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Tells it All - Namibian Sun

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    N$10k per day to keep a rhinoN$10k per day to keep a rhinoShifeta laments dwindling trust fund Namibia needs to sell its stockpiles of ivory and rhino horn to fund its conservation efforts as funds towards those are decreasing sharply. Environment minister Pohamba Shifeta has again spoken up about the drawbacks for Namibia of not being able to sell its ivory and rhino horn stockpiles.

    According to Shifeta it costs more than N$10 000 per day to keep a rhino. “Yet you are not allowed to sell rhino horns legally. Now farmers are giving up.”

    With dwindling funds flowing into the Game Products Trust Fund that supports activities and programmes in conservation and poaching and human-wildlife conflict, Shifeta said selling these stockpiles would make more income available.

    “Namibia is able to benefit from both its rhino and elephant resources. Now it is just standing here.”

    Shifeta explained that a proposal was already been made to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (Cites) to sell the country's ivory stockpiles.

    Shifeta further elaborated on how expensive it has become for rhino owners and custodians to keep rhinos on their farms.

    “Rhino farmers are giving up and selling their animals, yet they are not allowed to trade in rhino horns to get some income.”

    Arguments have however been if legal trade is allowed that this will fuel poaching.

    However, Shifeta countered this saying that as long as there is a demand for rhino horn there will be poaching. “The only thing to close the market is when you do not have a rhino with horns.”

    He referred to the recent case in South Africa where the world's largest private rhino breeder, John Hume, faced financial collapse this year, putting his more than 1 600 rhinos on the market.

    Hume's eventually held an online auction of rhino horns to capitalise on a court ruling that paved the way for domestic trade despite the international ban imposed to curb poaching.

    Domestic trade

    A moratorium on buying and selling rhino horn within South Africa has been in place since 2009, but in 2015 Hume and another rhino horn breeder filed a suit to overturn it. A final court ruling opened the way for domestic trade to begin again, although the ban on the international trade, established in 1977, remains in place.

    Also, a South African businessman Piet Warren was until recently the owner of the second-largest privately owned population of rhino in South Africa with about 250 animals, but was recently forced to sell more than half of these due to financial constraints.

    At a Cites convention in October 2016, Namibia and Zimbabwe each made a proposal to open up ivory markets, but were soundly defeated with a coalition of African states which opposed it and tabled a proposal to have ivory trade banned permanently.

    At that time Namibia's stockpile stood at about 62.9 tons of legal and illegal ivory with a collective value of N$341.2 million.

    The stockpile included 26.05 tons of legal ivory retrieved when animals died naturally, were put down for being problematic or shot in trophy hunting. The remaining 36.85 tons of illegal ivory were confiscated in police operations. The stockpile would have increased substantially since then with poaching numbers which remained high last year.

    Bureaucratic delays

    Furthermore, the Decision Making Mechanism (DMM) for future trade in ivory was also abandoned at the Cites meeting, after nine years of discussion. Namibia, South Africa, and Botswana all recommended the Cites parties to adopt a DMM.

    However an organisation selling ivory failed to garner approval by the parties, particularly because the ivory ban is in place.

    Without the DMM for future ivory trade, Namibia will still be required to go back to the Cites Conference of the Parties with proposals to trade in ivory and those proposals will, in all likelihood, be rejected.

    Imposed since 1989, the ivory ban is enforced in a way that Namibia, Botswana, South Africa and Zimbabwe can request permission for auctions due to their large elephant populations which received less protection than those from other African countries.

    The ban was in mid-2007 temporarily lifted for the four African States and 107 tons of ivory was auctioned under strict Cites supervision. The ban was also temporarily lifted in 1997.

    Failure to establish the DMM has undermined the generation of revenue from the sale of elephant products to finance elephant conservation programmes, including the management of protected areas and the combatting of illegal killing and trade.

    The next Cites meeting takes place in 2019 when it is expected that Namibia will again propose the selling of its stockpiles.


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  • 08/29/18--16:00: Thinking out of the box
  • Thinking out of the boxThinking out of the box The 49-year-old entrepreneur, Emelita Kuutondokwa, has taken on the demanding task of running her own business and making a living by crushing mahangu.

    She is the sole owner of Emelita Kuutondokwa Trading CC, a registered business specialising in the processing of a traditional pearl millet, colloquially known as mahangu, into a finished, crushed product.

    Her business is fast becoming an established brand in the Oshana Region, where she has three full-time employees.

    Mahangu is the world's most popular type of millet crop. In Namibia, it is usually made into porridge called oshifima or isima in some local languages. Mahangu can also be fermented to make a drink known as oshikundu or sikundu.

    With valuable experience gained over the years, Kuutondokwa elaborated on why she chose this specific venture. “Experience is very important. After working in the industry for years, I felt that I could make it,” she said.

    Born at Oshinyali village, in the Oshana Region, Kuutondokwa comes from a family of seven siblings. After she completed her secondary education at Oshakati Senior Secondary School, she was unable to further her education due to a lack of financial support.

    Being the woman that she is, this did not deter her. “I had to look for a job that would allow me to pay for my sibling's school fees and also assist my family with taking care of household expenses such as food,” she said.

    Plugging away

    In 1991, Kuutondokwa's persistence paid off when she secured employment offered to her by the late Gabriel Kandjengo, a reputable businessman from northern Namibia. The business offered mahangu crushing services to the community. In 2011, she decided to go for it and establish her own business. Using her savings, Kuutondokwa bought her first asset, a mahangu crushing machine. As her business grew, so did the demand.

