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Tells it All - Namibian Sun

older | 1 | .... | 627 | 628 | (Page 629) | 630 | 631 | .... | 1152 | newer

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    We must fix education togetherWe must fix education together The just released Junior Secondary Certificate (JSC) examination results are disappointing to say the least. Our education system has over the years experienced a worrying trend, which has seen many pupils lagging behind the national average in terms of their attainment levels. With a mere 22 462 or 55.3% qualifying for promotion to Grade 11 from a total of over 40 000 full-time candidates who sat for the Grade 10 examinations, it is sad that over 18 000 failed to qualify.

    There are clearly significant gaps particularly in knowledge of subjects like Accounting and the different languages offered at junior secondary level. And then you have the challenge of learners failing to turn up to write subjects that they have registered for. We believe a lot could have been done to avoid this drop – albeit a slight one – in the pass rate. We have not yet turned the corner in education and the below average performances being dished out on a yearly basis calls for an urgent review within the system. The inconsistent showing in Grade 10 can be attributed to many other factors within the system, and perhaps we should focus on addressing the problems which raises serious questions about the effectiveness of our schooling system. There will never be quick fixes in education.

    Also, the huge focus on Grade 10 and matric results is not productive, thus serious efforts must be made to ensure that we have an inclusive system designed to take into account the wide diversity of needs on the ground. The private sector, which has a key stake in education, should also assist the government in addressing some of these serious challenges affecting education. If we are serious about the future of this country and continuing the transition to new standards, we must include everyone as a key contributor to the process of once and for all improving our education. A good education system is a great asset to any country, because it produces a qualified, skilled and disciplined workforce to develop the country.

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    I am a wealthy man - my own wayI am a wealthy man - my own way If you ever thought Africa had a deficit of acting talent – think again! The ‘black’ African soil has surely produced some of the world’s finest actors and actresses. Hands Down!

    No, I am not referring to the likes of Arnold Vosloo and Charlize Theron.

    I am referring to the plain ‘Jane’, or as in this case – plain ‘Johns’ who would go out of their way to prove their perceived superiority and intelligence to all and sundry. The motive: to win the affection of a woman.

    Their modus operandi might appear simple to the untrained eye, however, it is a carefully orchestrated and foul proof method, at least for a while. The trick is to get into a personality that would surely arouse the interest of the woman concerned.

    For instance, if she is into bankers and economists - you become one of Namibia’s sought after economist. It’s not that simple though – you have to do some ground breaking research on basic fiscal terminology and jargons and find out about latest interest rates from the central bank.

    If you have one of those names named after your grandparents, like Estalimentaline for a Herero, or Shifinalonginyamwe if you hail from the north – lose it. Trust me; the woman would suffocate trying to say your name in a fit of anger…or passion!

    Once the opportunity arises to meet the woman, you offer to take your boss’ Mercedes Benz for a wash and pitch up at the woman’s place in it. Once outside her flat’s door, and after making sure she is watching from the window, you grab your new Nokia Dual-Sim cell phone (which you borrowed from a wealthier friend), and start ‘talking’ on it.

    It does not really matter what you say on the phone, as long as you throw large figures on the balance of payment surplus and comment on the raging economic meltdown. Oh, don’t forget to remind your ‘secretary’ on the other end of the phone to hold all your calls for the next hour, as you do not want to be disturbed. That is guaranteed to keep you in her good books for a while.

    ?Try to remain ‘modest’ during the conversation with the woman. If she goes like “Wow, so you studied at Harvard...?” You can interject by saying;

    “Actually No...I turned Harvard down. The timing of the studies came at a time when my country needed my services in drafting a turn-around strategy for our fiscal policy amid global speculations that emerging markets stand to lose out on direct-foreign investments as a result of a slowdown in the demand for the country’s exports. So, I had to turn them down in the interest of my country...”

    Also, make sure you throw in some tad-bits from history or go the trivial route, something like “...more people are killed each year from bees than from snakes and it is impossible to sneeze with your eyes open.”

    Well, that usually gets the brother going for a while before the woman invites him to dinner to meet her father – the governor of the central Bank.

    If your boss does not own a Merc, take your boss’ boss car. What, he too does not own one? Then quit – you will be better off working at the counter of Casa Branka For You and Me Shebeen.

    For those of us not lucky to land an office job, just present her with whatever is in abundance at your work place. For instance, If you work in a bakery - take her bread for her school kids every day. Trust me; bread is an expensive commodity in this world.

    I have to admit, acting out such a role requires more takes than shooting a Hollywood blockbuster. Of course the golden rule still applies - don’t get caught. If you do, you didn’t hear it from me.

    Until then...

    tjatindi@gmail.com

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  • 12/21/17--14:00: Three arrested in drug bust
  • Three arrested in drug bustThree arrested in drug bust Three men were arrested at Usakos on Wednesday in three separate cases of dealing in narcotics.

    According to the crime investigations coordinator for the Erongo Region, Deputy Commissioner Erastus Iikuyu, the three men were arrested during a police drug operation conducted that morning.

    “On Wednesday, at around 04:20 in the morning, a 47-year-old man was arrested in Saamstaan location at Usakos for dealing in 19 full, half and quarter Mandrax tablets valued at N$1 995,” said Iikuyu.

    A 42-year-old man was arrested in the same location 20 minutes later. He was allegedly dealing in 76 full, 35 quarter and half Mandrax tablets and dagga with a combined value of N$30 325.

    Ten minutes later, a 57-year-old man was arrested at a house in the town's Build Together location for allegedly dealing in 682 grams of dagga valued at N$6 820.

    ADOLF KAURE

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    Court to decide on RDP leadership fateCourt to decide on RDP leadership fateInterim interdict remains in place Jeremiah Nambinga remains the RDP's president pending a High Court ruling in March 2018. The High Court will only pronounce itself in March next year on the leadership battle pitting senior Rally for Democracy and Progress leaders against party president Jeremiah Nambinga.

