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Tells it All - Namibian Sun

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    Namibia praised for conservationNamibia praised for conservation Namibia has been lauded for it conservation efforts and for involving local communities in the management of natural resources through the Community Based Natural Resources Management (CBNRM) programme.

    International relations minister Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah said this at the second lecture in the Dr Theo-Ben Gurirab lecture series held at the University of Namibia's Jose Eduardo dos Santos Campus at Ongwediva on Wednesday.

    The lectures are held around the country to engage the public on the development of Namibia's foreign policy named after Gurirab, who was Namibia's first minister of foreign affairs from 1990 to 2002.

    Nandi-Ndaitwah said the CBNRM programme has improved the livelihoods of rural communities, which were deprived of the benefits and management of their natural resources by the colonial administration.

    “I am referring here to conservancies in all 14 regions of the country,” Nandi-Ndaitwah said.

    She noted that other local initiatives include the promotion of mixed renewable energy and value-addition to natural resources, such as diamonds.

    The minister encouraged Namibians to think out of the box, in order to come up with unique Namibian ways to optimally use natural resources without necessarily reinventing the wheel.

    Nandi-Ndaitwah told the audience the lecture series is “not just a talk show”, but is fertile ground for the cultivation of home-grown ideas that will serve as a vehicle to transport the nation to its Vision 2030 and the African Union's Agenda 2063.

    Agenda 2063 is a strategic framework for the socio-economic transformation of Africa.

    The panellists at Wednesday's lecture were fisheries permanent secretary Moses Maurihungirire, agriculture PS Percey Misika, mining commissioner Erasmus Shivolo and head of environment, climate change, water and land management of the AU Commission, Harsen Nyambe.

    All four panellists encouraged Namibians to support the government in strategising on the optimal use of the country's natural resources, for the benefit of the entire nation.

    Wednesday's lecture took place under the theme: 'Optimisation of Namibia's natural resources for sustained economic growth and the eradication of poverty'.


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  • 05/17/18--16:00: NTY voting begins on Monday
  • NTY voting begins on MondayNTY voting begins on Monday The voting for the 2018 Namibia Small Town of the Year competition will start on Monday and run until 1 June.

    The finalists of this year's competition are Eenhana, Okahao, Oniipa and Oranjemund.

    The winner will be announced on 2 June at the Namibia Tourism Expo, which will take place at the Windhoek Showgrounds.

    The expo is organised by Namibia Media Holdings (NMH) and sponsored by First National Bank of Namibia and Old Mutual under the theme 'Conservation, Small Things Matter'.

    Eenhana CEO Walde Ndevashiya says his town deserves to win the competition owing to the rapid growth and tremendous strides it has made over the years.

    “We have done a lot in a few years if you compare with other towns. With the limited resources we have we have built houses for our people, delivered services to them, attracted businesses to our town and the town is very clean and crime free,” he says.

    “We have interesting sites in Eenhana that one can visit such as the Eenhana shrine and therefore I am calling on Namibians to do the right thing and vote for Eenhana.”

    Okahao CEO Timoteus Namwandi says because of the rich cultural heritage and cleanliness of his town, people should vote for them.

    “Vote for Okahao because we are one of the cleanest towns in the country with a rich cultural heritage and there is a lot of development which is going on here,” Namwandi says.

    He says they are doing well in terms of delivering land and houses to the people.

    Oniipa CEO Junias Jacob says they deserve to emerge victorious because although the town is new, development is taking place at a rapid pace.

    “We are one of the youngest and fastest-growing towns in Namibia. We are privileged to have the monuments that were found by the Finnish missionaries and they are attracting tourists to our town. Therefore people should vote for Oniipa,” Jacob says.

    Oranjemund spokesperson Glenadette Scholtz says people should vote for the harbour town because it is unique and has a fascinating history.

    “Oranjemund is a unique town with a fascinating history and a hospitality culture driving the community in support of the Namibian economy. Vote for Oranjemund and support the thousands of Namibians who have lived or worked in the town and the few that are lucky to call it home,” Scholtz says.

    To vote for your town of choice, text the word TOWN, followed by the name of one the participating towns, and send the message to the number 51500. Each SMS costs N$3.


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    SME Bank employees demand paySME Bank employees demand payObligations remain unhonoured after collapse Former SME Bank employees are demanding their severance packages, while expressing disappointment over the fact that obligations toward them are not being honoured. Former employees of the SME Bank yesterday staged a protest in front of the offices of the ministry of finance, where they claimed that they had not been paid their severance packages as promised following the closure of the bank in June 2017.

    Following an urgent application by the Bank of Namibia, the SME Bank was provisionally liquidated and shut down by High Court Judge Hannelie Prinsloo.

    In a petition to the deputy minister of finance, Natangue Ithete, the former employees claim that most of them have not received their severance pay.

    Reading the petition, former SME Bank worker Justine Gebhardt expressed disappointment that obligations to 208 former employees were not being honoured.

    “Given the insolvent situation of the bank, the liquidators were only in a position to offer one week's pay for each year of service,” Gebhardt said.

    This, in her opinion, was a pittance. Other employees were still to be paid severance packages, she claimed.

    “The majority of employees received between three and two weeks' pay. Some employees were recruited early in that year [2017] and have not clocked a year's service as at the date of retrenchment. Such employees received nothing in severance pay,” Gebhardt claimed.

    “As can be expected, we are having financial commitments and this situation is depressing. The current situation of the bank was not of our doing; we played no part in the demise of the bank; we are innocent,” Gebhardt said.

    Further adding to the former employees' woes is the fact that some of them had resigned with 24 hours' notice from their previous jobs to help strengthen the SME Bank's application for a banking licence.

    “We were requested to resign within 24 hours to assist the SME Bank in obtaining its licence. Having resigned under those circumstances makes it difficult for those institutions to take us back,” Gebhardt said.

    In their petition, they demand nine months' salary and also asked for their SME Bank loans to be written off.

    SME Bank spokesperson Liina Iyambo would not respond to queries at the time of going to press.

    In a notice to retrenched employees, liquidators McLaren and Bruni wrote: “The consequence of this provisional liquidation order is that the services of all staff are terminated.

    “Your claim against the bank, which has absolute preference above any other claims, will accordingly be as follows: one month full salary as notice pay, leave pay according to the leave records of the bank [and] severance allowance calculated as to one week for each completed year of service, and arrear wages and salaries,” said the notice.

    The Bank of Namibia placed the SME Bank under curatorship in March 2017 when it was discovered that close to N$200 million had been invested in questionable investments in neighbouring South Africa.


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    Corruption - A social disease (Part 138): The role of corporates and oversight bodies in tackling corruptionCorruption - A social disease (Part 138): The role of corporates and oversight bodies in tackling corruption Johan Coetzee - Corruption is an add-on and/or inflation that increases the prices of consumer goods and services and reduces profit.

    Business compensate for such add-on cost by increasing prices. All consumers in Namibia pay for corruption and the poor in comparison with the affluent in terms of affordability pay the most. The business sector that can afford corruption the least of all sectors are Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) that cannot absorb public service inefficiencies compared to large corporates.