    In 2015, Kuutondokwa approached Bank Windhoek's Emerging Small and Medium Enterprises (ESME) Finance Branch for working capital and financing to purchase equipment. Her application was successful and a year later, she was able to open another branch at the Epungu Ekukutu Village.

    Bank Windhoek's ESME Finance Branch mandate is to ensure that promising Namibian entrepreneurs, with feasible business ideas are financially assisted in order to contribute to the country's economic alleviation.

    “One area we focus on is empowering women. Kuutondokwa's drive and focus is what we would like to see from every woman planning to enter the Namibian business landscape. She took a local product, met the demand on the processing capability and capacity and improved on delivering it to her market. This is a successful Namibian story and we are so proud to have been able to help her realise her dream of being independent and successful. This venture has shown that together it is possible to achieve success. We wish her all the best,” said Bank Windhoek's ESME Finance Branch credit manager, Aune Hamukonda.

    Many challenges

    One of the main challenges Kuutondokwa's business is facing is a lack of transport for bringing mahangu from producers who grow it to the processing facilities. Despite this her business manages to generate good revenue. She also points out the challenge of foreign direct competition that usually offers the same services at lower prices.

    However she says this will not stop her from serving her loyal customers and she will continue to reinvent her business in order to remain competitive.

    Kuutondokwa advised other entrepreneurs to work hard, save more and to never give up. “Do not wait for the government to help. With your education or skills nothing is impossible. Success comes to those who work hard to achieve their set goals,” she said.

    Kuutondokwa commended Bank Windhoek for the role it played in her success and because of the strong relationship she now has with the bank, her loyalty is cemented. She concluded by adding that the bank should continue assisting entrepreneurs who also create jobs for others.


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    African Deli gives matangara to marginalisedAfrican Deli gives matangara to marginalisedNamibian delicacy African Deli is a Namibian home-grown company, founded in January 2013 as a food manufacturer that provides quality, healthy, affordable and convenient ready-made traditional food. The products are targeted at the urbanised, modernised and aspirational traditionalist with busy lifestyles- Sylvanius Kathindi, CEO, African Deli The core of our project is directly tied to the heartbeat of our National Development goals namely the “Growth at Home Strategy” and the “Harambee Prosperity Plan”.

    President Hage Geingob, has declared war against poverty in the quest for economic emancipation. He also emphasised that no Namibian should be left out inclusivity is key.

    The government will continue to create the statutory framework to allow all stakeholders to participate meaningfully in policy formulation and the socio-economic development of our nation.

    African Deli’s value proposition is to bring to the market a choice of the best traditionally inspired products that offer customers a cost-effective, convenient and healthy experience wherever they are. These products are long-life and are prepared by just heat-and-eat within 5 minutes.

    The products are targeted at the urbanised, modernised and aspirational traditionalist with busy lifestyles and offer a quick, comforting and convenient pantry-fill linked to their roots and culture and to re-establish a sense of pride in traditional food and African culture says the company’s CEO Sylvanius Kathindi.

    It is for this reason that African Deli has responded to the President call by donating 1 800 boxes of Matangara beef tripe towards the Vice President’s office to benefit the Marginalised Community in the rural area.

    This exercise is part of African Deli’s corporate social responsibility and will continue to do so.

    Upon receiving the donation, Gerson Kamatuka the deputy director of the Marginalized Community Division under the Office of the Vice President expressed his gratitude to African Deli for the contribution towards zero rate to hunger. This is going to make a major difference for our marginalized community. We are therefore very grateful. As a true Namibian patriot, African Deli is definitely here for Namibia and its people said Kamatuka.

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    Steinhoff commits to release audited financial resultsSteinhoff commits to release audited financial results Chair of Steinhoff’s supervisory board Heather Sonn yesterday detailed the process leading up to Deloitte’s decision not to sign off on financial statements for 2017.

    According to Sonn, at the time, Deloitte was in a process of reviewing statements when allegations came forward from various sources raised questions about the financials which raised concerns.

    The audit committee worked with Deloitte on the matter and asked for audit evidence to address concerns. The audits could not be produced – which led Deloitte to decide not to sign off on the statements.

    On December 5, 2017, PwC was approached to conduct an investigation.

    Sonn also assured that Steinhoff will “not stop trying” to recover returns to individuals affected by the fallout of the share price.

    She added that leadership would continue to try to save the company. The financial statements for 2017 will be released in December 2018, the financial results for 2018 will be released in January 2018.


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    Cashbuild annual profit down Cashbuild annual profit down South African building materials retailer Cashbuild reported a 9% decline in annual profit on Tuesday due to higher costs and weak consumer demand, sending its shares tumbling more than 4%.

    Headline earnings per share (EPS) — the main profit gauge in South Africa that strips out certain one-off items — came in at 1 867 cents in the year to the end of June versus 2,045 cents in a year earlier.

    Revenue rose 5% to 10.2 million rand (US$696,800) but the cost of revamping and opening news stores pushed costs by 9%, Cashbuild said in a statement.

    The company added 42 stores in this financial year to its 276 outlets.

    Consumers in Africa’s most advanced economy are spending warily due to slow economic growth, high unemployment and rising fuel costs that have pushed inflation to its highest in ten months.

    The company said although it expects trading conditions to remain “extremely challenging”, it will “continue its store expansion, relocation and refurbishment strategy in a controlled manner, applying the same rigorous process as in the past.”