    This week Judge Shafimana Ueitele extended the interim ruling blocking the RDP national executive from holding a meeting where it was expected to confirm a vote of no confidence passed against Nambinga.

    A few months ago, RDP vice-president Steve Bezuidenhout announced that the party had decided to recall Nambinga, who turned to the court to challenge the decision.

    “Nambinga still remains the president of RDP. He is still the chairperson of the central committee as well as that of the national executive committee of the party. No meeting of these organs can be convened without his involvement,” Judge Ueitele emphasised.

    Last month, the court temporarily declared the national executive committee's vote of no confidence null and void.

    The meeting of the 72-member RDP central committee, which was scheduled from 3 to 5 November, was prevented from proceeding.

    “There is no way I will ignore the lawfulness of the decision,” Ueitele informed lawyer Uananiva Hengari, appearing for the RDP on instruction of Tobie Louw.

    Nambinga was not invited to attend the meeting in his capacity as either the chairperson of the national executive committee or as party president.

    Hengari tried to argue that the motion of no confidence was approved by 12 members of the NEC, and that the motion was supposed to be discussed at the central committee meeting this past weekend.

    The judge said the central committee of the RDP cannot debate the motion without it being taken through the disciplinary process.

    “That is the bottom line. There is no way I can ignore the lawfulness of the matter because what is being questioned is the lawfulness of the decision,” Ueitele said.

    Advocate Gerson /Narib, instructed by Loini Shikale, argued that there were sufficient grounds for the interim order to be confirmed as a final court order.

    He maintained that the decision of the executive committee to adopt a vote of no confidence in his client was unlawful and that such decision cannot be discussed until the Discipline and Auditing Commission has had an opportunity to look into the grievances and make a recommendation to the central committee.

    As such, he argued, the planned central committee meeting must be set aside.

    FRED GOEIEMAN

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    Namibians among wealthiest in AfricaNamibians among wealthiest in Africa Namibia, which is the 34th largest country in the world with a population of just over two million, is one of the wealthiest countries in Africa per capita.

    Namibians are the third wealthiest individuals on the continent with an average of U$10 800 (N$140 400) per person.

    The wealth per person in Namibia has increased since 2015 when it was N$132 600.

    This is according to the Afrasia Bank's Africa Wealth Report, which said the average wealth per capita globally was N$351 000 at the end of last year.

    While Namibia's wealth per capita is still significantly lower than the world average, it is much higher than the African average of approximately N$26 000 (U$2 000).

    According to the report released this year, there are 3 300 millionaires and 120 multimillionaires with wealth of U$10 million or more in Namibia. Half of them reside in Windhoek.

    Mauritians are Africa's wealthiest individuals with an average of N$ 334 100 per person while Zimbabweans are the poorest with a measly N$2 600 per individual.

    The report also measured the total wealth of African countries, placing Namibia 15th on the continent with a total wealth of U$24 billion. This is in comparison to South Africa which has a total wealth of U$610 and was ranked as the country with the highest total wealth in Africa.

    The report says total wealth refers to the private wealth held by all the individuals living in each country. It includes all their assets such as property, cash, equities and business interests, less any liabilities. Government funds are excluded.

    The research found that 3 300 high-net-worth individuals (HNWI) are living in Namibia. This number has increased by 21% since 2006. High-net-worth individuals are defined as individuals with net assets of U$1 million or more.

    According to the report, the number of high-net-worth individuals in Namibia grew by 6% last year alone and it is predicted that within the next ten years they will grow by another 50%. Also 120 multimillionaires call Namibia home. In comparison, South Africa has 2 130 multimillionaires and 40 400 high-net-worth individuals. Windhoek has 1 400 high-net-worth individuals and 60 multimillionaires.

    It is forecast that high-net-worth individuals in Windhoek will increase by 50% over the next ten years.

    Earlier this year Forbes magazine named five multimillionaires from Namibia, who included Tony Pupkewitz, eldest child of the late Harold Pupkewitz; Quinton van Rooyen, founder of Trustco; Frans Indongo; Meryl Barry, only daughter of Harold Pukewitz; and Sven Thieme, whose grandfather founded the Ohlthaver and List Group.

    There are approximately 145 000 high-net-worth individuals and 7 010 multimillionaires living in Africa. Namibia has consistently topped economic performance rankings in Africa, ranking highly on the World Economic Forum as Africa's seventh most competitive country in its 2017-2018 Global Competitiveness Index. It is also rated 11th in Africa in the World Bank's latest Ease of Doing Business Report.

    ELLANIE SMIT

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    PDM criticises classroom shortagePDM criticises classroom shortageBlames lack of planning Opposition MP Nico Smit has slammed the government's “ingenious excuses” for the failures of the public education system. The Popular Democratic Movement (PDM) has lashed out at the education ministry for its poor planning and accused the government of introducing free education to “buy” votes from the poor.

    The statement issued by PDM treasurer-general and parliamentarian Nico Smit followed remarks made by education minister Katrina Hanse-Himarwa recently regarding challenges faced by the public education sector.

    According to Smit, the minister identified the lack of space in schools and a shortage of school hostels as problems facing the sector.

    He said this indicated the minister's complete miscomprehension of the issues plaguing public education in Namibia.

    He said the lack of space in schools and the shortage of hostels were rather consequences of a deeper problem that was not only within the education ministry, but across the entire government.

    He said the PDM believed that for a minister to say that public schools would not have enough space to accommodate all learners in the coming academic year was an admission of failure on the part of the government.

    “Every year countless Namibians must delay the start of their children's education because of the outright incompetence of and incorrect prioritisation by the Swapo government,” he said.

    According to Smit, this is unsustainable, and if not rectified immediately it will severely compromise any effort at socio-economic advancement for Namibians.

