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Tells it All - Namibian Sun

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    Resettlement programme blastedResettlement programme blastedCurrent policy 'discriminatory' Stakeholders in the Hardap Region have criticised the government's resettlement policy, saying it was discriminating against the already disadvantaged Namibians. Hardap Region inhabitants on Tuesday said the land resettlement programme is skewed and unfair, while labelling the qualifying criteria as discriminatory towards the poor and uneducated Namibians.

    The Office of the Ombudsman conducted a public hearing, chaired by Ombudsman John Walters, on the Land Reform and Resettlement Programme at the Mariental Community Hall, which was attended by 21 people.

    Walters said the need for a national inquiry concerning the land resettlement programme is necessitated by the many complaints against Regional Resettlement Committees.

    “There are reported, alleged incidents of unfair treatment in the allocation of land, allegations that the primary objectives of the resettlement policy have not been achieved and allegations that resettlement farms are not occupied by beneficiaries but subleased to others,” he said.

    A 69-year-old female farmer said she has been applying for a resettlement farm for over 20 years without success and attributed the situation to unjust qualifying criteria.

    “I am old now and tired of applying to be resettled as I have been doing so for the last 20 years. Where will I get an agricultural qualification at this day and age to be considered for resettlement?”

    She further said most people, especially old people, don't have banks and only make use of the savings accounts offered by NamPost.

    “It is heart-breaking that our government prefers education qualification over us, the disadvantaged citizens,” she noted.

    Another contributor, a male farmer, said most farms in the Hardap Region are allocated to people without livestock at the expense of successful communal farmers.

    “I know of a lot of farms in the region that are subleased to other people, because the original beneficiaries do not have livestock. Is it fair while some of us, successful communal farmers, suffer with our livestock and leave them in corridors to die?”

    He said the farming experience gained over the years goes to waste and the country suffers indirectly due to this, because people who could have contributed to the economy of the country stop farming.

    He said applicants do not even receive feedback from the lands ministry as to why their countless applications were not successful and called on the government to do regular inspections and see whether the original beneficiaries are in fact farming at the allocated farms.

    The resettlement programme is intended to cover all kinds of landless, displaced and destitute people in the country.

    The ombudsman's office will also hold similar hearings in the 13 other regions in the country.


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    Lab accreditations health's responsibilityLab accreditations health's responsibility The Health Professions Councils of Namibia (HPCNA) says it is not responsible for the accreditation of laboratories and that it is in fact the health ministry's job.

    Namibian Sun reported last week that the Namibia Institute of Pathology (NIP) laboratories were accredited by the HPCNA, following a questionable report leaked to the media.

    The council's registrar Cornelius Weyulu said it was not responsible for the accreditation of pathology laboratories.

    “Laboratories like all other health facilities are licenced by the Hospitals and Health Facilities Act. Licensing and inspection is done by the ministry of health,” said Weyulu.

    The only time the council steps in with inspecting laboratories is cases where interns are assigned to these health facilities for training purposes, he said. The council would then decide whether these facilities were suitable.

    NIP acting CEO Mecky Nghipandulwa, who has taken up the reins of the public entity after the recent suspension of Augustinus Katiti, has dismissed the claim of non-accreditation of its labs as “fake news”.

    The parastatal conducts laboratory tests for the ministry of health from which it earns as much as 95% of its revenue.

    The Namibia Standards Institute (NSI) said it had conducted calibrations on NIP laboratory equipment.

    “The NSI conducts calibrations of laboratory equipment and certification services for laboratories such as NIP,” said its spokesperson Joanette Eises.

    The disputed report claimed laboratory services at the NIP have deteriorated.

    “They subsequently lost two out of three accreditations. The privately run company Pathcare has six laboratories and these are all accredited. Pathcare's results are accurate, reliable, repeatable, available and with a short turnaround time,” the report said.

    Another worrying issue raised was that the health ministry's needs to use NIP since it is a parastatal, notwithstanding the often long turnaround times witnessed by doctors to access the results of their patients.

    “The main complaint regarding NIP is [that] the laboratory results take too long or are never obtained. The ministry of health needs to use NIP, a state-owned enterprise,” the report said.

    This also meant that tests needed to be repeated because of the urgency required in getting results to patients and the long turnaround times witnessed by doctors.

    “Often due to unavailability of results, investigations need to be repeated at an extra cost to the ministry of health,” the report added.


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    Welfare organisation keeping children off the streetsWelfare organisation keeping children off the streets The Tov HIV/Aids Orphans and Vulnerable Children Organisation has scored great success in a variety of its programmes, mainly aimed at rehabilitating young children through continuous mentoring and care.

    The Tsumeb-based welfare organisation, in its quarterly report issued this week, stated 65 boys and girls are housed at its community centre and are put through both primary and secondary school.

    The report noted that most children come from either broken families or those unable to support children, especially in the town's informal settlements.

    “I made a commitment 17 years ago that I will remove every condom from the hands of girls in my community and remove every knife from the hands of the boys in my community. I vowed to replace the condoms and knives with pens, books and a spoon in their hands,” Reverend Edward Amadhila, Tov's technical advisor said in the report.

    He said the children appear to be heeding his message as most have done well in their school and scored good grades.

    “Last month, we invited Dr Phyllis Mary Yesudas, the principal of St Boniface College - which is the best private school in the country to come - and encourage them and it is paying off,” he noted.

    To sustain the children, including two babies that the organisation took in after they were abandoned by their mothers; it operates a chicken project and a crop production facility.

    It has on its books 150 chickens which lay eggs that the organisation sells at a profit and also use to feed the children.

    The organisation plans to increase the number of laying chickens to 2 000 within the next 18 months.

    They also grow spinach to complement the children's diet, whilst intending to sell part of the produce in future to sustain its activities and programmes.