    Shares in the firm fell 4.15% to 300 rand by 0945 GMT, versus a 0.41% rise in the All-Share index.


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    NTTU steps back from 50% fare hikeNTTU steps back from 50% fare hike The Namibia Transport and Taxi Union (NTTU) has taken a more cautious stance on its demand for a 50% taxi fare increase effective this Saturday.

    Earlier this month, the Namibia Competition Commission (NaCC) had warned taxi operators to desist from any price increases without the approval of the Road Transportation Board, as that would amount to prohibited price fixing in terms of the Competition Act.

    The board is expected to announce its decision by the end of the week.

    NTTU president Werner Januarie yesterday told Namibian Sun that although the union still wanted a 50% increase, it was trying to negotiate its way around the Competition Act.

    “There's now the competition commission and there's also Nampol to consider. The taxi drivers can charge what's fair and we'll be there to speak on their behalf,” he said.

    Januarie challenged the transportation board to indicate where in the Road Traffic and Transport Act it is stipulated that taxi drivers cannot charge more, in agreement with customers, than what is approved by the transportation board.

    “In the absence of that, taxi drivers can charge even the amount of N$15 or any other higher amounts and also we're trying to assure taxi drivers that they have nothing to worry about,” he said.

    Januarie argued that it was the Competition Commission's role to promote healthy competition and that it had “no role if businesses charge clients according to their own needs”.

    Nevertheless, he denied any collusion or price fixing and said proof should be provided if that was the case.

    He said taxi operators had nothing to worry about. “If anyone is accusing them of anything, it's for their accusers to prove their case beyond a reasonable doubt.”

    Previously Januarie had insisted that a 50% increase would be effected on 1 September “whether someone likes it does not like it”.

    Yesterday he said taxi drivers should continue to charge “any amount they wish” after informing their customers of the price.

    He urged taxi drivers to “avoid fighting with customers at all cost”.

    Januarie said customers should be informed of the fare before a trip, “as per the usual norms and practices, and if a customer doesn't agree with a set price, then just leave them there”.

    He argued that neither the Road Traffic and Transport Act, nor the permit conditions for taxi drivers, prohibit negotiations between taxi drivers and commuters on non-standard routes.

    “Neither the police nor any other persons can interfere as it would be a private agreement between two parties,” he said, arguing that such negotiations for special trips were part of the industry already.

    Decision imminent

    Damien Mabengano, the deputy director responsible for transport regulations at the ministry of works and transport, yesterday confirmed that an announcement on the fare increase was expected this week.

    He said the Road Transportation Board had received three requests for fare increases. The Namibia Public Passenger Transport Association (NPPTA) requested a 10% increase, the Namibia Bus and Taxi Association (Nabta) 20%, and NTTU 50%.

    Mabengano said the board had consulted widely, including with the various associations and unions, and with a new association representing commuters.

    “They have consulted each association to discuss and to try and understand in terms of the sectors why they are calling for those increases.”

    He added that the board had undertaken independent analysis and research to ensure all factors were considered, including the impact on commuters dependent on public transport.

    Mabengano warned that taxi operators who increased fares by more than the percentage approved by board could lose their public transport permits.

    “If they charge the 50% that is not agreed upon, they are not complying with permit conditions and if they are not complying, it's a good reason to withdraw the permit,” he said.


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  • 08/29/18--16:00: Road cost balloons by N$36m
  • Road cost balloons by N$36mRoad cost balloons by N$36mRCC fails to make headway on gravel project The Roads Contractor Company has failed to make headway for five years on a critical gravel road project, whose cost has now ballooned by N$36 million. The transport ministry has approved further funding of N$36 million for the construction of a gravel road between Omakange and Onamatanga, after the Roads Contractor Company (RCC), which was originally awarded a N$21 million tender to construct the road five years ago, failed to make headway on the project.

    RA spokesperson Hileni Fillemon told Namibian Sun their request for further funding had been approved by the ministry and they would now find a contractor for the 41km road project.

    Fillemon said the RCC had only been paid for work done, but could not say exactly how much of the original N$21 million budget had been spent and what had happened to the rest of the money.

    “The RA and works and transport ministry, through the Omusati regional council, awarded this tender to the RCC to construct the said road in November 2013, but up to now the RCC only managed to de-bush about half of the total distance,” Fillemon said.

    She added that the RA had terminated the RCC's contract for non-performance and its machinery was removed from the site.

    When Namibian Sun visited Onamatanga last month, the RCC was still on site. When contacted, RCC acting CEO Seth Herunga would not comment.

    Ruacana constituency councillor Andreas Shintama said the RCC remained on site although the work had ground to a halt in 2014.

    Shintama said he had written several letters to the transport ministry, requesting that the project be speeded up. The latest response he received from the ministry was that it was considering the project.

    “This road is very bad throughout the year and it needs to be attended to as soon as possible. There are many businesspeople who declared an interest in upgrading Onamatanga, but due to the road's condition they cannot go ahead,” Shintama said.

    “It is also difficult to take government services to the area due to this bad road. It was a good thing that the RA considered upgrading it, but now we don't know what went wrong with the RCC.”

    Former transport minister Erkki Nghimtina launched the construction work in 2013. However, to date, the RCC has de-bushed less than 20km of the road.