    “It is surely not rocket science for a competent education ministry to use the endless learner numbers it demands from all schools at the start of every school year to predict the number of school places that will be required throughout the country for the next five years - ask any half-competent statistician to help if the ministry has no-one suitable to do this. After almost 30 years this simple exercise is surely not too much to expect from this government,” said Smit.

    He said when the minister pointed to a lack of sufficient spaces in schools and a lack of hostels as problems facing public education, one must begin to question the planning process within the ministry.

    “How else could one explain the abysmal return on investment of public funds that are allocated to the education ministry on an annual basis? Where planning is poor or neglected in the workflow process, implementation and monitoring and evaluation are likely to suffer as well. This is a basic and easily understandable idea yet it seems that those in the top echelons of government are oblivious to this.”

    According to Smit the government's failure to deliver an effective solution to the total collapse of public education in Namibia for close to three decades was evidence that the government simply did not understand, let alone know how to solve this problem of their own making.

    “Hanse-Himarwa is the last in a long line of Swapo leaders who has succeeded only in producing spectacular failures and the most ingenious of excuses for these failures in public education in Namibia.”

    ELLANIE SMIT

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    Disappointment of 2017: Tesla’s Model 3Disappointment of 2017: Tesla’s Model 3Highly anticipated model stuck in ‘production hell’ The much-vaunted ‘affordable’ battery-powered sedan has been a disaster for Tesla. LANCE BRANQUINHO -

    Throughout this year the company founded by former Pretoria Boys High matriculant Elon Musk did some extraordinary things. Its share price burst through the R4 000 level, a new Roadster and electric truck were revealed, and an enormous Tesla battery was delivered to South Australia, assisting in alleviating the state’s pressing power grid crisis.

    The one thing Tesla did not do in 2017 was build enough cars.

    Or even the cars it had promised – for customers who had paid handsome deposits for them.

    A company which is now considered more valuable than Ford by investors cannot appear to fulfil the one function one would expect from a car company: assembling and delivering automobiles to waiting customers.

    Model 3 has been a disaster for Tesla. The much-vaunted ‘affordable’ battery-powered sedan is positively creeping out of Tesla’s Fremont factory at a rate of only a few hundred per month, whereas Tesla’s initial production goal was 5 000 per week.

    Labour unrest, factory safety and suspect product quality have all stunted the Model 3’s delivery schedule.

    Showing off a new Roadster and electric truck is typical Tesla theatre, but it’s inconceivable how the company can satisfy Model 3 demand when its approach appears so diluted: bothering with future concepts whilst there are massive industrial engineering issues to be solved in its factory.

    Issues which are not a simple algorithm fix, but instead: difficult, immersive physical engineering challenges.

    At its peak Toyota delivered just shy of 8 000 vehicles a week from the Fremont plant, Tesla’s average in the low hundreds are telling.

    For customers who are keen to engage with the affordable – and promising – future of battery powered motoring, the ‘production hell’ (to quote Musk) of Model 3 has been the new car disappointment of 2017.

    Tremendous technology. But it’s of no use if Tesla cannot scale it sufficiently. For those who paid their deposits early two years ago, the wait is testing. –Wheels24

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    Namibia used in smuggling scamNamibia used in smuggling scam A Namibian company was used as a front for a tax-evasion scam involving more than N$1.5 million in Zambia over a two-year period.

    The company Daily Meat Products Limited, based in Lusaka, smuggled goods worth over N$1.5 million in unpaid duty and taxes.

    The company was used as a front to smuggle chicken into the country under value to avoid higher taxes.

    The products that were actually imported from the Netherlands were changed and documents forged to make it look like it came from Namibia to avoid paying higher import duties.

    In a statement, the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) said it has been engaged in an ongoing investigation involving a local customs clearing company in Walvis Bay and a business entity in Zambia called Daily Meat Products Limited.

    According to the ACC, Daily Meat Products imported containers of frozen chicken that had been mechanically deboned from the Netherlands with legitimate and authentic documentation.

    It included invoices stating the actual value at which the product was purchased in the Netherlands.

    The local clearing company at the coast handled the import and the goods were supposed to be in transit on a third-party bond with a final destination at Daily Meat Products in Zambia.

    In order not to compromise the bond the consignments were received in Walvis Bay and cleared by the clearing agency and transported to the Wenela Border Post in the Zambezi Region.

    According to the ACC, the original documentation and authentic invoices were posted to the Asycuda Customs system to ensure that the chicken products were indeed transferred and removed in bond from Namibia and due for import into Zambia.

    Asycuda Customs System is a computerised customs management system which covers most foreign trade procedures.

    “The documentation was in order and authentic up to that stage and the bond was not compromised and the goods left Namibia with the correct documentation,” said the ACC. A clearing agent on the Zambian side would then facilitate the import into Zambia.

    He would allegedly create a new Customs Declaration Form complete with fictitious set of invoices and undervalue the consignment stating that the chicken products originated from Namibia.

    The agent would also utilise a local Namibian company, that was unaware of these transactions, its name and details on the invoices and forge SADC certificates as if the products originated from this company in Namibia.

    Due to certain SADC agreements there are some benefits to importers within the region, said the ACC. The clearing agent in Zambia would then allegedly present this forged documents with considerable lowered values.

    Also included would be a Customer Road Freight Manifest that indicates that the product originated from Namibia and misrepresent it as an import from a local company in Namibia to the Zambia Revenue Authority.

    This is in order to evade paying the due and much higher import duties that would have been payable if the goods were in fact imported with the original documentation from the Netherlands.

    According to the ACC, the matter was exposed after the Namibian company became aware of transactions through a subsidiary and started investigating as Daily Meat Products was unknown to them.

    Only after receiving the documentation presented in Zambia did the company realise that these documents are forgeries and alerted the ACC.

