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Tells it All - Namibian Sun

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  • 04/15/18--16:00: Each man for himself
  • Each man for himselfEach man for himself Namibia was known as the smile on the face of Africa. This is no longer a truth. Our people were known for their hospitality, welcoming smiles and friendly attitudes. That too, is no longer a truth.

    The truth in this country is that we are a selfish, egocentric, greedy bunch.

    What kind of a person does it take to, for more than 24 months, defraud a ministry that is trying to educate our children to uplift them from poverty? What kind of a person does it take, to apply Vaseline to a condom to allow the continued rape of a 13-year-old girl? What kind of person does it take to stab his own four-year-old son the head because he believes the child' mother has cheated on him?

    We see corruption and violence every single day in our small nation. Our violence levels are through the roof.

    But our leaders proclaim peace and stability.

    Well, allow us to disagree.

    There is no peace and stability on our roads – people drive with an arrogance and a competitive nature like never before. They drive with a 'me-first attitude' and to hell with the rest. There is no courtesy at all.

    There is no peace and stability within our state departments. Cashiers and other clerks are rude and self-aggrandising. They are lazy and have an attitude of the 'world owes them'. Travellers complain about rude customs and immigration officials, citizens complain about home affairs, vehicle owners complain about NATiS. And the list goes on.

    Our crime, directed at the most vulnerable, can only be described as a pandemic. Day after day we are inundated with stories of gruesome violence, of women stabbed to disable them so they can be raped, of children raped, of children dumped. Of sons killing their mothers.

    In this country, we kill over a cigarette or a cell phone.

    Where is our fellowship? We are in trying times. Our sense of community is all but gone. Here, in our sunny corner of the world, it is each man for himself and invariably, the one with the mightiest weapon, is the one that wins.

    Things are falling apart.

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    Nationwide First Division games postponedNationwide First Division games postponed The nationwide First Divisions scheduled to kick off on Saturday were postponed indefinitely.

    This was revealed in a letter addressed to the secretary-general of the Namibia Football Association and given to Nampa on Friday by North East Stream First Division (NESFD) chairperson Mpasi Haingura.

    Haingura said they needed to sort out some issues related to administrative changes.

    “We apologise for any inconvenience caused as a result of the postponement,” he said.

    The letter further said the postponement applied to all First Division leagues, with new kick-off dates to be communicated in due course.

    North West Stream First Division (NWSFD) league chairperson Lydia Hakandongo also confirmed the postponement.

    The NWSFD and NESFD were the two streams scheduled to kick off.

    The Southern Stream First Division is still busy with administrative matters, according to their vice-chairperson, Murs Markus.

    NAMPA

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  • 04/15/18--16:00: Chief Santos relegated
  • Chief Santos relegatedChief Santos relegatedCitizens impress Several clubs in the MTC Namibia Premier League (NPL) survived relegation, while others will now settle for first-division football. MTC's NPL Chief Santos became the first club to be relegated from the Namibia Premier League after a 2-2 draw with Rundu Chiefs on Saturday.

    Santos needed three points in order to stand a chance to survive relegation, but their hopes were dashed by a resilient Rundu Chiefs who also have survival aspirations. The Tsumeb-based side was on 17 points by Saturday, while 14th placed Civics [Survival spot] were on 31 points by Saturday after beating Tigers 2-0.

    This meant that Chief Santos could not reach more than the 28 points they would have required even if they won their last remaining games. Santos gained promotion to the premier league last season, but will now have to settle to play in the first division.

    In other results, Black Africa defeated Blue Waters 3-2 in Walvis Bay, While Eleven Arrows beat Young African 1-0 in Swakopmund on Saturday.

    Mighty Gunners also dashed the hopes of Young Chiefs after beating them 1-0 in Otjiwarongo.

    Citizens defeated Life Fighters 2-1 to remain in the premier league, while Orlando Pirates beat Unam 2-1.

    African Stars, who needed six points this weekend to win the premier league, stunned Tura Magic with a late penalty to win the match 1-0.

    Stars now only needed to beat Tigers in order to claim the premier league late yesterday afternoon.

    JESSE JACKSON KAURAISA

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  • 04/15/18--16:00: Thousands mourn Ma Winnie
  • Thousands mourn Ma WinnieThousands mourn Ma WinnieEulogised as an icon for black women everywhere The funeral of struggle icon Winnie Madikizela-Mandela saw her honoured for her role in the fight against apartheid and leading for black women everywhere. South Africans turned out in thousands to bid final goodbyes to anti-apartheid icon and Nelson Mandela's former wife Winnie Mandela who was laid to rest with full state honours on Saturday.

    Mourners filled the 37 500-seater Orlando Stadium in the township of Soweto where Winnie lived and erupted into loud cheers as the casket carrying her remains was wheeled in.

    The casket, draped with South Africa's national colours, was placed in the middle of the stadium in front of a stage, decked in white and yellow flowers.

    Mourners dressed in the colours of the ruling African National Congress (ANC), as well those of the radical opposition Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF), sang “there's no-one like Winnie”, an adapted popular liberation struggle song.

    President Hage Geingob who also attended the burial service in Johannesburg, gave a moving eulogy to the late struggle icon saying, “You strike a woman, you strike a rock. The enemy struck the woman but was defeated by the rock.”

    He said many who had endured and persevered through the fight against apartheid are struggling to come to terms with the fact that they can no long laugh or talk politics with Ma Winnie.

    “She was a woman who was the epitome of black female resistance against oppression, racism and imperialism,” he said.