    Partially due to reluctance of the South African government to investigate corrupt leaders, AgriForum is initiating civil and criminal cases against corrupt individuals. Against the background of the severe impact of corruption on the business environment in deterring investment, the dire current economic situation, reduced government resources and mediocre political commitment to reduce corruption, the private sector, civil organisations and professional bodies in Namibia need to increase public awareness about corruption and initiate civil and criminal cases to investigate corruption.


    The NamCode is Namibia’s version of King III and IV. The NamCode is not well known/and or not applied in Namibia as it should be. The magnitude of corporate corruption such as State Owned Enterprises (SOEs) illustrates the substandard level of corporate governance.

    Areas for major improvement by boards of private companies and public entities, include the following.

    The private sector should create an awareness programme to market the voluntary implementation of the NamCode. Since the Namibia Stock Exchange and Deloitte & Touche Namibia were the initiators of developing the NamCode (funded by First National Bank of Namibia), they should take the lead in this process.

    Boards of private companies and public entities should improve their corporate governance and reduce the level, frequency and magnitude, and/or monetary value, of corruption in Namibia. It is recommended that the NamCode be amended in order to make provision for changes in King IV, e.g. from the "apply or explain" approach to "apply and explain".


    Board members should receive training on their fiduciary powers and skills training in areas such as interpreting financial statements, risk management and liabilities. Board members are individually liable for financial losses incurred in terms of the Companies Act.

    Given the gross negligence of board members in general in Namibia, it is high time that board members are held liable so that the level of governance improve and corruption is reduced. Such training should be measurable in terms of outcomes and board members’ performance agreements and appraisal to enable a turnaround in the level of governance.

    Deloitte & Touche’ Namibia Surveys of Corporate Governance should in future include questions to board members about donations, gifts and entertainment offered to them, as well as questions about declaration of interests, recording of interests at board meetings and monitoring of the execution of such declarations.


    Oversight bodies consisting of members of the public could cooperate and assist the ACC in their awareness of corruption and prevention programme.

    Based on the best practice example of Singapore, the private sector and interest groups should request the ACC for monthly meetings between the ACC and oversight bodies to report on the ACC’s progress, e.g. on the number of cases reported, cases pending, cases referred to the Prosecutor General’s Office and cases finalised.

    Since the Anti-Corruption Act is to be reviewed starting in June 2018 it is an appropriate opportunity to amend the Act so that monthly reporting can be legalised as part of the ACC’s accountability towards the public (Shipena).


    Corporates and oversight bodies have a critical role to play and an undeniable accountability in reducing corruption in the public-private sector interface. The private sector and specific corporates should refuse to pay bribes, expose corrupt public servants and corrupt public transactions.

    Corporates should start putting their money where their mouth is if they are equally serious about reducing corruption as about supporting sport teams with millions of Namibian dollars.

    I challenge all corporates to report corruption to the media and the ACC. Extensive protection is provided under Article 52, Section 4 of the ACC Act.


    Coetzee, J.J. 2018. The role of the private sector in tackling corruption. Article commissioned and published by the Institute of Public Policy Research (IPPR), Windhoek: The Open Society Initiative of Southern Africa (OSISA).

    Shipena, H. 2018. Permanent Secretary of the ACC, a panel member of the study commissioned by the IPPR, launched 9 May Windhoek.


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    Hollard Namibia, imagining a better futureHollard Namibia, imagining a better futureValues are the driving force behind the ‘Hollard Way’. Hollard Namibia insurance is the epitome of partnership and service delivery. Elizabeth Joseph

    Hollard Namibia came into being in 2003 when a small team of enthusiasts shared a vision that would take insurance to another level, challenging the norm of the industry. The team has since grown in volume, but also in our capacity for knowledge and passion, and through this growth we have changed the face of the industry. We are constantly looking for new team members who share the same vision and would enjoy a career in insurance.

    Namibia is a vast, beautiful country, only matched by the beauty of its people. At Hollard the people know that by understanding the uniqueness of its people they can make the biggest difference where it would matter the most. Humility and sincerity are two of the core elements of why they do what they do, putting emphasis on the fact that they are a company built on morals and (sometimes quirky) but always genuine ethics. Hollard strives to not merely be successful as a company, but to always remember that their success should match their never ending resolve in always finding the best ways and means to stand by the people who matter the most. They are a company built on Namibian soil, by Namibian people, for Namibian people! Hollard is passionate about developing skills and making sure their staff and clients are happy.

    Corporate Social Responsibility

    Hollard has been committed to making a difference and remaining flexible and innovative. There are constant cultural changes in the industry and thus Hollard tries to remain vigilant and also assures that everyone who joins the company understands the core values and are willing to grow with the company.

    Today, at Hollard Namibia they continue to grow and thrive in their environment, while encouraging each other to meet and exceed all client expectations with their “can do” attitude. Hollard consistently producing healthy underwriting profits as well as establishing, servicing and maintaining strong relationships with our partners. With 7 branches across Namibia from Keetmanshoop in the south to Rundu in the north, our footprint has grows substantially over the last couple of years. Through smart partnerships, we can now ensure that our partners are the best in the business, maintaining only the highest level of professionalism within the industry.

    Hollard Group, Headquartered in Parktown, Johannesburg on a campus that houses the historic Villa Arcadia, touches more than 6 million policyholders in 18 countries 4 continents. Hollard Group employs more than 4 000 people across the globe and posted R18.1bn in premium income in the year to June 2016. Hollard International has also been changing and growing by the year and wants to be one of the top 20 insurers globally, by 2020.

    Purpose and culture:

    Hollard’s purpose is to enable more people to create and secure a better future for all.

    By achieving exceptional, sustainable and inclusive growth; by partnering to deliver the win-win-win; by treating everyone with care and dignity; by courageously pursuing a better way; and by acting as a catalyst for positive and enduring change, we will be the favourite insurer in each country in which we operate.

    Of course, none of this can be achieved without a supportive culture. And the company’s culture, which is called the Hollard Way, is something that they’re passionate about and something that every Hollardite lives every day.

    The Hollard Way requires everyone to balance the need to deliver and get things done, with the need to dream, pioneer and experiment. It recognises that they are a family, made up of real and mindful individuals. It encourages the employees to find the win-win-win for Hollard, their partners and customers, and to get the balance right for themselves. It asks that they get the facts, but listen to their gut. Perhaps most demandingly of all, requires them to take what they do seriously without taking themselves too seriously.

    As a result of all of this, as a Hollard customer you can expect to be treated with the utmost respect, dignity and above all, a sense of common humanity. The company expects to be held to the highest standards and whilst they certainly can’t claim to always get it right, they sure try their absolute best to deliver on your expectations.