    “The idea is that the community buys from us; in this way we will become self-sustainable. Or you can buy from us and we will give to school feeding schemes in and around Tsumeb,” said Amadhila.

    The organisation also called on the corporate world to come to its aid through sponsorships and donations, to allow it to take in more children.

    Alternatively, Amadhila said, companies and individuals can assist in the upgrading of the organisation's income generation projects such as the chicken farm.

    “We need some 300 bags of cement to start making bricks for the chicken coop. We need to fence off some part of the farm. We also urgently need to put shade netting on the eight greenhouses. We need a solar home system for our farmhouse as there is no electricity and it is important for communication purposes to have electricity,” he said.


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    Outapi holds farming, electricity potential Outapi holds farming, electricity potential Increasing population, higher income A First Capital report that profiled the northern town of Outapi concluded it holds much potential for farming and electricity production, both using solar energy and hydro power. "The ever-sunny weather of Outapi has proved to be an opportunity to channel the ever-frequent sunlight into the generation of electricity through solar projects."- First Capital NDAMA NAKASHOLE

    Titled ‘Economy Profile for Outapi’ and published yesterday, First Capital, a financial services company specialising in providing treasury and asset management services, said the town’s rapid increase in population, as well as improving income levels, provide buying power for local businesses.

    Outapi’s population is estimated to be growing at 9.3% per annum, which is higher than the average growth of 4% per year of all urban areas in the country.

    “The local economy is private sector driven, and the rapid growth in local infrastructure developments indicate the future growth potential of the town’s economy,” the company said.

    The firm further concluded that despite the town’s growing agricultural farming base, access to financing, especially among small and medium farmers, remains a challenge to enhance this potential further.

    “Value-addition in agricultural raw commodities is also low, hence there is potential to grow the local manufacturing capacity.”


    The town of Outapi, like many others in the north is widely surrounded by villages where communal livestock, crop and poultry farming is common. A significant number of residents interviewed indicated they were involved in either one or most of those common agricultural activities, the report said.

    Furthermore, only 33% of Outapi households were engaged in poultry farming activities. In all those common agricultural activities, the proportion of Outapi families engaged in such farming activities is much higher compared to the national proportions.

    Role in power supply

    The report further said the ever-sunny weather of Outapi has proved to be an opportunity to channel the ever-frequent sunlight into the generation of electricity through solar projects.

    To meet the growing demand of electricity, a 5MW solar power plant project was established through a partnership between an international and local investor (Ino Investment). The solar energy plant forms part of the 14 national renewable energy independent power producers, with a combined capacity of 70MW.

    About 68km west of Outapi is a hydroelectric power plant called Ruacana.

    Power usage

    The average usage of electricity in the country for individual customers is 4 megawatts hour per annum, equivalent to 333 kilowatts hour per month. However, it differs by area.

    Individuals in the northern regions, where Outapi is situated, use 3.5 megawatt hours of electricity per annum (292 kilowatt hours per month), which is slightly below the national average, based on the surveyed individuals.

    First Capital estimates the average electricity usage in Outapi to be 3.6 megawatts hour, equivalent to 300 kilowatts hour per month. Commercial users of electricity in the Omusati Region use 17 megawatt hours in a year, equivalent to 1 417 kilowatt hours per month.

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    Huawei pushes back as pressure on Chinese companies growsHuawei pushes back as pressure on Chinese companies grows Huawei said a proposed ban on selling its gear to some US mobile providers isn’t lawful, pushing back against assertions it poses a risk as the Trump administration increases pressure on China over trade and national security.

    The Shenzhen-based networking giant’s presence in the US “has been artificially restricted by unfounded allegations and suspicions based solely on misperceptions” about its relationship with China’s government, Huawei said in a filing with the Federal Communications Commission that was made public on Tuesday.

    The agency under chairperson Ajit Pai, an appointee of President Donald Trump, has proposed barring telecommunications companies from using a federal subsidy to buy gear from companies such as Huawei and ZTE that are judged to be a national security risk.

    Huawei, China’s top telecommunications equipment vendor and the world’s No. 3 smartphone maker, was founded in 1988 by former Chinese army engineer Ren Zhengfei.

    The company took the unusual step on Wednesday of publicising the minutes of a recent high-level meeting during which the ex-military officer emphasised the symbiotic relationship between the two world powers, and China’s dependence on cutting-edge American technology.

    Huawei will buy some 50 million chips from Qualcomm alone this year, he was cited as saying.

    “The US-China trade dependency is mutual and extensive, I don’t foresee strong conflicts,” Ren was quoted as saying in a transcript posted on social media platform WeChat. “American communications technology crested in the 1960s, when we were mere college students.”

    The rapid ascendancy however of Huawei and other Chinese companies in just the past decade has raised red flags.

    On Monday, another federal agency asked the FCC to block China Mobile from entering the US market, citing national security grounds. A spokesperson for China’s foreign ministry said the US “should stop groundless speculation and intentional suppression against Chinese companies.”

    The US is set to impose tariffs on US$34 billion of Chinese goods on Friday, with China vowing to retaliate.

    Trump has also threatened additional tariffs on US$200 billion of Chinese imports that could be implemented if China imposes counter-measures. Talks between the US and China have stalled in part over American demands that Beijing reduce government support for high-tech industries.

    Huawei, in its comments to the FCC that became available on Tuesday, said it’s an independent, privately-owned business.

    Letting Huawei compete freely could yield savings, while restrictions “will result in excessive profits for a handful of other equipment suppliers in this highly concentrated market.”

    The result would leave the US falling behind other countries, with harm concentrated in remote and poor areas, according to the filing said. “The US cannot afford to become the only country in the world that lacks access to the best communication technologies,” Huawei said in the filing.

    The FCC’s authority over the subsidy, the Universal Service Fund, doesn’t encompass national security concerns, Huawei said.