    The ACC with the assistance of the finance ministry and Customs of Excise then started to launch an investigation that is still ongoing. Searches were performed at the clearing agent in Namibia and various documents, computers and cellphones were confiscated.

    The ACC immediately alerted the Zambian Revenue Authority who started their own probe in Zambia covering the period from January 2015 to November this year.

    ELLANIE SMIT

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  • 12/21/17--14:00: Tent camp raises eyebrows
  • Tent camp raises eyebrowsTent camp raises eyebrowsOmaruru residents complain about disturbance Residents of the small retirement town of Omaruru are up in arms about a construction depot in a residential zone. Three letters and a petition signed by 29 Omaruru residents protesting the alleged misuse of a residential plot for tented staff housing and storage of building materials and construction vehicles were submitted to the municipality this week.

    The complaints are related to an undeveloped property, Erf 536, where at least 18 employees of a contractor appointed by the government to rehabilitate railways have lived in tents since November.

    Moreover, construction vehicles are being parked on or near the property and building materials are stored there.

    “Please be advised that the residents in the residential area around Erf 536 are very disturbed that no action has been taken by the Omaruru municipality with regard to the working and camping on an industrial scale that is taking place on that erf,” one of the letters stated.

    Residents have questioned whether the use of the property for informal staff housing and storage was in line with the town's by-laws.

    Moreover, questions regarding the health implications of the crowded living conditions and sanitation have also been raised.

    Frequent noise and dust pollution by large trucks are also mentioned in the letters and petition sent to the municipality.

    In addition to these disruptions, residents are concerned about the impact on their property values.

    “We wish, with immediate effect, to have measures enforced that comply with the zoning of this area, which is residential,” a letter by the Omaruru Residents Association demands.

    It is alleged that the contractor signed a 12-month agreement with the property owner to house staff and building materials and equipment on the property.

    One of the construction firm's supervisors, known only as Toivo to Namibian Sun, declined to comment on the complaints, except to say it was a private matter between the property owner and the contractor.

    The municipality's CEO, Alfons Tjitombo, yesterday confirmed he had previously told the concerned residents that the deal did not require permission or zoning amendment from the municipality.

    “According to our research we established that only if it is any permanent change in terms of usage then it needs council consent to be changed. But the temporary usage for storage of material doesn't need consent from council.”

    He would not comment on regulations related to zoning or health, pertaining to the number of people living on the property, or the conditions in which they are living.

    He referred Namibian Sun to the property department of the municipality, where a response was not forthcoming on the matter.

    Tjitombo said his hands were tied for now and he could only acknowledge receipt of the petition but could not act until the council met again in January.

    The Residents Association further argued that an industrial plot should be provided to the contractor and warned that allowing the situation to continue could set a precedent that “will embolden other individuals to follow suit and misuse residential areas for monetary gains.”

    A brief visit to the site earlier this month by Namibian Sun showed that the contractors had installed water supply to at least two showers and installed flush toilets.

    An employee at the site claimed that the next step was the installation of an electrical connection.

    A truck parked next to the property displayed a logo of MK Capital Investment cc, a Namibian general contractor.

    A respected town planner, who declined to be named, said a crucial issue to investigate was the public health implications of so many people living in tents on an undeveloped residential property.

    He said the overcrowding of people and availability of services on the plot raised questions of whether health and safety regulations were being complied with to ensure the wellbeing of the staff and people living in the surrounding area.

    JANA-MARI SMITH

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  • 12/21/17--14:00: COMPANY NEWS IN BRIEF
  • COMPANY NEWS IN BRIEFCOMPANY NEWS IN BRIEF Distell sells cognac business

    Distell announced on Wednesday that it had entered into an agreement to sell its cognac business, Bisquit Dubouche et Cie (Bisquit), to Campari Group for about N$800 million.

    According to Distell’s managing director, Richard Rushton, the Bisquit brand remains strong and well positioned for long-term growth.

    "As we have said consistently for the last while, Distell has obviously embarked on a journey to focus our business and to create winning propositions in winning geographies. We did an assessment and we want to focus on addressable opportunities where we can win in the longer term," Rushton told Fin24 on Wednesday.

    FIN24

    Massive Shoprite strike planned

    Retailers Shoprite and Checkers are due to be hit by nationwide strikes on one of the busiest shopping days before Christmas.

    The South African Commercial‚ Catering and Allied Workers Union (Saccawu) and trade union Cosatu announced on Tuesday that 30 000 workers were planning to down tools at the supermarkets today.

    The planned one-day nationwide strike will include marches and protests across the country, said Cosatu spokesperson Sizwe Pamla. The strike was protected, Cosatu added.

    FIN24

    Uber names ex-Orbitz executive as COO

    Uber Technologies Inc on Wednesday named the former chief executive of Orbitz to be its chief operating officer, second-in-command to new CEO Dara Khosrowshahi, who has been revamping the leadership team in hopes of turning around the ride provider and preparing for an IPO.

    Barney Harford, who was CEO of online travel service Orbitz Worldwide Inc, will join Uber on Jan. 2 and will be tasked with overseeing global ride-hailing operations, marketing, customer support and the food delivery business. A familiar face at Uber, he been an adviser since October, Khosrowshahi said in an email to employees.

    NAMPA/REUTERS

    Azul to set up cargo service

    Brazil's third-biggest airline, Azul Airlines signed an agreement on Wednesday to create a private integrated logistics company to transport cargo in a joint venture with the state-owned Brazilian postal service Correios.

    Azul said in a securities filing that it will have a controlling 50.01% ownership stake. The new company is expected to start operating in the first half of 2018 and will handle 100 000 tonnes of cargo per year, Azul said.

    NAMPA/REUTERS

    Ex Steinhoff CEO faces liquidation order

    Absa Bank has applied for the liquidation of former Steinhoff CEO Markus Jooste’s Mayfair Speculators, the company that, until this week, owned South Africa’s best racehorse, Legal Eagle, as well as hundreds of other racehorses, a property portfolio and a chunk of Steinhoff shares.