    Hollard Namibia fact file:

    They are Namibia's largest privately owned insurance group

    Hollard holds a highly diversified business profile

    The company hosts over 236 passionate team members in Namibia

    Hollard has always been known for excellent service delivery

    Combined annual gross premium income of N$1.3 billion and rising

    Total assets of over N$700 million

    Financial strength of N$350 million in shareholder’s funds

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    South Africa's Reserve Bank seen keeping rates unchangedSouth Africa's Reserve Bank seen keeping rates unchangedMay keep rates at 6.50% next week South Africa’s Reserve Bank will keep interest rates unchanged next week as an anticipated quicker rise in consumer prices over the coming months won’t drive inflation above target, a Reuters poll showed Wednesday. “They will probably hold steady, with the rand showing some vulnerability,” Dennis Dykes, chief economist, Nedbank. All 25 economists surveyed in the past week predicted the central bank will hold rates at 6.50% at its May 24 meeting, which will follow last month’s losses by the rand and renewed weakness on Tuesday.

    “They will probably hold steady, with the rand showing some vulnerability,” said Dennis Dykes, chief economist at Nedbank. “It illustrates the concerns that they have about the global situation.” However, he expected a reasonably neutral statement from Reserve Bank Governor Lesetja Kganyago.

    The Bank cut its main interest rate to 6.50%in March, giving a boost to the economy, and is now expected to enter a prolonged period of inactivity, with no change forecast for the next 18 months at least.

    “This current oil price is putting pressure on the inflation rate, especially if you consider the value-added tax (VAT) hike, we have seen the bottom or the best of inflation,” said Stanlib economist Kevin Lings.

    In February the National Treasury announced a VAT increase for the first time in two decades, which could hurt consumer demand, to cap ballooning debt and close a large revenue shortfall.

    “From here inflation will move higher, that obviously makes it more difficult to justify a rate cut,” Lings added.

    Still, the rate of increase in consumer prices is not expected to breach the top-end of the Reserve Bank’s 3-6% target during the forecast horizon.

    Emerging market currencies, including the rand, have been under pressure in the past month from a strong dollar bolstered by the Federal Reserve’s decision to raise US rates in March and its apparent disposition to do so again.

    In April, a Reuters poll predicted the Fed would raise rates three more times this year.

    Still the rand is expected to recoup some of its April losses against the dollar in the next 12 months - provided domestic economic growth improves.

    Growth forecasts for South Africa have improved to 1.8% from 1.3% at the start of the year, even though mining and manufacturing shrank in March due to lingering policy uncertainty and lukewarm demand.

    Growth for next year is expected to hit 2%.


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    Health makes U-turn on foreign nursesHealth makes U-turn on foreign nurses The health ministry has found itself with egg on its face after it issued a circular last year announcing that employment contracts of foreign nurses would not be renewed in a bid to accommodate Namibian graduates.

    In August, former health permanent secretary Andreas Mwoombola announced that the ministry would not extend the contracts of foreign health professionals until Namibian graduates were accommodated.

    Health minister Bernard Haufiku yesterday said the approach was wrong and created confusion and uncertainty.

    “A day after this circular was sent out I was approached by the American embassy who, through their PEPfar programme, have many nurses placed around the world including Namibia,” he said.

    Haufiku admitted that this “blanket statement” also did not honour the stipulations of an agreement between Namibia and Kenya.

    After a meeting with Kenyan high commissioner Isaac Njenga, a committee was formed comprising ministry and embassy staff to ensure a smooth transition between Kenyan and Namibian nurses.

    “We would like to reiterate that the two parties, I and the Kenyan high commissioner, Isaac Njenga, are committed to the implementation of the existing MoU and to follow the laid-down procedures and processes,” said Haufiku.

    To date he has only been approached by the Kenyan high commission and the American embassy, but the minister urged other countries to appeal to him if they felt offended.

    “It is a process. We cannot just abruptly terminate the contract of a person. Practically what this means is that some of the nurses who received notices of termination of their contract and the process was not duly conducted we pull back. Fortunately there are not so many of them. They are probably fewer than ten. So we will pull back and say you can continue to work as normal and when notice is given it will be done according to the processes and procedures in the MoU,” he said.

    Haufiku added that terminating the contracts would be done on a case-by-case basis in order to make sure a Namibian nurse was available to replace the expatriate nurse.

    He emphasised that Namibia was still committed to working with foreign nurses.

    “The process must be done in the most humane way so that we don't cause unnecessary fear and anxiety and also a bad name for the country that we just dump people as if they are used material. We don't want that,” said Haufiku.

    At a media briefing yesterday, the Kenyan high commissioner called on the ministry to honour the stipulations of the agreement signed in 2009.

    He also urged the ministry to find a “humane and procedural” way to deal with the matter.

    “These nurses have been here for many years. They have come to assist and transfer skills and we understand it is not a permanent arrangement. But it has now occurred that there is a blanket statement or misinformation which has caused anxiety,” Njenga said.

    Haufiku further pointed out that Namibia was still short of health professionals and needed funding to implement new health solutions and deliver health services.

    “However, alternative measures are in place to fill the critical gaps such as compensatory reduction of non-critical vacant posts to accommodate essential services positions,” he said.


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  • 05/17/18--16:00: Govt sued for park shooting
  • Govt sued for park shootingGovt sued for park shootingFamily claim N$3.2 million in damages The parents of a little girl who was shot in the head by an anti-poaching patrol in the Bwabwata National Park last year are suing the government, while a criminal case is still pending. The Keil family, whose daughter was shot in the head by an anti-poaching unit in the Bwabwata National Park last year, are suing the government for N$3.2 million in damages.

    The family of four - Harald Keil, his wife Teresa, and their two young daughters, Alexia and Caitlyn - were on holiday in the Kavango East Region when an anti-poaching unit shot at them on 15 March 2017.

    Alexia, who was three years old at the time, was shot in the head and had to undergo brain surgery. The family opened a case of attempted murder against the patrol members, in which a decision by the prosecutor-general is still pending.

    Meanwhile a civil claim has been instituted against the ministries of safety and security, defence, and environment and tourism.

    The chief of the defence force, the inspector-general of the Namibian Police and the Namibian government are also listed as respondents.

    The spokesperson for the Namibian Police, Deputy Commissioner Edwin Kanguatjivi, yesterday confirmed that they had received the summons and that they would contest the matter.

    A supporting affidavit states that members of the anti-poaching unit acted with gross negligence on 15 March 2017 when they fired on the family car on a public road in the national park.

    The documents indicate that the family had been stopped by some armed men who did not identify themselves.

    These men acted “intimidatingly and aggressively” and ordered them to leave the vehicle.

    Since some of these men tried to force their way into the car, the family feared that their actions could be an attack or attempted kidnapping and drove off.

    Some of the armed men shot “wildly” at the car. According to the documents, this action was irresponsible because the men, some of whom were in plainclothes, had neither erected a roadblock nor presented identification documents or a search warrant for the vehicle.

    According to the plaintiffs the men opened fire on a car and its passengers who posed no danger to them. “There was no reason to do so and they knew or ought reasonably to have known that they could cause serious injury to innocent parties including passengers.”

