the August 8 election was rigged through the hacking of an electronic vote-tallying system.

    It said that many of the so-called 34A tallying forms, meant to back up electronic results, were delayed and often had not been signed or stamped, or were illegible or lacking serial numbers or watermarks.

    French biometrics firm OT-Morpho, which provided the results transmission system, has said that an audit of its system showed no hacking or manipulation of data.

    But the IEBC has yet to comply with a Supreme Court order to allow independent access to its servers.

    Cheeseman said that with the IEBC suffering from lost legitimacy, an ideal solution would be for rival parties to sit down and negotiate an election which could be acceptable to all.

    Increasingly bitter rhetoric, however, has driven them only further apart.

    “A lot of the language has been really worrying,” Cheeseman said.

    He pointed in particular to comments by Kenyatta saying he would “fix” the Supreme Court if re-elected, and threatening to impeach Odinga if he wins.

    Analysts say the main problem with a rushed, imperfect election is that the Supreme Court has now set a potentially problematic precedent, by overturning an election result based on shoddy procedures without taking into account whether the flaws would have altered the outcome of the vote.

    As a result, the losing party in the new vote could again argue that improper procedures had marred the results, which could lead the Supreme Court to again overturn the result.



    NAMPA/AFP

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    Hamas agrees to steps toward Palestinian unityHamas agrees to steps toward Palestinian unity Hamas said yesterday it would do away with a body seen as an alternative government in the Gaza Strip in a step towards reconciliation with rival Fatah following discussions with Egypt.

    Hamas, the Palestinian Islamist movement that runs the Gaza Strip, also said it was ready for talks with Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas's Fatah on forming a unity government and holding elections.

    The announcement comes after talks in Cairo last week with Egyptian officials in which Hamas chief Ismail Haniya agreed to take such steps, a Hamas official has told AFP.

    It was unclear however whether the steps would result in further concrete action toward ending the deep division with Fatah, based in the Israeli-occupied West Bank.

    In Sunday's statement, Hamas spoke of the “dissolution” of what is known as the administrative committee, which was seen as a rival government to Abbas's administration.

    Hamas formed the committee in March, and since then Abbas has sought to put further pressure on the Islamist movement, reducing electricity payments for the Gaza Strip among other measures.

    Hamas has run Gaza since 2007, having seized it in a near civil war from Fatah following a dispute over parliamentary elections won by the Islamist movement.

    The Gaza Strip has faced deteriorating humanitarian conditions, with a severe electricity crisis and a lack of clean water, among other issues.

    It has been under an Israeli blockade for around a decade, while its border with Egypt has also remained largely closed in recent years. The coastal enclave of some two million people also has one of the world's highest unemployment rates. Facing those conditions, Hamas has turned to Egypt for assistance, particularly involving fuel to produce power.

    Israel and Palestinian militants in Gaza, including Hamas, have fought three wars since 2008.

    UN officials have called for the blockade to be lifted, but Israel says it is necessary to stop Hamas from obtaining weapons or materials that could be used to make them.

    Last month, the Gaza head of Hamas, Yahya al-Sinwar, said the movement had increased its military capabilities thanks to newly improved relations with Iran, Israel's arch-enemy.



    NAMPA/AFP

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  • 09/17/17--15:00: A green reprieve
  • A green reprieveA green reprieve Few, if any, towns in Namibia can boast of welcoming and safe public parks and playgrounds offering local residents and visitors a reprieve from the boiling sun and drudge of everyday demands and stresses.

    While the widespread lack of such facilities might not seem a priority right now, there are important reasons why major global countries, responsible for millions more citizens than tiny Namibia, place great emphasis on providing their residents with well-maintained green spaces.

    In many countries around the world, parks are situated a mere stroll away from residents, equipped with green grass, trees, flowers, playgrounds, benches, tables and recreational facilities.

    Parks can revitalise and boost a vital sense of community, simply by bringing neighbours together in a stress-free, visually appealing place, where easy chats lead to a holistic sense of partnerships and empathy for others.

    These suburban relationships in turn can boost public participation and interest in local and national social and political issues, a crucial ingredient for a healthy democracy.

    Parks remove the barriers of fences and walls, turning strangers into familiars, who we care for.

    Of course, parks are great for the kids, the dogs, a game of football between friends, a picnic, concert, a weekend farmers market.

    On a personal and physical level, parks can make a big impact on the physical and mental health of communities.

