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Tells it All - Namibian Sun

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    Home-schooling or traditional schooling?Home-schooling or traditional schooling?What is home-schooling and why is it preferable to some parents? Although a small population of Namibian parents opt for home schooling, it is slowly becoming a growing practise. The Zone spoke to a few experts and parents who home school their children. Tunohole Mungoba

    Educational psychologist, Marietjie Slippers says there are various reasons why some parents opt for home schooling such as religion. “We can agree that an excellent education is at the top of your to-do list as parents, but going back to why you chose to home school in the first place will often provide the best clue to discovering your child’s ultimate destination. Some parents have religious convictions or needs that are not met in the traditional school setting. In general, public schools do not incorporate, or sometimes even disallow the integration of religious beliefs and morals into the educational environment. For some parents, the Bible is essential in every educational lesson learned,” says Slippers.

    She also said some parents are often unhappy with the quality of their child’s current educational system. “Sometimes parents also want to strengthen their family bond and increase time spent together. Many parents feel there is not enough time in the day to build the bonds that families need to provide a happy, healthy existence. Home-schooling is a way to tighten relationships and build love and respect between parent and child.”

    The most important reason why some parents choose home-schooling according to Slippers is because the child has learning disabilities that are not being properly addressed in a traditional setting. “Children with learning disabilities and mental challenges, or even physical handicaps, do not always thrive in traditional schools. Even if academic requirements are met, some parents feel that their child is not being taught to the best of his or her potential,” she says. “Or sometimes it could be that your child has been a victim of bullying. Bullying has negative impact on a learner’s education so it is best for some parents to take them out that environment.”

    Slippers also explained to The Zone the difference between home-schooling and the challenges that come along with it. “There are various reasons involved like flexibility, parental involvement, personalisation and the learning environment. Firstly, the level of parental involvement is one area in which traditional and home schools can differ greatly. At a traditional school, for example, parental involvement is often limited to things like reviewing homework and attending parent–teacher meetings. With home schooling, parents have many options for being involved in their children’s education as personal as they can get.”

    She also adds that home-schooling is often more flexible than traditional schools. While parents have little to no control over a traditional school’s schedule or learning environment, parents at home can set the daily routine and cultivate an effective, nurturing learning atmosphere for their children.

    “As with flexibility, many traditional schools can’t offer much in the way of personalization. It’s not that the educators are not dedicated or willing to assist students individually, but it is that the logistics of managing a classroom full of students makes it difficult impossible to do so. As a result, traditional education tends to take a “one size fits all” approach to education, with few opportunities for individualized instruction available. These schools may offer accelerated and honours classes for eligible students, but course selections may be limited.”

    Words from a home-schooling parent

    The Zone also spoke to Monja Gouws, a parent that home-schools her children. “In the current structure, the only disadvantage to home-schooling is when a parent decides to isolate his or her child. There are so many public and private schools that take in home scholars for sports and various other activities. Not to mention all the other social activities in this day and age for children. Home-schooling is also very flexible and you can work in your own time it is not like traditional school where you are bound to 45 min per period and is forced to work at the same pass as the rest of the other children,” Gouws says.

    She also adds that home-schooling is not nearly as expensive as centres make them out to be. “If you pay more than N$1500 per month per child, you are being exploited.” Gouws also tackled the misconceptions that children that received home-schooling will not be able to cope in the “real world.” “These kids learned from an early age to think for themselves and are not being spoon-fed. They are also the ones who ask more questions if something is not understood as the rest. They strive to be better and compete against themselves,” she says.

    Gouws warned parents to be careful when choosing a home-school. “Parents must be careful if they enrol into a home-schooling centre. Make sure that the centre is registered at the ministry of education and following the regulations and rules of the ministry. They are mini private schools and use the term home-schooling wrongly,” she says.

    She continued to add that “home-schooling does not involve any uniforms, no sitting in mini class rooms, no teachers spoon-feeding children and no judging or comparing of kids.”

    Learning is fun and kids love to learn regardless if it is walking, talking, maths, games or reading. This is just how kids are. Young kids believe that they are capable of doing anything. They are born invincible. Traditional schools and sometimes uncaring teachers take this away from kids and causes education and a generation lost for ever.”

    Teachers from Manuel Educational College also sat down with The Zone and spoke how their institution helps children that receive home-schooling. Anne Uys, a retired teacher that helps out with Mathematics and Science subjects at the school says their facility offers any assistance to parents who are not well-acquainted with a certain topics. “We are also an after-care centre and we assist from all grades.” Pikkie Olivier says at their facility, they try their best to limit.

    Home-schooling Facts:

    · Most parents home-school for multiple reasons. The most common reasons were concern about the environment in other schools, academics, and religion.

    · Home-schooling began in the 1970s. Home-schooling originated among progressive educational reformers in the late 1970s, and was adopted by evangelical and fundamentalist Christians in the 1980s.

    · Perpetrators of severe child abuse often home-school. A 2014 study around the world of child torture found that 47% of school-age child torture victims were removed from school to be home-schooled.

    · Home-schooling parents stay up to date on how children learn and grow.

    · It's not unusual for classroom teachers to home-school their own children.

    · Lots of home-schooling parents are also working parents.

    · The high cost of private schools is one of the reasons why some parents prefer private schools.

    · Home-schooling is a lot more convenient to flexible scheduling, especially for parents who work from home and those who travel for their jobs.

    · There are more opportunities to further challenge your children in a home-schooling environment.

    · There is more ability to travel whenever needed or desired.

    · The opportunity to challenge gifted children while maintaining appropriate developmental levels

    · The genuine desire to spend more time with your kids as they grow and learn is more visible in a home-schooling environment.

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    African Union Youth Club launchedAfrican Union Youth Club launched Working towards the Africa we want Tunohole Mungoba

    Launched last week in Windhoek, the African Union Youth Club aims to help Namibians achieve the goals they would like to see in Africa and their own communities.