    CTIA, a Washington-based trade group with members including US mobile providers AT&T Inc. and Verizon Communications, didn’t express outright support or opposition to the measure. It said in a filing that the FCC should proceed cautiously and consult with the Department of Homeland Security and other agencies before acting.

    FCC action could have the “inadvertent effect” of inhibiting investment in secure equipment by creating uncertainty over which suppliers can be used, the CTIA said.

    The Competitive Carriers Association, with members including regional and rural mobile providers, opposes the FCC’s rule which will “devastate impacted rural carriers,” according to an emailed statement from the Washington-based trade group.

    The Telecommunications Industry Association, a trade group for gear makers, said it supports the FCC’s proposal.

    The FCC in April cast a 5-0 vote to advance the restriction, which won’t be final until a second vote that hasn’t been scheduled. The agency in its draft order said Congress scrutinised Huawei and ZTE as possible security threats.


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    Namoloh wants stay of prosecutionNamoloh wants stay of prosecution A warrant officer is tackling the prosecutor-general's office for failing to finalise a pending fraud case against him since 2009.

    Warrant officer Marien Ngouabi Namoloh alleges this has prejudicially affected him and wants a court order to halt all proceedings against him.

    The fraud charges are currently provisionally withdrawn in the Katutura Magistrate's Court.

    Namoloh said in a sworn statement the failure to finalise the matter has affected his right to the presumption of innocence and has prejudiced his employment.

    According to him there is prejudice because of the fact that some witnesses have already died, while he has also lost some documents relating to the matter.

    Namoloh claimed he had also forgotten some of the facts surrounding the case, which is to his disadvantage.

    “This is a case in which the court in terms of article 12(1) (b) of the Namibian constitution should release me and order the permanent stay of prosecution,” Namoloh stated in his application.

    The state alleges Namoloh in June 2009, together with four other police officers, arrested two Tanzanians for alleged illegal dealings in immovable properties.

    They were incarcerated for one day.

    Upon their release, the Tanzanians opened a criminal case against the officers alleging that money was taken from them.

    A corruption charge was opened against the police officers and they were arrested and later released on N$7 000 bail each.

    “In anticipation of the criminal charges against me during late 2009 and early 2010, I was suspended from my employment. This was in order to facilitate a fair trial without interference in the investigation, since I was a police officer,” Namoloh said in his sworn statement in his application, which is still at the pre-trial stage.

    He added he was reinstated in the service in 2014, after the case was provisionally withdrawn.

    Namoloh has been a police officer since 1999. He made his first appearance in the Katutura Magistrate's Court on 9 December 2010 and the case was postponed to 28 January 2011 for its transfer to the regional court.

    The matter was again remanded on 28 January 2011 to August of that year for plea and trial. But in August 2011 it was again postponed to January 2012.

    However, the matter was again postponed without any reason given to between 23 and 24 July 2012.

    “I believe this postponement was unnecessary as the court could have addressed me, as I was present,” Namoloh said in his sworn statement. He alleged that on about 23 July 2012 his finances were depleted, as he had to pay his attorney to secure his attendance at court.

    “My state of mind was deteriorating. I was emotionally drained as I wanted the matter to be finalised but it was being postponed unnecessarily,” he argued.

    Namoloh further alleges that the state on 5 June 2013 failed to secure the attendance of its witnesses.

    He alleged the presiding magistrate warned it would be the final postponement. Namoloh added some of the state witnesses were foreigners; hence the state's failure to secure their attendance.


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  • 07/04/18--16:00: LPM, Swapo clash
  • LPM, Swapo clashLPM, Swapo clashAmid claims that voter cards were confiscated A Swapo councillor is being accused of intimidation by the LPM, however, he claims, he was under the impression that people were being defrauded. Mobilisers of the Landless People's Movement (LPM) are accusing Swapo Otjiwarongo constituency councillor Julius Neumbo of confiscating about 60 voter registration cards from its supporters.

    LPM organiser Frans Pemboma said Neumbo, accompanied by two men, had arrived at his home on Sunday and demanded the voter cards, which he had been collecting from people for the purpose of capturing their personal information.

    Pemboma claimed residents of the Ombili informal settlement intend to give the LPM their support, once it is registered as a political party by the Electoral Commission of Namibia (ECN), ahead of next year's general elections.

    Pemboma said Neumbo took the cards and told the people they should come to his office if they want them back.

    The mobiliser said this was clearly an attempt to intimidate residents that were planning to join the LPM.

    Another LPM mobiliser, Jakob Hausiku, confirmed Pemboma's claims and added he had been approached by a police intelligence officer, who he only knows as Carlos, on 26 June.

    The intelligence officer allegedly wanted to take him to the Otjiwarongo police station, presumably for interrogation.

    Hausiku said unknown police officers have been “threatening” residents not to take part in any LPM activities.

    Neumbo denied the allegations, saying he was requested by Pemboma to take the voter cards with him for safekeeping.

    He stressed he had not confiscated the cards, saying they were given to him.

    Neumbo said he was in the north when he received a call about people being registered. He said he then called Otjiwarongo mayor Bennes Haimbondi to establish what was happening.

    When he arrived at Otjiwarongo he heard the queues for registration were growing longer and he then went on NBC's Oshiwambo radio station to warn residents about “dubious acts”.

    “This is not the first time these types of people are registering those communities. Another time people had to pay N$40 and were promised houses. That is why I thought I should alert the people,” Neumbo said.

    He said after the broadcast many people demanded their voter cards and identity documents back from the LPM mobilisers. He said he also took up the matter with an ECN official.

    “I thought somebody tried to defraud the people,” Neumbo insisted, saying he would give the people their voter cards back.

    “I am not a Swapo councillor; I am a councillor for the government.”

    The LPM mobilisers vehemently denied Neumbo's assertion that they have gone around promising plots to people, saying they made it clear to him they were merely registering people as LPM members.

