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Tells it All - Namibian Sun

older | 1 | .... | 792 | 793 | (Page 794) | 795 | 796 | .... | 1152 | newer

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    Mets pitcher Mejia reinstatedMets pitcher Mejia reinstatedLifetime ban lifted Mejia was banished in February 2016 after a third positive test for a banned substance. New York Mets pitcher Jenrry Mejia, the first player issued a lifetime doping ban by Major League Baseball, will be eligible to return in 2019, MLB commissioner Rob Manfred said Friday.

    Manfred said that provided he meets certain conditions the 28-year-old Dominican will get “a final chance” at a major league career.

    “Under the terms of our collectively bargained Joint Drug Programme, a permanently suspended player like Mejia has the right to apply to me for discretionary reinstatement after serving a minimum of two years,” Manfred said, adding that after Mejia applied for reinstatement last year they met in person.

    “In light of Mejia's contrition, his commitment to comply with the programme in the future, and the fact that he will have already spent almost four consecutive years suspended without pay, I have decided to grant him a final chance to resume his professional career,” Manfred said.

    Mejia's permanent ban followed an 80-game suspension handed down on 11 April 2015, after a positive test for the anabolic steroid stanozolol.

    In July 2015 he was suspended 162 games for using stanozolol and the steroid boldenone.

    Shortly after his permanent ban was announced, Mejia told the New York Times he was the victim of a conspiracy, saying the second positive result wasn't accurate and that after it was announced MLB officials pressured him to share information about his doping connections.

    Mejia sounded a more contrite tone in a statement issued through the Players' Association on Friday.

    “I've had a long, difficult time away from the game to contemplate the mistakes I've made both with regard to my positive drug tests and also the false allegations I made about Major League Baseball's investigation into my testing history,” Mejia said.

    “Baseball is my profession, my passion and my life, and for those mistakes I am truly sorry.”

    MLB said Mejia will be allowed to resume participation in non-public workouts at Mets facilities following the 2018 All-Star break.

    He will be eligible for a rehabilitation assignment with a Mets minor league affiliate in mid-August and could be reinstated and eligible to resume all baseball activities beginning with 2019 spring training.

    “Jenrry Mejia has abided by the terms set forth by Commissioner Manfred and we appreciate his regret and renewed commitment to comply moving forward,” the Mets said in a statement.

    “We will evaluate his progress on the field and assess the situation and our options in the coming months.”

    NAMPA/AFP

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    Seattle Seawolves capture League Rugby crownSeattle Seawolves capture League Rugby crown The Seattle Seawolves claimed the inaugural Major League Rugby championship Saturday with a 23-19 triumph over the Glendale Raptors in San Diego, California.

    The Seawolves, beaten twice by the Raptors in the regular season, finally found a way past the Colorado club, who were the top seeds in the playoffs after losing just once in the regular season of the fledgling league, which kicked off in April with seven franchises. The league is the latest attempt at launching a top-flight rugby union league in the United States.

    Seattle flyhalf Peter Smith opened the scoring with a penalty goal for a 3-0 lead, but Glendale replied with a maul that put hooker Zach Fenoglio over. Flyhalf Will Magie converted for a 7-3 lead for the Raptors.

    A try from hooker Ray Barkwill gave the Seawolves a narrow 8-7 lead at the half.

    But Glendale regained the initiative with two quick tries early in the second half, Magie's conversion of Bryce Campbell's try putting the Raptors up 19-8.

    The Seawolves, bolstered in the playoffs by the return of USA and Canadian internationals including Olive Kilifi, Barkwill and Vili Toluta'u, responded minutes later as William Rasileka crashed over in the corner.

    Two minutes later Seattle's Riekert Hattingh powered over and Smith's conversion made it 20-19 for the Seawolves. A Smith penalty completed the scoring at Torero Stadium on the campus of the University of San Diego, where MLR's San Diego Legion play their home games.

    MLR, which could expand to as many as ten teams next year, follows a failed 2016 attempt to establish a US league, with PRO Rugby lasting only one season with five clubs.

    NAMPA/AFP

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    Suns sign Booker to five-year, US$158m dealSuns sign Booker to five-year, US$158m deal Star guard Devin Booker signed a maximum contract extension with the Phoenix Suns on Saturday worth a reported US$158 million over five years.

    “We are thrilled to announce this contract extension with Devin,” Suns general manager Ryan McDonough said in a statement.

    “'Book' has been a pillar for the Suns franchise ever since he arrived in Phoenix in 2015. Devin and the team both wanted to extend his agreement with the club as long as we possibly could.”

    Booker, 21, said he was “humbled and honoured” to make a long term commitment to the Suns.

    “Thank you to the Suns for drafting me and believing in me,” he said.

    Through his first three seasons with the Suns, Booker has averaged 19.8 points, 3.5 assists and 3.3 rebounds in 208 games.

    On March 24, 2017, Booker scored a franchise record 70 points at Boston, becoming just the sixth player in NBA history to record a 70-point game.

    Booker averaged 24.9 points, 4.5 rebounds and 4.7 assists per game last season, making him one of nine players in the league and the youngest to average at least 24 points, four rebounds and four assists per game.

    Booker has 4 120 career points and eclipsed the 4 000-point mark on 2 March 2018, at the age of 21 years, 123 days old.

    The only two NBA players to reach 4 000 points at a younger age are LeBron James and Kevin Durant.

    NAMPA/AFP

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  • 07/08/18--16:00: Yankees overpower Jays 8-5
  • Yankees overpower Jays 8-5Yankees overpower Jays 8-5 Brett Gardner and Aaron Judge opened the game with consecutive home runs, Luis Severino pitched five innings, and the visiting New York Yankees defeated theToronto Blue Jays 8-5 on Saturday.

    Gardner also had a two-run triple and Brandon Drury hit a two-run double, helping the Yankees bounce back from a 6-2 loss Friday in the opener of a three-game series.

    Kevin Pillar hit a two-run homer for the Blue Jays, and Randal Grichuk and Aledmys Diaz added solo shots.

    Severino (14-2) allowed three runs, five hits and two walks while striking out five to win his fifth consecutive start.

    Yankees closer Aroldis Chapman struck out the first batter in the ninth inning before leaving the mound with a trainer.

    Chasen Shreve replaced him and gave up Diaz's eighth homer of the season with two outs before securing the victory.