    The official launch of the club took place at Namibia University of Science and Technology (NUST) and saw different youth coming together under one roof to witness history. Marius Kudumo, director for international relations at NUST welcomed the members of the public to the event on behalf of Tjama Tjikua, vice-chancellor of the institution. Kudumo congratulated the brains of club and wished them well during the journey. “Africa’s highest population is the youth. Therefore, when we talk about the participation of the citizens of Africa, we are mainly focus on the younger generation as they are the future,” he says. “I hope that the launch of this club will influence the youth and help steer them in the right direction.”

    He also says that leadership is not something that happens by accident and those that are serving in those positions should prepare themselves for a better future. “Learning is a continuous process that starts from birth until you die. We also need to understand that learning does not only take place in schools, but we have informal learning institutions as well. Therefore, we must make sure we execute all our resources that are of disposal to us.”

    Ambassador Lineekela Mboti speaks about how the Namibian youth will be championing the the Africa we would like to see. “The youth of Namibia should be driven through meaningful participation in Africa’s socio-economic development agenda. This emphasis on the youth is a recognition and confidence placed on young people to spearhead the attainment of the Pan African Vision of the ‘Africa We Want’ by 2063. The club is focused on achieving Africa’s Agenda 2063 with 7 aspirations that include a prosperous Africa based on inclusive growth and sustainable development, an integrated continent, politically united and based on the ideals of Pan-Africanism and the vision of Africa’s Renaissance and an Africa of good governance, democracy, respect for human rights, justice and the rule of law.

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    Rocky Crest High School loses principalRocky Crest High School loses principalAlban Kloppers passes on Teachers, parents and learners of Rocky Crest High School received the news of the passing of their principal last week and learners were encouraged to stay focused on their examinations. Tunohole Mungoba

    The management and staff of Rocky Crest High School also urged parents to continue supporting their children now more than ever as this sad occurrence could deter children to keep the focus and to continue studying hard and also to comply with all that is expected of them.

    Sara Malima, a grade 10 learner of the school described her principal as “a very loving and helpful man.” She tells The Zone that he was very supportive around the school and also encouraged his learners on a regular basis. “He really tried his best to make sure we received the best education. He was very involved around school activities and he also made sure we studied hard as well. It is a great loss to the community of Rocky Crest High School as we will never be able to replace him or his help around the school. He will truly be missed,” she says.

    The office of the Khomas Regional Council, Directorate of Education, Arts and Culture sent their messages of condolences to the school and also requested for all principals to release their Life Skills teachers where possible to report to the school in order to assist with counselling of both learners and teachers during their period of bereavement. Priscilla Anti, the Life Skills of the school of the school is grateful to the directorate “as some learners were really affected and fears of them failing their examinations were taking over their thoughts.” She also adds that the school is going to celebrate their 10 year anniversary and the passing of Kloppers came as a shock. “He was really looking forward to next year as our school has grown from strength to strength. He was very passionate about his work and he was always one of the last people to leave,” says Anti. She also adds that Kloppers uplifted teachers and learners’ spirits and he always went the extra mile and he lived by an open-door policy.

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    Beauty queen making a difference for the youthBeauty queen making a difference for the youth Motivated to inspire those who look up Tunohole Mungoba

    Jeanette Tlhabanello is the current Mrs Globe Namibia, Mrs Africa Namibia and Mrs Africa Elegant, and she has been chosen to represent Namibia and the African continent at the Mrs International Globe pageant with national holders from all seven continents taking place in December in China. She sat down with The Zone to speak about how she wants to make a difference within the youth.

    “I do not believe in beauty queens who only want to look good on the ramp, but they are not coming back home and try to bring change in their community,” says Tlhabanello. The outspoken young lady is very involved with community work and is currently working towards making sure all Namibian girls have access to sanitary wear. “Sanitary pads should be provided and we must make sure girls have easy access to sanitary as most girls are forced to miss school which hinders their education,” she says.

    She believes that sanitary wear should not be a luxury and no women or girl should have to use socks, newspaper, toilet paper, or miss school during her menstrual cycle because she cannot afford them. Tlhabanello also tells The Zone that this will have a negative impact on their self-esteem and the cycle of poverty will continue to grow. Tlhabanello has been making regular visits to secondary schools around Windhoek and her home town with aim of having motivational talks and inspire her younger generation.

    “One thing people with influence need to understand is that these children also want to be exactly where you are, but they do not have any idea how you got there. That is why I always take time out of my day and visit these schools,” she says. She has visited schools before their examinations begin to motivate them to take their education seriously. “I am a big advocate for education as I know its importance. So I try to advice all the schools I visit that your education should come first and then the rest will follow.”

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    'Let me be a Hitler tenfold': Mugabe in quotes'Let me be a Hitler tenfold': Mugabe in quotes Zimbabwean leader Robert Mugabe has a long history of making colourful or controversial remarks during a reign that has spanned nearly four decades.

    Among them:

    * "I am still the Hitler of the time. This Hitler has only one objective, justice for his own people, sovereignty for his people, recognition of the independence of his people. If that is Hitler, then let me be a Hitler tenfold." 2003

    * "Only God who appointed me will remove me - not the MDC (opposition), not the British." 2008

    * "Some are saying 'Mr Mugabe is old, so he should step down'... No! When my time comes, I will tell you." 2014

    * "I have died many times. That's where I have beaten Christ. Christ died once and resurrected once. I have died and resurrected and I don't know how many times I will die and resurrect." 2012

    * "It could never be a correct justification that because the whites oppressed us yesterday when they had power, the blacks must oppress them today." 1980

    * "You are now our enemies because you really have behaved as enemies of Zimbabwe. We are full of anger. Our entire community is angry and that is why we now have the war veterans seizing land." 2000

    * "Mandela has gone a bit too far in doing good to the non-black communities, really in some cases at the expense of (blacks)... That's being too saintly, too good." 2013

    * "African resources belong to Africa. Others may come to assist as our friends and allies, but no longer as colonisers or oppressors, no longer as racists." 2015

    – Nampa/AFP

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    Likely players in potential post-coup unity governmentLikely players in potential post-coup unity government According to political sources in Zimbabwe and South Africa and several years of Zimbabwean intelligence documents seen by Reuters, these are the key players:

    Emmerson Mnangagwa (Likely president)

    A lifelong Mugabe aide and 1970s liberation war veteran known as "The Crocodile", Mnangagwa, 75, was in the pole position to succeed Mugabe until his progress was impeded by the dramatic political ascent of Mugabe's wife, Grace.