    Ironically, Neumbo forwarded a photo of the LPM registration form, with a caption that read “dubious form”.

    The form clearly states the purpose of signing it was to show support for the LPM's registration with the ECN.

    Neumbo also said “someone from Windhoek” had in the meantime phoned and insulted him.

    LPM's national secretary Henny Seibeb admitted he had called Neumbo about the voter cards, saying the Swapo councillor's motive was clearly an attempt to intimidate people supporting the LPM.

    “I told him how a democracy works. There is space for any political party or civil movement in a democracy. The political space is not just for Swapo. This is not a one-party state. They think they own people and that when we want to go into a community we have to go through them,” Seibeb fumed.

    He claimed Neumbo had gone to the informal settlement with police officers “to clamp down” on LPM supporters.

    “Otjiwarongo is known for its political violence; it is a powder keg and things can turn out violent if we are not careful,” Seibeb cautioned.

    He said Neumbo should be called to order by Swapo secretary-general Sophia Shaningwa and police chief Sebastian Ndeitunga.

    “The police are supposed to be neutral. Neumbo is friends with people in the police. Swapo does not own people's minds; their days are numbered,” Seibeb said.

    Head of the Otjozondjupa police, Commissioner Heinrich Tjiveze, said LPM leader Bernadus Swartbooi had spoken to him about the matter, but did not give him anything “concrete”.

    “If he can give me something concrete I can follow it up officially,” Tjiveze said.

    Catherine Sasman

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    Robbery suspect killed in shootout with policeRobbery suspect killed in shootout with police A man suspected to have been involved in the robbery of the Standard Bank Namibia branch at Nkurenkuru died instantly on Tuesday after a shooting between the suspects and police officers.

    The robbery, which took place during the early hours of Monday, was reported on Tuesday, after which a police investigation was launched.

    Police spokesperson Chief Inspector Kauna Shikwambi said members of Nampol and the Windhoek City Police pursued the suspects from the Windhoek-Okahandja road traffic checkpoint.

    “When the suspects arrived at the traffic checkpoint, they sped off in their vehicle but abandoned it later and continued to flee on foot, before opening fire on the law enforcement officers,” Shikwambi added.

    According to Shikwambi, the officers retaliated by firing back, in an act of self-defence, shooting and killing one of the suspects instantly.

    The deceased has been identified as 37-year-old Tyles Uugwanga, whose next of kin have been informed about his death.

    The officers managed to arrest another 45-year-old suspect, while four others fled into the nearby farms.

    Shikwambi gave her assurance that Nampol is still in pursuit of the fleeing suspects.

    Meanwhile, a murder case against the officer is being investigated by Nampol's internal investigation department.


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  • 07/04/18--16:00: June tough on African stocks
  • June tough on African stocksJune tough on African stocksEscalating trade war June was a tough month on African bourses, with most of the equities markets under coverage closing on negative territories. "The Zimbabwe Stock Exchange was one of the worst performers, dropping 3.47% to close at 340.06 in the month." The weakness in most markets across the continent come in the wake of escalating trade-war concern, and weakness in China and the US Federal Reserve’s aggressive move on interest rates.

    The Ghana Stock Exchange, which had been a lead performer earlier in the year, was the biggest loser in the month of June. It dropped 12.56% to 2 880.63, although it still has a year-to-date gain of 11.66%.

    This comes as Vodafone Ghana plans to list on the Ghana Stock Exchange (GSE), but only after dealing with some debt restructuring issues with the government.

    In Nigeria, the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NGSE) also saw weak trade, coming off by -1.92% to 38 278.55.

    During the month, the NGSE announced plans to change its market structure to include strategies that might provide potential for cheaper cost of capital to issuers in the market, according to NGSE chief executive officer Oscar Onyema.

    The Zimbabwe Stock Exchange was one of the worst performers, dropping 3.47% to close at 340.06 in the month.

    This is ahead of the country’s general elections, to be held on 30 July. Stocks fell the most in the last week, following the blast that took place soon after President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s political address at the White City Stadium in Bulawayo.

    The ZSE closed the month with a year-to-date gain of just 2.11% down from a year-to-date gain of approximately 16% in mid-June.

    The drop in ZSE stocks also come at a time when there is volatility on the country’s currency front, with bank depositors only managing to convert their bank balances into real US dollars at a 60% discount.

    The Botswana Stock Exchange was down 1.66%, while the Lusaka Stock Exchange shed 1.89%.

    The Nairobi Securities Exchange was, however, one of the few in the positive territory, up a marginal 0.44% to 175.5.


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  • 07/04/18--16:00: //Karas faces power cuts
  • //Karas faces power cuts//Karas faces power cutsNamPower targets non-paying villages, towns, govt departments The country’s power utility is putting its foot down in an effort to recover long outstanding debt. NamPower has resolved to suspend the power supply to a number of villages and town councils, government departments and customers with long outstanding accounts in the //Karas Region.

    The Aranos town council and several other village councils in region face power cuts from next Wednesday.

    NamPower released a statement yesterday saying the Aranos town council and abattoir, as well as the Tses, Koës and Berseba town councils would have their electricity cut.

    In addition, various facilities managed by the agriculture ministry also face power cuts, including the Kalahari experimental farm, the Neckartal Dam, the Directorate of Veterinary Services offices in Ariamsvlei, Buitepos and Noordoewer, as well as the Tsumis agricultural college campuses at Pump Kujek and Pump San.

    An Agribusdev project along the Orange River also faces a power cut.

    NamPower said it had held continuous engagements with the affected parties over longstanding overdue accounts but that nothing was forthcoming from the stakeholders to avoid cuts in their supply of power.

    “NamPower has resolved to suspend the power supply to a number of village and town councils, government departments and customers with long outstanding accounts. NamPower came to this decision after continuous engagements with the affected parties to settle their outstanding accounts did not yield positive results,” the utility said.