    Blue Jays starter J.A. Happ (10-5) yielded six runs, four hits and six walks in 2 2/3 innings in losing his second consecutive start. He fanned five.

    The Yankees homered twice in the game's first five pitches. Gardner led off with his sixth homer of the season the 14th of his career leading off a game on a first-pitch fastball. Judge hit his 25th on a 2-1 fastball.

    The rally continued when Giancarlo Stanton and Aaron Hicks walked. After Happ struck out two batters, Drury blooped a two-run double to centre.

    Justin Smoak singled and Pillar hit his eighth homer of the season in the second.

    The Yankees scored three runs in the third for a 7-2 lead. Didi Gregorius and Greg Bird walked.

    Blue Jays manager John Gibbons was ejected by plate umpire Lance Barrett for arguing balls and strikes after replacing Happ with Jake Petricka.

    Gardner greeted Petricka with a two-run triple and scored on apassed ball.

    During the inning, Yankees pitcher CC Sabathia also was ejected from the bench by Barrett, apparently for protesting a called third strike on Kyle Higashioka.

    Hicks left the game in the fifth inning with a leg cramp. Clint Frazier, recalled up from Triple-A on Saturday, entered the game in left field with Gardner moving from left to Hicks' spot in centre.

    NAMPA/REUTERS

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    Omukwaniilwa gwaNdonga ta kongo ekwatho kompanguOmukwaniilwa gwaNdonga ta kongo ekwatho kompanguOonakutidhwa miilonga oya dhini aniwa omalombwelo nomatokolo gomukwaniilwa Omukwaniilwa gwaNdonga, Immanuel Kauluma Elifas okwa yi kompangu opo a konge ekwatho, omolwa aaleli yelelo ndyoka mboka a tidhwa miilonga taya tsikile nokukondolola iikumungu yelelo lyoshilongo shoka. Oonakutidhwa miilonga okwa lopotwa natango taya tsikile iilonga yawo, onga ookansela melelo lyaNdonga, mwa kwatelwa okugongela iifuta yelelo ndyoka okuza moshigwana.

    Elelo ndyoka okwa lopotwa li li mompumbwe yiimaliwa, sha landula sho iimaliwa ya kana melelo moka, oshowo oshigwana shoka inashi hala okugandja iifuta yawo kelelo epe ndyoka lya tulwa miilonga komukwaniilwa gwaNdongwa ihe inali tulwa miilonga pamushangwa gwopapangelo.

    Aakwashigwana ohaya futu iifuta yawo kelelo lyookasnela mboka ya tidhwa miilonga tali kwatelwa komeho kuFillemon Shuumbwa Nangolo, ngoka nonando okwa kuthwa oshinakugwanitha kombala yoshilongo shoka onga omulanduli gwomukwaniilwa Elifas, natango papangelo oye omulanduli gwomukwaniilwa gwaNdonga.

    Nangolo pamwe nookasnela mboka ya tidhwa miilonga ngashiingeyi otaya longele mombelewa yi li mOniipa na okwa hololwa taya yambidhidhwa kuuministeli wuuyuuki, omanga elelo epe tali longele moombelewa oonkulu dhelelo ndyoka mOluno.

    Elenga enene melelo ndyoka, Naeman Amalwa, ngoka ta longo pehala lyomukwaniilwa Elifas, okwa ningi eindilo lyompangu mOmpangulilo yoPombanda ta indile opo ompangu yi indike ookansela mboka ya tidhwa miilonga ya longe iinakugwanithwa yelelo ndyoka.

    Meindilo ndyoka lya ningwa omasiku 22 gaMei, Amalwa okwa popi kutya Nangolo pamwe nookansela yahamano mboka ya tidhwa miilonga otaya tsikile nokudhina etokolo lyomukwaniilwa.

    Elifas okwa kutha miilonga ookanasela mboka ya longela elelo ndyoa uule nethimbo ele, ngaashi omunashipundi nale gwelelo lyaNdonga, Peter Kauluma, omupopiliko gwelelo ndyoka, Joseph Asino oshowo omalenga omanene ngaashi Walenga, Tonata Ngulu, Kashona Malulu, Joseph Akawa, Fillemon Nambili naVilho Kamanya.

    Omalenga ngoka ga kuthwa miilonga natango ogeli pamushangwa gwepangeo onga aaleli melelo lyopamudhigululwakalo mOndonga.

    Amalwa okwa holola kutya ye okwa ulikwa onga omukalelipo gwomukwaniilwa Elifas, ngashiingeyi.

    “Otandi koleke mpaka kutya onda pewa epitiko komulwaniilwa opo ndi popye pehala lye. Pampango yelelo lyaNdonga , onda ulikwa komukwaniilwa momasiku 27 gaApilili momvula yo 2017 opo ndi ninge omuyambidhidhi gwe. Ompito ndjoka oya kala nale yaNangolo sigo osho euliko lye lwa kuthwa oonkondo. Sho omukwaniilwa a pendje oshinakugwanithwa shoka okwa tseyithile ezimo lyaakwaniilwa mOndonga, omupeha omunashipundi gwomalelo gopamudhigululwakalo gahetatu monooli yoshilongo oshowo oombelewa adhihe dhomalelo goshigwana mepangelo lyaNamibia.”

    Pahapu dhaAmlwa, aanamagumbo ayehe meni lyoongamba dhelelo lyaNdonga oye na oshinakugwanithwa shokufuta iifuta yawo yomagumbo kelelo lyopamuthigululwakalo. Okwa tsikile kutya iifuta mbyoka ohayi gongelwa komuniilonga gwelelo lyopamuthigululwakalo. Elalakano lyiifuta mbyoka okukwathela miilonga yelelo yesiku kehe, mwakwatelwa okufuta oondjambi nomayambidhidho giimaliwa koonsela yelelo, oshowo iipumbiwa yesiku melelo lyoshilongo.

    Okwa popi kutya iifuta mbyoka monena oyi li pooN$20 na otaya yi pumbiwa okufutwa kelelo lyoshilongo ihe ha kiilyo yelelo. Okwa popi kutya ookansela mboka ya kuthwa miilonga otaya pula oshigwana shi fute iifuta mbyoka ku yo na okwa tsikile kutya kashi li mondjila molwaashoka kaye na oonkondo dhopaveta okuninga shoka taya ningi.