    He also reminded all and sundry to celebrate their heroes while they are still alive.

    In a moving, yet fiery eulogy, her daughter slammed her mother's critics.

    “It was my mother who kept his (Nelson Mandela's) memory alive,” said a teary Zenani. “South Africa, and indeed the world, holds men and women to different standards of morality.”

    She added that “praising her now that she is gone shows what hypocrites you are. They robbed my mother of her rightful legacy during her lifetime,” she said of Winnie, who she praised for taking on “one of the most powerful and evil regimes of the past century”.

    South Africa's President Cyril Ramaphosa, who took office two months ago, offered an apology for the country's failure to honour Winnie for her contribution to the liberation of the country.

    “I'm sorry Mama that your organisation (ANC) delayed in according you its honour. I'm sorry that we delayed this much, to this point,” he said in a eulogy.

    Firebrand opposition politician Julius Malema, who was expelled from the ANC, but who remained close to Winnie, said “she died a revolutionary... she never sold out”.

    The ceremony concluded 10 days of national mourning during which time hundreds of thousands of South Africans have paid tribute to the “Mother of the Nation” at her Soweto home and elsewhere.

    Winnie Mandela, who died in Johannesburg aged 81 on 2 April after a long illness, has been celebrated for helping keep Nelson Mandela's dream of a non-racial South Africa alive while he was behind bars for 27 years.

    “She was one of the most profound leaders of the ANC,” said 53-year-old mourner Brian Magqaza. “She fought from beginning to the end. Go well Mama.”

    Former South African presidents Jacob Zuma and Thabo Mbeki also attended the funeral. Mourners booed when the presence of scandal-tainted Zuma was publicly acknowledged.

    Foreign dignitaries at the funeral include the leaders of Namibia, Swaziland and the Republic of Congo, as well as American civil rights activist Jesse Jackson and international supermodel Naomi Campbell.

    Her “steely leadership...gave strength to us all. She taught us not to be limited in our thoughts,” said Campbell.

    Winnie Mandela's husband became the first black president of democratic South Africa, but she refused to follow many other struggle-era politicians who moved from townships like Soweto to formerly white-only suburbs after the end of apartheid.

    Instead she remained embedded in the community where she met Nelson Mandela at a bus stop in 1957.

    Her body was buried at a privately run graveyard in Johannesburg's upmarket Fourways suburb where two of her great-grandchildren are also buried.

    The funeral closes the final chapter in the history of a woman who was exalted for her fearless defiance of apartheid rule but also implicated in violence and corruption in later life.

    – Additional reporting by Nampa/AFP



    STAFF REPORTER

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  • 04/15/18--16:00: Footballer with brains
  • Footballer with brainsFootballer with brainsInspirational Ndjavera graduates A talented young man from Otjinene has just shown that people from Otjinene do not only 'Compressor' and play in the mud, but can excel at school too. Many Namibian footballers have struggled to make a living after the end of their football careers because they often fail to invest in education.

    But league-winning defender Romario Ndjavera has chosen to focus on both studying and sport. It has not been easy to juggle the two and make enough time for his studies.

    But with perseverance and endurance, the Tigers FC right back has attained a diploma in Accounting and Auditing from the University of Namibia.

    Ndjavera became one of the few graduates in Namibian football when he graduated on Thursday.

    “I am flattered to say that graduating is something everyone dreams about.

    “But footballers think it's something out of their calibre. My mom always said, 'stick to school and drop soccer', but I told her I would do both because football is my passion and school is my life,” a happy Ndjavera said.

    In 2016, Ndjavera failed his final year because he put football above his studies.

    He had asked Unam for permission to write his exam after coming back from a training camp with the national team in Accra.

    “Unfortunately I was told they couldn't set papers for one person so I was knocked down and at some point I wanted to quit school.

    “I however realised it was not the end of the world and so I passed all the second-semester modules.”

    The right back played for Namib Colts and Kaizen FC before joining Tigers FC at the beginning of the 2015/16 season.

    In his first season at Tigers, Ndjavera was one of the best right backs of the season, helping his club win the Namibia Premier League trophy.

    He also had several call-ups to the national team and Brave Warriors coach Ricardo Mannetti has spoken highly of the player on several occasions.

    “I want to encourage many footballers out there that you can become who you want to be if you focus on your education.

    “We all know that sport in this country is really underfunded and it is hard to make a living from it.

    “I want to be an example to my teammates and other footballers, so that they can choose a path in education.

    “We have families and friends to take care of and I can say football is just not enough to do so.”

    Born in May 1995, Ndjavera developed his love for the beautiful game as a young boy when he would make a ball out of plastic bags to kick around for fun.

    Years of daily 'practice' would eventually lead him to playing for one of Namibia's biggest football clubs.

    Ndjavera attended school at Hermann Gmeiner before moving to People's Primary School where he completed grade 7 in 2006.

    He later went to Augustineum Secondary School until grade 10 before moving to Khomas High School where he passed grade 12 with 32 points.

    “I would like to thank my parents who have been supporting me throughout my journey.

    “It is something very special for me and I will cherish this moments for the rest of my life.

    “I would also like to thank all my friends and teammates who have supported me.

    “The journey does however not end here because I know I have to work on my degree now.”

    The player is currently nursing a knee injury which has troubled him for the past few months, but he hopes to make an incredible comeback to football.

    “This injury I have is something that has been bothering me, but I have chosen not to give up on my football career.