    His sacking as vice-president this month cleared a path for Grace to the presidency and appears to have been the trigger for the army to step in to advance its preferred successor.

    Morgan Tsvangirai (Likely Prime Minister)

    A former union leader who founded the Movement for Democratic Change in the late 1990s, Tsvangirai, 65, has been Mugabe's main political rival for two decades.

    He served as prime minister in a 2009-2013 unity government formed after violence-ridden elections in 2008. Tsvangirai has been undergoing treatment for cancer outside Zimbabwe but returned to Harare late on Wednesday.

    Constantino Chiwenga (Possible Vice-President)

    As the military chief who pulled the trigger on the coup, Chiwenga is expected to win a senior role in the interim administration.

    Chiwenga, 61, who has served in the armed forces since Zimbabwe's independence in 1980, was sanctioned by the United States and European Union although the latter removed him from its list of restricted individuals in 2014.

    Joice Mujuru (Possible Vice-President)

    A liberation war veteran with the nom de guerre "Spill Blood", Mujuru, 62, formed her own political party after being ousted as vice-president in 2014.

    Her husband, Solomon Mujuru, a general who died in suspicious circumstances in 2011, was regarded as one of the most feared men in Zimbabwe and one of the few people capable of challenging Mugabe.

    Dumiso Dabengwa (Possible Vice-President)

    Moscow-trained Dabengwa, 77, nicknamed "The Black Russian", fought in the 1970s anti-colonial struggle for ZIPRA (Zimbabwe People's Liberation Army), a rival to Mugabe's ZANLA (Zimbabwe African National Liberation Army).

    His incorporation in any unity government would ensure it represented both wings of the liberation struggle.

    Tendai Biti (Possible Finance Minister)

    A lawyer by training, Biti, 51, won international plaudits as finance minister in the 2009-2013 government that stabilised the imploding economy.

    He told Reuters he would be happy to reprise this role if Tsvangirai, his former political mentor, was on board. – Nampa/Reuters

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    The man behind the ‘Crocodile’The man behind the ‘Crocodile’Secretive, insular and full of jokes Emmerson Mnangagwa's role remains shrouded in mystery, typical of a political operator trained as a communist guerrilla in China in the 1960s and who always stayed in the shadows behind Mugabe. The revolution has a way of strengthening itself. - Emmerson Mnangagwa Ed Cropley and Cris Chinaka - When Zimbabwean leader Robert Mugabe sacked his vice-president in front of 12 000 baying party members in 2014, Emmerson Mnangagwa sat quietly in the crowd, a green baseball cap pulled low over his eyes.

    The man who stood to gain most from the dismissal betrayed nothing through his expression and gentle clapping - a survival tactic honed during five decades of service to the mercurial Mugabe. His cap, however, spoke volumes.

    Emblazoned across its front, next to a portrait of Mugabe, were four words: "Indigenise, Empower, Develop, Employ"– a slogan of the ruling ZANU-PF party.

    Speaking at the congress, Mnangagwa reinforced the message from his headgear, announcing revisions to the party's constitution that backed "total ownership and control" of Zimbabwe's natural resources.

    It was a key insight to the party's direction as it contemplated life beyond Mugabe.

    "We will remain forever masters of our own destiny," Mnangagwa said, to cheers from the crowd.

    With Mugabe, 93, held following Wednesday's military takeover in Harare, questions have arisen about what the future holds for Mnangagwa, whose sacking from the post of vice president two weeks ago brought the political crisis to a head.

    "There are no arguments around his credentials to provide strong leadership and stability, but there are questions over whether he can also be a democrat," said Eldred Masunungure, a political science lecturer at the University of Zimbabwe.

    With his appointment in 2014 as official deputy to Mugabe, Mnangagwa had appeared well set as the eventual successor to Africa's oldest head of state.

    The 75-year-old was one of Mugabe's most trusted lieutenants, having been at his side in prison, during wartime and then in government.

    CROCODILE

    Along the way, he earned the nickname "Ngwena", Shona for crocodile, an animal famed in Zimbabwean lore for its stealth and ruthlessness.

    Mnangagwa backed Mugabe's economic nationalism, especially a drive to force foreign firms to hand majority stakes to local blacks, suggesting he may not be the pro-market pragmatist many investors were hoping for.

    He has been in every administration since independence, holding posts as varied as minister of state security, defence and finance, as well as speaker of parliament.

    Most controversially, he was in charge of internal security in the mid-1980s when Mugabe deployed a crack North Korean-trained brigade against rebels loyal to his rival Joshua Nkomo.

    Rights groups say 20 000 civilians, mostly from the Ndebele tribe, were killed. Mugabe denies genocide or crimes against humanity but has admitted it was a “moment of madness”.

    Mnangagwa's role remains shrouded in mystery, typical of a political operator trained as a communist guerrilla in China in the 1960s and who always stayed in the shadows behind Mugabe.

    Secretive and insular, he prefers to operate under the radar, those in his inner circle say, and when pushed into a corner, resorts to jokes and trivia to avoid serious discussion.

    "I wouldn't say he is deceptive but it's fair to say his default position is to crack jokes and deflect uncomfortable questions by asking endless questions," one member of parliament close to him said.

    "He is very conscious that his public image is that of a hard man but he is a much more complex personality – pleasant and an amazing story-teller," the politician, also from Mnangagwa’s Midlands Province, told Reuters.

    Mnangagwa’s appointment as vice president appointment came a day after his predecessor Joice Mujuru was fired for allegedly planning to topple Mugabe.

    Asked whether the purge would weaken the party, a smiling Mnangagwa said: “The revolution has a way of strengthening itself. It goes through cycles, this is another cycle where it rids itself of elements that had now become inconsistent with the correct line.”

    Mnangagwa learnt his politics in prison in the 1960s after being sentenced to death for sabotage by British authorities following his capture while in one of the earliest guerrilla units fighting white colonial rule in what was then Rhodesia.

    He was 19 and only spared the noose by a law prohibiting the execution of convicts under 21.