    “We thought it was a relief for us to get a gravel road, but now we don't know what happened. There are many cases of community members who either died or gave birth while on the way to the hospital because of the condition of the road,” Onamatanga Primary School principal Johannes Shaanika told Namibian Sun.

    “We have a local clinic, but it takes an ambulance from the Okahao district hospital a long time to reach us, and during the rainy season they do not reach us at all.”

    Onamatanga is about 120km from Okahao.

    Shaanika expressed his disappointment, saying the two parastatals (the RA and RCC) seemed to be unconcerned about the welfare of local residents. He said Onamatanga is only accessible by four-wheel-drive vehicles because the road is sandy, making it dangerous and difficult to drive.

    During the rainy season the area is not accessible at all.

    Shaanika added the RCC had exacerbated the already bad condition of the road. He said he had written many letters enquiring about the road, but did not receive a single response.

    “It is now four years, but we don't know why the road works have not started. This road means a lot to the community of Onamatanga,” said an irate Shaanika.


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    Governments hope to build bridgesGovernments hope to build bridges A high-ranking German delegation will accompany the Namibian emissary that will return to Windhoek with the skulls of 27 Nama and Ovaherero people tomorrow.

    It is the third such repatriation of human remains dating back to the 1904-1908 genocide in Namibia.

    Accompanying the grim cargo will be Germany's minister of state, Michelle Müntefering; its special envoy for the genocide negotiations, Ruprecht Polenz; its regional director for Sub-Saharan Africa and the Sahel, Robert Dölger; and the German ambassador to Namibia, Christian Schlaga.

    Müntefering met the Namibian delegation led by the minister of education, arts and culture, Katrina Hanse-Himarwa, upon their arrival in Berlin on Monday.

    At the occasion Müntefering said it was a political and personal priority for her to accompany human remains and artefacts purloined during the colonial period during their return home after more than a century.

    “I am very confident that this repatriation of human remains will be a further step among the numerous efforts of state and civil society actors to build bridges between our two countries and to invest in a better future,” Müntefering told the Namibian delegation.

    Müntefering said further dialogue between the two governments on how to deal with the shadows of the colonial past would continue as soon as tomorrow, when the repatriated skulls will be displayed for public view in Windhoek's Parliament Gardens.

    “Namibia and Germany share a trustful partnership. On the basis of this mutual trust both governments are working intensely on coming to terms with the colonial past,” Müntefering said.

    “We want to help heal the wounds from the atrocities committed by Germans at the time,” she added.

    But representatives of the descendants of the tens of thousands of Herero and Nama massacred during the 1904-1908 genocide have criticised yesterday's ceremony as insufficient.

    Esther Utjiua Muinjangue, chairperson of the Ovaherero Genocide Foundation, said the handover would have been “the perfect opportunity” for Germany to officially apologise for what is often called the first genocide of the 20th century.

    “Is that asking too much? I don't think so,” she told a Berlin press conference this week, describing the attitude of the German government as “shocking”.

    This third repatriation was initially planned to take place between 2 and 9 June 2017, but the Namibian embassy in Berlin requested a postponement.

    A commemoration service was held in the Französische Friedrichstadtkirche in one of Berlin's central squares yesterday, where the human remains were officially handed over to the Namibian delegation.

    A spokesperson for the ministry of science and arts of the German state of Baden-Württemberg, Denise Burgert, this week said that the Hendrik Witbooi Bible would be returned to Namibia at the beginning of 2019 by a high-ranking government representative from that state.

    “We also would like to combine the return of the Bible with future close relations and cooperation with Namibia,” Burgert said.

    “The state of Baden-Württemberg is already in contact with Namibian partners and hopes to continue to expand our scientific and cultural cooperation there. State secretary Petra Olschowski will be visiting Namibia with various institutions at the end of September,” she added.


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  • 08/29/18--16:00: Africa briefs
  • Africa briefsAfrica briefs IMF support could help Angola- Moody's

    Financial support from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) could help support Angola’s reform drive, Mathias Angonin, assistant vice president at Moody’s ratings agency, said in a report on Tuesday.

    Angola said last week it sought financial support from the IMF due to poorer than expected economic growth this year.


    Truck explosion at Glencore oilfield in Chad

    A truck caught fire and exploded on Sunday at Glencore’s Mangara oilfield in Chad, injuring three employees and forcing production to be suspended, the company said on Tuesday.

    “A truck used to transport crude oil caught fire and exploded. Three employees suffered minor injuries and have since been discharged. As a result of the incident, the field was immediately shut down,” Glencore said in a statement.

    Glencore added that it had deployed investigators to the scene and was working closely with local authorities.

    The company produced nearly 2.5 million barrels of oil last year at its Mangara and Badila oilfields in Chad.


    South Africa withdraws land expropriation bill

    South Africa’s ruling African National Congress (ANC) said on Tuesday an expropriation bill passed by parliament in 2016 enabling the state to make compulsory purchases of land to redress racial disparities in land ownership has been withdrawn.

    The bill — which had not been signed into law — was withdrawn to allow an ongoing process that could lead to the changing of the constitution to pave way for expropriation of land without compensation, the party said.


    Number of Somalis evicted from their homes doubles

    The number of Somalis left homeless has surged this year as thousands who had already fled war, drought and floods were forcibly evicted from mostly makeshift homes, the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC) said.

    The aid group, in a report published on Tuesday, said one of the main factors driving people out of their homes was property developers requisitioning land, often without warning, during a building boom in the capital Mogadishu.