    “I am a person who has endured plenty of pain, but I still stand on my feet and ready to conquer.”

    JESSE JACKSON KAURAISA

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    Namvet founder urges focus and calmNamvet founder urges focus and calm Founder and chairperson of the Namibia War Veterans Trust (Namvet) Jabulani Ndeunyema has appealed to former SWATF/Koevoet members to remain focused on their plans for recognition as war veterans.

    This is after President Hage Geingob on Wednesday once again said government will not recognise former members of the South West Africa Territorial Force (SWATF) and Koevoet as war veterans.

    He was responding to a question by Salmon Vleermuis of the Workers' Revolutionary Party after delivering the State of the Nation Address.

    Vleermuis wanted to know what Geingob's position is on their demands for recognition as war veterans with all benefits attached through the Ministry of Veterans' Affairs.

    “It is very difficult to give war veteran status to former members of SWATF and Koevoet,” Geingob said.

    He further stated that they earned a salary while fighting to deny Namibia its independence, while members of the former People's Liberation Army of Namibia were paid nothing, but had to sacrifice for the country to enjoy the peace and stability it does today.

    “We have been asking the president the same question for years and his answer has remained the same,” Ndeunyema said.

    He is however of the opinion that there is still hope for them and he appealed to the group to remain calm and focused.

    Ndeunyema told Nampa they still have hope as they had a promising meeting with Geingob on 15 November 2016.

    Afrobarometer on Thursday released findings from research conducted last November on whether the ex-SWATF/Koevoet members should be awarded veteran status or not.

    Forty-three percent of the respondents agreed that they should be granted veteran status with benefits, while 37% disagreed and 20% neither agreed nor disagreed.

    Afrobarometer is an independent, non-partisan research network that measures public attitudes on economic, political, and social matters in Africa.

    NAMPA

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    Get ready for national clean-upGet ready for national clean-upMaking Namibia beautiful again There has been great impetus given to a national clean-up campaign following the president's comments as far back as 2015 and social media attention granted to the issue of late. President Hage Geingob says it is unacceptable that Windhoek has lost its position as the 'Cleanest City in Africa' because of littering.

    He called upon Namibians to turn up in numbers for the national clean-up campaign to be held on 25 May.

    Geingob made these remarks during his State of the Nation Address and said more details would be communicated in due course.

    “Since this is a national effort all Namibians, including men and women in uniform, will participate,” said Geingob.

    Meanwhile, the Cleaner Namibia team comprised of the Recycle Namibia Forum, Eco Awards Alliance, the Hospitality Association and the Federation of Namibian Tourism Association, in partnership with TOSCO (Tourism Supporting Conservation) is mobilising the tourism industry for a concerted effort to rid the environment of waste on 25 May.

    All tourism service providers, operators, tour guides, and even visiting tourists will be encouraged to lend a hand to this cause by simply “picking up where you are” - and where possible, separating recyclables from the general waste.

    TOSCO has clinched a deal with Plastic Packaging and will be able to equip all tour guides and coach drivers with plastic bags and gloves to assist in the waste collection efforts on 25 May and beyond.

    As part of the initiative, a working group has met to ask large corporates and suppliers for help in transporting recyclable material back from remote areas on return trips from delivering supplies to those areas.

    Recycle Namibia Forum has solicited the support of a number of its members to set up strategic waste collection pick-up points, to which tour guides and travellers, as well as remote lodges and other businesses will be encouraged to bring their collected waste materials.



    Pick-up points are:

    Swakopmund: Skip placed at the jetty

    Usakos: Bubble & Splash Car wash, opposite Engen service station

    Springbokfontein: Between Usakos and Okombahe on the 2306 gravel road

    Omaruru: Next to Nelsnel and RCC. Follow signs.

    Aranos: Recycling stand in centre of town

    Tsumeb: Cultural Village entrance

    Sossusvlei: Namib Desert Lodge of the Gondwana Collection on the C19 will act as collection point, with Namib-Naukluft Lodge offering to transport all collected waste to Rent-a-Drum.

    ELLANIE SMIT

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    PDM to build northern headquarters in OshakatiPDM to build northern headquarters in Oshakati The official opposition party is negotiating with the Oshakati town council to secure a plot for its operational headquarters for the northern regions.

    For more than four years now the PDM has been renting conference venues or held meetings under trees for lack of its own offices.

    The office in Oshakati that the party used in the past did not belong to them and they had to vacate it when the new building of the Ministry of Home Affairs and Immigration was built there.

    In January 2016, PDM president McHenry Venaani told journalists in Windhoek that the party wanted to establish a strong presence in the north, which is a Swapo stronghold.

    Venaani was quoted as saying that the PDM's headquarters would be moved to the Oshana Region within three months, but that never happened.

    This office was to be in Ongwediva.

    But after the party had rented a house in that town and wanted to convert it into offices, the move was apparently blocked by the Ongwediva town council.

    According to PDM deputy secretary-general Linus Tobias they had already prepared the house and were ready to move in when the council intervened, saying the area was not zoned for office use.

    Tobias said they then applied to several other town councils for a piece of land where they could build their headquarters and Oshakati responded positively.

    “Currently the deal is not finalised as we are still negotiating with the council about the land and thereafter we will construct our own office,” Tobias said.

    Yesterday PDM secretary-general Manuel Ngaringombe said the importance of having a regional office could not be overemphasised.

    Ngaringombe explained that the party office in Windhoek mainly handled administrative work and the Oshakati office would deal with the general operations of the party.

    He said the office would serve all the northern regions.