    The demand for compensation adds up to N$3.2 million and includes redress for the trauma suffered during the shooting incident, as well as an associated loss of quality of life.

    According to the official incident report released by the ministry last year, Keil and his family entered the Buffalo Core Area in the Bwabwata National Park on 12 March and were briefed at the tourism reception area about the rules and regulations as well as the security forces in the park. They left the park that same day.

    On 15 May they again wanted to enter the park and when officials wanted to brief them again, Keil said he was already informed.

    That morning three gunshots had been reported in the area of Pica-Picau and Nova in the Buffalo Core Area and it was suspected that there were elephant poachers in the area, according to the ministry.

    Anti-poaching activities were intensified and a mobile roadblock was set up.

    “At about 15:00 the anti-poaching unit, dressed in full uniform and with a government vehicle parked next to the road, stopped Keil and his family,” said the ministry.

    They introduced themselves and asked to search the vehicle. According to the ministry Keil then just drove off and the team fired warning shots.

    The next shot was fired at the right back wheel, puncturing the tyre. Three further shots were fired at the vehicle but the vehicle still did not stop.

    “The family drove past the tourism reception where they could have reported the shooting but did not,” said the ministry. They only stopped at the Divundu police checkpoint.

    The spokesperson for the environment ministry, Romeo Muyunda, yesterday confirmed to Namibian Sun that the ministry was aware of the lawsuit.

    He referred further questions to the Namibian Police, adding that the safety and security ministry was listed as first respondent in the case.


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    Age is no obstacle for educationAge is no obstacle for educationAll roads lead to success Careers spoke with Reverend William Daniels, who at 80 years is the oldest student enrolled at the University of Namibia. Elizabeth Joseph

    William Daniels enrolled for his PhD in Theology at the University of Namibia (Unam) and says he has every intention of graduating with flying colours.

    Daniels, who serves as reverend at the Uniting Reformed Church in Khomasdal, Windhoek and describes himself as someone who has always been well informed about church history.

    “I always thought about how our church came into existence and had a passion for the things of God. I knew I had to learn more, to know more,” he says.

    According to him when he was young children were not always educated in a holistic and integrated manner in the church. He would like to serve as a facilitator and bridge between children and what they are taught in church.

    “Discipline was the order of the day and we had to accept that we had to live under strict rules,” he says.

    He describes himself as someone who is passionate about learning and gaining new skills. Although he is retired now, he still lives out his title as reverend. Daniels still has a marriage license and thus still performs matrimonial services as well as funerals.

    Reverend Du Plessis attends the same denomination as Daniels. He met Daniels 20 years ago and describes him as a very vision and goal driven individual. “He always wants to empower himself and that is why he enrolled for his PhD,” he says.

    Dr. Tjibeba, Daniels’ supervisor says that Daniels serves as a very good example of lifelong learning. “He is a very committed and hardworking post graduate student despite his age. He started with his proposal last year and is well on track with his research,” he says.

    Tjibeba further adds that it is good for the leaders of the church to further their education because the times are changing and so is the education system.

    Simon Namesho, public relations officer at Unam says it is overwhelming but refreshing to see an elder on the campus. “During the time I interacted with Daniels, he made his reason for enrolment very clear. Education is not for self-enrichment instead it is for the benefit of everyone around you,” he says.

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    Dentistry students to be placedDentistry students to be placedInternships for 27 new graduates The health minister has responded to the plight of 27 dentistry students who had returned from Russia, Ukraine, China and Belarus with degrees but little practical experience. Health minister Bernard Haufiku has announced that he has managed to “scrape together” N$3.7 million to arrange internships for 27 dentistry graduates.

    Seventeen of them will be placed immediately and the remaining ten graduates later.

    The graduates, who studied in Russia, Ukraine, China and Belarus, had pleaded for months for the ministry to place them, as they had to sell T-shirts and do other menial jobs to make a living.

    Most of them had already passed a pre-internship evaluation in November last year. According to Haufiku the situation was so frustrating that graduates and their parents had been “knocking at his door” pleading for intervention.

    He said the N$3.7 million from the health ministry's budget would be used to procure dentist's chairs in order to place interns at training facilities staffed with senior dentists. Cornelius Weyulu, the registrar of the Health Professions Council, confirmed that all the graduates had been approved as interns and were just waiting to be placed.

    “Before they become full dentists they must undergo mentorship because all of them did not have enough exposure at college or university level so that they are prepared to practise and when they are posted they will be able to manage on their own,” he said.

    Meanwhile, Haufiku has announced that the Health Professions Bill, which he has been pushing for in order to compel medical staff to go to rural areas, will be debated in parliament when it resumes in June.

    He said, however, he had little confidence that it would be passed, as there was a group of people, mostly pharmacists, who opposed the bill and was hell-bent on keeping it from becoming law.

    “There is a lot of lobbying going on… But we do not think that the issues they raise will override the general public interest in health. They are there in their comfortable lives; they are not treated at Okongo or Okanguati. If this bill is not approved then it will be the biggest blow to the health sector,” he said.

    As it stands now, rural clinics are without doctors and other staff because nobody can be forced to work at remote villages such as Aroab, Okongo or Impalila Island.

    The bill would also force Namibian and foreign doctors alike to work for the government before going into private practice.

    It would also merge the existing five health councils into one board with five professional boards that can establish technical committees to streamline workflow.

    “I would like to share with the public that I have signed appointment letters for an interim health professions council of Namibia until the Health Professions Bill is approved and signed into law,” said Haufiku.


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    Employee empowerment strategiesEmployee empowerment strategies Employee empowerment is an extremely impactful yet often underutilized motivation tactic. When used properly, your empowerment strategy can increase business profitability, revive company culture and improve satisfaction both internally and externally.

    In fact, one study found that organisations leveraging employee empowerment receive 50% higher degrees of customer loyalty. However, so many businesses are focused on empowering their customer that they forget about empowering their employees.

    Fundamentally, employee empowerment works by giving team members the authority and freedom needed to adapt instantly to situations, responding with better services and experiences for your customers. It requires open communication and contextual understanding from the top down, in turn enabling employees to make crucial decisions on the spot. By empowering employees, businesses give their team:

    Empowering employees can seem risky, but in a world that puts experience above all else, bridging the gap between employee knowledge and customer satisfaction is paramount for success.

    1. Foster a social workforce

    Employee empowerment begins with giving your staff access to the resources they need to become more productive and efficient. Today, we’re constantly browsing social media pages at work and checking emails at home, creating an undeniable connection between our work and personal lives. However, these blurred lines don’t have to be a negative thing for business.

    Though some organisations fear giving their employees social media access during work hours, the truth is that embracing the social world is often very beneficial to companies.

    Not only can social accounts give your employees a new way of interfacing with potential customers, but it also ensures that they’re ready to advocate on the behalf of your brand in a positive light. It’s easier than ever for employees to share branded content with their social networks, and it’s important for employers to take advantage of that.