    A study by Finnish researchers found that even ten minutes in a park or urban woodland area, that provides contact with a natural environment away from the imposing brick and concrete of a city, can tangibly benefit on mental health, reduce stress and increase happiness.

    Its green allure motivates tired caregivers and their offspring to leave the comfort of their couches to get out into nature, to walk the dogs, offering a healthier and cheaper alternative to video games and malls.

    Playgrounds can act as a helpful way to reduce the bubbling energy of toddlers and their older siblings, leading to less temper tantrums, for both the kids and their parents.

    While the more complex issues will take time and patience to resolve, communities and their elected officials would be off to a great start to ensure communities have access to green spaces that could greatly, and quickly, benefit everyone's mood and health and happiness and sense of belonging.

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  • 09/17/17--15:00: Shot of the day
  • Shot of the dayShot of the day UNWANTED: A Rohingya refugee girl looks at newly arrived refugees who fled to Bangladesh from Myanmar in Ukhiya on 6 September 2017. More than 125,000 refugees have flooded across the border into Bangladesh. Most are Rohingya, a Muslim ethnic minority that the government of Buddhist-majority Myanmar largely does not recognise as citizens. Photo: NAMPA/AFP

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    Otjombinde must wait until dust settlesOtjombinde must wait until dust settles The Otjombinde district has to wait until the dust settles before they can hold a district conference, Swapo secretary-general Nangolo Mbumba has said.

    Mbumba told Nampa last week the Omaheke Region had recently elected a new regional leadership that would soon be looking into the issues of the region.

    “For now the current district executive is still in charge of the district until a date is set for the district to have a district conference during which they will elect a new leadership,” Mbumba said.

    Newly elected Omaheke regional coordinator of Swapo Ruth Kaukuata-Mbura refused to comment on the issue, saying she would do so when the time was right.

    The party's politburo last week disqualified the Otjombinde district from the sixth electoral congress of Swapo for threatening senior party officials assigned to the region.

    The congress is slated for November.

    The former regional coordinator of Swapo in Omaheke, Kejamuina Mungendje, on Monday told Nampa that the politburo had acted on misinformation by some members who put their personal agendas above those of the party.

    Approached for comment, political analyst Uazuva Kaumbi said the ruling party had done an injustice to its members in the Otjombinde district by disqualifying them.

    Kaumbi said it would have been better for Swapo to have found a different way to rectify the irregularities rather than denying the members their legitimate opportunity to air their grievances.

    Swapo districts in Omaheke are divided according to the region's political constituencies: Aminuis, Otjinene, Otjombinde, Okorukambe, Epukiro, Kalahari and Gobabis.

    Each district has several branches and sections.

    NAMPA

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  • 09/17/17--15:00: Lengthy delay in murder case
  • Lengthy delay in murder caseLengthy delay in murder caseState's case appears to be in trouble A Walvis Bay magistrate has granted the prosecution a final postponement in the case against five men accused of shooting a local businessman in his home. The case against five men accused of killing Walvis Bay businessman Hans Jorg Möller has been postponed to 24 October.

    The accused appeared before Magistrate John Sindano in Walvis Bay last week.

    He granted a final postponement and said he would not grant the State another postponement.

    “There is no evidence on record indicating culpability of the accused for the crime at this stage,” he said.

    “The basis on which the accused were arrested and the allegations levelled against them are serious. The case is unique. It concerns the community and is treated as special.

    “At this stage the case has been on the court roll for 17 months, has run out of its lifespan and cannot be postponed. It is also true that every postponement should be supported by reasons.”

    Sindano also said that there were two competing interests and pointed out that the right to be presumed innocent until proven guilty was in favour of the accused, while the interest of society and the law requires that serious criminal offenders should stand trial and be punished.

    “After 17 months there is however no indication at this stage how the trial will proceed and I accept that there is reason for this predicament which has to do with competence and experience at various levels.

    “The accused were arrested and appeared in court in Walvis Bay. We rely on a prosecutor based in Swakopmund who in turn relies on someone else and I accept that the docket is with an advocate in Windhoek.”

    State prosecutor Theresia Hafeni requested the postponement.

    She informed the court that the case was placed on the court role in anticipation of a decision from the prosecutor-general and said the pending decision had not been received yet.

    “The case was assigned to the PG on 22 June 2017 and returned on 31 July. The docket is with the office of the PG in Windhoek currently. The PG indicated that another month is needed for a decision to be made. The involved stakeholders are working together to ensure a speedy trial,” she said.