    Because of the ongoing negotiations with the Oshakati council, Ngaringombe could not say when the new office would be operational.

    KENYA KAMBOWE

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    Above-inflation increase for GIPF pensionersAbove-inflation increase for GIPF pensionersAnnual pay-out of N$1.4 bn A total of 35 081 active annuitants will receive increased pensions. The 5.5% pension increase is well within the fund’s affordability margin and will not have adverse financial implications for the institution. – Daylight Ekandjo, manager: stakeholders’ engagement, GIPF Staff reporter – Above-inflation returns on investments resulted in the Government Institutions Pension Fund (GIPF) increasing its monthly pensions by 5.5%, effective from the beginning of this month.

    A total of 35 081 active annuitants, i.e. pensioners and other beneficiaries, will receive the higher pay-outs, the GIPF said in a statement on Friday.

    The increase is higher than the overall annual inflation rate of 3.5% for 2017.

    “The board of trustees normally target inflation-linked pension increases. However, other factors which influence the annual pension increase include the performance of the fund over the financial year, historical pension increases and consumer price index (CPI) which is used as a baseline to determine the shift in the prices of basic commodities,” Daylight Ekandjo, the GIPF’s manager: stakeholders’ engagement, said.

    “With the year-on-year percentage inflation rate standing at 3.5%, the board carefully considered the above factors and found the 5.5% pension increase suitable and affordable for the fund. Over the years the board has always awarded increases slightly above CPI,” Ekandjo said.

    The increase will result in the GIPF paying out an estimated N$115.8 million in monthly annuities, which translates to approximately N$1.4 billion annually.

    The average annual returns over the past five years of 12.7% indicate that the fund has been receiving above inflation returns, Ekandjo said.

    “Therefore the 5.5% pension increase is well within the fund’s affordability margin and will not have adverse financial implications for the institution.”

    Considering the current volatile economic outlook, the GIPF remains fully funded and in a sound financial position to afford such a benefit to its pensioners, Ekandjo said.

    “This is also in line with the fund’s strategy to protect pensioners’ income from the erosion of the purchasing power of their income.”

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    Price monster has other fish to fryPrice monster has other fish to fry Jo-Maré Duddy – Annual fish inflation slowed to its lowest level in more than two years in March, reaching 3.1%.

    This is the lowest since February 2016, when the rate was 2.8%. Fish inflation has been back in single-digit territory since November last year, when it reached 7.8%. In February this year, it stood at 5.9%.

    Data released by the Namibia Statistics Agency (NSA) on Thursday shows overall annual inflation of 3.5% in March, the same as the previous month. Last March, the rate was 7%.

    Overall food inflation, however, picked up. Last month it was 2.9%, compared to 2% in February. In March 2017 it was 6.8%.

    Bread and cereal inflation spent its 11th consecutive month in deflation. However, at -1.3% in March, it is the lowest deflation since August. Last March, bread and cereal inflation stood at 1.5%.

    After four consecutive months in deflation, oils and fats exited negative territory last month, recording annual inflation of 2%. Last March the rate was 6.9%.

    Annual inflation for other categories was: Alcoholic beverages and tobacco (4.3% versus 4.4% in March 2017); clothing and footwear (-5.7% vs 2%); housing, water and electricity (3.3% vs 9.4%); furnishings, household equipment and maintenance (0.9% vs 7.4%); health (6% vs 5.6%); transport (5.4% vs 6.5%); communications (0.4% vs 5.6%); recreation and culture (2.8% vs 4%); education (9% vs 7.8%); as well as hotels, cafes and restaurants (3.7% vs 8.6%).

    Outlook

    Commenting on the latest figures, PSG Namibia head of research, Eloise du Plessis, said headline inflation has fallen sharply on an annual basis thanks to moderating food inflation and rental costs.

    “Lower food inflation has mainly been driven by a decrease in grain prices, while slower growth in rental prices reflects weak housing demand (also evidenced by the moderation in house price growth) due to the weaker economy,” Du Plessis said.

    Looking ahead, a stronger Namibian dollar compared to last year should help to ease price pressures, but the possibility of higher international oil prices due to a larger-than-expected increase in global fuel demand is un upside risk to inflation, she said.

    “The Namibian dollar has appreciated significantly since December 2017, mostly thanks to market-favourite Cyril Ramaphosa’s election as president of South Africa, following Jacob Zuma’s resignation as head of state in February 2018.

    “Whether the Namibian dollar can hold on to these gains depends on how Mr Ramaphosa will manage to improve South Africa’s fiscal balance, provide more clarity regarding policy and clean up corruption,” she said.

    According to Du Plessis, another risk to the currency that has emerged in the last couple of months is the possibility of a trade war (rising global import tariffs) that could reduce global growth and contribute to emerging market currency weakness.

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    Water skiers bring home 13 medalsWater skiers bring home 13 medalsProve commitment The Namibia Water Ski Association is embarking on a two-year development and training plan in preparation of the 2020 All-Africa Championships. A team selected by the Namibia Water Ski Association and approved by the Namibia National Sport Commission excelled at the South African Open and All-Africa Water Ski Championships on Thornlea Dam, just north of Durban, recently.

    The South African Open Championships started with site familiarisation and the competition commencing the next day.

    Weather conditions were challenging with sunshine, rain or wind alternating during the day, resulting in some competition disruptions.

    Chief boat drivers Martin Schmidt and Bernd Kebbel from Namibia were the only two international drivers out of four tasked to drive the boats perfectly for the four days of the open and international competition.