    After a decade in prison, often sharing a cell with Mugabe, Mnangagwa became personal assistant to the leader of the liberation struggle, and went on to head the guerrilla movement’s feared internal security bureau.

    ‘I'M THE BOSS’

    In January, a photograph appeared in local media showing Mnangagwa enjoying drinks with a friend. In his hand was a large novelty mug emblasoned with the words: "I'm the boss."

    To supporters of Mugabe, this bordered on treason. They suspected that Mnangagwa already saw himself in the leader's shoes.

    When Mugabe fired Mnangagwa as vice president recently for showing "traits of disloyalty", he removed a possible successor who was also one of his last remaining liberation war comrades.

    But relations had already cooled between the two men after suggestions by Mnangagwa's allies in August that he had been poisoned by ice cream from a dairy owned by the Mugabes. – Nampa/Reuters

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    Traffic cop faces reckless driving chargeTraffic cop faces reckless driving charge Warrant Officer Leonard Paulus (47), the acting station commander of the Omuthiya police station, sustained a broken leg when he was hit by a police car in the presidential motorcade at Omuthiya on Sunday.

    The police have opened a case of reckless driving against the traffic officer who was driving the car.

    According to the regional police commander, Commissioner Armas Shivute, Paulus was standing on the side of the road at the turnoff to the Omuthiya Elcin Church when he was hit by the police car.

    Traffic police cars were escorting President Hage Geingob to the Omuthiya Elcin Church for a church service before his campaign rally at the same town that afternoon.

    Shivute said Paulus was rushed to Omuthiya District Hospital but was later transferred to Oshakati Intermediate Hospital where he is in a serious but stable condition.

    “The station commander was standing at the turning point because at every point it is required to have a commander. The traffic vehicle got off the road to avoid bumping another vehicle that was stationed at the turning point waiting to be instructed as to which direction it must go,” Shivute explained.

    A statement issued by the police's public relations division on Sunday evening said a case of reckless or negligent driving was opened at the Omuthiya police station against the driver who hit Paulus.

    Shivute said Paulus was appointed as the acting station commander in May this year.

    ILENI NANDJATO

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    Cost of meat, fish skyrocketsCost of meat, fish skyrocketsFood inflation to rise in December Although the inflation in food prices has dropped since last year, there will not be many reasons to be merry in December. Although food inflation is lower now than at the same time last year, there is little relief for consumers as the festive season approaches, because predictions indicate that food inflation will increase in the coming months.

    There is particular concern about the increase in Brent crude oil prices currently trading at around US$62 per barrel, which are expected to push up the petrol price further in the coming months.

    According to Trading Economics, a statistics and economic indicators website, which has compiled historical data of food inflation in Namibia over more than a decade, food prices in Namibia increased by 3.7% in October this year.

    While the numbers appear high, they are nothing like what was experienced last year this time. In October 2016, food inflation stood at 11.7%.

    Food inflation in Namibia averaged 7.8% from 2012 until 2017, reaching an all-time high of 13.2% in January this year and a record low of 3.7% in May this year, according to Trading Economics.

    It is predicted that food inflation will increase again in December to 4.41%, in January to 4.58% and in February to 4.74%.

    According to the Economic Association of Namibia, consumers continue to benefit from lower prices for basic food items such as bread and cereals and relatively modest increases for food items in general.

    “However, inflation is expected to pick up for November due to the increase in fuel prices by 40c per litre for petrol and 60c for diesel. Since transport accounts for the third largest category in the consumption basket (14.3%), any price increases within this category influence the overall inflation rate,” the association said.

    The Namibia Statistics Agency recently released its Consumer Price Index which indicated that the lower inflation rate was marked in bread and cereals, oils, fats, and fruits, while meat and fish inflation remained elevated at 9.2% and 15.2% in October this year.

    The inflation in bread and cereal prices has declined by 2.7% since last year, while fruits (1.6%) and vegetable (2.1%) prices increased below average.

    According to data compiled by Namibian Sun a loaf of brown bread can cost anything between N$7.99 and N$10.99 in Windhoek grocery shops, while 2kg of sugar sells for between N$23.99 and N$43.99; cooking oil (750ml) sells at anything from N$14.99 to N$18.99; and 2kg of maize meal costs between N$29.99 and N$36.99. Canned fish (410g) varies from N$18.99 to N$23.99.

    The price of a litre of milk can go up to N$19.99 in some shops while half a dozen eggs vary from N$14.99 to N$17.

    Meanwhile, meat prices remain under pressure, increasing to 9.2% after an increase of 9.4% in September this year and 5.3% in October 2016. Strong price rises for meat could be explained by better grazing conditions and strong exports that have competed with local demands.

    The Meat Board recently said that the higher profitability of South African feedlots had increased the export of Namibian weaners since local slaughter prices underperformed significantly.

    “The weaner and slaughter prices are expected to remain firm in both Namibia and South Africa over the medium term due to the shortage of the supply of cattle in South Africa and the high demand from the South African feedlots, driven by lower feeding cost,” it said.

    Beef producer prices skyrocketed by 17.% on average in 2017 to N$35.8/kg average in September 2017 compared to N$29.5/kg annual average for 2016.

    On the other hand, mutton producer prices increased by 11.5% on average in 2017 from N$35.7/kg in 2016 to N$42.8/kg in October 2017.

    This increase can be attributed to lower supply in the market as the number of sheep slaughtered decreased.

    According to the Meat Board, the main reasons for the significant reduction in local slaughter numbers were a decrease in sheep numbers due to unfavourable climatic conditions and the lower local producer slaughter prices compared to slaughter prices in South Africa.

    Furthermore, for October this year the annual inflation rate for alcoholic beverages and tobacco stood at 5.7% as compared to 6% registered in October last year.

    ELLANIE SMIT

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  • 11/20/17--14:00: Pushing the boundaries
  • Pushing the boundaries   Pushing the boundaries Tunohole Mungoba

    For many young African people there are a number subjects considered a taboo to talk about especially with parents or elderly people. Some of these subjects include sex education, taking a gap year and allowing children to pursue their own choice of field of studies and career paths.