    More than 200,000 Somalis, or one in 60 of the population, were forcibly evicted from their homes in January-July, more than double the number in the same period last year, the group said.

    NRC said most evictions were done without due process, including without prior notice, and called on the government to address the problem by developing land policies and improving access to land for people who were forced from their homes.


    Nigerian economy loses momentum

    Nigeria’s economic growth dipped to 1.50% year on year between April and June, the statistics office said on Monday, extending a slowdown into a second quarter as the oil sector contracted.

    Largely dependent on its rich crude reserves, Nigeria’s economy began climbing out of its first recession in 25 years in 2016 as President Muhammadu Buhari’s government implemented the early stages of a turnaround plan.

    But the pace of recovery has been relatively slow, and since the beginning of this year has again started to dip.

    The oil sector shrank 3.95%in the second quarter, the National Bureau of Statistics said. Oil production dipped to 1.84 million barrels per day (mpbd) from 2 mpbd in the first quarter.


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  • 08/29/18--16:00: There are no 'untouchables'
  • There are no 'untouchables'There are no 'untouchables' The so-called state capture commission of inquiry in South Africa, chaired by that country's deputy chief justice, Raymond Zondo, is exposing financial treason committed by one family, their political enablers, including a head of state and his ministers, and sycophantic parastatal and government department heads.

    Even more disturbing is evidence that the country's elite crime-fighting unit, the Hawks, was knee-deep entwined in actively drawing up false declarations and statements for whistleblowers to sign, who had gone public with graft allegations involving the country's then president, Jacob Zuma.

    This goes to the heart of public trust in the rule of law, in the sense that - in the words of George Orwell - some animals are more equal than others.

    In the Namibian context, as we grapple with unfolding horror crimes, as well as state corruption and other economic offences against our people, it has become even more critical that law enforcement is not only perceived as impartial, but acts without fear or favour.

    The breakdown of societies not only happen when they are confronted by critical issues like land redistribution; the breakdown of law and order and public trust in law-enforcement is a massive catalyst when it comes to a nation withering and degrading.

    Over many years, alarm bells have been raised about the effectiveness and will of the Anti-Corruption Commission, when it comes to investigating and charging so-called bigwigs in our country.

    This dangerous perception that there are 'untouchables' among us has not been dealt with effectively by the powers that be.

    As politically connected individuals continue to escape with their loot, after brazen heists of state money, confidence in our law enforcement and justice system continues to wane.

    The irony is that this eventually leads to tribalist and other debates, where instead of individuals, the tribes they belong to become the black sheep, so to speak.

    It is not necessary for us to go the route of South Africa… we need to address the sagging confidence most citizens have in our law enforcement entities.

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    Three more murders besides CherylThree more murders besides Cheryl Besides car crashes, which invariably occur over long weekends, the Heroes' Day weekend was marred by three other murders and three rapes.

    Beverly Kuranngera, 26, was stabbed to death, allegedly by her ex-boyfriend, 51, at Omaruru on Saturday. According to the police, the suspect, who was arrested later, had gone to Kuranngera's shack, broken open the door, and followed her when she ran away. She was stabbed several times in the neck and back.

    Drinking remains a problem in Namibia, leading all too frequently to violence. On Sunday, 26 August at Groot Aub's Dallas Grocer Bar, Ulrich Klasen, 34, was allegedly stabbed to death by a 24-year-old suspect following an argument.

    On the same day at Oshakati, a 23-year-old stabbed a 45-year-old to death, also at a drinking spot, Kutya Bar.

    At Omitara, also on Sunday, Elden Skrwyer, 19, was shot dead with a 9mm pistol. Two suspects, aged 37 and 51, were arrested.

    Three rapes were reported. A 15-year-old girl was allegedly raped by a 21-year-old man between Corridor 11 and Corridor 13 in the Omaheke Region on Saturday evening. According to the police, the girl had asked the man to walk her from Corridor 11 to Corridor 13.

    On Sunday, a 13-year-old girl reported a rape at Outjo, which is said to have occurred between 03:00 and 04:00. The girl was on her way home from a music show held at the local sport stadium when she accepted a ride in a white Combi. The driver, she said, took her to the riverbed near Ombinda Lodge and raped her.

    On Monday, a female security guard, 19, was raped at Oshitayi next to a brick manufacturing plant in Ondangwa. She was on her way home when she was held at knifepoint at about 05:00.


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    Court bid to stop billions flowing to SACourt bid to stop billions flowing to SAInsurance companies in the dock The finance minister says non-compliance by insurance companies will lead to irrecoverable outflows of money from the country. Finance minister Calle Schlettwein has dragged seven insurance companies and their CEOs to court for defying sections of the Namibia National Reinsurance (NamibRe) Act, which he says will lead to irrecoverable outflows totalling N$1 billion a year for an indefinite period.

    The court application follows local insurance firms sending 20% of their monthly income to reinsurance companies in South Africa, instead of paying it over to NamibRe.

    In his application against Hollard Insurance, Hollard Life, Sanlam, Santam, Trustco Insurance, Trustco Life, Outsurance and Old Mutual Assurance Company, Schlettwein is challenging their decision not to pay compulsory cession fees over to NamibRe.

    Schlettwein, through government attorneys, argued in his High Court papers that the insurance companies were not paying the local cession fees, as stipulated in the amended NamibRe Act.

    The cession fees were initially set at 20%, but were reduced to 12.5% after consultations with industry stakeholders.