    NamPower encouraged the use of power supply generators in the affected areas.

    “Institutions that provide critical services are kindly advised to ensure that standby generators are used or alternative arrangements are made,” NamPower said.

    Berseba village council CEO Charles Vries said efforts were being made to ensure that its power would not be cut.

    His council currently owes NamPower N$1 million.

    “There were such talks that power would be cut but we made arrangements to pay off the electricity we will be consuming, while the other portion of existing debt will be paid off on a monthly basis,” Vries said.

    Tses councillor Josef Awasman said they had made arrangements and were still looking to engage NamPower to avoid power cuts.

    “We need arrangements but we are not sure. We are doing our best,” Awasman said.

    NamPower spokesperson Tangeni Kambangula would not say how much was owed to the power utility.


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    Avid culprits finally face sentencingAvid culprits finally face sentencing Thirteen years after the Social Security Commission (SSC) was swindled out of N$30 million by a group of politically connected Swapo politicians and their cohorts, five accused - amongst them a former ruling party deputy minister and a youth leader - will finally hear if they will go to jail for their crimes.

    High Court Judge Christie Liebenberg is expected to sentence former works deputy minister Paulus Kapia, accountant Inez /Gâses and former Swapo youth leader Ralph Blaauw, who were earlier found guilty of fraud.

    One of the kingpins in the matter, Nico Josea, was found guilty of theft by conversion, while Sharon Blaauw, Ralph’s wife, will be sentenced for reckless business conduct.

    They have all been conclusively linked and found guilty on 11 May of being involved in the defrauding of the SSC using the Avid Investment Corporation, with which the commission was convinced to invest its money in 2005.

    Among the announced 66 witnesses in the trial was Christophine Ndapewa Kandara, the widow of Lazarus Kandara, whose shadow has hung over the courtroom, despite his alleged suicide also near 13 years ago.

    Kandara mysteriously ended his own life in front of the Windhoek police station by shooting himself on 24 August 2005 at around 20:30.

    The flamboyant and connected businessman had promised during an Avid liquidation hearing before his arrest in 2005, that he would “spill the beans” by revealing the names of people who helped him siphon off N$30 million from the SSC.

    Many people believe that was actually the reason he was allegedly ‘assassinated’.

    Shortly after the N$30 million was transferred to Avid, N$29.5 million was paid into Josea’s company, Namangol Investments, account.

    Liebenberg found in his judgement that Josea and the South African investment broker Alan Rosenberg had been in cahoots with Kandara, who concocted the scheme to swindle money out of the SCC.

    Blaauw, who is a former secretary-general of the National Youth Council, is alleged to have touted Avid’ political links to persuade SSC executives to invest N$30 million with the then newly-created company.

    During the trial he had disputed testimony that he had told SSC managers that both Swapo and former President Sam Nujoma held stakes in Avid, while trying to convince the SSC management to invest.

    “There is overwhelming evidence that the SSC funds invested with Avid were stolen and that the theft was a co-perpetrated,” Liebenberg said in his May judgement.

    Kapia, /Gâses and Ralph Blaauw will be sentenced for fraud and face the imminent prospect of jail term.

    The court found that although the three did not know the money was going to be stolen, they knowingly made representations to the SCC, in an effort to persuade it that the N$30 million investment would be safeguarded.

    In the case of Sharon Blaauw, the court found she signed resolutions of the Avid board, which were presented to SSC in an attempt to calm the commission regarding the safety of its investment.

    The court found she did not acquaint herself with the correctness of those documents.

    Kapia testified in his mitigation of sentence that he is politically and financially a ruined man.

    He pleaded for mercy and asked for a suspended sentence.

    His lawyer Sisa Namandje said Kapia had no intention to cause a loss to the SSC.

    He also described how Kapia had fallen from grace, politically.

    Kapia was forced to resign as deputy minister in August 2005.

    “It was a big, bad political fall,” Namandje said.

    “He lost that position to which he was appointed a few months before and subsequently his house in Pionierspark, after he resigned from his position.”

    Two other accused Otniel Podewiltz, and retired defence force brigadier Mathias Shiweda were acquitted after state could not prove their guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.


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    Ndeitunga: Stop embarrassing meNdeitunga: Stop embarrassing me Police chief Sebastian Ndeitunga has accused some police officers of being in the pockets of criminals and of corruptly misusing state resources, while embarrassing the name of the country's uniformed forces.

    He warned lax police officers he will not lose his job over their negligence and lack of performance.

    Ndeitunga yesterday summoned all police officers for a briefing at the Wanaheda police station following a hike in the crime rate, which allegedly was partly due to compromised officers.

    According to him a member of the police's special reserve force is facing the axe after it was found that he was compromised during the investigation of the late Sakeus 'Kablou' Amateta. Amateta, a notorious figure, was gunned down by the police recently in Windhoek for allegedly resisting arrest.

    The police chief said he is embarrassed by some lazy and unprofessional officers, who are often the cause of justice failures.

    “They are even saying, 'you know why you are not succeeding in your operation is because Van Wyk is investigating. Van Wyk is too much sniffing around',” he said, adding that some police officers are simply corrupt.

    He also said the Rundu family massacre over the weekend was purely as a result of police negligence and a failure to deliver services.

    “When you see the report, it states that a member of public came to the charge office and asked the police to assist. But the police said no, they have no car there.

    There was not even an entry in the registry to indicate that there was a case.

    They just said, 'no car here',” Ndeitunga lamented.

    He said it was a joke that while there was no car available to prevent the Rundu massacre, about 12 police vehicles were in attendance at the subsequent crime scene.

    “The result of this negligence led to the loss of five lives.

    Imagine if it was your own family that was wiped out by a person that was supposed to be arrested by the police.”

    “Where were the cars? It is a matter of allocating resources where they are needed,” he said.