    Without despising societal or cultural norms and values, I will attempt to share with you why I feel it is important for parents to teach young people about sex education in a way that not only breaks cultural boundaries but also educates young people. It is high time parents start getting comfortable to have such discussions with their children.

    I sincerely believe there are good reasons why parents are reluctant to teach their children about sex. I believe some of the reasons parents frown at talking about sex education with their children include the prevention of premarital sex and unwanted pregnancies as well as maintaining the family's reputation. Many parents also fear that presenting basic information is the same as giving young people permission to be promiscuous. Knowledge they say is power and this knowledge becomes power when it is imparted and shared with adolescents who may not be able to differentiate between irrational decisions and well-informed ones.

    Despite the valid reasons that parents use as an excuse not to engage in discussions about sex with their children, I personally believe sex education should start at home. Parents should engage their children as active participants as they mature or as they develop into adulthood. This kind of education should continue in school in a way that preserves the cultural norms while embracing the dynamism in culture. It is not a good thing that many parents leave all the responsibility to teachers. Sex education provides young people with information they need to understand their bodies and gender roles in positive ways so young people must have the knowledge power about sex.

    I am not saying all parents are the same but there is always the avoidance reaction, “go and ask your mother or father” or “we will tell you when you are old enough to understand”. As difficult as it may sound, you could sit down with your child and have that frank talk. The same goes for children. It may feel uncomfortable to talk to your parents about sex but you owe it to yourself. I think it is important that children open up to their parents. One thing worth mentioning is that parents should recognise that before they can communicate freely with their children they must be able to talk freely with each other as couples.

    As young people, it is also imperative that we do not entirely shift the blame on our parents for not having these types of conversations with us. It is also our responsibility that we confront them and get all the information we need not just about sex education, but also other subjects that we struggle to talk about with our parents because these issues affect us later in our lives.

    Another subject that is not necessarily avoided but I feel young people are not always allowed to do is to make their own decisions regarding career choices. It seems as if a lot of parents still decide for their children what career paths they should follow. There is no harm in giving guidance but deciding for them is not fair. People who do courses that were forced down their throats by parents end up unhappy professionals because they will spend the rest of their lives doing something that they do not like or something that they are not passionate about. I know sometimes young people opt for easy courses but in most cases, they would be what they are really passionate about. So, instead of discouraging them just support them and avoid trying to live your dreams through your kids. I urge parents, especially African parents, to listen to their kids and be there to support them.

    As stated earlier, young people should not just blame their parents but also understand that it is also their responsibility to make sure that parents listen to them. Avoid blaming parents for everything that does not work out and start engaging with them in discussions considered sacred and inappropriate to discuss with elders. Respect is all the young people need to break the barriers while at same time preserving cultural values and remaining relevant to present day societal realities.

    tunohole@namibiansun.com

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  • 11/20/17--14:00: DTA accused of name theft
  • DTA accused of name theftDTA accused of name theftKauandenge wants to sue The official opposition, now known as PDM, says Joseph Kauandenge never registered a party with a similar name. Popular Democratic Movement (PDM) president McHenry Venaani has laughed off claims by Nudo spokesperson Joseph Kauandenge that the former DTA stole their party's new name from Nudo.

    In 2013, Kauandenge established the People's Democratic Movement (PDM), a name he claims the former DTA has stolen.

    Kauandenge yesterday confirmed that he never registered his party, but said he did not want Venaani to confuse his potential followers.

    He admitted that he had buried the PDM idea when he joined Nudo in 2014.

    “We were left flabbergasted and in awe that in this day and age, the DTA could take our party name without our consent and rename their party PDM.

    “We hold it as evidently true that we are the rightful custodian of the name PDM and we must categorically make it clear that we are not impressed by this daylight robbery of our name by the DTA leadership,” he said.

    Kauandenge also threatened to sue the new PDM party and to use every legal means possible to keep the official opposition from using PDM as its new acronym.

    “This action from the DTA can be best described as intellectual property theft of the highest order and we will not sit idle and watch this being done and carried out under our very own nose,” he said.

    Venaani yesterday told Namibian Sun that Kauandenge never registered PDM as a party, nor any other political party for that matter.

    “We do not take him seriously at all. He just does not have the kind of following that would allow him to register a political party,” said Venaani.

    Kauandenge, who is now the presidential spokesperson of Nudo, was a youth leader of the former DTA.

    He then established his own political party, Namibia Movement for Independent Candidates (NMIC), in 1997. It did not last long.

    He then returned to the DTA before joining the late OvaHerero Chief Kuaima Riruako when Nudo broke away from DTA in 2003.

    Kauandenge also had a short stint at the Republican Party (RP) which he joined in 2005 and served as advisor to the party's then leader Henk Mudge.

    He then left the RP for the Namibia Democratic Movement for Change (NDMC) party in 2009 where he was appointed as secretary-general. He left NDMC in 2010.

    JEMIMA BEUKES

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  • 11/20/17--14:00: Keetmans not marred by SELCo
  • Keetmans not marred by SELCoKeetmans not marred by SELCo The Keetmanshoop town council is not suffering any after-effects of its disastrous relationship with the South African-based Southern Electricity Company, SELCo.

    SELCo previously held a concession for the operational functions of Keetmanshoop's electricity network.

    Town CEO Desmond Basson told Namibian Sun that the municipality would not be discouraged from joining a yet to be established Southern Regional Electricity Distributor (RED) despite its rather precarious history with SELCo.

    “Our history with SELCo has nothing to do with a national drive backed by the Ministry of Mines and Energy.

    “The Southern RED would only be viable for any of the participants if all the municipalities in the south join at the same time and only when the bigger municipalities are part of the venture, to cross-subsidise the activities of the smaller municipalities,” Basson said.

    SELCo's responsibilities in Keetmanshoop included upgrading, maintenance, operation and distribution of an optimal electricity network.

    This extended to billing and revenue collection.

    Residents of Keetmanshoop complained about SELCo's power tariffs, saying they were too high.

    That eventually brought the rocky relationship to an end and marked the entry of Erongo RED as the Keetmanshoop municipality's technical partner.

    Basson indicated that the ball was now rolling steadily towards the establishment of a southern RED.

    “We have already confirmed that we would join the Southern RED.