    In the South African Open Championships Namibia had to compete against water skiers from South Africa, Belgium, Zimbabwe and Morocco.

    Namibia's participant in the under-17 boys' class was Morné Mostert, who achieved first place in tricks and second place in slalom with a new personal best performance.

    In the under-21 men's category Dieter Kebbel achieved first place in tricks and second place in slalom.

    In the open women's class, Natascha Rottcher won the slalom and in the senior men's division Andre Mostert achieved second place in tricks and fourth place in slalom.

    Following the South African Open Championships prize-giving, the Namibian team members were inspired to improve on their performance during the All-Africa Water Ski Championships and to ski for their country in a team event.

    Morné Mostert once again clinched first place in tricks and second place in slalom.

    Dieter Kebbel, who now had to compete in the open men's category, came third in tricks and sixth in slalom, while André Mostert stepped up his slalom to second place and remained second in tricks.

    The highlight of the tournament was in the final slalom round when Natascha Rottcher set a new record for the All-Africa Tournament, which was 2.25 buoys on a 12-metre rope at a speed of 55km/h, improving the previous record by 0.25 buoys and placing her first in the open women's category.

    The previous record was set 12 years ago by Kim Rice of Zimbabwe with 2 buoys on a 12m rope.

    The scores were then compared against the best skiers' scores from Europe, Africa and Middle East to determine the All-Africa Champions or equal scoring terms.

    In the slalom event Natascha Rottcher was placed second, Andre Mostert sixth, Dieter Kebbel 10th and Morne Mostert 15th.

    In the trick event Dieter Kebbel was placed fourth, Andre Mostert fifth and Morné Mostert sixth.

    The final team scoring placed South Africa on top, followed closely by Namibia in second position with less than 200 points difference. Zimbabwe was third and Morocco fourth.

    The Namibian Water Ski Association congratulated its athletes and said their performances proved that with dedication and hard work, goals and dreams can be achieved.

    In total, Namibia brought home 13 medals on this trip.

    SPORT REPORTER

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    Shalulile revels in PSL returnShalulile revels in PSL return Highlands Park striker Peter Shalulile says he can't describe the feeling of returning to playing Absa Premiership football again.

    Shalulile is currently second on the National First Division top goal scorers' chart with 13 goals, one goal behind Mwape Musonda of Black Leopards.

    Shalulile says the dream of being a PSL player again motivated him to score goals for the newly-crowned NFD champions.

    “It's an unexplainable feeling, my brother,” Shalulile told KickOff.com.

    “I'm happy and at the same time it's an unexplainable feeling. It is a positive feeling, I am very, very happy to get back to the PSL.

    “At the beginning of the season I didn't know that I will score such goals, the only thing that pushed me was the motivation to come back to the league. And my teammates pushing me and the coach was also pushing me.”

    Shalulile is determined to buck the trend of strikers doing well in the second tier only to flop in the elite division.

    “I will push more, I will change my style of play and do something more better than the way I performed this season.”

    Highlands sealed an immediate return to the PSL with four games to spare following their relegation from the topflight last term.

    KICKOFF

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    Stripped naked over missing keyStripped naked over missing keyEmployees bring charges against OTA secretary Two women and a man working for the Ondonga Traditional Authority claim that they had to undress in front of six police officers at the request of the authority's secretary, Nepando Amupanda. The prosecutor-general will decide whether to prosecute the bodyguard of former president Sam Nujoma, Nepando Amupanda, and six police officers from the Ondangwa police station, following charges by three Ondonga Traditional Authority employees who allege they were stripped naked over a missing office key.

    The Oshana police regional commander, Commissioner Rauha Amwele, confirmed to Namibian Sun yesterday that the Oshana police had completed a crimen injuria investigation involving senior leaders of the authority and police officers. She indicated that they had submitted the report to the prosecutor-general to decide whether to prosecute or not.

    According to statements made by the three complainants and seen by Namibian Sun, on 22 March the three employees, two women and a man, were stripped naked and subjected to body-cavity searches by the Ondangwa police at the request of Amupanda, who accused them of stealing the key to the community court cupboard drawer.

    Nepando claims that he is not aware of the allegation made against him, saying he is being victimised.

    “We were taken to the community court hall where we found an angry Amupanda, who was accusing us of being responsible for the disappearance of the key. He called in six police officers from the Ondangwa police station.

    They took us to our offices one by one, where we were stripped naked and our body cavities searched,” read one statement.

    The statement says that the three were asked by the police to undress while Amupanda looked on. They were thoroughly searched. They alleged that after the search found no key, Amupanda told them to reveal what happened.

    “I wish to vehemently point out that I found the strip and body cavity search to be extremely intrusive, demeaning, dehumanising, indecent, undignified, humiliating, terrifying, unpleasant, embarrassing, repulsive and signifying degradation and submission, as well as a gross and impermissible assault on my human dignity and privacy,” one complainant said.

    Contacted for comment, Nepando said that he was a threat to employees and they were victimising him.

    “I am not aware of any information regarding your questions. Hypocrites have always the luxury to do that. I am a threat to them and will always be. They are free to paint me any colour they wish, but the truth can set them free,” Amupanda said.

    The Ondonga king, Immanuel Kauluma Elifas, appointed Amupanda as the traditional authority secretary in April last year after he had dismissed seven of his traditional councillors, including secretary Joseph Asino, chairperson Peter Kauluma, John Walenga and Vilho Kamanya, Kashona Malulu, Tonata Ngulu and Fillemon Nambili.