    Hafeni said the accused were habitual offenders with multiple schedule-one offences on their records and for this reason and the fact that they could flee bail was opposed.

    She also pointed out that the community of Walvis Bay had a huge interest in the case from day one.

    Lawyer Mpokiseng Dube, who represents David Tashiya (29) and David Shekundja (35) and also stood in for Panduleni Gotlieb (30) represented by Asnath Kashipara, objected to any further postponement being granted.

    He requested that the accused be released on bail in line with Chapter 3 and Section 12 of the Namibian Constitution and said if the court refused bail it should also refuse the further postponement of the matter requested by the State.

    “The record reflects that plea was recorded on 15 June 2017, three months ago. The facts of this matter are very unique and the State classes it as serious. The community of Walvis Bay has also shown interest in how this matter progress with community members protesting against bail being granted on every appearance. The norm is usually to institute prosecutor guidance from the office of the PG directly.”

    Dube reminded the court that the first accused was arrested on 18 June 2016 and said from that date over a year has lapsed due to prosecutor-guided investigations.

    Lawyer Albert Titus, who represents Elly Ndapuka Hinaivali (29) and Malakia Shiweda (28), concurred with Dube and reiterated that the State did not give any reason at all why another postponement should be granted.

    Möller was shot in the stomach while trying to protect his wife, Carol-Ann Sowden Möller, and their two children, aged six and four years, during an armed robbery at the family's home in Walvis Bay in June 2016.

    The accused pleaded not guilty on charges of murder, attempted murder, possession of an illegal firearm and ammunition, and robbery during a previous appearance before the Walvis Bay Magistrate's Court in June 2017.

    OTIS FINCK

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    Namibia recognised for anti-poaching effortsNamibia recognised for anti-poaching efforts The Save the Rhino Trust's Conservancy Rhino Ranger Incentive Programme was recognised for his continued efforts in combatting rhino poaching at the Rhino Conservation Awards recently held in South Africa.

    The awards celebrated conservationists who have made a marked impact in the war against rhino poaching. With a holistic view of rhino conservation, the awards honour those that strive to limit risks and vulnerabilities within their specific areas of expertise: from field rangers to conservation practitioners; conservation supporters; political, investigative and judicial supporters; and endangered species conservationists.

    The winner of the Conservation Practitioner Award was the Kruger National Park's Marula South ranger team.

    The runner-up was Save the Rhino Trust's Conservancy Rhino Ranger Incentive Programme.

    “I was very happy to be able to attend the event, to meet so many rangers from across Africa and of course to bring back an award to Namibia. It really felt great when they called our names and everyone cheered, especially the Namibians in the crowd!” said Boas Hambo, Rhino Ranger northern field coordinator.

    “It is very exciting to be recognised by our peers from all across Africa. This is truly a team award, one that so many individuals and institutions working at the coal-face of rhino conservation in north-west Namibia can be proud of. For conservation efforts to be successful we need a collaborative approach with efforts being made by a variety of passionate contributors,” added Dr Jeff Muntifering, Save the Rhino Trust science adviser.

    The Rhino Conservation Awards have been held annually since 2012, celebrating those that continue to fight in the rhino poaching war, under the patronage of Prince Albert II of Monaco.

    The awards were founded by Dr Larry Hansen and Miss Xiaoyang Yu in collaboration with the South African Department of Environmental Affairs and the Game Rangers Association of Africa.

    STAFF REPORTER

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    Woman seeks wheelchair for disabled childWoman seeks wheelchair for disabled child Lydia Alfeus from Ontananga village in the Oshikoto Region is appealing to Good Samaritans to assist her with a wheelchair for her three-year-old child who has been disabled since birth.

    The 34-year-old told Namibian Sun that she is struggling to raise her son, Simaneka Frans. She said she last saw the boy's father a year ago.

    According to her, doctors have been unable to do anything for her son.

    Alfeus explained that her son is unable to use his hands to grab onto something, he cannot sit or stand on his own, he cannot talk and he also cannot eat solid foods. He only drinks Oshikundu, a traditional cultured milk drink.

    “I really need help, my son cannot sit, walk, talk or eat solid foods as he can only eat soft food. I used to feed him milk but the N$250 monthly grant I receive from the government is not enough to buy him enough milk as I have to spend most of the money on diapers,” Alfeus said.