    Amalwa okwa tsikile kutya okwa pewa oonkondo komukwaniilwa opo a ninge eindilo lyompangu, yo ompangu yi tokole kutya aaleli nale mboka ya kuthwa miilonga inaya pitikwa okugongela iifuta yoshigwana nenge ya longe iinakugwanithwa melelo lyoshilongo shoka, molwaashoka oya kuthwa miilonga komukwaniilwa.

    Amalwa okwa popi kutya okwa hala wo ompangu yi gandje elombwelo kOminista yOmayambulepo gOondoolopa nIitopolwa, Peya Mushelenga opo a kuthe momushangwa gwopapangelo ookansela mboka ya kuthwa miilonga, onga aaleli melelo lyaNdonga.







    ILENI NANDJATO

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    Aapangi aazaizai ya taalela omambandamekoAapangi aazaizai ya taalela omambandameko Ominista yuundjolowele Bernard Haufiku oya kunkilile AaNamibia ya hulithepo okuninga nayi aapangi aazizai, mboka taya ningilwa omatilitho.

    Pahapu dhaminista, aapaangi yamwe po aazaizai oya lopota kutya otaya ningilwa omatilitho okuza koshigwana oshowo kaaniilonga yamwe po muuministeli.

    Haufiku okwa popi kutya uuministeli itawu tula miilonga omatilitho ngoka taga ningwa opo ookondalaka dhaaniilonga mboka dhi kuthwe oonkondo, opo ku gandjwe oompito dhiilonga kaapangi AaNamibia mboka ya manitha omailongo gawo ihe inaya mona natango iilonga.

    “Otatu ungaunga nonkalo ndjoka momukalo omuwanawa na inatu hala okuhwahwameka iipotha yompangu. Mboka taya ningi omatilitho ngoka otaya taalele iilanduli, ngaashi omitumba dhomautho.” Minista okwa tsikile kutya ngele otaya pitika aapangi mboka aazaizai ya ye nena oondohotola dhaazaizai nadho otadhi ka yi naashoka otashi tula moshiponga oshikondo shuundjolowele moshilongo.

    Amushanga muuministeli mboka, Petronella Masabane okwa popi kutya inashi yela ngele aapangi aazaizai oya ningilwa omatilitho geso.

    Masabane okwa popi kutya aapangi aazaizai yamwe oya lopota kutya otaya ningilwa omatilitho nomalaka oshowo omaihumbato gamwe ngoka taga ulike omikalo omwiinayi okuza kaaniilonga yakwawo mboka Aanamibia, na otaga etitha onkalo yiilonga inayi opala. Amushanga okwa pula onkalo ndjoka yi hulithwepo.

    Omatilitho ngoka oga landula sho aapangi AaNamibia mboka ya manitha omailongo gawo, ye li natango momapandanda, sho epangelo tali popi kutya kape na iimaliwa yoku ya kuta miilonga.

    Omasiku ga piti, ongundu yaapangi mboka ya manitha omailongo gawo ihe natango oye li momapandanda kaye na iilonga, oya tsakanene nomuleli gwongundu yoPopular Democratic Movement (PDM), McHenry Venaani.

    Omukomeho gwongundu ndjoka, Junias Shilunga, okwa popi kutya ngele epangelo inali katuka oonkatu mokukandula po omukundu ngoka, nena otaya ka thiminikwa konkalo ndjoka ye li muyo, opo ya katuke oonkatu dhontumba. Aapangi AaNamibia mboka kaye na iilonga ye li po 300, na oya manitha omailongo gawo oya gandja sigo omasiku 30 gaJuli kaapangi aazaizai, opo ya ze miilonga, yo ya gandje ompito kAanamibia ya vule okukutwa kuuministeli wuundjolowele.

    JEMIMA BEUKES

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  • 07/08/18--16:00: Athletes embrace competition
  • Athletes embrace competitionAthletes embrace competitionSatisfied with performance Namibia's Paralympic team won nine medals at the 2018 IPC Grand Prix while the wrestling team took 17 medals in Johannesburg. Paralympic and wrestling athletes who recently took part in international events in Germany and South Africa have expressed satisfaction over their performance and described the experience as amazing.

    Representatives of the two sport codes, during the welcoming ceremony at the Namibia Sports Commission (NSC), on Thursday said the experience will help them win even more medals in future.

    David Ndeilenga, a guide for the Paralympic athletes said their participation at the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) Berlin Grand Prix in Germany was one of the best competitions for the team so far.

    “It was the first time we took a lot of young athletes to the competition and they all did well. Most of them went there without classification and they managed to get classified. The majority of them also registered their personal best scores,” he said.

    Ndeilenga added that they are now looking forward to further competition aiming for the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games in Japan.

    He said there was pressure for them to perform well at the events and they handled it very well.

    On his role as a guide, Ndeilenga said he relished the new experience.

    “The bond that we create with the athletes is huge, it is like one human being.

    “As a guide we look after the athletes in every aspect from walking, eating, sleeping and sitting. When they do not win, we also feel sad,” he added.

    Romeo Goliath, a junior wrestler who participated at the South African Wrestling Championships, said the standard of competition was high but they produced great results.

    He added that some wrestlers beat reigning African Champions and now stand a chance of qualifying for the Olympics very soon.

    On his love for sports, Goliath said: “Sports is an angel for me as it keeps me away from all the negative things happening around us.

    “When we are in training, a lot of bad things are happening, but sport teaches us basic things about life like discipline and I advise fellow youths to take sport seriously.”

    NAMPA

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    NPC targets 2020 Paralympic GamesNPC targets 2020 Paralympic Games Namibia Paralympic Committee (NPC) secretary-general, Michael Hamukwaya said their aim as a sport federation is to develop more young talent to represent the country at international games.

    Hamukaya said this in an interview with Nampa after Team Namibia won nine medals at the 2018 International Paralympic Committee (IPC) Berlin Grand Prix that was held at the Friedrich Ludwig Jahn Sportpark in Berlin, Germany, over the weekend.

    Hamukwaya told this agency that the NPC is working on building strong partnerships towards the Paralympic Games that will be held in Japan, Tokyo in 2020.

    “The results at the Berlin Grand Prix showed us that there is a lot of talent in Namibia. But there is also still a lot of work to be done for this team to improve from the five medals we won at the 2016 Paralympic Games that were held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil,” he said. The secretary-general added that for the NPC to build a strong team, they need support from the corporate world.