    The fees are a portion of an insurance company's monthly income, which is paid to a reinsurer, which in the case of local insurers should be NamibRe.

    The companies, however, challenged this decision, which led to NamibRe incurring costs to rope in specialists to strengthen its in-house expertise, while also hiring additional staff.

    Schlettwein said the local insurance industry had been given ample time to prepare itself, in addition to the reduction in the cession fees percentage. According to him, the resistance was unlawful in terms of the law.

    “They have broken ranks with other major insurers which are not flouting the law, pending the determination of the (court) challenge and review. The unlawful conduct of the respondents, intended to protect private profit, cannot be allowed to prevail over this period at the (cost of the) achievement of the objectives of the Act,” Schlettwein said.

    According to him, capital outflows from Namibia in respect of reinsurance are set to continue, irrecoverably, at a cost of N$1 billion a year for an indefinite period.

    “If the respondents are permitted to continue in their stance, there is reason to apprehend that those who are currently complying will cease to do so,” said Schlettwein.

    The reluctance to pay cession fees locally also meant that NamibRe's creditworthiness was at risk, he said.

    “The non-implementation of the cession (fees), owing to the unlawful conduct of the respondents, will likely result in ratings agencies downgrading NamibRe's credit rating. This will negatively impact on NamibRe; it will result in a loss of business,” Schlettwein said, adding this was detrimental to the economy.

    NamibRe, in its supporting affidavit filed by Sisa Namandje & Co, said it depended on the cession fees for the sustaining of its operations and to continue to achieve the objectives of the Act

    The insurance companies and their CEOs, represented by Francois Erasmus and Partners, said they were not to blame for the delayed growth of NamibRe's balance sheet or the delays in the finalisation of pending court proceedings challenging the cession fees.

    “The applicants do not make out any case why NamibRe's balance sheet could not have been adequately capitalised by government itself as the sole shareholder, by its listing or by the issuing of debts through conventional bank funding or through a listed note programme,” Erasmus argued.

    He further argued another year would not make any enduring difference, either to Namibia or NamibRe, or to the NamibRe Act and its enforcement.

    “The respondents were entitled to pre-emptively lodge their challenges, and a court has no discretion, with respect, in the circumstances of this case to refuse the applicants time and opportunity to finalise their challenges,” Erasmus said.

    He further argued the intended revisions to the Act were prejudicial to consumers, the economy and a sustainable insurance industry; and that the measures violated the rule of law and entrenched constitutional rights.

    Arguments are set to continue today before Judge Thomas Masuku.


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    Witchcraft remains centre stageWitchcraft remains centre stage The Popular Democratic Movement Youth League (PDMYL) says the manner in which Cheryl Avihe Ujaha's body was mutilated, boiled and discovered with missing parts, points to a cultist or ritualistic killing.

    The youth wing also condemned the brutal killing that culminated in Cheryl's maimed corpse being discarded in a riverbed near Staanvas circle in Khomasdal.

    “The PDMYL urges the Namibian government to rapidly implement measures to tighten laws pertaining to the operations of traditional healers and radical churches,” said PDMYL secretary-general Benson Katjirijova.

    Ujaha, a learner at Gammams Primary School, went missing over the weekend.

    According to Katjirijova the persistent violence against women and girls can only be stopped with drastic measures.

    “The murder of young Cheryl is particularly sickening because not only was she abducted and murdered, but she was also subjected to the most inhumane treatment from a fellow human being or beings,” he said.

    Local gender expert, Ngamane Karuaihe-Upi, said the police should not stop their efforts to track down Cheryl's killer or killers, adding many witchdoctors across Africa are getting away because they are not prosecuted.

    He said it is time for the police operating in an African context to look beyond the “gory killings” and get to the bottom of what was happening.

    “Our government must also look at encouraging laws that address the conduct of sangomas. We cannot just throw our hands into the air and say it is witchcraft.

    “We must do something about it. There was a time when they talked about registering all traditional healers… what happened to that process? Perhaps that will allow us to go to traditional healers and advise them to tell their clients who want to be wealthy to kill a goat instead of a human being,” he said.

    Khomas crime investigations coordinator, Deputy Commissioner Abner Agas, said it is not clear at this stage what the motive was behind Cheryl's murder.

    “We are still busy with the investigations,” he said.


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  • 08/29/18--16:00: 'I forgive her killer'
  • 'I forgive her killer''I forgive her killer'Grandpa agonises over Cheryl Neighbours, aunts, her grandparents and mother have been left broken by nine-year-old Cheryl Avihe Ujaha's abduction, murder and maiming. Cheryl Avihe Ujaha's grandfather, Seth Kaimu, says he holds no grudges against her killer or killers.

    “I hold no grudges against that man or whoever it is; I will forgive him completely. I would like to have a chat with him, if he is found. I work in prison to help prisoners rehabilitate,” he said.

    This past Friday, a day before her disappearance, Cheryl proudly showed off her school report to Kaimu. She had done exceptionally well.

    He was not surprised, as she was a very intelligent girl.

    “She was smart… she was certainly not the type who would get into a car if it was not someone who knew her very well,” he remarked, as he fiddled with a plastic bag, as an immense sadness filled the family home.

    Kaimu is a pastor at El Shaddai Ministries and Cheryl used to sing in the church, on occasion, during Sunday services.

    Her gruesome abduction and murder has ripped the heart of a nation to shreds, as many continue to vent their anger, amid calls for a return of the death penalty on social media.