    “Is started giving him Oshikundu but as I am unemployed and with the limited funds I get, I can no longer afford sugar to put in his drink.”

    Alfeus said a wheelchair would reduce the burden of having to carry her son around.

    “I really need a wheelchair for my son as I cannot move around that much as he can do nothing for himself. I appeal to all Good Samaritans out there and businesspeople to assist me in getting at least a wheelchair and other donations are welcome too,” Alfeus said.

    She would also be delighted to find a job so that she can provide for her two children. She said she's a good cook and can do domestic work.

    KENYA KAMBOWE

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  • 09/17/17--15:00: Vehicle sales fall 18.7%
  • Vehicle sales fall 18.7%Vehicle sales fall 18.7%Instalment credit has slowed considerably Sales of new vehicles have been under pressure since 2015 because of waning consumer and business confidence. New vehicle sales of 1 094 units were recorded in August, with sales falling by 19.9% from the 1 366 new vehicles sold in August 2016.

    This is according to the monthly report released by IJG Securities on the number of vehicles sold in August.

    On a month-on-month basis, new vehicle sales fell by 18.7%, with August recording 252 fewer in sales than July. Year to date, 9 272 vehicles have been sold, 21.4% fewer than sales recorded in the corresponding period of 2016.

    Of the 9 272 vehicles sold this year, 3 978 were passenger vehicles, 4 848 were light commercial vehicles, and 446 were medium and heavy commercial vehicles.

    “Passenger vehicle sales fell by 24.5% year-in-year (y-o-y), to 400 vehicles, while commercial vehicle sales have fallen by 17.0% year-on-year. Of the 694 commercial vehicles sold in August: 650 were classified as light, 12 as medium and 32 as heavy,” it said in the report.

    According to IJG, heavy commercial vehicle sales contracted by 25.6% year-on-year.

    “The highest volume for this calendar year so far was the sale in June of 83 units, which provided some optimism as increased capital spending pointed toward improving business confidence. Light commercial vehicles sales make up the bulk of this category's sales, reporting a decline of 15.7% month-on-month (m-o-m) and falling 15.1% y-o-y,” IJG said.

    On a twelve-month cumulative basis, vehicle sales remained under pressure, contracting by 24.4% year-on-year.

    “Instalment credit, which is mainly used to finance vehicle purchases, has slowed considerably. Although, instalment credit increased by 0.5% month-on-month in July, this followed six months of consecutive month-on-month declines, bringing the annual growth to -1.4% year-on-year,” IJG said.

    Year to date, Toyota and Volkswagen continued to maintain their strong hold on the passenger vehicle market, claiming 36% and 25% of the market respectively. They were followed by Ford and Mercedes at 7% and 4% respectively, while the rest of the passenger vehicle market continues to be shared by several competitors.

    “Toyota remains the leader in light commercial vehicle sales with 47% of the market, followed by Nissan at 16%. Ford and Isuzu claimed 12% and 9% of the number of light commercial vehicles sold in 2017,” IJG said.

    According to IJG, vehicle sales have been under pressure since 2015.

    “The Private Sector Credit Extension (PSCE) growth figures prove testament to waning consumer and business confidence and an already stretched consumer as instalment credit, mainly used to finance capital goods, remains sluggish,” it said in the report.



    STAFF REPORTER

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    MVA Fund appeals for help to identify patientMVA Fund appeals for help to identify patient The MVA Fund appeals to the community to assist in identifying and tracing the next of kin of a male pedestrian who was hit by a car more than three months ago in Windhoek's Olympia suburb.

    The man, who is unable to speak as a result of the serious head and spinal injuries he sustained, was first admitted to Lady Pohamba Private Hospital and then transferred to Katutura Hospital after he was stabilised.

    The patient has received all the necessary medical attention and is supposed to be released in the care of a family member to continue with his rehabilitation plan from home.

    However, this is not feasible as there are no traceable particulars of the patient or details of relatives that can be contacted for support.

    No details could yet be provided to either the medical personnel or the MVA Fund as no claim has yet been made on behalf of the patient.

    The fund's investigation officer has submitted the patient's finger prints to the Ministry of Home Affairs for possible identification and results are still pending.

    Anyone who has information that can assist the fund in tracing the next of kin or who may know the patient, is requested to contact Eugene van Wyk at the MVA Fund at 061 289 7133 or 081 846 8306.