    “If we are to have athletes who can compete competitively with the rest of the world we need to expose them to a lot of international grand prix and that can only happen if we have money.

    “For us to travel to Berlin, NamPower sponsored the trip and we are thankful for their support towards para-athletes. We hope others will learn from that and start coming on board, so we can produce more future champions,” Hamukwaya said.

    Hamukwaya stated that if funds are not availed to prepare young athletes who won silverware in Germany, Namibia as a country should forget about winning or even qualifying for the 2020 Paralympic Games.

    “We are working on building a team that can represent Namibia at major competitions but for that to happen we need to keep this team in training. When the Grand Prix season opens again, we have to select three or four Grand Prix, where they can compete with the world's best,” he added.

    He said the more experience they gain, the better it would be for them to qualify for the 2020 Tokyo Paralympic Games.

    “All we need is to have more funds which will help us in preparing a team of athletes for the All African Games and World Athletics Championships, which will be used as qualifiers for the 2020 Paralympic Games,” Hamukwaya said.

    NAMPA

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  • 07/08/18--16:00: Company news in brief
  • Company news in briefCompany news in brief Airbus fails to break deadlock on AirAsia A330neo jet order

    Airbus has failed to break an impasse with AirAsia over the fate of a multi-billion-dollar order seen as key to the future of its A330neo passenger jet, people familiar with the matter said.

    AirAsia co-founder Tony Fernandes visited the planemaker this week for talks aimed at shoring up and increasing the existing order for 66 jets, but left Toulouse without signing a deal after what one source described as challenging talks.

    -NAMPA/REUTERS

    Credit Suisse pays US$77 million to settle Asia hiring corruption probes

    Credit Suisse Group AG agreed to pay about US$77 million to settle US bribery probes into its awarding of jobs to family and friends of Chinese and other government officials in the Asia-Pacific region, to win lucrative investment banking business.

    The US Department of Justice on Thursday said Credit Suisse’s Hong Kong unit will pay a US$47.03 million criminal fine and enter a non-prosecution agreement, in which the Swiss bank admitted and accepted responsibility for wrongdoing.

    Credit Suisse will also pay US$29.82 million to settle related US Securities and Exchange Commission civil claims.

    -NAMPA/REUTERS

    'Sacred Games' marks Netflix debut into Indian original series

    Netflix’s first Indian original series makes its debut on Friday, the first of a slate of new shows aimed at the vast Bollywood entertainment market.

    “Sacred Games,” based on the 2006 novel by Vikram Chandra, is a thriller set in Mumbai with a cast of police officers, politicians and spies, and stars some of Bollywood’s biggest personalities: Saif Ali Khan, Nawazuddin Siddiqui and Radhika Apte.

    -NAMPA/REUTERS

    Boeing to take over US$4.75 billion Embraer unit

    Boeing Co struck a deal for a controlling stake in the commercial aircraft arm of Brazilian planemaker Embraer SA under a new US$4.75 billion joint venture, the firms said on Thursday, reshaping a global passenger jet duopoly.

    The new company, encompassing Embraer’s airliner business, thrusts Boeing into the lower end of the market, giving stiffer competition to the CSeries jets designed by Canada’s Bombardier Inc and backed by European rival Airbus SE.

    -NAMPA/REUTERS

    China's ZTE names new top executives

    ZTE Corp has appointed a new team of top executives including a CEO to comply with a deal it made with the United States to end a ban on US firms supplying parts to China’s second-biggest telecommunications equipment maker.

    ZTE, in a statement to the stock exchange on Thursday, named a former head of its Germany business, Xu Ziyang, as its new chief executive.

    Wang Xiyu, Gu Junying and Li Ying have been named executive vice presidents, the statement showed. Li Ying was also appointed chief financial officer.

    -Nampa/Reuters

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    Edgars parent to close Boardmans, La Senza and other chainsEdgars parent to close Boardmans, La Senza and other chainsRecovery plan Edcon Holdings’ latest recovery plan includes closing chains including Red Square cosmetics and La Senza lingerie and attempting to lure their customers to its flagship Edgars clothing stores. “The quicker we can do this, the better.” Grant Pattison, CEO, Edcon Holdings The move is the brainchild of new chief executive officer Grant Pattison, who replaced Bernie Brookes at the helm of South Africa’s biggest non-food retailer in February. The 89-year-old Johannesburg-based company has long struggled to stay afloat amid weak consumer spending and economic growth, and had to be taken over by banks and bondholders in 2016 to avoid collapse.

    Under Pattison’s strategy, Edcon will reduce its more than 1 300-store footprint and cut floor space by 17% over five years to boost profitability, the CEO said on Wednesday. The retailer will focus its attention primarily on Edgars, which already sells most of the ranges available in the stores that will close. Edcon will also retain discount clothing specialist Jet and its CNA chain of stationery stores, though Boardmans homeware is set for the chop.

    “I do think the company can turn,” Pattison said. “The quicker we can do this, the better.”

    Suffocating debt

    The urgency comes as Edcon’s retail sales fell 9.4% in the three months through December 23 and adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation slumped 25%. The company’s owners include Franklin Templeton, Sanford C Bernstein & Co LLC and Harvard University Pension Fund, which took over Edcon when it was suffocating under foreign-currency debt used to finance its 2007 takeover by Boston-based Bain Capital Private Equity LP.

    With more than 14 000 permanent staff, Edcon is a significant employer in a country where more than one in four people are out of work.

    Net debt at the end of 2017 was R4.2 billion, compared with R24.7 billion the previous year. Earlier attempts at reviving Edcon included increasing the workforce, slashing prices and introducing international brands. The latter policy was reversed by Brookes, who led the company for a little over two years.

    Edcon said in March it was in discussions with creditors about refinancing debt to strengthen the balance sheet. The company has a liquidity facility and credit facilities maturing at the end of September.

    Pattison is a former CEO of Massmart Holdings, and is best known for selling a majority stake in the general goods retailer to Wal-Mart Stores in 2011.

    -Fin24

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    Nigeria woos importers to trade Chinese yuanNigeria woos importers to trade Chinese yuan Nigeria’s central bank is wooing local businesses importing goods from China to use the yuan instead of the US dollar in its effort to support its naira currency and boost reserves.