    Absa has also demanded an investigation into a suspicious transaction that saw Mayfair move N$1.5 billion of assets to its holding company in August this year. This was just months before significant financial irregularities hit the headlines, causing one of the largest ever corporate implosions in South Africa.

    MONEYWEB

    Tanzania’s Bharti Airtel localised

    Tanzania says Bharti Airtel’s local unit belongs to state-owned Tanzania Telecommunications, a claim that sets up an ownership dispute between the government and the Indian phone operator.

    "Airtel, according to the information we have", is an asset of Tanzania Telecommunications, President John Magufuli said on the East African country’s national broadcaster, TBC, on Wednesday. "A terrible game was played. I don’t want to say more than that."

    The president asked Finance Minister Philip Mpango to follow up on the claim. His comments follow a 2016 order for telecommunications companies to sell at least a quarter of their units on the local bourse to boost domestic ownership.

    FINANCIAL MAIL

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    Former Katwitwi residents bemoan relocationFormer Katwitwi residents bemoan relocationSay council should provide services The Helao Nafidi town council and former residents of the Katwitwi informal settlement are still at loggerheads over their removal. Former residents of the Katwitwi informal settlement at Helao Nafidi are accusing the town council of relocating them to a place without water, electricity and toilets.

    Earlier this month, the council relocated residents illegally living at Katwitwi to Oshikango's Extension One and Seven areas. Six plots at Katwitwi will now be handed over to their rightful owners for the development of a business centre, Helao Nafidi mayor Eliaser Nghipangelwa said on Wednesday.

    “We have peacefully and successfully relocated about 500 people from an illegal informal settlement to a new area which they now legally occupy,” Nghipangelwa said. Some of the relocated residents that Nampa spoke to denied that their relocation was peaceful.

    “It was not peaceful at all. We dismantled our shacks and shebeens after the council threatened us with message to our mobile phones that our structures would be demolished on 6 December if we happened not to remove them on our own,” one of the residents claimed.

    “They brought us here where we have no toilets, water and electricity, the same way the colonial regime forced black people to vacate Pionierspark for Katutura in Windhoek,” argued another former Katwitwi resident. Nghipangelwa said messages sent to residents' phones simply explained what procedures would be followed during the relocation process, and nobody was threatened or forced to take up a plot at the relocation site. According to him, residents have been relocated to a formalised area, where they are expected to provide water, toilets and electricity to their houses on their own cost, unlike at Katwitwi where the council provided water, electricity and some toilets to those they had authorised to do business there. This was not well received by the residents, who argued that it was the council's responsibility to ensure that the relocation areas were provided with the basic services before relocation. Nghipangelwa said relocation to Extension One and Seven was a privilege and not a right, as they had illegally used Katwitwi as a residential area.

    “They don't deserve such relocation. We could have told them to leave Katwitwi without an offer if the council was not kind,” he said.



    NAMPA

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    Corrections to JSC exam resultsCorrections to JSC exam results Due to a mistake in the automated formula used by Namibia Media Holdings (NMH) to calculate the total number of points for candidates in the Grade 10 Junior Secondary Certificate (JSC) examination, certain candidates' points were incorrect in the results published yesterday.

    Instead of first taking the symbol value for English and adding a candidate's top five remaining subjects, the formula used by NMH selected a candidate's top six subjects without taking the score for the official language into consideration. Less than 2% of students were affected in terms of being promoted to Grade 11.

    NMH regrets the error and apologises to the Ministry of Education, Arts and Culture and all those who might have been inconvenienced.

    Students are requested to check their total points against SMS results and the official results issued to secondary schools.

    Results for the Namibia Senior Secondary Certificate on Higher Level (NSSCH), as well as infographics published about the exam results, were not affected at all.

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    0.8% GDP growth forecast for 20180.8% GDP growth forecast for 2018Growth estimate down from 2016 figure The Bank of Namibia expects a slowdown the forecasted growth for 2017. This is as a result of a slowdown in construction while the outlook for uranium also remains subdued. OGONE TLHAGE



    The Bank of Namibia expects the economy to get out of its recessionary state and register growth of 0.6%. The central bank this week released its revised growth estimates following the conclusion of a visit by the International Monetary Fund earlier this month.

    “Domestic growth for 2017 is estimated to slow down to 0.6%, from 1.1% in 2016,” the Bank of Namibia said.

    The slowed growth was attributed to contractions in the construction sector and retail trade and slow growth rates for manufacturing, the Bank of Namibia said.

    “This slowdown is mainly on account of deeper than previously expected contractions in sectors such as construction and wholesale and retail trade, as well as slower growth rates for manufacturing, electricity and water, and the public sector,” the Bank of Namibia said.

    Growth was also expected to pick up remarkably from the 2016 and 2017 lows for the next three years.

    “Growth is expected to improve to 2.2% and 3.1% in 2018 and 2019, respectively. This growth will be supported mainly by anticipated improvements in uranium mining, wholesale and retail trade, manufacturing, transport and communication sectors,” the Bank of Namibia said.

    Despite the optimism, the outlook for uranium mining was not too positive while the ministry’s fiscal consolidation stance was also expected to stem growth, the Bank of Namibia said.

    “Risks to the domestic economic outlook remain, although somewhat moderated, but the persistently low uranium price remains a major risk. Risks to the domestic outlook include persistently low international prices for uranium, slow growth amongst some of Namibia’s key trading partners and challenges associated with the implementation of fiscal consolidation,” the central bank said while the outlook for the agricultural sector was also not too rosy.

    “Furthermore, weather conditions remain a risk for the future rainy seasons and may adversely affect performance in the agricultural sector,” the Bank of Namibia said.