    STAFF REPORTER

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  • 09/17/17--15:00: To bail or not
  • To bail or notTo bail or notMagistrates get crash course on legal principles The concept of bail remains a mystery to many Namibians, Chief Justice Peter Shivute said at a workshop for magistrates. Dozens of magistrates attended a workshop in Windhoek on Friday to fine-tune an understanding of the legal principles governing the granting of bail.

    A public outcry against the granting of bail in high-profile cases, such as the recent controversial Western Bypass robbery case, highlighted again that the concept of bail remained a mystery to many Namibians, Chief Justice Peter Shivute said when he opened the conference.

    While the suspect, Frabianus Endjala, 32, was hijacking a car on the Western Bypass with several accomplices in early August, he was supposed to be in court in another robbery case. The magistrate in that case withdrew his N$2 000 bail and issued a warrant for his arrest.

    Following his arrest in the tourist hijacking case, Endjala was granted bail of N$5 000 by the Katutura Magistrate's Court and a public outcry ensued.

    The police at the time said that their “must have been a miscommunication for the accused to secure bail.”

    The minister of environment and tourism, Pohamba Shifeta, publicly called for a review of the granting of bail by Namibian courts.

    “Of late very strong views have been expressed from different quarters through the electronic, print and social media, raising dissatisfaction and grave concerns with the manner in which we as judicial officers handle bail matters,” Shivute said on Friday.

    He said some of these concerns were based on misunderstanding of how the bail system works.

    “I cannot emphasise enough that it is essential that magistrates must have a thorough knowledge and understanding of all the legal principles and considerations involved in a bail application.”

    High Court Judge Christie Liebenberg led the workshop.



    Not a punishment

    Both Shivute and Liebenberg emphasised that by law a person is innocent until proven guilty and that bail is not a tool to punish an accused.

    Liebenberg further emphasised that bail is an urgent matter, and that magistrates, the police and the lawyers have a duty to ensure that bail applications are promptly heard.

    “Judging from the reaction in certain sectors of society when bail is granted to an accused arraigned on one or more counts involving serious offences, the granting of bail and the bail amount posted is often equated with punishment,” Chief Justice Shivute said.

    “Sight is often lost of the basic purposes of bail, namely that where it is not necessary to keep the accused detained pending finalisation of his or her case, he or she may be released on bail.”

    Shivute added that the responsibility of the courts is not only to protect the rights of the accused but also to ensure that the rights of the victim are safeguarded and that public trust in the judicial system is maintained.

    “I implore you to be up to date with legislative developments, as well as with judicial precedents, on matters concerning bail.

    “The court has to balance individual liberties of the accused against the interests of the victim, the effectiveness of the administration of justice and the safety of the wider public.”

    Shivute said releasing accused persons on bail is “essentially taking a calculated risk” and often stringent conditions are attached to ensure that the accused return to court.

    JANA-MARI SMITH

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    Five nabbed with drugs in ErongoFive nabbed with drugs in Erongo Five people were arrested for drug possession during a police sweep at Usakos and Swakopmund on Friday and Saturday.

    Deputy Commissioner Erastus Iikuyu of the Erongo police said a man was arrested at a house in Leutwein Street in the Hakhaseb residential area.

    He was allegedly caught with 130 grams of dagga, ten mandrax tablets and 105 ballies of dagga with a combined estimated value of N$2 375 on Friday.

    Another suspect was arrested at a house in front of the Hakhaseb community hall. The police found 16 units of crack cocaine, one block of cocaine; 14 mandrax tablets, 154 ballies and one bankie of dagga and two parcels of dagga (865 grams) with a combined estimated value of N$2 175.

    A third suspect was arrested at a house in Saamstaan location on Saturday. He was found with 144 ballies, 15 bankies and three parcels (775 grams) of dagga; one unit of crack cocaine and one mandrax tablet with a combined estimated value of N$7 950.

    Another man was arrested for possession of three ballies of dagga (10 g) and three mandrax tablets with a combined value of N$400 at a house in Mondesa on Saturday.

    Another suspect was arrested for selling dagga. He was caught with 213 ballies and one parcel (765 g) with a combined estimated value of N$7 650 in his possession.

    Ikuyu said anti-drug operations were continually conducted in all towns in the region.

    The suspects will appear in the local magistrate's court today.

    OTIS FINCK

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    Negligent driver to appear in court todayNegligent driver to appear in court today A 29-year-old taxi driver accused of having hit and killed a pedestrian in Mondesa on Thursday morning will appear in the Swakopmund magistrate's court today.