    Central bank officials on Wednesday held a town hall meeting with businesses in Lagos to introduce the yuan for imports from China ahead of plans to start auctioning the Asian currency later this month.

    The dollar is Nigeria’s main trade currency. The OPEC member suffered severe dollar shortages after the price of crude oil, its top export and main source of FX, plunged in late 2014, prompting it to introduce capital controls in 2015.

    It now has multiple exchange rates against the US currency and has been selling the dollar on the interbank market to boost liquidity after floating the naira for investors.

    “The central bank will encourage users importing goods from China to use the yuan and not the dollar,” officials said.

    “Dollar demand burden arising from trades with China would be lifted from our FX reserves,” they said, adding that initial yuan trades could be small.

    Nigeria signed a US$2.5 billion currency swap arrangement with the People’s Bank of China (PBOC) in May.

    Officials said the deal is aimed at reducing reliance on the dollar and “as such reduce the pressure on the naira-dollar exchange rate.”

    Under the swap arrangement, Nigeria’s central bank would hold 720 billion naira in an account in favour of the PBOC while the Chinese central bank would hold 15 billion yuan, impling an exchange rate of 48 naira to the yuan.

    The bank also said the move was aimed at encouraging Chinese firms buying local raw materials and semi-finished goods to pay in naira. However payment for crude oil sold to China would be in US dollar, they said.

    Nigeria has been trying several options to curb pressure on the naira. But some of its plans may require time to materialise as it needs to develop its economy in order to cut imports.

    It currently runs a large trade deficit with China, its biggest trading partner. Nigeria imported goods worth almost US$2 billion per annum from China last year as against almost US$500 million imported by the Chinese, figures showed.

    Economists fear that currency swap could worsen the deficit and trade balance. Some importers told Reuters that a strong naira would erase the benefit of the swap but added that the naira may weaken especially after elections next year.

    Nigeria has around 4.4% of its foreign reserves of US$47 billion denominated in yuan while the remaining is held in US dollar. Officials expect the move to also boost foreign investment from China into Nigeria.

    -Nampa/Reuters

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    N‡a Jaqna dispute clarifiedN‡a Jaqna dispute clarified The lands ministry, along with the EU Delegation to Namibia and the German embassy in Windhoek, have issued a joint press release regarding the objections and media coverage over the Programme for Communal Land Development (PCLD) in Tsumkwe West, more particularly, the N‡a Jaqna conservancy.

    In the statement, released by the German embassy, the three parties confirmed that the affected communities were well involved in project planning and no formal objection has been uttered throughout the process.

    “It must be emphasised that the lands ministry's PCLD does not force any development on Namibian communities, and shall only implement consensus-based decisions. The highly participatory nature of the planning process remains open for inputs from the local community structures,” the statement read.

    The embassy further added that the development of the 53 198 hectare project area is equally aimed at supporting community-based tourism (craft centre, living museum, campsite) and to invest in community crop fields and means of utilisation and infrastructure as required.

    The PCLD is a national programme implemented under the mandate of the lands ministry. The implementation of this programme is supported and partially funded jointly by the EU and Germany through KfW Development Bank.

    According to the embassy, the draft investment plan for this project will include N$6.7 million for tourism, N$500 000 for crop production, and N$9 million for solar water points and elephant-proof installations. The beneficiaries include 135 San residents of the Aasvoëlnes community. Investment categories currently planned include ten solar boreholes, fencing and development of one model farm, a craft and activity centre, a living museum, the rehabilitation and extension of the community's fields and the provision of implements for the working and harvesting of these fields. “An iterative process was followed, in which four potential sites in the larger Tsumkwe West area were assessed and analysed. This was done together with the local community, the !Kung Traditional Authority, N‡a Jaqna conservancy representatives and line ministries in October 2017,” the embassy said.

    Important aspects that were considered during this process included a focus on areas without known disputes, areas with unexploited development potential, the availability of sufficient underground water, and areas with as yet limited or no infrastructure.

    Furthermore, detailed mapping of all existing land rights and existing infrastructure in the project area, as well as socio-economic and production data gathered in collaboration with local residents, was presented in a map analysis report and extensively discussed at community level.

    “It is a cornerstone of the PCLD implementation approach to avail as much information to the potential beneficiaries as possible, to enhance the decisions taken at public meetings.”

    The embassy said a consensus decision was reached on 21 October last year to focus PCLD efforts on the Aasvoëlnes area. All of this is detailed in a site file, which has been availed to the public. The draft investment plan was open to public scrutiny and inputs from 4 to 12 June this year.

    “The information was broadcast by radio and the site file and draft investment plans were made available to the public in the traditional authority's office, the offices of the lands ministry and the Aasvoëlnes school office.

    On 29 June 2018, at a feedback meeting, the chief of the !Kung Traditional Authority expressed her satisfaction with local level participatory planning process and added that the authority would like the programme to continue until it is fully implemented.

    STAFF REPORTER

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    Zambian 'assasin' training addressedZambian 'assasin' training addressed The ministry of health and social services said it is in the process of informing cabinet and parliament about the eligibility of medical courses in which some Namibians are currently enrolled in neighbouring Zambia.

    This follows a news report that two Zambian universities, where Namibians are currently enrolled, “train assassins” instead of doctors and that the health council there had banned five degree programmes at the Cavendish University and Apex Medical University.

    According to health permanent secretary Petronella Masabana they have engaged the universities and the universities have promised to rectify the situation.

    “We can confirm that we went there and had discussions with the universities. They promised to rectify the situation, but more than that I cannot say,” she said.

    A report has been compiled following the visit to Zambia by a last month that was comprised of representatives of the Health Professions Council of Namibia and the University of Namibia's Medical School, amongst others.

    On 11 June the Zambian online newspaper News Diggers reported that the registrar of the Zambian Health Professions Council of Zambia, Dr Aaron Mujajati, said the council could not allow the Apex and Cavendish universities to continue training doctors saying given their capacity, they could only produce “assassins”.

    According to the report some courses were withdrawn because they do not have teaching staff for core programmes especially under the MBCHP programme that produces doctors.