    ILENI NANDJATO

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  • 04/15/18--16:00: Chiradza gets bail
  • Chiradza gets bailChiradza gets bail The now notorious Otjiwarongo-based doctor, Yevai Chiradza, was granted bail on Friday in the matter of a 2015 crash he was involved in which killed three.

    This follows after he handed himself over a month ago to the police in Windhoek following a warrant of arrest issued against him for failing to appear in court in Karibib.

    Magistrate Unchen Konjore granted Chiradza bail of N$12 000 in the Karibib Magistrate's Court after the prosecutor, Johannes Kalipi, indicated the State would not oppose bail.

    However, Konjore instructed Chiradza to hand his passport over to the investigating officer.

    Furthermore, he must report to the Otjiwarongo police from Monday to Friday, between the hours of 08:00 and 17:00. The magistrate also warned him that in terms of his bail conditions, he may not commit the same offence while out on bail.

    The deadly crash took place between Usakos and Karibib.

    On 16 March, when he handed himself over to the Windhoek police, he was reportedly in town to see his doctor. He was transferred to Karibib and has been in holding ever since.

    The matter was postponed to 25 June where his trial on three charges of culpable homicide will begin.

    The crash claimed the lives of Welmine Louw and her sister Alet Junius, and Louw's only son, Konrad.

    Junius' only child Sonja Junius, and her cousin Johan Junius, survived the crash.

    Chiradza gained notoriety when, on the day he should have appeared in court, he allegedly drove very irresponsibly in a black Mercedes-Benz on the B1 between Okahandja and Otjiwarongo. The video went viral on social media platforms.

    In the meantime, he has been suspended by the health ministry and it also came to light that he is under investigation by the Medical Professionals Council.

    Louw's husband, also Konrad, has also launched a civil suit against Chiradza.

    DENVER KISTING

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    Majority say Germany must payMajority say Germany must pay The majority of Namibians say traditional authorities should join the negotiations for genocide reparations, the latest Afrobarometer survey has shown.

    Currently two parallel negotiations are ongoing: the official government-to-government talks between Namibia and Germany, and a civil suit against Germany by Nama and Ovaherero traditional leaders who accuse the Namibian government of side-lining them.

    The survey shows that 20% of interviewees feel the government alone must handle negotiations and only 11% believe it should be exclusively handled by the Nama and Ovaherero traditional authorities.

    The Afrobarometer is a pan-African research network that conducts public attitude surveys on democracy, governance, economic conditions and related issues in Africa. The Afrobarometer team in Namibia, led by the Institute for Public Policy Research, interviewed 1 200 adult Namibians in November 2017.

    This survey indicated that only one in five citizens say the Namibian government should handle the negotiations on its own. Two thirds of Namibians say Germany should pay reparations for the 1904-08 genocide, while 10% of Namibians disagree. According to the survey 13% Namibians either do not know about the Nama and Ovaherero genocide or declined to respond.



    Koevoet

    The survey also measured public sentiments about the plea to be granted war veteran status by former SWATF and Koevoet soldiers.

    Two in five Namibians say veterans of South African forces during the war for liberation should qualify for veterans' benefits, while 37% Namibians say they should not.

    Former Koevoet members and SWATF soldiers, represented by the Namibia War Veterans' Trust (Namvet), are demanding to be registered as war veterans and to benefit from the Ministry of Veterans' Affairs funding programmes.

    However, the government insist they fought on the opposite side of the liberation struggle and cannot be awarded war veteran status.



    Lubango

    Meanwhile, four in ten Namibians believe there should be an independent investigation of alleged human rights abuses in the so-called Lubango dungeons, while half as many disagree with the investigation.

    Despite objections by the government, the Lubango dungeons saga has strongly advocated for and has seen the Committee of Parents and the Truth and Justice Committee announcing the names of Namibian and other players who have agreed to investigate claims of human rights abuses perpetrated by Swapo in exile.

    The joint committee wants the commissioners to investigate killings and detention of Namibian refugees, torture, forced confessions of detainees, complaints against Swapo's leadership made by members of its youth wing in 1976, as well as members of PLAN, the involvement and complicity of foreign missions and other instances, the probing of the Johnny Ya Otto Commission of Inquiry, and other related matters.

    JEMIMA BEUKES

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    No public funds for Geingob's Areva lawsuitNo public funds for Geingob's Areva lawsuitNo retraction yet by French radio If the president sues Radio France International over a story linking him to corruption at the French mining giant Areva, he will pay for the lawsuit himself. President Hage Geingob is threatening legal action over corruption allegations involving Areva in his private capacity and no state funds will be used.

    His lawyer, Sisa Namandje, confirmed this to Namibian Sun, but declined to comment when queried about their next move.

    Earlier this month Radio France International (RFI) published an article in which it mentioned Geingob's involvement at UraMin as a consultant.

    The article linked him to an unfolding investigation involving Sébastien de Montessus, Areva's former mining branch head, who has been charged with corruption in relation to Areva's purchase of Canada's UraMin, which owned the Trekkopje mine in Namibia.

    In a letter to on 9 April this year Namandje demanded “an immediate retraction of “untruths and imputations of dishonesty towards Dr Geingob”.

    The letter also stated that Geingob reserved all his rights against RFI should the retraction not be made immediately.

    The article has not been retracted yet.

    However, yesterday, Namandje told Namibian Sun that there was still “reasonable time within which they can respond”.