    2. Consult Employees

    Empowering employees also means endowing them with a sense of authority and trust that can promote greater pride in their workplace. Workers who feel pride in their brand are often more satisfies and engaged at work. In other words, something as simple as empowerment can lead to less turnover, greater productivity and enhanced efficiency.

    If you’re wondering how to empower employees, the first place to start is open and frequent conversation. Ask your employees to consult on the projects they’re involved with and seek out their opinions. Help your staff feel as though they have a real impact on the projects they manage the benefits will far outweigh your efforts.

    3. Establish Guidelines

    Employee empowerment doesn’t mean you have to give employees complete freedom and free reign over the company.

    Start your empowerment strategy by making sure everyone is on the same page regarding the goals of the business and provide a loose framework around what your staff can do. For instance, you should trust employees to make decisions on-the-spot for your customers.

    This might mean allowing employees to decide whether they should refund a customer or solve an issue that might lead to negative feedback for your brand. However, it’s important to watch over this behaviour to make sure your employees are advocating for the best interests of the customer and your company.

    4. Create flexible team structures

    Engagement is an element felt strongly among employees and the customers you serve, and achieving this often hinges on collaboration. When you encourage this kind of internal culture, your most innovative employees will begin to connect with one another and inspire new ideas and solutions. Collaboration can be improved through workplace tools, social resources and even business intranets.

    You could allow your employees to create their own teams for specific projects, choosing the best skillsets for specific challenges. Some businesses will even benefit from using their current team to find and recruit new talent for your team.

    5. Encourage open communication

    Many of today’s businesses are built using top-down communication structures. While this might feel natural to executives, employees in such environments often feel that they have little power in their ability to make a real impact on the business at-large. While leaders might have more experience, it’s important for them to avoid invalidating feedback from the people on the front lines.

    All businesses should give employees a structured solution for making their observations and thoughts known. Additionally, it’s crucial for companies seeking employee empowerment to let their staff know that they appreciate and value their ideas. Provide rewards, offer feedback, acknowledge staff input – and you’ll start to see communication and engagement levels grow.

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  • 05/17/18--16:00: Teamwork key for Shimuafeni
  • Teamwork key for ShimuafeniTeamwork key for ShimuafeniLooks back at NSA ‘realising tremendous progress’ Looking back on his second year in office as the statistician-general and CEO of the Namibia Statistics Agency (NSA), Alex Shimuafeni says that significant advancement has been made. Gabby Tjiroze

    Statistician-general and CEO of the Namibia Statistics Agency (NSA), Alex Shimuafeni, says the past two years has realised “tremendous progress”.

    “We were able to develop data accessing tools such as the NSA app (free to download and with offline accessibility) and the Geoportal for viewing infrastructure with statistical characteristics. We have also seen the further development of statistics and spatial information, as Namibia is one of the few countries where the spatial data is integrated in the national statistics offices, as per the provision of the Statistics Act,” he said.

    Shimuafeni assumed office in April 2016, after he left the Namibia Broadcasting Corporation (NBC), where he worked for five years.

    He says his first two years at NSA was no walk in the park.

    “My first two years was a rollercoaster because the NSA operates in a dynamic environment, where we collect data for processing and analysis and subsequently publishing, as per the Statistics Act No. 9 of 2011. I assumed duty during the period of external auditing and annual report writing, which is done in a period of three months after the close of the financial year. During this time, I had to deliver what was required from me, without the luxury of making excuses of being new.”

    He is no stranger to the statistics world, where he was also a chief statistician during the early days of his career at the trade ministry, as well as head of price statistics at the then Central Bureau of Statistics.

    He has been in executive and management positions for 15 years. He was also part of the executive management committee at the National Housing Enterprise (NHE) from July 2007, for close to five years, where he was responsible for the management of the home loan book of more than N$500 million.

    Before joining the NBC, he was in the private sector as part of FNB Group management, where he served as the group manager: market research & intelligence.

    He was responsible for market research projects, as well as gathering competitor intelligence information, which includes pricing information, market share analysis as well as strategy formulation for the FNB Group (FNB, insurance companies and other subsidiaries). At FNB he was the co-founder of the first-ever housing index, now called the FNB Housing Index.

    Outlining the philosophy of the NSA, Shimuafeni says it is about teamwork, as well as building on the foundation left by founding statistician-general, Dr John Steytler.

    “I am proud of the staff members who do their job with zeal despite the many challenges we are facing. The NSA staff are highly qualified and highly skilled and despite challenges of lack of exposure, as a result of inadequate funding, as well as the fact that they are stretched with limited opportunity for specialising, they remain determined.

    “We have a relatively young workforce that are also creative and innovative and as a result keep on challenging the status quo. With the current staff that we have, coupled with the necessary support, the NSA has a bright future,” Shimuafeni said.

    He holds MBA and Master of Statistics degrees obtained from The Regent Business School (South Africa) and The University of New South Wales (Australia).

    He also has international working experience and was part of a team that opened an office for a joint venture between Telecom Namibia and Angolan telecommunications company Mundo Startel from June 2003 to December 2004.

    His typical day is always divided between general management and strategic focus areas.

    “I start my day with urgent administrative matters that will ensure people carry out their daily tasks in order to produce the end result of producing quality statistics that will enable the policymakers to make informed, evidence-based decisions. Simultaneously, I ensure that whatever we do is in pursuit of achieving those strategic goals, which we have set out for ourselves. In a dynamic situation as this, it is easy to lose focus of the bigger picture and hence the reason why I need to keep track of the six strategic goals that we have set out to achieve, which include development of human capital, effectiveness and efficiency, sustainability in funding, as well as the promotion of the use of statistics for evidence-based policy, planning and decision-making,” he added.

    Shimuafeni has been a board member of New Dawn Productions, a subsidiary of Kalahari Holdings, since October 2016.

    Free time

    When he’s not in the office, he is a philanthropist. He is a founder member and chairperson of the Donkerhoek Social Club, a charity organisation that was established in 2015, with the aim of assisting the elders of Donkerhoek, Katutura where he was born and bred as a child.

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    Veteran offers 10 000ha for mahalaVeteran offers 10 000ha for mahala Victoria Kauluma, a registered war veteran, says she wants to give away 10 000 hectares of her 20 364-hectare farm in the Hardap Region.

    Kauluma, daughter of Ondonga king Immanuel Kauluma Elifas, bought a portion of Farm Lahnstein No 193 on auction March this year.

    She says the farm is too big for her and her two children. Her children are currently living in Canada.

    “I do not want to live alone on the farm. I want to give a portion of land to the people of the Hardap Region,” Kauluma said of her unusual and generous offer.

    Her intention is to give away portions of at least five hectares to those interested in small-scale farming activities by dividing up the 44 camps on the farm. That would mean at least 2 000 people would benefit.

    “I do not want to sell or rent out the portions of land. I want to give it to deserving people. It was a gift to me from the Lord and I want to share that,” Kauluma said this week. Kauluma, a staunch Swapo member, says she wants to give the five-hectare portions of land to anyone interested irrespective of colour, creed or political affiliation.