    According to him a handful of police officers are truly serving the nation, while the majority are chasing the comfort and shade of offices.

    He also lamented how there are many police officers who do not do patrols and that some officers are being deployed without the necessary equipment to defend themselves or members of public.

    “They are not fit if they do not have the equipment. And I heard some of the officers are apparently allergic to these items, and you find some of these officers on duty in isolated sites such as the Kupferberg satellite police station. They are there because they are disciplined, but they are not given the necessary equipment,” said Ndeitunga.

    He also lashed out at female police officers who are posing at shopping malls wearing their police uniforms, while trying to impress people on social media.

    According to him many junior police officers are also deployed without being briefed by their supervisors and may even miss criminal activities because they are not vigilant.

    “You are getting a salary to produce; the productivity is zero in some offices. The level of productivity is low and you can only improve it when you adjust your performance. If you do not do this then you will be transferred forcefully,” Ndeitunga added.


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     Stripped and cavity searched Stripped and cavity searchedOndonga employees sue Amupanda, others for N$4 million It is alleged the four employees were stripped naked and subjected to demeaning and humiliating cavity searches, after they were accused of stealing the key to the community court cupboard drawer. Four Ondonga Traditional Authority employees are suing the authority’s secretary Nepando Amupanda and five others for about N$4 million after they were allegedly stripped naked and cavity searched over a missing office key.

    The six defendants in the matter are Amupanda, Sergeant Haindongo, senior member of Ondonga royal family Selma Gwanandjokwe Shejavali, Frans Shidhudhu, Naeman Fillemon and Ondonga authority senior councillor Johannes Eino Shondili Amutenya, who were present when the staff were allegedly humiliated.

    In a combined summons issued by the Windhoek High Court, dated 26 June, the four are demanding N$975 000 each, while claiming they suffered contumelia (a deliberately offensive act) and were maliciously deprived of their fundamental rights to liberty and dignity.

    It is alleged the four employees were stripped naked and subjected to cavity searches by the Ondangwa police at the request of Amupanda, who accused them of stealing the key to the community court cupboard drawer.

    “On 22 March at or near the offices of the OTA, Amupanda maliciously, punitively, unlawfully and intentionally ordered his agents to seize (the) plaintiffs persons and deprived them of their personal liberty, alternatively maliciously arrested and detained them in the community court hall,” summons reads.

    The staff members say this was done without warrants of arrest and detention or reasonable and probable cause, and in an arbitrary manner.

    They further claimed that Haindongo was accompanied by several unidentified police officers, and under his command, they were subjected to strip and body cavity searches while Amupanda looked on.

    “At all relevant times to the aforesaid incidents, Haindongo acted in his personal capacity as an agent of Amupanda, who is the unrecognised and un-gazetted acting OTA secretary, and his cohorts,” the summons said.

    Each staff members is demanding payment in the amount of N$975 000 each, breakdown as follows: N$275 000 for the malicious, unlawful, flagrant, punitive, oppressive and high-handed deprivation of personal liberty, N$350 000 for pain, suffering, distress and inconvenience and N$350 000 for contumelia.

    The four are being assisted by the National Society for Human Rights of Namibia (Namrights).

    Namrights executive director Phil Ya Nangoloh confirmed to Namibian Sun that the four approached his office for assistance.

    Ondonga king press aide Naeman Amalwa confirmed they have received the summons and that they are ready to defend themselves.

    It is alleged the four staff members were asked by the police to undress while Amupanda looked on. They were thoroughly searched.

    They alleged that after the searches uncovered no key, Amupanda told them to reveal what has happened to it.

    “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.

    Ondonga king, Immanuel Kauluma Elifas, appointed Amupanda as the traditional authority secretary in April last year, after he 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.


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  • 07/05/18--01:07: Nangolo gets Nipam job
  • Nangolo gets Nipam jobNangolo gets Nipam job
    Former Namibia Training Authority chief executive officer Maria Nangolo has been appointed as the new boss of the Namibia Institute of Public Administration and Management (Nipam). Nangolo’s appointment is effective 1 August 2018 and she will take over from the retiring Andrew Ndishishi.

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  • 07/05/18--04:33: Avid kingpin gets 17 years
  • Avid kingpin gets 17 years Avid kingpin gets 17 years Judge Christie Liebenberg has sentenced Avid kingpin Nico Josea to 17 years in prison, while co-convicted accused Paulus Kapia, Inez /Gâses and Ralph Blaauw were fined N$60 000 each or three years in prison. Ralph’s wife, Sharon, was fined N$8 000 or six months in jail.

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  • 07/05/18--16:00: Do-or-die for final 8
  • Do-or-die for final 8Do-or-die for final 8World Cup quarterfinals set to electrify Only eight teams remain out of the 32 that started their quest for World Cup glory at Russia 2018, and this weekend it will be make or break, as they vie for semifinal berths. The World Cup in Russia is quickly reaching the business end of the competition, with all four quarterfinals taking place this weekend.

    One of only two teams to win all four games so far at the Russia World Cup, Uruguay, boast one of the meanest defences at the tournament, marshalled by talismanic captain Diego Godin, and a lethal strike force in Edinson Cavani and Luis Suarez.

    However, Cavani's fitness is the big concern as the Paris Saint-Germain striker limped off with a calf injury after scoring twice to end Cristiano Ronaldo and Portugal's World Cup dreams in the last 16.

    After cruising through the group stage in underwhelming fashion, France kicked through the gears thanks to Kylian Mbappe's blistering pace to blow Argentina away in a 4-3 World Cup classic in the last 16.

    A very different task waits in breaking through Uruguay's brick wall of a defence that will not allow Mbappe the same space to exploit. But as legs start to tire at this stage, France's strength in depth could start to make the difference.