    The deceased, Medona Geingos (24), was standing next to the road at a mobile tuck shop with her twin sister when the accident occurred.

    According to Erongo police Deputy Commissioner Erastus Ikuyu, another taxi with three occupants including the driver, was travelling down Ondjamba Street when the accused's taxi overtook it on the left.

    The accused allegedly failed to give right of way to an oncoming vehicle and turned right in front of the other taxi, hitting it on the right front door. As a result of the collision, both vehicles swerved off the road and the accused's taxi hit Geingos.

    According to Ikuyu, Geingos sustained multiple serious injuries which resulted in her death at the scene of the accident.

    The accused, who is not in possession of a valid driver's licence, was arrested at the scene. He is facing charges of culpable homicide, reckless and negligent driving and driving without a driver's licence.

    The occupants of the two cars did not sustain any injuries, but both vehicles were damaged.



    JESSICA BOTES

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    Thieves targeting tourists arrested swiftlyThieves targeting tourists arrested swiftlyPolice impound taxi used as getaway car The area between Swakopmund and Walvis Bay is under police surveillance and no crimes against visitors will be tolerated, the police say. Three suspects who had allegedly broken into a tourist's car were swiftly arrested by police officers stationed at the Yianni Savva police station at the coast on Friday.

    A case of theft out of a motor vehicle was opened by the complainant, German citizen Ole Göng (32) after the Toyota double-cab bakkie he had parked alongside the B2 road was broken into.

    Deputy Commissioner Erastus Iikuyu said the incident happened between Swakopmund and Walvis Bay in the vicinity of Langstrand.

    “The tourists parked the vehicle and walked to the dunes. While they were on top of the dunes a white Toyota Corolla taxi with three occupants (aged 29 and 33) arrived and parked next to the bakkie. The suspects smashed a window and removed two bags containing torch batteries, a knife, sun creams and toiletries valued at N$1 500. They also punctured a tire of the vehicle with a sharp object.” Iikuyu said officers patrolling the area arrested the suspects and recovered the stolen property.

    “We impounded the taxi and the investigation continues. The suspects will appear in Walvis Bay court today.” Iikuyu warned taxi drivers and criminals who target tourists between Swakopmund and Walvis Bay that they will face the wrath of the law.

    “The area is under police surveillance. Members of the Tourist Protection Sub-Division and the force stationed at Yianni Savva police station are on high alert. People travelling between the two towns are encouraged to report any suspicious observations to the police for immediate action,” he said.





    OTIS FINCK

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  • 09/17/17--15:00: No pay, no work, says Salini
  • No pay, no work, says SaliniNo pay, no work, says Salini The Neckartal Dam contractors will not resume construction activities until it is paid an overdue bill of N$600 million for work completed over the last four months by the ministry of agriculture, water and forestry, Salini spokesperson Gilles Castonguay told Namibian Sun.

    Salini recently reduced its 12-hour work shifts to seven and a half hours to circumvent layoffs and the payment of overtime to workers and subcontractors.

    “Salini Namibia will resume work once it has been paid.

    Work has been reduced to a minimum and it will be the case until we get paid,” Castonguay said in an update.

    The slowdown in construction activities at the Neckartal site is not expected to affect the completion of the project by the end of the year, according to him.

    “We are working to complete the project on schedule, we are working towards that target,” said Castonguay.

    When asked for comment on the payment due to Salini, Castonguay would not comment.

    “The company prefers to refrain from commenting on the matter. Thank you for contacting us,” Castonguay said in an email response.

    The dam's workforce of around 2 500 was informed of the company's decision in a letter on Friday.

    The company normally operates on a 24-hour schedule with two 12-hour shifts.

    Company insiders told Nampa last week that the government only paid a portion of an accumulated amount due to Salini at the beginning of September.

    Nampa also reported that the cabinet committee on treasury had met last week with a view to approaching NamWater to secure the funding necessary to pay Salini. This despite an earlier announcement by agriculture minister John Mutorwa that Salini would be paid by last week Friday already.

    “The decision was taken after a unanimous agreement that the abandonment of the project would be inconceivable and with due consideration that this dam, like all others in the country, will be on the balance sheet of NamWater,” Mutorwa said at an agricultural expo in Keetmanshoop.

    To date, Salini has been paid N$3.1 billion.