    JEMIMA BEUKES

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  • 07/08/18--16:00: Free your mind through work
  • Free your mind through workFree your mind through workWe have earned a second chance Many inmates in the Windhoek Central Prison have grabbed the opportunities offered to them with both hands and are working for a better tomorrow. Hope for a fresh start and a strong sense of purpose permeates the walls of the central artisan workshops at the Windhoek prison in which nearly 100 inmates hone new skills to boost their opportunities once they step outside.

    Offenders classified as 'low risk' at the Windhoek facility can apply, and when approved, acquire training and skills in one of a number of workshops, including welding, motor mechanics, maintenance and electrical, woodwork and carpentry, upholstery and tailoring.

    Walking between the workshops, men are working on car engines, creating well-crafted furniture, sewing clothes and repairing electrical equipment, handcrafting wooden cabinets, beds, chairs, welding trailers and prison beds, among the many activities.



    A clear goal

    One man is working on a delicate set of wooden miniature houses, which he explains is on order for a school project.

    “It's better to come here every day and work, than just to sit in the cells,” Manfred Shukete (34) who is working on the tiny homes, told Namibian Sun.

    Before he was sentenced, his day job entailed working with wood, but he says the workshop has given him the chance to improve his skills, and could help him get a job or start his own business one day.

    He adds: “Many of the people here have not had any skills before, and it helps you to reintegrate better when you get out.”

    He says for many, it is a chance not to “go back to the old ways”.

    An offender who has worked for five years in the upholstery section, who declined to be named, says he feels joy and pride in “taking something old, and making it new again”.

    He says the work makes him forget where he is. “I don't feel punished, I feel a bit better about myself when I do this work.”

    He is set to be released later this year, after almost 13 years.

    The work has allowed him to feel confident about his future, and his reintegration into society.

    “If I can get some help to buy machinery, I want to start my own upholstery business. I am very good at this, and I don't want to ever suffer hunger again. When I first arrived here, I had no skills. Now I have learned so much. I won't go back to a life of crime; I feel I have been rehabilitated.”



    Soul food

    Kiewiet Plaaitjies (49), who applied for a spot in the panel beating and spray-painting section, says the work and the training help overcome the day to day humdrum of prison life, and addresses anxiety.

    “Because when you are busy, you stimulate your brain and you don't think about the other stress so much, on the issues you cannot resolve now.”

    He says the work, the acquiring of skills, the focus on daily tasks, are “healthy. It's soul food. All the divisions teach you not only to do this job on the outside, but it helps you to keep focused in here.”

    When I get out

    The inamtes who spoke to Namibian Sun agree that the work not only offers a reprieve from a day in their cells and an opportunity to learn new crafts, but allows them to plan for the future, despite knowing that society often harshly judges and stigmatises former inmates.

    “Society needs to accept that I have changed. I was still young when I came here. Now I have matured, and I know good and wrong. I have paid my dues and I plan to become a productive member of society,” Wilfred Siririka (43), who works in the mechanical division workshop.

    Siririka, who has been behind prison bars for ten years, and is set to be released in about two years, is also studying towards a law degree in his free time, which he hopes to pursue fulltime after prison.

    He worked for eight years as a literacy instructor while serving his time, but says he prefers the mechanics workshop for the new skills he is learning and being able to focus on a single task on his own.

    A fellow mechanic, Colin Ortner (35) is near the end of serving a 12-year sentence.

    He says while he grew up learning about car mechanics, working at the mechanics division has enabled him to fine-tune his skills and gave him the chance to obtain an artisan trade certificate.

    Ortner's sentence ends in February next year, and he is bursting with plans for his future, which involves opening his own mechanics workshop.

    “I am a changed man, and I will be leaving here with my own skills with which I can add contribute to society. Anything to do with cars, I can do it, I am good at it.”

    He is still married, and the father to three children and says their support “through the hard times”, and the opportunity given to him by the correctional services to improve his mechanic skills, is a source of gratitude.

    “I am not scared to go out. I am ready, and I am prepared.”

    Josaya Shigwedha (46), has spent almost ten years in prison, and is set to be released this year, began “from scratch” as a welder in the welding division six years ago.

    Through his training and work, he has obtained a qualification as a certified artisan, and already registered a CC for his future company.

    He often works on orders from the public and government offices, and says although he has a diploma in sales and marketing and an environmental management diploma from before his sentence, he wants to focus on welding when he finishes his time.

    “I enjoy this work. It not only gives you skills, but it's good to keep you busy, and your mind refreshed.”



    An unsure future

    Randy van Wyk (38) has been in prison for 18 years, after he was sentenced to 30 years when he was 20.

    Over the past seven years, he has become, according to one prison official, an expert carpenter, creating stunning pieces of furniture as well as being adept at fixing old, broken pieces.

    He is also praised and admired for his paintings, for which he developed a passion over the years.

    “I have been here for a long time. When I arrived, I had no skills at all.”

    In addition to the carpentry and painting, he also completed his Grade 10 and Grade 12 qualifications, and he hopes, with the support of family, to launch his own business when he leaves.

    He admits that he is apprehensive of leaving prison in 2020, when he expects to be paroled.

    “Prison has changed me. It has given me a new perspective on life, and I have accepted God into my life too.

    “The way I think has changed in here.”

    But, he says leaving prison will push him “into new and strange surroundings. I also wonder how people will respond to me.”



    Give a helping hand

    Deputy Commissioner Eveline January, spokesperson of the Namibia Correctional Service and a social worker, says in her view, the skills training at the workshop's offers inmates to develop new skills, which can ease their way back into society.

    “It keeps you busy, and it gives you a purpose to get up and to start and finish something. It equips you, and when they go out, they have a skill.”

    January underlined that it is crucial to understand that offenders are not the crime they committed, but are people with the same needs as the rest of society.

    “In my personal view, they are people, who have the same needs as the rest of us.

    “They need acceptance, respect, they need compassion. We all have the same needs as human beings.”

    January underlined that the NCS is responsible for the incarceration of inmates, and providing counselling programmes that support their reintegration before they are released.

    She noted however that a lack of support systems for former inmates after their release poses a risk and can challenge their efforts to re-join society.

    She says society can help by changing their mind-sets and giving former inmates a second chance, by helping with jobs, and supporting them in finding their feet again in the outside world.

    JANA-MARI SMITH

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  • 07/08/18--16:00: A World Cup for underdogs
  • A World Cup for underdogsA World Cup for underdogsEuropean teams take the lead The 2018 Fifa World Cup nears its conclusion and Europe has so far conquered the rest of the continents. The 2018 Fifa World Cup has proven that it will go to the underdogs of the tournament after several nations expected to lift the cup at the end of the competition were eliminated.