    IMF mission head Geremia Palomba recently expressed confidence that the economy would recover in the years 2018 and beyond during a conclusion of a consultation visit to Windhoek. According to him, mining and construction would help drive growth.

    “Growth is projected to resume in 2018 and accelerate thereafter to about 4% as production from new mines ramps up and manufacturing and retail activities recover.”

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    Rundu abattoir almost completeRundu abattoir almost complete NAMPA

    The construction of the Rundu abattoir is about 80% complete. The abattoir will be leased to private operators upon completion.

    This was said by the chief veterinary officer in the Directorate of Veterinary Services, Dr Adrianatus Maseke, in an interview with Nampa yesterday.

    He said the facility would be leased to suitable and experienced private operators through an open public tender process.

    Maseke said the construction of the facility, which had been expected to be completed in January 2017, was delayed due to cash-flow problems experienced in the ministry.

    “A new date for completion is still to be determined,” he said.

    Asked about the number of jobs the ministry expected the abattoir to create once operational, Maseke said that would be up to the operator.

    In January this year, New Era reported that the N$110.8 million abattoir and meat processing facility would be equipped with modern cold-storage and meat-processing equipment.

    It will slaughter cattle, goats and sheep. It will have a maximum slaughter capacity of 50 cattle and 150 goats per day. However, the slaughtering of cattle will be the facility’s core function.

    Although the meat processing facility is being built to world-class standards for export purposes, provision to sell to locals will also be made, agriculture minister John Mutorwa said during a visit to the site in January.

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    Illegal fishing in Zambezi continuesIllegal fishing in Zambezi continues Illegal fishing with nets on the Zambezi River, including dragnets which are illegal throughout the year, has caused outrage among conservationists and lodge owners whose livelihoods to a large part depend on sustainable harvesting of the river's resources.

    Pictures taken from Caprivi Mutoya Lodge & Campsite were circulated on a tourism and wildlife WhatsApp group on 12 December. They clearly show how four men are catching what appears to be tiger fish with nets.

    Fishing is not allowed in the river this time of the year because it is the breeding season. Only catch and release angling is allowed.

    Expert observers preferring anonymity said the men probably used dragnets because there is not enough fish in the river to net the normal way.

    “Every year this time they dragnet, as all the bream is finished and it is the only method to catch tiger fish,” one source said.

    The owner and manager of Caprivi Mutoya Lodge, Zina Swanepoel, said this sort of illegal fishing is “very prevalent”.

    “We continue to report the problem but it persists. The government makes laws but they seem to lack interest [in enforcing the laws],” said Swanepoel. “The fish is dying. Last year we have not been able to catch anything.”

    Mary Rooken of Caprivi River Lodge said most of the illegal fishing does not take place on the main river but in the back channels where there is not a lot of traffic.

    Curt Sagell, co-owner of Caprivi Houseboat Safaris, said businesses along the Zambezi River have been trying to push the Ministry of Fisheries and Marine Resources for stricter law enforcement.

    He said it appears that fisheries officials are hamstrung because they often do not have sufficient means to patrol the river.

    Sagell said the officers often do not have fuel for their patrol boats and the boats are not properly maintained.

    Also, the officers do not want to patrol after working hours, which is usually the time when illegal fishing takes place.

    “There is no proper system in place to stop the illegal fishing. All lodges on the Namibian side have offered our assistance but they are reluctant to go with us after hours without pay.

    The system is not working. They are not getting paid to work after hours and the only time they can do their jobs is after hours,” said Sagell.



    Sagell said police officers in the area are more helpful than the fisheries inspectors.



    He also said that most of the illegal fishing is done by Zambians who illegally cross the border at night to fish in the floodplains on the Namibian side of the Zambezi River, which offers better fishing conditions.



    “It is a very permeable situation. There is virtually no enforcement from the fisheries department,” Sagell charged.



    The offered assistance from the lodges comes with its own perils because of threats from the fishermen, he said.



    Sagell said it would take serious intervention from both the Namibian and Zambian sides to stop the depletion of the fish resource.



    He said the fish stock along the river has markedly dropped since 2012, which includes a drastic decline of tiger fish.



    “There was a time that you could catch 30 to 40 tiger fish in one hour. The situation today is very different. What needs to happen is that the head office of the ministry of fisheries must support the officers here and give them the resources they need. We all feel a bit helpless,” Sagell said.



    The head of the fisheries inspectorate in the Zambezi Region, Bargrey Kapelwa, referred all questions to the head office of the fisheries ministry, which failed to respond.



    There are some attempts at conservation through the establishment of fish protection areas (FPAs) within conservancies.



    Two FPAs within the Sikunga and Impalila conservancies were established in December 2011.



    Fisheries minister Bernhardt Esau in November 2015 declared the Sikunga and Kasaya channels as fisheries reserves, or protected areas, in response to a written initiative of the Zambezi Regional Council and Bukalo Traditional Authority.



    In these protected areas the use of any netting is prohibited and recreational anglers may only catch and release.



    According to the agreement reached with the ministry, boat movements in the protected areas are only allowed between 05:00 and 20:00 and patrols are done by conservancy guides, game guards and conservancy fish monitors.

    CATHERINE SASMAN

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  • 12/21/17--14:00: Rain lashes Windhoek
  • Rain lashes WindhoekRain lashes WindhoekRaging streams and slippery roads The rainy season started with a bang on Wednesday afternoon, leading to several road accidents. A relatively brief but heavy downpour in Windhoek on Wednesday afternoon caused mayhem as flash floods and slippery streets led to several accidents.

    A serious crash was reported late on Wednesday on the road leading out of Windhoek to Gobabis, when a truck driver lost control of the vehicle and an oncoming sedan crashed into the side of the truck. According to reports, the car driver was trapped and emergency personnel had to cut off the car's roof in order to extract the driver and three passengers.