    Along with Uruguay, Brazil share the best defensive record, having conceded just once in four games so far, and are slowly starting to hit their stride at the other end of the field too, as Neymar struck his second goal of the tournament in the last 16.

    After a disappointing 1-1 draw against Switzerland, 2-0 wins over Costa Rica, Serbia and Mexico have taken Brazil into a seventh straight quarterfinal and they remain the favourites to erase the scars of a humiliating 7-1 semifinal thrashing at the hands of Germany four years ago.

    Belgium will be the true test of how good the Brazilian back line is, but coach Roberto Martinez has some big decisions to make after a stunning comeback from 2-0 down in the final 21 minutes avoided a shock exit to Japan in the last 16.

    Japan picked the holes in Martinez's attack-minded 3-4-2-1 system and the Red Devils had to rely on their superior physical power in the latter stages, with Jan Vertonghen and Marouane Fellaini heading home before Nacer Chadli completed the comeback at the end of a stunning counter-attack.

    Martinez must now find the right balance to harness the best from Kevin De Bruyne, Eden Hazard and Romelu Lukaku without leaving Belgium exposed.

    They are not the prettiest side, but Sweden are extremely effective and happy to play the role of underdog, having seen off the Netherlands and Italy in qualifying and Germany in the group stages. Their run to the last eight for the first time since 1994 has been built on three clean sheets in four games, but while hard to break down, they lack a potent force upfront.

    Freed from the curse of the penalty shootout after they beat Colombia from the spot, England will be favourites to reach a first World Cup semifinal since 1990.

    For 92 minutes in Moscow, the Three Lions kept their cool as Colombia lost theirs and played with patience in possession rarely seen by England sides in recent years.

    Yerry Mina's stoppage-time header threatened to change all that, but a first World Cup win on penalties in four attempts gives Gareth Southgate's men reason to believe this time really will be different.

    The hosts, Russia, have delighted their public by surpassing all expectations to make it to the last eight thanks to a stunning penalty shootout elimination of 2010 winners Spain.

    Russian players were on their knees in exhaustion after defending for 120 minutes in Moscow, with just 26% possession, and they must now summon another huge physical effort, with Croatia expected to dominate the ball once more.

    Arguably the outstanding performers of the group stage, Croatia were made to suffer to make it past Denmark on penalties.

    Luck often has not accompanied Croatia in the knockout stages after bright tournament starts, but having bounced back from the blow of Luka Modric's missed penalty four minutes before the end of extra-time in the last 16, the time for a highly talented generation may have come.


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    Namibia jumps 8 places in netball rankingsNamibia jumps 8 places in netball rankings Namibia has moved up five places on the International Netball Federation's (INF) latest rankings announced on Monday.

    Netball Namibia (NN) has improved from 36 to 28 in the world. This was aided by their recent Debmarine Pent Series second edition victory against Zambia, who they beat 54-43 in the final.

    “This is a massive improvement we should say. The participation at international level indeed helped,” said Rebekka Goagoses from NN.

    “We are henceforth humbly thanking the title sponsor Debmarine Namibia who made it possible for the senior netball team to participate by supporting and sponsoring the recently concluded second edition of the Pent Series, where the national team emerged victorious. We also thank NamPower who generously assisted in preparing the team in the series,” Goagoses said.

    She added the hard work starts now for the team in terms of preparing for the upcoming African championship in August in Lusaka, Zambia.

    “It is very important for us to maintain the ranking and to improve on it. So it means the team must continuously take part at international level. We call on the corporate world to support us in our quest to qualify for the world champs for 2019.”

    Meanwhile, South Africa is the top ranked African nation in the fifth spot globally, while Malawi follows in sixth, Uganda in seventh, Zimbabwe in 13th, Zambia 17th and Swaziland 20th, while Botswana sits in the 22nd spot.


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  • 07/05/18--16:00: Riders ready to Rock & Rut
  • Riders ready to Rock & RutRiders ready to Rock & RutStrong legs to be tested to the limit Mountain bike enthusiasts will once again convene tomorrow at the IJG Trails for the fourth leg of the Nedbank/Rock & Rut Cross-Country (XC) series. Nedbank/Rock & Rut Cross-Country (XC) series participants will have their work cut out for them tomorrow, when they tackle two different routes.

    The short track is 2.7km long with approximately 38m of climbing per lap, while the long track is 4.5km long with a 100m of climbing per lap.

    Gernot de Klerk, head of marketing and communications at Nedbank, highlighted the bank's long-term commitment to support cycling development in Namibia, including mountain biking, dating back more than three decades now.

    “The Nedbank Cycle Challenge, launched in November 1986, marked the start of Nedbank's close-knit association with cycling in the country. Our support has only increased in the intervening years, and cycling is now comfortably the bank's largest sponsorship property,” De Klerk said.

    Mountain bike fever has steadily increased due in large part to its suitability for the whole family, De Klerk explained. He also mentioned that Windhoekers have enthusiastically embraced mountain biking in places like the IJG Trails to “shake of the humdrum of city life”.

    De Klerk also underlined that Namibia has quickly became a prime destination for premier MTB events, in part because of the quality of work done by race organisers in preparing challenging race courses and mountain biking trails, as can be found at the IJG Trails.

    He added that with the “enthusiasm and commitment shown by Rock & Rut MTB Club and the Namibia Cycling Federation, we remain especially proud of our association with the series, and this weekend's race will undoubtedly again show why Namibian cycling is starting to show its true mettle”.

    Adrenaline pushing factors aside, Peter van der Merwe of IJG Trails assures that both tracks are not only designed to challenge respective participants, but “more importantly, give all who take part a fun day out in the mountains”.

    The IJG Trails comprise of approximately 75m of purposely built mountain bike trails, which according to Van der Merwe makes it the “perfect venue for both training as well as events”.

    “We also have a world-class cross country track suitable for UCI endorsed cross country events,” he added.