    Many had betted on Brazil, Spain, Germany, Argentina and Portugal to be in the semi-finals.

    These four nations have surprisingly however exited the tournament with nothing to show for it.

    Germany left the tournament during the group stages, while Argentina and Spain and Portugal were booted out in the Round of 16.

    South Americans Brazil and Uruguay also failed to get past the quarterfinals of the competition.

    This means that England, France, Belgium and Croatia are the remaining four, having a chance to become world champions.



    Belgium

    Belgium booked their place in the semi-final after beating tournament favourites Brazil 2-1 in the quarterfinals.

    Dubbed as the most talented team in the tournament, the bookmakers had given the Belgian's no chance of beating Brazil.

    An own goal by Fernandinho and a superb strike by Kevin de Bruyne was enough to put Belgium in the semi-final of the competition, beating the Brazilians 2-1.



    England

    England came into the tournament with very little expectations, given their past performance in the World Cup within the last two decades.

    It has not been a star-studded line up for the English coming into this cup and therefore people gave them no chance of reaching this far.

    The English team however grew in the tournament and defeated Sweden 2-0 in the quarterfinals.

    England will battle Croatia in the last-four for the competition.

    “It's a great achievement for the team, we owed it to the fans back home who believed in us,” Dele Alli of England told AFP.

    “It's always nice to score, especially on occasions like this. It's an amazing feeling to be going to a semi-final at a World Cup.”



    France

    The French always held great prospects when entering the World Cup given the horde of talent they have.

    Many pundits however also had little faith in the French team based on their previous performances at the competition.

    The team however proved their mettle and managed to outplay a resilient Uruguay side by beating them 2-0 in the quarterfinals.

    The French now have a date set with traditional rivals Belgium in the semi-finals.



    Croatia

    It has been over 20 years since Croatia reached the semi-final of the Fifa world Cup.

    A generation of new players led by their skipper Luca Modric ensured that the European nation got a chance to be in the semi-finals.

    It was however not easy for the team that had to go through to periods of extra time and two penalty shootouts to reach the semi-final.

    Croatia ended the fairy-tale journey of Russia by beating them 4-3 on penalties following a 2-2 draw in normal time.

    Russia gave a good account of themselves in this tournament as no one expected them to go this far.

    “We just wanted to prove ourselves,” said Russian coach Stanislav Cherchesov.

    “The entire country is in love with us, they know what the Russian national team is worth.”

    Europe's dominance

    The last remaining four teams have proven the level at which Europe is as far as football is concerned.

    The last team outside Europe to win the competition was Brazil when they beat Germany 2-0 back in 2002.

    Three European teams Italy, Germany and Spain have lifted the tournament in the last three World Cup finals.This shows how the European game has grown from strength to strength, despite Brazil still holding the record of winning the competition five times.

    Jesse Jackson Kauraisa

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    The tax benefit of a housing allowanceThe tax benefit of a housing allowance JOHAN NEL - A common trend in the job market is to award employees a housing benefit. This assists employees to afford the cost of housing. A tax benefit may be available to the employees who receive this allowance. It is important to note that this tax benefit is only available to employees where the employer has a registered housing scheme.

    The one-third tax deduction is applicable where:

    • the employer provides employees with free housing

    • an employee leases residential accommodation, the employer may pay an allowance limited to the actual rental agreement

    • an employee owns his/her own residence, the employer may pay an allowance limited to the actual bond instalments

    • the employee receives subsidised housing from the employer.

    Before application of the housing scheme tax benefit by the employer, it is recommended that the following is confirmed by all employees who will benefit:

    • Verification of the amount payable with the employee’s rental or bond agreement;

    • Combined housing allowances of an employee and his/her spouse should not exceed the amount payable per agreement;

    • Housing allowances shall be limited to one such agreement per employee; and

    • The allowance will only be applicable to the employee’s primary home. Therefore, an employee that is based in Windhoek cannot claim a housing allowance on his/her holiday home in Swakopmund.

    It should be noted that employers can still provide employees with housing benefits even though the above criteria is not met. However, the tax benefit would not be available on these housing benefits where no registered housing scheme is in place.

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    South Africans paying too much for private healthcareSouth Africans paying too much for private healthcareWatchdog findings South Africans are paying too much for private healthcare, the country’s antitrust watchdog said on Thursday, adding patients are sometimes prescribed treatments they don’t need by an industry with limited competition. “One of the challenges of this, from a competition perspective, is that it affords the big-three hospital groups “must-have” status in bargaining for contracts with funders which reduces funders’ countervailing power” - Sandile Ngcobo, head of investigating panel, Competition Commission Presenting its findings of a four-year investigation into the sector, the Competition Commission said private health providers sometimes recommended pricey treatments unnecessarily.

    “This happens, for example, if a doctor orders more tests than are absolutely necessary or conducts a Caesarean section when it is not absolutely necessary to do so,” said Sandile Ngcobo, a former chief justice who headed the Commission’s investigating panel.

    The findings could boost health minister Aaron Motsoaledi’s efforts to cut costs for patients as the government works towards implementing a nationwide medical insurance plan that aims to give the poor greater access to healthcare.

    South Africa spends roughly 9% of gross domestic product on healthcare but more than half of that is spent by about 16% of the population with private medical schemes, according to the health department.

    The inquiry also found there was limited competition in both the healthcare insurance and the private hospital markets.

    South Africa’s private hospital industry is dominated by Mediclinic International, Life Healthcare and Netcare, while the medical insurance sector counts Discovery Ltd , Liberty Holdings and MMI Holdings among the biggest players.

    “One of the challenges of this, from a competition perspective, is that it affords the big-three hospital groups “must-have” status in bargaining for contracts with funders which reduces funders’ countervailing power,” Ngcobo said.

    To address the concentration, the Commission proposed divestments and imposing a moratorium on issuing new licences to the three large hospital providers until such time as their national market share is no higher than 20%.

    It also proposed setting up a regulator to set tariffs for health services after extensive consultation with stakeholders in a public forum.

    South Africa already uses a regulator to set the price of electricity, the bulk of which is supplied by utility Eskom.