    “That is on which basis the CEO of Keetmanshoop municipality is part of the technical committee that is establishing the Southern RED and the mayor serves on the shareholders' committee,” Basson said.

    With no clear date set for the establishment of the Southern RED, Basson said his municipality and Erongo RED would be engaged in a partnership for at least two years.

    “Our arrangement with Erongo RED is an interim electricity management contract which specifically states that the arrangement would be in place for two years or until the Southern RED has been established, whichever comes first,” Basson explained.

    OGONE TLHAGE

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  • 11/20/17--14:00: The future is female
  • The future is femaleThe future is femaleFirst female president in a decade After being crowned Miss First Year in 2015, the journey to greatness did not stop for Marvellous Shilongo. The newly elected SRC president of Namibia University of Science and Technology (NUST) spoke to The Zone about how she plans to influence positive change during her term. Tunohole Mungoba

    Born and raised in Tsumeb, the second year Economics student at the institution has always been motivated to achieve great things as her family is very supportive. “I come from a family of achievers. It is a norm to achieve great things,” she says. Shilongo describes herself as “a fighter, confident, loveable and approachable.” In 2015, Shilongo and her friend Rejoyce Towe decided to enter for Miss First Year and to their surprise, they both walked away from the competition with titles. She continued to also win the competition of the first Miss NUST. “Winning the pageants has opened so many doors for me and it has given me a beautiful platform of getting to know people on another level and getting to meet people that I can definitely associate myself with in the new future,” she says.

    However, Shilongo says she is not a model, but she is grateful for all the opportunities. “That is why I like to emphasize that you do not know what you are capable of unless you try.” She also added that beauty pageants are not superficial events and disagrees with those that share those views. “Girls who enter beauty pageants need to have the ability to tackle social problems that are being faced in society so you need to have brains.”

    Shilongo was inspired to run for these leadership positions because she wants to be the voice of her students. “I want my students to come to me with problems as little as toilet paper and as big as not being able to write exams. I want to channel that voice to management,” she tells The Zone. She aspires to be a transparent leader and an honest leader as well. She also added that growing up, she was not a leader, but more of a follower. “I was never someone that took the initiative and now I am that person. I decided to find it within me to be a positive and hard worker.”

    What does she plan on achieving?

    “As much as I am a fighter, I need to be realistic fighter. So I will first need to see what kind of obstacles I will be facing,” she says when asked about her plans during her term. She has a number of goals including providing free condoms and sanitary wear in bathrooms, make her institution more wheel-chair friendly, building a taxi rank for the students to reduce robberies and introducing the selling of alcohol during events like the Cultural Festival. “It is important that we accommodate all our students including those that drink. Many of our students tend to take their money to Unam’s Cultural Festival because of what we do not offer. I would prefer my students to spend money at our institutions rather so we that we can use that money to build other recreational facilities for our school.”

    Shilongo plans on juggling her newly elected position with her school by changing her studies to part time next year. “Being president is a very demanding position and everything will fall back on me. I decided to be at office during the day and attend my classes part time. I have decided to put my education first while serving my students, because at the end of the day, I am a student as well.”

    As a female in male-dominated field, Shilongo believes that women “are just as fit to take leadership positions.” Shilongo believes that it is not about gender, but about the person ability’s to take up the position.

    Fast Facts about Marvellous Shilongo

    · Favourite food: Traditional food and anything that has a lot of cheese on it

    · Favourite song: Sista Bettina

    · Favourite hangout spot in Windhoek: I go out a lot but my room is definitely my favourite hangout spot.

    · Motto I live by: “Hard work beats talent and nothing comes easy”

    · One Namibian person I look up to: I can’t choose, but definitely my mother Dina Shilongo, Sidney Martin and his wife Patty Karuaihe Martin.

    · Super power I would choose: To think of any destination and magically appear there as I love traveling.

    · Last book I read: the Bible

    · Winter or summer?: Definitely summer

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  • 11/20/17--14:00: Swapo faces test of unity
  • Swapo faces test of unitySwapo faces test of unityFeuding candidates widen intra-party rift The watershed Swapo congress could result in intensifying differences, political analysts warn. The Swapo internal leadership race has exposed deep divisions as the ruling party prepares to elect new leaders this weekend.

    There is without a doubt a vicious battle for the control and soul of the party under way.

    The significant succession battle has divided the party faithful with two leading factions squaring off against each other.

    Some Swapo members are backing acting president Hage Geingob and his Harambee slate to take over the running affairs of the party, while others favour 'Team Swapo', which has fielded Nahas Angula and Jerry Ekandjo as its presidential candidates.

    The two factions have denounced each other publicly in their bid to sway congress delegates to vote for them.

    At the weekend, defence minister Penda Ya Ndakolo pleaded with Geingob to get rid of ministers who are critical of his administration.

    Ya Ndakolo said Team Swapo candidates who had labelled the Geingob administration “corrupt and weak” needed to be dealt with.

    Local political commentator Ndumba Kamwanyah believes the Swapo infighting will escalate regardless of which candidates emerge victorious at the congress.

    He says even if the hostility may sound normal to some, the current atmosphere is unprecedented.

    “If you look at the commentary on social media you can see that the two camps' supporters cannot stand each other.





    “If one looks at what is at stake here; two centres of power versus one centre of power. It is a very deep ideological difference,” he said.

    Geingob supporters are against the notion of having two centres of power, which the Team Swapo candidates are using as the central message of their campaign.

    Team Swapo's candidates include home affairs minister and vice-presidential candidate Pendukeni Iivula-Ithana, Helmut Angula (vice-president), Armas Amukwiyu (secretary-general), Petrina Haingura and Martha Namundjebo-Tilahun, who are vying for the deputy secretary-general position.

    They are standing against Geingob's slate, which includes deputy prime minister Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah (vice-president), Sophia Shaningwa (secretary-general) and Marco Hausiku (deputy secretary-general).



    'Two-headed monster'

    Kamwanyah likened Swapo to a “two-headed monster” ahead of the elective congress. He said the party would have to come up with a plan to “rein in” its members to accept any possible congress outcome and continue as a united party.