    In another reported accident, a car skidded and ended up in a riverbed. Four people were taken to hospital.

    At least two more vehicles, including a truck, landed in a ditch next to the road after their drivers lost control during the rain. No further details on the extent of the injuries could be obtained from the authorities by the time of publication. The daily flood bulletin issued by the Namibia Hydrological Services (NHS) yesterday confirmed that heavy rains fell over most parts of Namibia. Windhoek residents reported varying quantities of rain, ranging from as much as 100mm reported in Auasblick to 22mm in Cimbebasia. Olympia residents reported around 45mm, Windhoek West 50mm, Eros 48mm, and Klein Windhoek 60mm.

    Outside Windhoek, Heja Lodge reportedly received 18mm of rain while a lodge 70km east of Windhoek received more than 50mm. A farmer near Mariental said they received 22mm and a farmer near Omaruru reported 10mm. Residents of Outapi and Outjo shared videos of flooded streets on a popular Facebook page.

    Photographs and videos taken by people across Namibia showed flooded streets and vehicles stuck in deep water after daring to cross flowing streams. Earlier this week, chief forecaster Odillo Kgobetsi at the Windhoek weather office told Namibian Sun that the rainy weather would continue in most parts of Namibia until Saturday. He added that especially heavy downpours were expected in the north and the //Karas Region.

    According to the latest NHS bulletin, the Zambezi River at Katima Mulilo is gradually rising and is currently at 0.47m. Water levels are slightly higher than the same period last year. The Okavango River at Rundu is currently at 3.88m, which is lower than at the same time last year. The NamWater dam bulletin stated that Von Bach Dam is at 62.1%, Swakoppoort Dam 41.7%, Omatako Dam 1.1%, Naute Dam 75.2% and Oanob Dam at 73.5%. Last season, Von Bach was at 10.2% of its capacity and the Swakoppoort Dam at 6%. The Hardap Dam is currently at 46.7%.

    JANA-MARI SMITH

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    Geingob asks for national spirit of love this ChristmasGeingob asks for national spirit of love this Christmas

    President Hage Geingob’s Christmas wish list is for all Namibians to adopt a zero tolerance attitude towards violence against women and children, to remain safe on the roads and to enjoy the celebrations moderately.

    “This is the season of peace and the season of love and I call on all Namibians to adopt a zero tolerance attitude towards Gender Based Violence and abuse of children. Let us use this Christmas as a stepping stone towards turning a new leaf in our treatment of women and children,” he said in his annual festive season message today.

    He said all Namibians should “exemplify the spirit of love” this season.

    The president urged Namibians to ensure that women and children who are “the jewels of our nation”, should be kept out of harm’s way, not only this season but at all times.

    “I do not want to receive any distressing news about the abuse of women and children during this festive season,” he said.

    “Let us use this Christmas as a stepping stone towards turning a new leaf in our treatment of women and children,” he added.

    Geingob said it is time for Namibians to think beyond their nuclear families and extend a spirit of appreciation and love to the “national family, the Namibian House and ensure that we look out for one another.”

    He urged drivers to “Harambee towards road safety by taking a united and committed approach” towards ensuring that everyone can safely use the roads.

    The president cautioned that while this time of the year is marked by joyful celebrations “we should avoid the abuse of alcohols and other intoxicating substances during this time as these activities pose a risk to human life.”

    He warned that over-indulging could lead to “senseless violence, avoidable accidents and unnecessary injuries and deaths.”

    He asked that Namibians acknowledge and appreciate the work of those in uniform this festive season including emergency personnel, health workers and others who are “sacrificing time away from families to ensure that lives are protected and saved during this time.”

    Reflecting on the economic woes of the past year, Geingob concluded with a message of hope.

    “Although we have encountered economic difficulties and setbacks during the year 2017, Namibia continues to make headway towards attaining its developmental objectives and we look forward to a rebound in fortunes in 2018.”
    STAFF REPORTER




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    President Hage Geingob wishes all Namibians a merry Christmas and a prosperous 2018.President Hage Geingob wishes all Namibians a merry Christmas and a prosperous 2018.“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16
    Therefore, I call upon all Namibians to exemplify the spirit of love during this festive period. As we spend time with our immediate and extended families, let us use this quality time to rededicate ourselves to being more appreciative of and loving towards the special people in our lives. We should also think beyond our immediate and extended family members. Let us think of the national family, the Namibian House and ensure that we look out for one another, in a loving way, during this period. Many of us will find ourselves on the road, travelling to our respective destinations. We should all ensure that we arrive alive by looking out for one another. This year, let us Harambee towards road safety by taking a united and committed approach towards ensuring all Namibians and visitors from abroad are safe and happy on our roads. Therefore let us all actively participate in looking out for one another as law enforcement, drivers, passengers and pedestrians.Our women and our children are the jewels of our nation. Let us show them our love and appreciation during Christmas by looking out for them and ensuring that they are kept out of harm’s way. I do not want to receive any distressing news about the abuse of women and children during this festive season. This is the season of peace and the season of love and I call on all Namibians to adopt a zero tolerance attitude towards Gender Based Violence and abuse of children. Let us use this Christmas as a stepping stone towards turning a new leaf in our treatment of women and children. Being amongst family and friends is always a joyful time, a time for laughter, a time to revel and celebrate. However, we should avoid the abuse of alcohol and other intoxicating substances during this time as these activities pose a risk to human life by contributing towards senseless violence, avoidable accidents and unnecessary injuries and deaths. Let us therefore endeavor to celebrate responsibly and ensure that this Christmas will be memorable for everyone. To our neighbors and friends from further afield who have decided to visit us and celebrate Christmas in the Namibian House, we welcome you with open hearts and extended arms. Welcome to Namibia and may your time here leave you with a lifetime of memories. Let us also take this time to appreciate our men and women in uniform, our emergency rescue personnel, nurses, doctors and all other professionals who will be sacrificing time away from their families to ensure that lives are protected and saved during this time. We laud and acknowledge your dedication and patriotism. Although we have encountered economic difficulties and setbacks during the year 2017, Namibia continues to make headway towards attaining its developmental objectives and we look forward to a rebound in fortunes in 2018. Through unity, peace, hard work and a love for one another, we will be able to achieve our monumental ambitions. The march towards prosperity continues and we are prepared to achieve more gains in 2018. Together, we can make the coming year and the promise it holds, a most memorable year indeed. I wish you all, my Namibian family, children of the Namibian House, a merry Christmas and a prosperous New Year. May the peace and love of this season be with you all.