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  • 07/05/18--16:00: New nerve agent case in UK
  • New nerve agent case in UKNew nerve agent case in UKAuthorities hold emergency meeting Britian's counter-terrorism police are on high alert following a second suspected nerve agent attack. Britain held an emergency cabinet meeting on Thursday over a couple who were left critically ill after being exposed to the same nerve agent used on a former Russian spy earlier this year.

    Home Secretary Sajid Javid will be chairing the talks in London, as counter-terrorism police lead an investigation into the incident in Amesbury, a village in southwest England.

    The village is close to the city of Salisbury, where former double agent Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia were found slumped on a bench on March 4 in an incident that sparked a diplomatic crisis with Russia.

    “The possibility that these two investigations might be linked is clearly a line of enquiry for us,” said Neil Basu, head of Britain's counter-terrorism police force.

    Police on Wednesday said that tests at Britain's Porton Down defence laboratory had confirmed that the substance was Novichok, which Britain says is a Soviet-made military grade nerve agent. “The priority for the investigation team now is to establish how these two people have come into contact with this nerve agent,” Basu said. “We have no idea what may have contained the nerve agent at this time,” he said, urging members of the public not to pick anything up if they did not know what it was.

    The police chief said it was the same nerve agent used against the Skripals but “whether we can ever tell if it's the same batch will be up to scientists to determine”.

    Basu said there was no evidence to suggest that the man and the woman, named locally as Charlie Rowley and Dawn Sturgess, “were targeted in any way”. Basu said there was no evidence the man and the woman had “recently visited any of the sites that were decontaminated” after the poisoning of the Skripals. “This remains a low risk to the general public,” he said.

    “We're satisfied that if anyone was exposed to that level of nerve agent by now they would be showing symptoms.” The 44-year-old woman collapsed first and an ambulance was called at in the morning, while the 45-year-old man fell ill later and an ambulance was called during the afternoon to the same house in Amesbury. Police had initially assumed that the two had consumed contaminated drugs. But samples from both patients were sent to Porton Down on Monday “due to concern over the symptoms the man and woman were displaying,” Basu said. Both are still in a critical condition and are at Salisbury District Hospital - the same facility where the Skripals were treated.

    Local man Sam Hobson, 29, told AFP he was a friend of the pair and said he saw the man fall ill.

    “He was sweating loads, dribbling, and you couldn't speak to him, he was making funny noises and he was rocking backwards and forwards,” Hobson said. “It's like he was in another world.” In Salisbury, local residents said they were “shocked” that their quiet area was again hitting the headlines. “I was shocked to hear that something had happened so soon after the last contamination scare,” Patrick Hillman, 70, told AFP.

    The Skripal poisoning “really affected business and life in general in Salisbury” in recent months, he said.

    “It is a bit of a scare,” said John Reid, 84. Police launched two helplines for those worried about possible contamination. “We cannot underestimate the impact the shocking news of a second major incident in this part of our county in such a short space of time will have,” Wiltshire Police Chief Constable Kier Pritchard said in a statement. Police called for calm but also said that anyone who had visited any of the five sites that the man and the woman went to on Friday and Saturday should wash clothing worn at the time and wipe down personal items. The sites, which have now been cordoned off, are a park and a homeless hostel in Salisbury, as well as a pharmacy, a church and the house in Amesbury. Local resident Natalie Smyth, 27, told AFP she saw fire engines and ambulances arrive at the house on Saturday. “They shut the road. They said it was a chemical incident and then that it was drug-related. “It is so strange, it is such a quiet place,” she said, indicating that the emergency services personnel were wearing protective suits.

    The police said local residents should expect to see officers in protective suits at “a number of sites” in the coming days. Skripal, 67, and his 33-year-old daughter Yulia, who was visiting from Moscow, were treated for an extended period of time before being released from hospital.

    A police officer who came to their aid, Nick Bailey, was also taken to hospital. The police said they suspected the nerve agent may have been smeared on a front door handle in liquid form. Moscow has rejected British accusations of involvement in the Skripal poisoning, which sparked a diplomatic crisis that saw Russia and the West expelling dozens of diplomats in tit-for-tat moves.


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    Mugabe beneficiaries will not lose land – Zim oppostionMugabe beneficiaries will not lose land – Zim oppostion Zimbabwe's main opposition, the Movement for Democratic Change Alliance, has reportedly ruled out repossessing land from those who benefitted from former president Robert Mugabe's chaotic land seizures over two decades ago should it win the coming elections.

    According to Daily News, the MDC-Alliance presidential candidate, Nelson Chamisa, told his supporters that his government would not take back the farms, but rather would empower the resettled farmers by giving them title deeds to fully own the land.

    Chamisa has blasted the ruling Zanu-PF party, saying it had given the resettled farmers unbankable 99-year leases which did not give the farmers full ownership.

    “We are saying, once we start to govern, we are not going to be taking land from anyone, but we are saying we need title deeds because we want Mashonaland Central to be the hub of agrarian reform,” Chamisa was quoted as saying.

    According to an AFP report, critics blame the land redistribution programme, which began in 2000, for the collapse in agricultural production that saw the former regional breadbasket become a perennial food importer.

    President Emmerson Mnangagwa, a former Mugabe ally who came to power following a military intervention, has pledged to compensate farmers who lost their properties, but said they would not be given their land back.

    Mnangagwa's administration has, however, recently announced that white farmers still in business after controversial land reforms will be able to obtain 99-year leases, signalling a new government approach to the key agricultural sector.

    Thousands of white commercial farmers and their employees were displaced and left without sources of income during the fast-tracked agrarian reforms that were masterminded by Mugabe's administration in 2000.

    According to the CFU, more than 4 000 white farmers were affected by the often violent farm invasions.

    Some of the white farmers who were kicked off their properties during the agrarian reforms have now set up base in neighbouring countries like Malawi, Mozambique and Zambia.


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