    “I want to give the portions of land to poor and needy people from the Hardap Region because the people there are suffering; no one is looking after them.”

    It would be better if people had the opportunity to work and make their own gardens, to be able to generate their own food instead of the perpetual dependency on South Africa.

    We have the power to become self-sufficient,” Kauluma said.

    She added: “The [Hardap] councillors have opportunities but they are not looking after the needs of the people. Some councillors have as many as 10 or 15 plots, farms, erven, and houses. Why do they not give some of these to poor people?

    “Not a single councillor is looking after the people. They are only enriching themselves. The people of the Hardap Region are unemployed, they do not get resettled. There are no SME, youth or women's empowerment projects for them. Councillors give projects to their families and friends. Why are the people of Hardap not resettled so that they can prosper? ”

    She says she has been thinking about her proposition for a long time and was inspired by founding president Sam Nujoma's donation of a clinic and school on his farmland to surrounding communities.

    “I have learnt from former president Nujoma who is not only for Swapo people; he fought for all people in this country,” she said, and added: “Swapo is not looking after Swapo people only. It is taking care of all people in Namibia. Swapo is your father and mother. Swapo is the key to everyone.”

    She invited interested people to contact her at her place of work, at the 062 building on Bahnhof Street in Rehoboth, or to phone her on 081 467 6195 or 081 473 1569.

    “Anyone can register as long as you are from the Hardap Region. Those who want to register can have some livestock but I do not want to give land just for grazing. I want people to make their own gardens to feed themselves,” she said.

    She also stressed that she would not tolerate anyone intending to put up shebeens or sell from the plots.

    She said she would assist the prospective beneficiaries to register the plots of land in their names with the Registrar of Deeds once she could secure a waiver from the Ministry of Land Reform.

    Kauluma dared others who have so far benefitted from land acquisitions to do the same – to give small portions of land as gifts to other landless Namibians.

    “Do not be selfish. Give plots of land to future generations of Namibians,” Kauluma said.


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  • 05/17/18--16:00: N$6m for rundown house
  • N$6m for rundown houseN$6m for rundown houseGovt pays ex-Oshana governor a fortune The Ohangwena regional council has confirmed that the government paid N$6 million for a rundown property, which subsequently was renovated with the help of parents before accommodating over 100 pupils. Former Oshana governor Sylvanus Vatuva has received a massive N$6 million windfall for his rundown property and mahangu field at the Omungwelume settlement, which is now being controversially used to house 118 school learners.

    Ohangwena governor Usko Nghaamwa and his administration are on a collision course over his decision to accommodate the pupils without following proper procedures.

    However, it is the N$6 million price tag of the property, purchased by the regional council through the ministry of urban and rural development, which has raised eyebrows. Ohangwena regional council chairperson Ericson Ndawanifa told Namibian Sun this week the property had been valuated, but he would not supply the evaluation figure as proof. “Discussions regarding that land and property took a long time. The property and the land were evaluated and the regional council approved the value. When he (Vatuva) was compensated, the money came from the ministry of urban and rural development and not the regional council,” Ndawanifa said.

    Vatuva, who served as Oshana governor between 1992 and 1998, confirmed he was compensated “to pave way for development” after clinching a deal with the regional council.

    “The house together with the mahangu field falls under settlement land. The council then compensated me for the whole piece of land,” Vatuva said.

    He did not say how much he was paid. The former governor has since acquired a new property not far from his original homestead.

    Collision course

    The payment for the land came to light this week when Namibian Sun was covering the unfolding drama around the accommodation of the 118 pupils from Omungwelume Senior Secondary School in the regional council property.

    Following his visit earlier this year, Nghaamwa ordered that learners be accommodated in a vacant house that the council had acquired last year.

    The principal of the school George Nanghanda moved the learners into the house soon after Nghaamwa's visit.

    However, this had been done without a council resolution leading to unfolding feud, which has included the council switching off water supply to the property.

    The council does not support the decision to accommodate the 118 learners at the settlement and is finding ways to push the learners out.

    At the beginning of the year, Nghaamwa, accompanied by Ongenga constituency councillor Sakaria Haimudi, visited various schools in the region, including Omungwelume, where it was revealed by management that more than 360 learners were suffering due to a lack of accommodation at the school.

    The governor was informed that some learners were camping outdoors in the school premises, while others were living in makeshift structures within the settlement - a situation which made the educational environment very challenging.

    Nghaamwa confirmed on Tuesday to Namibian Sun his decision to accommodate learners in a regional council house had created tension between him and his councillors.

    “Soon after the learners occupied the house, the water got disconnected by the regional council. I spoke to the ministry of agriculture to provide them with water, which they did. This house was vacant since it was bought and since there is a need for learner accommodation, why can't we make use of it? Learners have already moved in and it is unfair if the regional council is chasing them out. All I am doing is to create a conducive environment for the learners,” Nghaamwa said. He said these learners are from far-flung places throughout his vast region and do not have family members in Omungwelume.

    He said the house accommodates both male and female learners under the care of four supervisors, provided by the parents.

    “Those learners will remain there until the end of the year, then we will find a way forward. Their future is in our hands and any decision we are making may impact their future in one way or the other. This is what it means meeting the government halfway,” he said.

    Verbal undertaking

    Nanghanda said before Nghaamwa visited the school they had already submitted a request to the regional council for them to accommodate learners in the house.

    The council, however, did not respond to them “on time”. “When the governor visited our school and we briefed him on the situation, he made a decision that the learners be accommodated in the house. Since the house was vandalised by community members after the owner left, parents solicited money to have the premises renovated. Just after the learners moved in, a letter came in from the regional council that our request was rejected,” Nanghanda said.

    He said the regional council does not have money to renovate the house.

    Nanghanda said since the parents collected money, they wrote an appeal letter to the council. He said 118 learners are currently in the house and once their request is granted by the regional council, they will renovate currently unoccupied rooms, so more learners can be accommodated.

    He said parents are willing to help and they are currently providing food and paying the caretakers. Nghaamwa always provides mahangu to the learners.

    “The regional council is saying that we are occupying the house illegally and they disconnected water. The governor however made a provision for us to get water supply through the regional directorate of water affairs,” Nanghanda said. Education director Isak Hamatwi said Omungwelume is not the only school without a hostel in the region and it is the duty of parents to find accommodation their children.

    “The Omungwelume situation is just similar to other non-boarding schools. Parents have to find accommodation for their children. We have similar situations at other schools in the region. Omungwelume is a day school and parents have to find their own accommodation,” Hamatwi said.

    Not followed

    Ohangwena chief regional officer Fillipus Shilongo said proper channels were not followed when the school requested the premises and this resulted in the council rejecting the request.

    “The school falls under the directorate of education and if they want something they have to go through this directorate. Unfortunately, this request was only done directly to the governor. They are occupying the house illegally, as the council rejected their request for a number of reasons,” Shilongo said. He said the council spent a lot of money compensating the owner of the property and after the owner moved out the property was vandalised.

    He said if the council gives the green light for learners to be accommodated in the house, it will first have to renovate the property and make it habitable.