    Stakeholders have until September 7 to comment on the findings and proposed recommendations.

    Ngcobo and his team will consider the comments and, if necessary, revise the report. The final report and recommendations are expected to be published by the end of November.

    -Nampa/Reuters

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    Otjihavera up for exciting ridesOtjihavera up for exciting ridesPapo excited Exiting times lie ahead for mountain bikers who will once again have a chance to participate in a race. The Rock and Rut Mountain Bike club will host the 2018 FNB Otjihavera Experience race.

    The exciting competition will be held from 10 to 12 August at Midgard Country Estate.

    Land Rover and Windhoek Light are also part of the racing initiative.

    Many cyclists gearing for the event have expressed excitement towards the upcoming race.

    Cyclist Xavier Papo is a regular participant and finished second in last year's Elite category is hoping for a victory.

    “I look forward to this year's Otjihavera, and I hope that I can win it this time. It's a great race and I have done it a few years, finishing second twice.

    “I really enjoyed last year as it was different and much tougher. This race teaches you to push yourself, especially on the first day; which can be very gruelling. I want to encourage all riders of this year's Otjihavera to come prepared and I want to wish them success. It really is an awesome race,” Papo said.

    Gordon Pokolo, sponsorship manager at FNB Namibia wished all riders the best of luck and commented that mountain biking was much like life with numerous ups and downs.

    “Going downhill is easy and fast and fun. But it's only the exhausting uphill grind that makes the descent so gratifying. And just like Otjihavera, life pushes our boundaries where taking risks is essential to our growth and vitality,” Pokolo reiterated.

    He further added that team camaraderie and spirit were some of the many reasons why this sport is so loved.

    “It is the spirit of partnership, even among the sponsors, that makes First National Bank a proud backer of this great initiative.”

    The race has grown from 40 participants in its maiden year 2006 to 105 teams of two last year.

    Over 90 teams have already entered this year promising some exciting racing across rugged mountain ranges. The organisers announced that there will new and exciting changes to this year's race.

    There will be a non-compulsory Prologue event on Friday evening, 10 August 2018.

    This will consist of a timed time trial around the Midgard Country Lodge area and game park.

    There will also be a Land Rover Hill – a timed competition for the steepest climb on the route.

    This year, there be will have the Windhoek Light Tented Race Village, a tented village on the Midgard premises for rider accommodation. This will have look and feel to be closer to some of the larger multistage events internationally.

    In addition to the beer tent the event will include special kid's entertainment for spectators of all ages.

    Jesse Jackson Kauraisa

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    Ball in the PSL's court in Ajax matterBall in the PSL's court in Ajax matter The Premier Soccer League (PSL) have exactly one month to sort out the Ajax Cape Town saga if they are to start the 2018/19 season on 3 August as planned.

    The new season traditionally kicks off with the MTN8 competition, with the league starting a couple of weeks after that.

    But Monday's Johannesburg High Court ruling by Judge Denise Fisher to overrule the earlier decision by Advocate Mokhari to dock Ajax the seven points from the games in which the allegedly ineligible Tendai Ndoro played, saw the Cape side reinstated to 15th place on the league standings.

    This, however, leaves the PSL with a major problem in that the promotion play-offs have already taken place and were won by Black Leopards, who are expecting to take their spot in the top flight next season.

    But while Fischer set aside the Mokhari's verdict, she did not offer a solution for the way forward and instead referred the Ndoro matter back to the Fifa Players' Status Committee to make a final ruling on the issue.

    However, earlier in the case, the first hearing which took place on 31 January, the PSL and later the South African Football Association (Safa) had tried on two occasions to get Fifa to rule on the matter, only for the world footballing body to refer the matter back to the South African authorities.

    The PSL issued the following statement on Monday acknowledging the court case, although it was not very definitive in what the next step will be.

    “The relief that was sought from the court was the setting aside of Advocate Mokhari SC's misconduct award together with orders that Ajax Cape Town should be on the 15th position on the final League table, and that the promotion play-offs be set aside.

    “Judge Fisher set aside Advocate Mokhari's award but declined to hand down the other relief sought. It is necessary for the League to properly consider the meaning and effect of the judgment before making any further comment on the matter.

    “The judgment and advice of the League's advisors will be considered by the PSL executive committee and the appropriate steps will be taken in due course.”

    Ajax are themselves unsure of what exactly the latest ruling will mean for their future.

    “Ajax Cape Town are naturally very pleased with Judge Fisher's ruling to set aside Advocate Mokhari's award. The club will make further comment once full clarity on Judge Fisher's judgment is received from its legal team,” said CEO Ari Efstathiou.

    It would seem likely the league will once more try and ask Fifa to step in and rule on the matter.

    If that request is declined, the PSL could replay the play-offs, which would likely draw an appeal from Leopards.

    It would also not make much sense to allow the team which finished second in the National First Division last season, Jomo Cosmos, to get another shot at the play-offs which they already lost out on.

    The increasingly feasible option, which would just about keep everyone happy and allow the new season to kick off as scheduled, would be to have a 17-team league for the 2018/19 campaign.

    NAMPA/ANA

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  • 07/08/18--16:00: Fredericks to get statue
  • Fredericks to get statueFredericks to get statue Legendary sprinter Frank Fredericks will be honoured with a statue at the Independence Stadium in Olympia in Windhoek, information minister Stanley Simataa announced on Thursday.

    Simataa said the decision to erect such a statue was taken at the ninth cabinet meeting held on Wednesday in the capital.

    “This Namibian individual participated in the Olympics in 1992 and propelled this country onto the world map. It's not only once that he did well for the country, but on numerous occasions and based on the merit of his contribution from independence up until he retired, we made a decision to erect his image at the Independence Stadium,” said Simataa.

    Fredericks is the only Namibian sprinter to have won a medal for Namibia at the Olympics since independence in 1990. He won silver medals in the 100 and 200 metre races at both the 1992 and 1996 Olympics.

    Simataa said the statue will be erected based on the Procurement Act that governs the procurement of goods and services in Namibia.

    “Having promulgated this act we have to first ensure that there are people who can offer these services locally and if they are not available, we will then source it elsewhere.

    “The specification of setting up this statue will have to be met so that the legendary person that we are honouring will not fall down with the slightest wind. That is why we will look at those who can offer value for money when erecting this statue,” he said.

    NAMPA

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