    “It is not guaranteed that the hostility will clear up before the start of the congress. We are likely to see a lot of debate and arguments.

    “I do not really foresee violent outbursts but it cannot be completely ruled out,” he said.

    It will be the first time an incumbent state president stands for the presidency of the party.

    Another commentator, Uazuva Kaumbi, believes that Swapo will emerge the winner at the end of the day.

    He says the intense campaigning is testimony that democracy is alive and well within the party.

    According to him, the party will emerge stronger, with members from both sets of factions to “kiss and make up”.

    “A lot of issues have been raised by people, especially the opposition, and I am sure that the candidates will take note of these,” he said.

    The much-anticipated congress will kick off in Windhoek on Thursday.

    JEMIMA BEUKES

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    Fitch downgrades Namibia to junkFitch downgrades Namibia to junk Fitch Ratings has downgraded Namibia's long-term foreign-currency issuer default rating (IDR) to 'BB+' from 'BBB-'. The outlook is 'stable'.

    According to the ratings agency, the downgrade reflects weaker-than-forecast fiscal outcomes and the government debt-to-GDP ratio will continue to increase in the short term.

    The country's economic recovery has been weaker than expected.

    “This will leave debt in financial year 2019/20 at nearly double the ratio in 2014/15. The downgrade also reflects a weaker-than-expected economic recovery and our view that medium-term growth has shifted to a lower gear,” the agency stated.

    Fitch noted that fiscal consolidation was temporarily interrupted in the current financial year.

    “We forecast the general government deficit to narrow to 6% of GDP from 6.9% in 2016, against a revised government target of 5.3%.

    However, this improvement is due solely to a one-off surge in transfers from the South African Customs Union (SACU) which we expect to lead to a downward adjustment in the receipts for 2019.

    “The initially projected reduction in aggregate public capital spending will not materialise due to a N$2.5 billion capital injection in a new public infrastructure fund and to the settlement of previously unreported arrears worth N$2.7 billion arising from commitments undertaken in 2016.

    “Total-spending-to-GDP will stabilise as lower non-wage current outlays will offset the rise in the payroll, interest costs and public investment.”

    The government has revised its fiscal consolidation strategy, and no longer targets a reduction or stabilisation of debt-to-GDP, the ratings agency said.

    “The latest Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) published earlier in November projects general government debt to grow to 44.2% in 2019, while it was forecast to decline to 37.7% in the previous MTEF.

    “The government also foresees a reduction in the general government deficit to 2.9% in 2019, up from a previous target of 1%. It plans to achieve this improvement by cutting operational costs, stabilising capital spending in nominal terms, and freezing the wage bill by reducing the number of civil servants by 2% per year through natural attrition.”



    STAFF REPORTER

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    PS blames politicians for bulk oil storage fiascoPS blames politicians for bulk oil storage fiasco The permanent secretary of the National Planning Commission (NPC), Leevi Hungamo, says the Namibian government has lost close to N$1 billion because of “people in authority not wanting to take professional advice given by officials qualified to do so”.

    Hungamo was referring to his acquittal on a number of charges in the Walvis Bay bulk oil storage facility debacle, in which the budget has ballooned from N$800 million (around 2008 and 2009) to N$5.5 billion.

    The storage facility is being built by CBR, which is a joint venture between Vaino Nghipondoka's Babyface Civils and China Harbour Engineering Company (CHEH).

    Hungamo, alongside the permanent secretary of finance, Ericah Shafudah, and the chief legal advisor in the Office of the Attorney General, Chris Nghaamwa, had to face the music over the hugely inflated costs of the storage facility.

    Nghaamwa was let off the hook while Shafudah was issued with a final warning by cabinet secretary George Simataa.

    Though he would not expound on what he meant by it, Hungamo added this about his acquittal: “It is a pity that the nation will probably never see these people taken to task […] those at political levels should learn to accept that permanent secretaries and other officials of government are also as patriots (sic) as the politicians are.”

    Although Hungamo's legal representative in the disciplinary process, Stephen Vlieghe of PF Koep & Partners, confirmed his acquittal of all charges, George Simataa on Friday claimed not have “any information on the verdict”.

    Simataa would not say what the next likely action was going to be, only saying that he was awaiting a final report on the matter.

    CATHERINE SASMAN

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    Better overall governance since 2012Better overall governance since 2012Red flags remain Namibia is one of 18 African countries where overall governance has picked up over the past five years. Jo-Maré Duddy – The Mo Ibrahim Foundation may have highlighted Namibia as one of top ten African countries which can boast with increasing improvement of its overall governance the past decade, but the watchdog also raised red flags regarding several areas in which the country is slipping.

    The 2017 Ibrahim Index of African Governance (IIAG), which was launched yesterday, shows 40 countries improved in overall governance in the last ten years. Of these, 18 picked up pace over the last five years.

    “In the last five years, their annual average increase in score is greater than that of the last ten years. This includes only four of the top ten highest scoring countries in overall governance in 2016: Seychelles (2nd), Namibia (5th), Tunisia (7th) and Senegal (10th),” the Mo Ibrahim Foundation says.

    Of the 18 countries, ten had a change of leadership since 2007, according to the foundation – Namibia, Côte d’Ivoire, Egypt, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Nigeria, Senegal, Somalia, Tanzania and Tunisia.

    “Amongst these are five of the most improved countries on the continent since 2012: Côte d’Ivoire (+8.2), Kenya (+4.9), Namibia (+4.0), Tunisia (+3.6) and Nigeria (+3.3),” the foundation says.

    Problem areas

    According to the IIAG, there are 14 individual areas in Namibia which show increasing deterioration, especially since 2012.

    They are: access to information (-4.15); corruption and bureaucracy (-2.38); and corruption investigation (-1.20). These three issues saddled Namibia with an average annual trend of -0.53 for IIAG’s accountability category.

    Despite overall improvement in the category for personal safety, two sub-categories remain worrisome: safety of the person (-0.58); and crime (-1.78).

    Namibia has an average annual trend of -0.23 for the category for rights due to its -1.55 for freedom of expression, and -2.25 for freedom of association and assembly.