    -additional reporting by Nampa

    OGONE TLHAGE

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    Harambee Valley will be a 'smart city'Harambee Valley will be a 'smart city'Construction could start in 2019 A new housing development in Windhoek is envisaged to be a complete city centre that will cater for all the needs of the community. A private development that aims to build more than 60 000 low-cost houses on the north-western outskirts of Windhoek is one step closer to becoming a reality.

    In August, the Windhoek city council conditionally approved the Monte Christo development, which will form a part of the Harambee Valley project, which has been hailed by the council as a welcome private initiative that could help ease the city's housing problems.

    “The issue of a shortage and unaffordable housing and unavailable serviced land comes a long time now, and has gained momentum at various levels.

    The problem is particularly acute among low- and middle-income earners,” the council agenda states.

    The Monte Christo development will consist of around 35 000 houses for low- and middle-income earners.

    According to the agenda, the Harambee Valley project overall will provide more than 60 000 dwelling units, of which 33 000 (55%) units will be for low-income earners, and 24 000 (40%) for middle-income earners. The remaining 5% of the area will be used for high-cost housing.

    Christopher van de Vijver, a director of Nambel Investments, the owner of portions 806 to 814 of the farm Monte Christo, told Namibian Sun that the first phase of the project would consist of 7 000 housing units and various plots for industrial, business and commercial use.

    He said the cost of this phase, which would include bulk infrastructure and internal infrastructure, was estimated at N$4.8 billion.

    Harambee Valley will “boast a complete city centre with various recreational attractions and other places of interest and will cater for all the needs of the community including the creation of employment, ensuring the availability of health, educational and transport services to the community and will have its own identity,” he said.

    He added that the prime goal of the project for Nambel Investments was to provide a “smart city” that that catered affordably to the needs of lower-income groups.

    It could help alleviate the critical housing shortage for these groups by doing a large-scale, cost-effective development, driven by private initiative and supported by government.



    All hands on deck

    City officials note in the council agenda that the proposal made by Nambel Investments, in addition to owners of nearby portions of land comprising Harambee Valley, was aligned with the municipality's long-term planning.

    Van de Vijver said although several more steps were needed before the construction phase could begin, the council approval was a step in the right direction.

    He said the construction phase, which would include the provision of services such as water and electricity for the entire project, could only begin after numerous other applications had been approved by NamPower, NamWater, the Roads Authority and the City of Windhoek.

    Depending on the speed of these approvals and funding negotiations, it was hoped that construction could begin within the next 14 to 18 months, he added.



    Crucial housing investment







    It is expected that by the year 2030 Windhoek will have a population of 645 355, Van de Vijver said.



    As a result, at least 80 000 houses must be built in the next 13 years to meet the demand and the current backlog.

    He said private-sector initiatives were crucial to help the municipality meet the demand, as the City did not have the resources to fund the servicing of plots at the required scale.

    In his view, the greatest housing need currently is in the low- to middle-income sectors.

    Due to decades of neglect of the poor and very poor, “the real source of market demand is not the wealthy few, but the emerging middle-income consumers and the thousands of aspiring poor who are joining the market economy for the first time.”

    One of the unique aspects of the Harambee Valley project was that it would not focus solely on providing housing to a specific target market, “but will incorporate the development of a whole new city,” Van de Vijver added.

    JANA-MARI SMITH

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    No charges against molesting stepfatherNo charges against molesting stepfather KENYA KAMBOWE

    A 17-year-old girl has reported her 59-year-old stepfather to the police for allegedly having slept with her, but she refused to open a case against him even after the police and social workers advised her to do so.

    Omusati police spokesperson Linekela Shikongo confirmed the matter, which was reported to the Onandjaba police station early this month.

    He said the authorities could not act as she was over the age of 16.

    Shikongo said by law the state could only take action if the girl or the family reported the matter, but so far no one had come forward.

    He added that the necessary medical examinations were performed and a medical report was available at the local police station.

    He further said that the mother of the girl was called in for consultation and was also involved when her daughter was examined but she refused to file charges against her husband.

    “As for the state, we can do nothing unless the child or the family opens a case,” Shikongo said.

    It is alleged that the relationship between the girl and her stepfather has been going on for over a year. Concerned community members who are aware of the matter have sought the advice of Okalongo constituency councillor Laurentius Iipinge.

    “It is not news to me as people came to my office to tell me about it but there is nothing I can do but I believe the police are looking into the matter,” Iipinge said.

    Namibian Sun understands the girl has moved out of the house and is staying with relatives in the same area.

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