    He would not comment on what steps would be taken should RFI refuse to retract the article.

    “For now, no comment on the next step. Once I have instructions then I will do what my client wants me to do,” he said.

    He added that this was a private matter which had “nothing to do with you and the public”.

    Implications

    When approached for comment on the hypothetical implications this case may have on the president should he be charged in France, constitutional expert Professor Nico Horn said that the Extradition Act does not allow Namibia to extradite its own citizens, let alone the president.

    “The best the French can expect is to give Namibian prosecutor-general Martha Imalwa the dockets and request her to prosecute once the president has left office,” he said.

    He also added that in France a president cannot be indicted during his or her term for crimes committed before he or she became president.

    “Consequently, I cannot see France bringing a request while President Geingob is still in office.

    “And I cannot see that extradition can take place without parliament approving. Although article 32 (3) (b) refers to a different situation, it demands a resolution by parliament to prosecute a past president.

    “The same checks and balances should apply when prosecution of a sitting president is at stake.”





    JEMIMA BEUKES

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  • 04/15/18--16:00: Congrats to the medallists
  • Congrats to the medallistsCongrats to the medallists It has been a remarkable time for Namibia sports after two of our athletes earned gold medals at the Commonwealth Games in Australia.

    I must congratulate Jonas Junias, who won gold this past weekend after beating Canadian Thomas Blumenfeld 5-0 in the final of 64kg fight.

    I am proud of Helalia Johannes, who won Namibia's second gold medal by winning the women's marathon on Sunday morning.

    Watching you guys step on that podium to receive the gold medals gave me tears of joy.

    Hearing the national anthem at such a platform with a blue, red, white and yellow flag raised high gave me chills.

    It is a moment I will forever cherish just because of what you athletes have achieved at such a big sporting event.

    I am sure that your victories were celebrated from the depths of the seas and from every corner of this beautiful country.

    You have made me proud, you have made your parents proud and you have made Namibia proud.

    I would also like to express my gratitude to the coaching team who prepared these athletes before this event.

    There are companies that have been involved in sport for many years and I would like to thank them for being there for various sport codes and I must say they are partly responsible for the victories we achieved in Australia.

    The fact that these medals come at a time when Namibian sport has been somewhat neglected by the government in terms of funding makes these wins extra special.

    I do believe it is time Namibia makes the most of these victories to groom more stars for the future.

    The gold medals are evidence that Namibia does have the potential to win more medals if corporate Namibia and the government can supply more funds to the sector.

    I would like to urge the government to show much more interest and commitment towards sport.

    With these victories, I do believe that it is high time that sport codes in this country take sport as a lucrative industry, which can benefit millions when all opportunities are explored.

    There is indeed a sign Namibia has talent and it just needs to be explored and given the necessary exposure it needs.

    It is time that we produce a generation of fine athletes to represent the country at future global events.

    It is time that sport administrators use these victories as an opportunity to lure more companies into sponsoring sport.

    The government has to reward the two athletes in a manner that will motivate them and others to do well in future competitions.

    These athletes deserve to be honoured because they have done the country and the continent proud.

    To those athletes who came back without a medal, I must say this should serve as a lesson as to what you should better in the future.

    We cannot all be medallists, but you guys are winners because of the fact that you represented Namibia at such a global spectacle.

    Learn from Johannes and Junias, who have never stopped trying to win that gold medal.

    It takes years of perfection and hard work to master a skill that can earn you the prestigious medal that everyone yearns for.

    It is time to go back to the drawing board and work harder in order to prove that you are worthy of a place in the history books.

    Please aim for bigger competitions and don't aim to participate but to win.

    I hope that we can work so hard in order to get that Olympic gold that we all want so dearly.



    jesse@namibiansun.com

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    Pharma plant stuck in the starting blocksPharma plant stuck in the starting blocksTwo-year allocation insufficient The trade and industrialisation ministry says the construction of a planned state-owned pharmaceutical manufacturing plant at Okahandja has not passed the site servicing stage, two years since the annual budget allocation for the project started. “This (N$10 million) allocation is not sufficient to start with the construction.”- Ruben Amaambo, GM, ODC Ndama Nakashole - So far, only 9.8% of the estimated total cost of the pharmaceutical plant project at Okahandja has been allocated by the government, which is the sole funder of the project.

    Because of this, the construction period will have to be reviewed because the funds allocated to the project are not enough, the ministry of industrialisation says.

    This year, N$10 million has been allocated for the construction of the plant, which is about 6.4% of the total project funding for the trade and industrialisation ministry for 2018/2019. This is only half the initial allocation of N$20 million for 2017/2018.

    Ruben Amaambo, the general manager at the ministry of industrialisation’s Offshore Development Company (ODC), which promotes investment opportunities, told Market Watch that the construction of the pharmaceutical manufacturing plant at Okahandja could not start because the site had not been serviced yet.

    Asked how far the N$10 million would take the work is year, Amaambo said: “This (N$10 million) allocation is not sufficient to start with the construction.”

    According to budget documents, the total cost of the construction is N$303.2 million and according to Amaambo, the initial estimated construction period was 2017 to 2020.

    Budget

    The project, which was introduced in last year’s budget, was allocated N$20 million in 2017, and the government plans to allocate N$10 million and N$15 million for 2019/2020 and 2020/2021, respectively. In 2020, the time initially planned for the completion of the project, N$248 million will be the balance on the cost, according to the Medium-Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) (2018/2019 to 2020/2021).