    Other sub-categories red-flagged in the IIAG were: legitimacy of political process (-1.38); economic diversification (-1.33); competition in the business environment (-2.08); soundness of banks (-1.55); transport infrastructure (-0.78); rural land and water (-1.13); and environmental policy (-1.8).

    Highlights

    • Namibia scores 71.2 (out of 100.0) in overall governance, ranking 5th (out of 54) in Africa;

    • Namibia scores higher than the African average (50.8) and higher than the regional average for Southern Africa (58.6);

    • Namibia achieves its highest category score in Safety & Rule of Law (78.1), and its lowest category score in Sustainable Economic Opportunity (64.2).

    • Namibia achieves its highest sub-category score in National Security (99.8), and its lowest sub-category score in Accountability (60.3), and Rural Sector (60.3).

    • Over the last five years, Namibia shows signs of “Increasing Improvement” in Overall Governance.

    • Namibia registers an Overall Governance improvement over the decade at an annual average trend of +0.42, with the pace of improvement quickening in the last five years at an annual average trend of +1.00.

    • Namibia’s Overall Governance progress over the decade is driven by all of the four categories: Safety & Rule of Law (annual average trend of +0.26), Participation & Human Rights (annual average trend of +0.62), Sustainable Economic Opportunity (annual average trend of +0.51) and Human Development (annual average trend of +0.31). – Mo Ibrahim Foundation

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    Schlettwein to table new tax billSchlettwein to table new tax bill Staff reporter - Finance minister Calle Schlettwein will table a bill providing for the introduction of a presumptive tax on the informal sector of the economy when the National Assembly opens for business in the New Year.

    He made the announcement at a post-budget discussion held in Walvis Bay last week.

    “During the next session of Parliament, it is my intention to table the tax proposal for the introduction of the presumptive tax on the informal sector, while giving due consideration to the micro units, and introduce measures to protect the tax base from erosion, profit shifting and illicit flows by eliminating some categories of tax exemptions,” he said.

    He also announced plans to further bolster existing revenue streams but gave his assurance that tax rates would not be increased to contend with a shortfall in revenue.

    “We will continue to strengthen the mobilisation of domestic revenue streams through tax policy and tax administration reforms to support the implementation of the fiscal consolidation and enhance the distributional impacts of tax policy,” he said.

    He also spoke about the planned introduction of an integrated tax system and said the long-anticipated revenue agency would become operational in due course.

    “We intend rolling out the integrated tax system mid-next year,” he said.

    “The Namibia Revenue Agency Bill is passed by Parliament and due for enactment. The Ministry of Finance in collaboration with all stakeholders will proceed with the orderly implementation of the transitional arrangements for this important reform.”

    He gave his assurance that there would be no increases in the general tax rates. Instead, he said, businesses would be encouraged to invest as a result of not having to pay higher taxes.

    “As the economic recovery takes shape, it is not my intention to increase general tax rates. But we intend to bring all potential taxpayers into the tax net and achieve full compliance. This is to allow for economic agents to produce and invest, while creating incentive to work and promoting equity and fairness of the tax system,” he said.

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    Policeman arrested for poachingPoliceman arrested for poaching Emergency services were called to the Western Bypass early this morning after a Namibian police minibus overturned, revealing at least three animal carcasses suspected to have been illegally hunted.
    Three occupants, a Namibian police officer and two civilians, sustained various degrees of injury.
    The police officer was taken to hospital, where he is under police guard, while the civilians were treated at the scene for minor injuries.
    A witness who arrived at the scene shortly before 03:00 said pieces of oryx and a whole warthog carcass were scattered next to the overturned bus.
    Deputy Commissioner Edwin Kanguatjivi of the police public relations department confirmed that three persons had been in the minibus with the registration number Pol 7853, and stickers indicating that it was allocated to the VIP Protection Directorate of the Namibian Police.
    He said charges of drunk driving, reckless or negligent driving, and illegal possession of game meat were filed against the police officer.
    He confirmed that the officer in question is a member of the VIP Protection unit.
    Ministry of Environment and Tourism spokesperson Romeo Muyunda said the ministry was aware of the incident.
    He said ministry staff were called to the accident scene and preliminary investigations indicated that there was no hunting or transportation permit for the carcasses.
    “We suspect that the animals were hunted illegally and in this regard we are investigating a case of illegal hunting of game and possession of wildlife products. The investigations between the Namibian Police and the Ministry of Environment and Tourism are ongoing,” he said.
    TANJA BAUSE


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    ‘I jumped to save my life’‘I jumped to save my life’ Warrant Officer Leonard Paulus (47), the acting station commander at the Omuthiya police station, is recovering in the Oshakati Intermediate Hospital after he was hit by a police car in the presidential motorcade on Sunday.
    He told Namibian Sun that besides a broken left leg, he sustained only scratches and bruises.
    Paulus said he tried to jump over the police car when he saw it approaching him at high speed. He said if he could not have jumped he do not think he could survived or he could has seriously injured.
    He said the accident took place a moment after he had finished deploying police officers to maintain security during President Hage Geingob’s visit to the town.
    He was standing at the turn-off to the Omuthiya Elcin church when the president’s motorcade approached from the Ondangwa side.
    The police cars were escorting President Hage Geingob to the church for a service before his campaign rally at the same town that afternoon.
    “When I was at the turning point I was vigilant and observant. There were three escort traffic vehicles leading the motorcade. The first two cars were travelling parallel while the third one was behind them.
    “I noticed that the two leading cars knew were the turning point was and they started reducing speed while approaching the turn-off. The third car was still at high speed and it swerved out of the road to avoid hitting the other vehicles,” Paulus said from his hospital bed.
    “I saw the car was coming straight at me. There was nothing I could do. Since I am a trained police officer, I decided to jump to avoid being hit. The next thing I saw I was already in the hospital.”
    The car’s windscreen hit Paulus in the leg.
    The hospital’s acting medical superintendent, Dr Vizkaya Amutenya, confirmed that Paulus sustained a broken leg and was recovering well.
    The police have opened a case of reckless driving against the traffic officer who was driving the car.
    The regional police commander, Commissioner Armas Shivute, said he was in contact with Paulus every day to check on his recovery.
    ILENI NANDJATO


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