    Cheryl's family had huge dreams for her future.

    But those dreams have been laid waste by an evil in our midst - an evil that abducted and killed a child, and dumped her with missing body parts earlier this week. She was partially cooked.

    During the search for Cheryl's grandparents' house yesterday, Namibian Sun encounters groups of little girls playing. This is what little girls do; they play, they are innocent and they trust; even the monsters.

    Mourners fill up the pink house in Omongo Street, Wanaheda, where Cheryl spent her carefree days.

    Cheryl's mother, Sylvia Kaimu, and her relatives are seated while mourners gather to encourage the family.

    Her aunties sob uncontrollably, as they chant “why, why, why”, while Cheryl's grandmother consoles them, saying “you must stay strong for us”.

    “If you cry like this then we will break. We will not be able to carry this burden.”

    Sylvia is covered with a pink flower-adorned fleece blanket and rocks back and forth - perhaps in an attempt to console herself.

    Her little girl was a stubborn young lady.

    “She played cricket, but she was always playful, ready to play any kind of game with her friends,” said Sylvia.

    Her daughter was a very responsible child and promised her mother she would finish school and buy them a house and a car, so they could stay in a better neighbourhood.

    A neighbour, Jessica Kazandjanja, who has lived next-door for years, said Cheryl was not a child who roamed far from home.

    “Even her mother was so protective of her and would always call her if she was too quiet,” she said.

    Kazandjanja said Cheryl had literally grown up before her eyes and was strong-willed. She said she is now haunted by her friendly, innocent face.

    “I used to help her mother when she was a baby; you know those late night cries of a three-month-old baby. I am very hurt. It can happen to any child. I am so shocked. I sat inside my house the entire day yesterday to digest this shock. And if I look at her mother, it hurts me even more. I do not know if I can recover from this shock, ever,” Kazandjanja added.


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    Bishop Nambala new IUM chancellorBishop Nambala new IUM chancellor Bishop Shekutaamba Vänö-Väinö Nambala was sworn in as the third chancellor of the International University of Management (IUM) on Wednesday at the university’s main campus in Dorado Park, Windhoek.
    He was born into a peasant family at Onewawa village, Ondonga in the Omuntele constituency in the Oshikoto Region on 5 August 1952.
    Dr David Namwandi, founder and chair of IUM governing council, thanked the outing going chancellor Bishop Episcopus Emeritus Kleopas Dumeni for his hard work and contributions over the past years.
    Namwandi also welcomed the incoming chancellor and added that he is looking forward to working with him.
    “We welcome you wholeheartedly into the IUM community of scholars as the third chancellor, and we look forward to your leading hand and to benefit from your vast wisdom and experience,” he said.
    Speaking at the inaugural ceremony Nambala said that he is excited to be at helm of the institution as the chancellor and undertook to continue with the same vigour the two previous chancellors kept during their tenures.
    "I am aware of the existence of other institutions of higher learning, but the objective of IUM is not to compete but rather act in a complementary manner to mobilise the institution to do the best it can for the sake of education and humanity," he said.
    Nambala called upon all people who love education, both within and outside Namibia to come and join, and support, the university with whatever resources they can in order to make IUM's academic dream a lasting reality.

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    Cops post reward to track Cheryl’s killerCops post reward to track Cheryl’s killer
    The Namibian police is offering a cash reward of N$30 000 for anyone who can provide information that will lead to the successful arrest and prosecution of the killer of nine-year-old Cheryl Avihe Ujaha, whose mutilated body was found near the Staanvas circle in Khomasdal on Tuesday.
    In a media statement issued this morning, the police said they have not yet arrested anyone in connection with the murder and re-iterated that the police will protect the identity of anyone who comes forward with helpful information.
    Those with information are requested to contact the Khomas regional crime investigations coordinator Deputy Commissioner Abner Agas at 081 1242 649 or report to the nearest police station.
    The Gammams Primary School learner went missing on Sunday and her maimed body was found three days later on Tuesday with some body parts such as both hands, lower arms, one foot, ribs, one thigh and the neck were missing.

    Her body was found by a passer-by.

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  • 08/30/18--07:14: 20% taxi fare hike approved
  • 20% taxi fare hike approved20% taxi fare hike approved The works ministry’s road transportation board has just announced its approval of a 20% hike in taxi and bus fares. The new fares are effective 1 September. The announcement follows months of demands by the Namibia Transport and Taxi Union (NTTU), which originally had demanded the 20% hike, to instead increase the fare by 50%.
    This led to several stand-offs with the police including a strike in April leading to 40 taxis being impounded. NTTU chief, Werner Janaurie, in his claims for 50%, has repeatedly threatened to sue the government.
    At this afternoon’s announcement, Januarie walked out.
    The Namibia Bus and Taxi Association (Nabta) distanced itself from the 50% hike demand and aligned itself with the 20% increase.
    This is the first fare increase since 2009 when fares were hiked from N$9 to N$10.

    Ellanie Smit

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  • 08/30/18--16:00: Namibia hunts second win
  • Namibia        hunts second winNamibia hunts second winHong Kong on the chopping block at World Rugby tourney The Namibian team is bristling with confidence as they head into their second encounter at the unfolding World Rugby U-20 Trophy. Namibia and Hong Kong will cross swords tomorrow in Bucharest, Romania at the World Rugby Under-20 Trophy.