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  • 12/26/17--14:00: Four exit Warriors squad
  • Four exit Warriors squadFour exit Warriors squad Ricardo Mannetti has once again eliminated some players from the Brave Warriors squad towards the build-up to the 2018 Afcon championship.

    Players Kennedy Eib, Hubert Mingeri, Jackson Johannes and Penda Mongudhi are no longer part of the squad that will travel to Tunisia for a training camp before they head to host country Morocco.

    The three players did not make the cut due to high competition in the midfield, but coach Mannetti thanked all the players for their great effort.

    He encouraged the rest to maintain the harmony in the squad and to keep working hard.

    “When you train hard, matches become easy. I will place you in your position of play, all you need to do is to work hard and the rest will be up to me,” he said.

    As part of their corporate social responsibly, Namibia Institute of Pathology (NIP) will cover the team's health checks at the request of the Confederation of African Football (Caf) prior to the competition.

    Each player will need 15 check-ups, according to NIP spokesman Jefta Gaoab.

    The team will now travel to Tunisia for a training camp and then head for Morocco.

    The coach will name the final 23-man squad on 2 January.

    Chan is a competition exclusively for players featuring in the national championships of their respective countries.

    Namibia is in Group D with Burkina Faso, Equatorial Guinea, and Mauritania.

    Group A: Morocco (host), Angola, Cote d'Ivoire and Libya.

    Group B: Cameroon, Guinea, Nigeria and Zambia.

    Group C: Congo, Uganda, Rwanda and Sudan.

    The tournament will be played in the following cities: Casablanca (Group A), Marrakech (Group B), Tangier (Group C) and Agadir (Group D).

    Brave Warriors squad

    Goalkeepers:

    Edward Maova, Charles Uirab, Loydt Kazapua and Calvyn Spiegel.

    Defenders: Ferdinard Karongee, Tjiuana –Tja Tjatindi, Charles Hambira, Riaan !Hanamub, Dynamo Fredericks, Tiberuis Lombard and Martin Emilio.

    Midfielders: Edmund Kambanda, Vitapi Punyu Ngaruka, Gregory Auchumeb, Imannuel Heita, Oswaldo Xamseb, Ronald Ketjijere, Petrus Shitembi, Absalom Iimbondi, Benjamin Nengavu and Himeezembi Hengombe.

    Forwards: Itamua Keimune, Roger Katjiteo,Junias Theophilus, Panduleni Nekundi, Hendrik Somaeb and Kleopas Useb.

    LIMBA MUPETAMI

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  • 12/26/17--14:00: Meroro loses in Russia
  • Meroro loses in RussiaMeroro loses in RussiaNo redemption for BeastMaster Namibia's former World Boxing Organisation (WBO) Africa cruiserweight champion Vikapita 'Beastmaster' Meroro was defeated by Maxim Vlasov of Russia in a non-title cruiserweight bout on Thursday. Vlasov ended another busy year with a bang by destroying fading and ageing Meroro in the very first round.

    It was a crown fight for the evening of boxing, promoted by the Patriot promotional company at the legendary Krilya Sovetov Arena in Moscow, Russia, but it didn't live up to expectations according to boxingscene.

    According to them after several fruitless efforts to show anything, the 32-year-old Namibian Meroro ate a right-and-left combo by Vlasov and chose to go down in what was meant to be in great pain but somehow didn't look that way.

    Meroro produced several attempts to get into the upright position following a couple of visibly light shots and failed. Time of stoppage was 1:43.

    Vlasov now stands at 41 wins, two losses and 24 knockouts. Meanwhile, Meroro got stopped for the third time in a row, dropping to 28 wins, 7 losses and 14 knockouts.

    The BeastMaster was adamant to show boxing fans what he is made of after his disappointing fight against Kevin Lerena of South Africa in February this year.

    Kiriata Kamanya from Salute Boxing said they were angry about the result.

    Now the focus is on former world champion Paulus 'El Jesus' Ambunda who will face Nasibu Ramadhan of Tanzania in the WBC International bantamweight title at the Dome in Swakopmund on 29 December.

    This will be his second fight under his new boxing stable, Salute Boxing Academy, which he joined in August after falling out with MTC Nestor Sunshine Academy.

    In his first fight he outclassed Tanzanian Tasha Mjuaji in September at the OtjiFestival.

    Namibia's first world boxing champion, Harry 'The Terminator' Simon, will also step into the ring at the same venue to face Tanzania's Said Mbwelwa in a six-round cruiserweight non-title fight.

    Simon last fought in 2016 and triumphed over Japhet Kaseba of Tanzania. Simon has 30 wins.

    The rest of the boxing card is as follows:

    Vacant WBF Africa title: Vakufilapo 'Cowboy' Nashivela vs George Mdluli (South Africa).

    Lightweight: Lazarus Shaningwa vs Andreas Nghinaunye.

    Flyweight: Immanuel Josef vs George Kandulo (Malawi). Catchweight: Jonas Matheus vs Israel Kamwamba (Malawi) .

    Super bantamweight:Joseph Hilongwa vS Tinkhani Kamanga (Malawi).

    –Additional reporting boxingscene.

    LIMBA MUPETAMI

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