    “They were talking about accommodating 80 learners, which is a lot to be accommodated in one house. The erf where that house is located is also (zoned) general residential and not as a hostel. So the council has looked at all these things before passing a resolution,” Shilongo added.

    He said since the school is accommodating learners illegally, with only the governor's verbal blessing, the regional council together with the directorate of education this month passed a resolution on the way forward. Shilongo however could not say what will happen.


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    South Africa's Reserve Bank seen keeping rates unchangedSouth Africa's Reserve Bank seen keeping rates unchanged South Africa’s Reserve Bank will keep interest rates unchanged next week as an anticipated quicker rise in consumer prices over the coming months won’t drive inflation above target, a Reuters poll showed Wednesday.

    All 25 economists surveyed in the past week predicted the central bank will hold rates at 6.50% at its May 24 meeting, which will follow last month’s losses by the rand and renewed weakness on Tuesday.

    “They will probably hold steady, with the rand showing some vulnerability,” said Dennis Dykes, chief economist at Nedbank. “It illustrates the concerns that they have about the global situation.” However, he expected a reasonably neutral statement from Reserve Bank Governor Lesetja Kganyago.

    The Bank cut its main interest rate to 6.50%in March, giving a boost to the economy, and is now expected to enter a prolonged period of inactivity, with no change forecast for the next 18 months at least.

    “This current oil price is putting pressure on the inflation rate, especially if you consider the value-added tax (VAT) hike, we have seen the bottom or the best of inflation,” said Stanlib economist Kevin Lings.

    In February the National Treasury announced a VAT increase for the first time in two decades, which could hurt consumer demand, to cap ballooning debt and close a large revenue shortfall.

    “From here inflation will move higher, that obviously makes it more difficult to justify a rate cut,” Lings added.

    Still, the rate of increase in consumer prices is not expected to breach the top-end of the Reserve Bank’s 3-6% target during the forecast horizon.

    Emerging market currencies, including the rand, have been under pressure in the past month from a strong dollar bolstered by the Federal Reserve’s decision to raise US rates in March and its apparent disposition to do so again.

    In April, a Reuters poll predicted the Fed would raise rates three more times this year.

    Still the rand is expected to recoup some of its April losses against the dollar in the next 12 months - provided domestic economic growth improves.

    Growth forecasts for South Africa have improved to 1.8% from 1.3% at the start of the year, even though mining and manufacturing shrank in March due to lingering policy uncertainty and lukewarm demand.

    Growth for next year is expected to hit 2%.


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  • 05/17/18--16:00: Quote of the day
  • Quote of the dayQuote of the day Quote of the day

    “Regardless of the challenging economic times, we remain committed to contributing to skills development and growth of the Namibian economy."- Roberto January, human capital manager, Kraatz.



    Of the 2018/2019 ICT ministry’s budget is allocated to cater for the creation of a conducive regulatory framework for a thriving ICT sector and for the advancement of an inclusive ICT Smart Namibia.

    -ICT ministry



    Millions for combating crime

    N$330 million has been allocated to projects related to combating of crime during the 2018/2019 financial year.

    Budget documents

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  • 05/17/18--16:00: The evolving use of money
  • The evolving use of moneyThe evolving use of moneyGovt urged to embrace technology Well-known South African economist Dawie Roodt says governments should embrace new technologies such as digital money use. “It is possible that we are at the beginning of an end for banks.” Dawie Roodt, economist NDAMA NAKASHOLE - As economies evolve and technology is embraced, there is a rise in interest and participation in blockchains, which is a digital ledger in which transactions made in digital currencies such as bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies are recorded.

    And while there are different types of cryptocurrencies, which is a digital currency in which encryption techniques are used to regulate the generation of units of currency and verify the transfer of funds, operating independently of a central bank, bitcoin is currently the biggest.

    Well-known South African economist Dawie Roodt said in Windhoek this week that he thought governments should embrace these technologies and encourage their use.

    This, he said, was because economies were evolving and things were becoming more digitised.

    “I think governments should align their taxing systems to the blockchains,” he said as a guest speaker at the Namibia Employers Federation (NEF) annual general meeting held in Windhoek on Wednesday afternoon.

    Roodt said governments could even create their own cryptos, adding that the Swedish government was considering creating its own cryptocurrency.

    He said embracing these technologies was better than controlling them, because the only way to ban cryptocurrencies was by switching off the internet in the country.

    He cited the example of the Zimbabwean central bank's recent ban on local banks trading or processing payments linked to cryptocurrencies.

    “If we put all this property for example on a blockchain, you can transfer ownership of a fixed property within seconds,” he said. According to him, the types of wealth creation that blockchains bring could mean less poverty.

    Roodt added that South Africa was getting its first crypto ATM machine where one can transfer money, withdraw rand and so on. He said there were over 3000 crypto ATMs worldwide.

    End of banks

    Roodt said with the money system as it was now, it was impossible for one to go on a computer to transfer money without going through a banking system.

    “If you use government money, you will always use financial inter­mediaries,” he said.

    With digital money such as bitcoin, one can transfer money within seconds.

    “It is possible that we are at the beginning of the end of banks,” he said.


    Like tax evaders who prefer dealing in cash, cryptocurrencies also have their loopholes and hiding information regarding one's returns for tax-evasion purposes is one of them.

    The system can also be used by crooks and people have to be very careful.

    “You can also use it for money laundering,” Roodt said, adding that with government money, the same challenges were there.


    The economist added that as economies evolved, things were becoming more computerised and most work done by people in the past was now being done by computers.

    “Some work done by lawyers, doctors, in the past can now be performed by computers,” he said. Given that, he said it was better not to spend too much money on education anymore but instead to spend more money on skills development so that people could prepare for surviving in future environments.

    He said while it was good to go to university, children's primary education development was the real start and an important part of skills development.

    Skills mismatch

    For his part, deputy labour minister Tommy Nambahu said the country was facing a big planning problem because there was an oversupply of graduates in one sector of the economy and a deficit in another.

    He said there were too many administrative jobseekers while mining had an under supply. He said there was a need for a platform where all parties involved could come together and discuss how to solve this skills mismatch.

    “Academia has to find a chair at that planning table and be part of the planning process so that we can address some of these challenges,” he said.

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    Rukoro, Chiyangwa smoke peace pipeRukoro, Chiyangwa smoke peace pipe Zimbabwe Football Association (Zifa) and Council of Southern Africa Football Associations (Cosafa) president, Phillip Chiyangwa, and Namibia Football Associations (NFA) secretary-general, Barry Rukoro, smoked a apparently buried the hatchet at a hearing in South Africa.

    Rukoro was suspended by Cosafa for 90 days after he was accused of violent conduct towards Chiyangwa in Johannesburg in February, following a difference in opinion during a heated discussion on the sidelines of an annual general meeting.

    Rukoro reportedly struck Chiyangwa after the latter asked him about his strained relationship with NFA president Frans Mbidi.