    The 11th edition of the competition kicked off on Tuesday, with eight teams battling it out for the title.

    In their first match, Namibia beat hosts Romania 55-26 with excellent display of attacking rugby.

    Making their first appearance at this level since 2010, the hosts were caught cold, as the visitors ran in two tries courtesy of Chad Plato and Denzo Bruwer, with the latter converting both.

    Cosmin Iliuta missed a penalty for Romania before two more successful kicks from Bruwer gave Namibia a 20-point lead with less than 25 minutes on the clock.

    Andrei Pasalan scored Romania's first try of the tournament shortly afterwards, but another brace of penalties from the boot of Bruwer put Namibia firmly in control.

    The hosts crossed again just before the break, through Dragos Ser, but Romania were comfortably second best and conceded within a minute of the restart, as Rudi Pretorius scored in the right corner.

    Bruwer showed he was human, as his conversion struck the post - his first miss in seven attempts - before he also failed with a long-range penalty.

    The second miss came after Ser had been shown a yellow card.

    The Namibian flyhalf, however, restored order with a further three points, as Romania rallied when Adriaan Ludick joined Ser in the sin bin.

    Prop Iulian Hartig scored just before the hour-mark and when replacement scrumhalf Andrei Homiuc sniped over nine minutes later, the hosts were within eight points of the lead.

    But Namibia were not in the mood for hospitality and ran in tries by Donabille Lebereki, Elmarco Beukes and Gerbus van Wyk in the final 10 minutes to power past 50 points.

    Namibia leads Pool A with five points, followed by Samoa, also on five, and Romania on one point. Hong Kong is yet to break their duck.

    In Pool B, Fiji leads with five points, followed by 2017 runner-ups Portugal with four, while Canada and Uruguay are on one point each.

    Hong Kong finished last in last year's competition, while Namibia finished fourth. Both countries want to do better this time around.

    The winner of the u-20 trophy will be promoted to the World Rugby U-20 Championship in 2019, replacing Japan who was relegated after finishing bottom of the 2018 edition in France last weekend. Uruguay will kickoff proceedings against Canada tomorrow, before Namibia tackles Hong Kong.

    Samoa will meet hosts Romania, with Portugal and Fiji closing off the day's action.

    -Additional info by WORLDRUGBY


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    Skorpion delivers national fruitSkorpion delivers national fruit Players who excelled at the just-ended Skorpion Zinc Under-17 Cup are likely to be roped into the national set-up.

    This was revealed by u-17 national team coach, Paul 'Shakes' Malembu, who witnessed first-hand how the cup competition unfolded in Grootfontein last weekend.

    He said he was very impressed with the talent on display.

    The //Karas Region defeated Omaheke 3-1 on penalties to win the fifth edition of the Skorpion Zinc Cup at the Omulunga stadium.

    Malembu was impressed with the natural talent some players possess, even if they do not have professional coaches.

    “Yes, we did see some fine players at the tournament and they are definitely the future for the national u-17 team.

    “There are about four players I have set my sights on, but I will reveal their names at a later stage.

    “I can tell you that the talent is there, but they just need to be polished,” Malembu said.

    He expects the identified players to be part of the squad for the next u-17 Cosafa tournament.

    Malembu mentored his team into third at this year's Cosafa u-17 tournament, held in Mauritius in July.

    “The only thing I can add is that I do believe that we can explore more talent at grassroots level, if people are able to pump more money into the sport.

    “It is always a shame when a nation has so much talent, but they are not discovered because of a lack of tournaments.

    “That is why it goes without saying, thank you to Skorpion Zinc and the Namibia Football Association for such a great initiative,” Malembu added.

    Jesse Jackson Kauraisa

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    Gladiators in Cosafa acid testGladiators in Cosafa acid testWill face Zim, Swaziland and Uganda The senior women's national football team are keen to at least make it into the semi- finals of the Cosafa champs, set for 12 to 22 September. The Brave Gladiators will face Zimbabwe, Swaziland and Uganda in Group C of the 2018 Council of Southern African Football Association (Cosafa) Women's Championships.

    This was revealed during a draw held on Wednesday in South Africa, which is the host country for the annual championships.

    The hosts and defending champions are in Group A alongside Malawi, Madagascar and Botswana.

    Guest country, Cameroon, who are ranked third in Africa, are in Group B with Lesotho, Mozambique and Zambia.

    Cameroon were the runners-up at the 2016 Africa Women's Cup of Nations, while Uganda finished second in the just-concluded CECAFA Women Challenge Cup in Rwanda.

    Uganda will be the third east African country to feature in the championship after Tanzania (2011) and Kenya (2017).

    The winners of the three groups will qualify for the semi-finals, alongside the best second-placed country after the group stage matches.

    Last year Namibia crashed out in the group stages in the tournament held in Zimbabwe. South Africa won the tournament, beating Zimbabwe 2-1 in the final.

    Brave Gladiators coach Brian Isaacs said the team started preparing for the competition in July and is doing well in terms of fitness and stamina.

    He, however, added the quality of the side has been reduced by the fact that foreign-based players like Zenatha Coleman (Valencia in Spain) and Annoushka Kordom (Corbin Warriors in the United States) will not be part of the Cosafa team, as they have active league matches taking place at the same time.

    Former captain Mamie Uerikondjera Kasaona will also not be part of the team, as she has stepped down from national duty.

    Emma Naris takes over as captain; second and third in command are Stacy Naris and Lovisa Mulunga, respectively.


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