    The initial construction period, according to Amaambo, must be reviewed. As it stands now, less than 20% of the required funding will have been released by the end of the MTEF period, according to budget documents.

    Asked whether the ministry planned to approach other financiers for this project, Amaambo said the principals had not pronounced themselves yet on the funding.

    “Thus assume it will be 100% funded by government,” he said.

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    Construction: New minimum wage now effectiveConstruction: New minimum wage now effective Jo-Maré Duddy – The new minimum wage in the construction industry, which became effective last Wednesday, is 90c per hour higher than the one that has been in effect since the end of 2016.

    The N$16.94 per hour minimum wage for labourers and general workers in the construction represents an increase of 5.6%. The average overall inflation rate in 2017 was 3.5%.

    From 2015 to 2016, the minimum wage increased by N$1.45 per hour or 9.9%.

    The new collective agreement, which was gazetted last week, was signed by the Construction Industries Federation of Namibia (CIF) and the Metal and Allied Namibian Workers Union (MANWU) on 16 November 2017.

    With the promulgation of the collective agreement, the agreed minimum wage payable and the minimum employment conditions is extended by the minister of labour, industrial relations and employment creation, Erkki Nghimtina, to the entire construction sector, irrespective of the size of business and irrespective of who owns the business, the CIF said in statement.

    Bärbel Kirchner, consulting general manager of the CIF, said it is important that there is no confusion. An increase of 5.6% on minimum wage payable is only relevant for certain selected positions, as per the collective agreement. It is also only includes an increase of the minimum wages that would need to be paid, she said.

    “So, if an employer does not yet pay the minimum wage for selected positions, then they would need to increase the wage to ensure it reaches the minimum wage payable. If, however, the employer is already paying the minimum wage payable, then no further increase is required,” Kirchner said.

    “This increase of the minimum wage payable therefore does not mean that it is an automatic increase for all. Provided the employer pays the minimum wage payable, any additional increase is totally discretionary, unless the employer had agreed to other arrangements, and that is ultimately largely determined by market forces.”

    Tough times

    Kirchner said the collective agreement between the CIF and MANWU was concluded after “arduous negotiations which included the threat of looming industrial action”.

    “The CIF had emphasised that the construction sector had been hit severely by the economic downturn and since September 2016, has seen large-scale retrenchment in the entire supply chain. The CIF maintained the position that instead of hiking up the increase of only a few remaining employees, that one needed to make every effort to keep as many persons employed as possible.

    “Sadly we have not seen any recovery in the construction sector since 2016. More businesses are being affected and more people are being retrenched. It is dire situation for our industry – businesses simply have no scope to further continue increasing labour costs without the generation of any revenue.”

    According to Kirchner, the increase of minimum wage payable unfortunately still means that more persons will be retrenched if there are no immediate construction or building projects being advertised.

    “Our industry needs work to survive. Our industry needs work to build our future,” she said.

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    Court spat puts prosecutor in jailCourt spat puts prosecutor in jail A Windhoek public prosecutor, who was sentenced to 30 days' imprisonment on Friday after he was found guilty of contempt of court, was released later the same day on warning, pending an appeal.

    Public prosecutor Rowan van Wyk's reportedly brief time behind bars on Friday followed a verbal altercation around a docket in a criminal matter before Magistrate Gerrit Brand van Pletzen.

    On Friday afternoon, Yvette Hüsselmann, chief public relations officer at the Office of the Judiciary informed Namibian Sun that Van Wyk had been released with a warning on Friday afternoon, and that the matter was pending appeal.

    According to the court record, Van Wyk informed Van Pletzen at the start of proceedings that the matter of Hafeni Thomas Nakasole could not proceed and that he was asking for a postponement.

    He told the court that this was because the “matter is a prosecutor general's-decision, and the decision is not yet available.”

    Van Pletzen however dismissed this assertion, noting that “it is clear this plead was taken already on 7 March 2017. In June 2017 the prosecutor, Mr Lusepani, told this court that the docket was submitted late and requested a postponement for the prosecutor-general's decision.”

    He further told Van Wyk that by informing the court that the prosecutor-generals' decision was not yet available, the prosecutor was “implying directly that the matter is lying at the PG, and that the reason for the delay is there”.

    Van Pletzen said he would not further postpone the matter unless “I know that the docket is lying at the prosecutor-general's office, and what the reason for the delay is.”

    Van Wyk replied that Van Pletzen is “wrong” and that he did not imply “anything like that”.

    Van Pletzen responded and said that he “is directly implying that the docket is at the prosecutor-general's office, and that the delay is there. I want to hear nothing further.”

    Van Wyk argued that van Pletzen was “insulting me in open court”.

    When ordered “not to say anything further” by the magistrate, Van Wyk responded by saying “I will not keep quiet”, according to the court record.

    Van Pletzen warned the prosecutor that “if you do not refrain from interrupting me, sir, you will find yourself in contempt.”

    The records indicate that Van Wyk continued to speak, after which the magistrate again warned him “of the consequences of interrupting me. Keep quiet now”.

    Van Wyk responded: “I challenge you, find me in contempt,” the court record shows.

    Van Pletzen then ruled that Van Wyk is found guilty of being in contempt of court and sentenced him to 30 days' imprisonment.

    Namibian Sun was also informed on Friday that prosecutor-general Martha Imalwa on the same day allegedly instructed the Windhoek magistrate heads that no more public prosecutors may appear before Magistrate van Pletzen.

    This could not be confirmed by the time of going to print.

    JANA-MARI SMITH

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