    Chiyangwa had also allegedly told Cosafa executive members that Rukoro and Mbidi should not be allowed to secure another term, once their time in office comes to an end.


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    Felesianu to headline 'Africa Rising'Felesianu to headline 'Africa Rising'Local boxer seeks glory beyond borders Albinius 'Danny Boy' Felesianu is billed to fight tough South African, Willis Baloyi, on 25 May. Local boxer Albinius 'Danny Boy' Felesianu is in search of glory beyond Namibia's shores and will fight South African Willis Baloyi on 25 May, which is Africa Day.

    It is the perfect day for Kalakoda Promotions and Kwesé Sports' next instalment of their Friday Fight Night series and is aptly titled Africa Rising.

    The event takes place at the Portuguese Hall in Turffontein in Johannesburg and forms part of a three-day boxing convention of Southern African states.

    The inaugural convention will seek to foster strong inter-country relations amongst the various boards, and cover a full spectrum of topics around boxing administration and good governance.

    Namibia has pinned its hopes on Swakopmund-based Felesianu to represent it.

    Felesianu's fight will be the main attraction on the night when he faces Baloyi in an international non-title lightweight bout.

    “We are building him up to an IBF Intercontinental fight on 3 August in Swakopmund and this contest will provide the competition needed for the Namibian prospect,” Jeremey Bean, marketing chief of Kalakoda Promotions, explained.

    The current IBF Lightweight Africa champion is managed by The Dome, Swakopmund, but fights under Kalakoda's banner - both in Namibia and South Africa.

    The 31-year old Namibian has been in impressive form over the last year, securing three undisputed wins.

    His last victory came in March 2018, when he dominated tough-as-nails South African veteran Lukhanyo Kaptein in Cape Town. It was his 16th career win.

    “I'm feeling good and looking forward to the fight. Training has been going smoothly. It's always difficult to fight away from home, but I'm confident that I'll return with another victory on my record,” Felesianu said.

    Another notable match-up will see welterweight champion Cristiano Ndombassy from Angola take on Sharief Kasongo from Zambia, in what promises to be an all-action fight. Special mention must also be given to

    Vlad Sirenko, the Ukraine heavyweight prospect, who has made South Africa his home. He takes on Malawi's Alick Gogodo in a non-title bout.

    The remaining card promises some great match-ups, with representatives from ten Southern African countries, including two ladies bouts.


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    Royal wedding 2018: Royal Family thanks publicRoyal wedding 2018: Royal Family thanks publicTwo hundred of Meghan and Harry's closest friends and family attended the event held by Prince Charles Thousands of people lined the streets to see the couple on their big day, with many more watching the ceremony on television around the globe. The Royal Family has thanked those who travelled to Windsor for the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle.

    The wedding celebrations ended with a black-tie dinner and fireworks display at Frogmore House, near Windsor Castle.

    More than 13 million people watched the TV coverage on the BBC - it peaked at 13.1 million just after 13:00 BST, with an average of 8.7 million viewers.

    As a wedding gift Prince Harry gave his bride an emerald-cut aquamarine ring which had belonged to his late mother - Diana, Princess of Wales.

    The Royal Family's twitter account posted a message of thanks to those who followed the wedding from the UK, the Commonwealth and around the world.

    The Royal Family

    Thank you to everyone who came to Windsor and those who followed from around the UK, the Commonwealth, and the world today. Congratulations once again to the newly-married Duke and Duchess of Sussex. #royalwedding

    The newlyweds - now to be known as the Duke and Duchess of Sussex - spent the night at Windsor Castle.

    The couple are not expected to leave for their honeymoon immediately, choosing instead to remain in the UK before taking a break.

    Their first official engagement as husband and wife will be at an event to celebrate Prince Charles's 70th birthday at Buckingham Palace on Tuesday.

    Meghan, who had changed out of her wedding dress into a lily-white, silk crepe Stella McCartney halter-neck gown, broke with royal tradition to give a speech at the evening reception.

    Among the close friends who attended the evening celebrations were Bollywood star Priyanka Chopra and tennis ace Serena Williams, who revealed their outfit changes on social media.

    Earlier, the prince and his bride exchanged vows and rings before the Queen and 600 guests at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle.

    Ms Markle wore a white boat-neck dress by British designer Clare Waight Keller and Prince Harry was given special permission from the Queen to keep his short beard while wearing the frockcoat uniform of his former regiment, the Blues and Royals. Large crowds turned out in bright sunshine to see them driven around Windsor afterwards in a horse-drawn carriage.

    Media captionPrince Harry and Meghan share their first kiss on the steps outside St George's Chapel

    Guests at the wedding included Oprah Winfrey, George and Amal Clooney, David and Victoria Beckham and Sir Elton John, who later performed at the wedding reception.

    Prince George and Princess Charlotte were among the 10 young bridesmaids and pageboys.

    Prince Charles walked Ms Markle down the aisle, after her father, Thomas, was unable to attend for health reasons.

    Prince Charles also accompanied Ms Markle's mother, Doria, after the service finished

    'A joyful thing'

    The wedding service combined British tradition with modernity and the bride's African-American heritage.

    The Most Rev Bishop Michael Curry, president of the US Episcopal Church, gave an address, the Rt Rev David Conner, Dean of Windsor, conducted the service and the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Most Rev Justin Welby, officiated.

    In a passionate speech, Bishop Curry - who was invited to speak by Ms Markle - referenced the African-American spiritual song Down by the Riverside, which was sung by slaves, and when he realised he had gone on too long, he told his audience he had better wrap up as “we gotta get you all married!”

    Speaking afterwards, Bishop Curry said it was “a joyful thing” to see diversity in the ceremony.

    He later joined Mr Welby at a prayer service in St Albans.

    Just got home from an amazing evening at St. Albans Abbey. Between 3,000 and 4,000 gathered to pray “Thy Kingdom come”. Many gave their lives to Christ. A privilege to serve with Archbishop Justin and Bishop Michael who left the royal wedding reception early to be with us! All 600 guests were invited to a lunchtime reception at St George's Hall, hosted by the Queen, where the best man, the Duke of Cambridge, acted as compere.

    Guests were served langoustine canapes, Windsor lamb, and champagne and pistachio macaroons. Instead of a formal sit-down dinner, food was served in bowls.

    Guest Suhani Jalota, founder of the India-based Myna Mahila charity, said Elton John performed a “mini-concert”. She said speeches by the Prince of Wales and the groom were “lovely”, adding: “Some people were even crying.”

    Posting on Instagram, David Beckham said: “Watching Harry as happy as he was makes us all proud of the man and person he has always been... what a day.”

    Other celebrities attending were TV personality James Corden, singer James Blunt, actress Carey Mulligan and former England rugby player Jonny Wilkinson.

    Prince Harry's uncle, Earl Spencer; the Duchess of York, Sarah Ferguson; and the Duchess of Cambridge's sister, Pippa Middleton, were also invited.

    About 1,200 members of the public - many who were recognised for their charity work - were invited into the grounds of Windsor Castle for the wedding.

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