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Tells it All - Namibian Sun

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    Air Namibia suspends union leadersAir Namibia suspends union leaders Air Namibia has suspended two executive members of the Namibia Cabin Crew Union (NCCU), effective from 29 August, presumably over their public criticism of the airline's intention to recruit foreign pilots.

    The two union leaders, NCCU president Willem Christiaan and legal advisor Reginal Kock, last week expressed shock at the plan and urged the airline to recruit Namibian pilots.

    The two received the suspension letters on Wednesday, a day after the letter was written. The letters, signed by the acting general manager for flight operations, Musenge Shebele, informed the two that they were suspended with pay pending the outcome of an investigation into alleged misconduct.

    The president of the Trade Union Congress of Namibia (Tucna), Paulus Hango, yesterday said the suspension was unlawful because the two had not been given an opportunity to argue why they should not be suspended.

    Christiaan and Kock, accompanied by Olsen Kahiriri, who said he was Tucna's “special envoy to Air Namibia”, barged into acting managing director Mandy Samson's office on Wednesday to demand an explanation.

    According to them, Samson said she was completely unaware of the suspensions.

    “If the head does not know what the body does, are these people fit to run the organisation?” Christiaan questioned.

    Christiaan said the NCCU believes that Air Namibia does not need foreign pilots, especially not at the proposed salary and benefit scales, while Namibian pilots have to make do with “slave wages”.

    The union claims that Air Namibia is offering foreign pilots monthly tax-free salary packages of between N$138 695 and N$150 392. Christiaan said the NCCU had conducted an investigation and found that pilots on the airline's Embraer ERJ fleet were averaging between 12 and 20 hours' flight time per month, while the law allows 70 hours per month. He described this as poor human resource management.

    “When we talk of 12 total duty hours, we are talking of four days of duty in a month! The other days in the month the pilots are just at home. And with this kind of management our Namibian pilots will never be skilled enough to eventually replace the foreigners currently flying,” Christiaan said.

    He said the NCCU had shared its concern over the alleged poor management of Namibian pilots at affirmative action committee meetings in 2015 already. The NCCU said there is currently only one black captain on Air Namibia's international fleet, the Airbus 330, while there are 13 foreign and nine Namibian pilots on the Airbus 319 fleet.

    “And the airline wants to employ more foreigners! How can this be after 28 years of independence?” Christiaan asked.

    Tucna and NCCU have threatened mass action at Air Namibia's head office next week if the suspensions are not withdrawn within 24 hours.

    Air Namibia said it would respond to questions on the suspensions by tomorrow.


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    200 pupils endure 'inhumane' hostel200 pupils endure 'inhumane' hostel About 200 pupils are still being housed amid inhumane conditions in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Namibia (Elcin) hostel at Nkurenkuru.

    The church has now urged the government to increase its subsidies or build a new hostel.

    The learners are living in dilapidated church buildings built from clay by Finnish missionaries in the 1960s.

    The buildings appear as if they are ready to collapse, and there are large, deep cracks in the walls.

    The learners have their meals in the open, as there is no dining hall.

    Namibian Sun observed recently that the situation remains the same as during a previous visit in January, when there were calls for the hostel to be closed down.

    Reverend Ernestus Karuyeva said things are getting worse and they are receiving little support.

    He said the government subsidies were not enough and should be increased so that renovations can be done.

    Karuyeva said as long as the subsidies did not include payments for institutional workers, water, electricity and renovations, hostel conditions would not improve.

    “We make nothing from housing the learners on behalf of the government. No one would want his or her child to be accommodated here, but what alternative do they have? Unfortunately this is the situation and something needs to be done. We would be so happy if the government constructed a hostel for the children,” he said.

    A few months ago the hostel received 363 mattresses from Token Fishing, a joint venture between five fishing rights holders.

    Karuyeva said a food storage facility was being built on the premises, but funding was a problem.

    He called on benefactors to assist.

    In January, education permanent secretary Sanet Steenkamp, explained that the church was responsible for renovating the hostel.

    She added that the government was only responsible for paying subsidies.

    One subsidy is for basic learner necessities, such as food and cleaning materials, and the other is for maintenance, which is paid per square metre.

    Steenkamp said further efforts to address various issues in the education sector were in the pipeline.

    “Everything is still evolving… we have what we call project identification forms, and based on the need of the region, the director will submit their needs.

    “What we also need to keep in mind is that at this stage we have made provision for funds for pre-primary classrooms, as well as funds for community hostels in Kavango West,” Steenkamp added.


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  • 08/30/18--16:00: Chaos at Oshakati council
  • Chaos at Oshakati councilChaos at Oshakati councilCouncillors, managers at each other's throats A restructuring exercise at the Oshakati town council led to angry scenes at a council meeting on Wednesday. Members of the public watched aghast as pandemonium erupted during an Oshakati town council meeting on Wednesday.

    Councillors and senior managers were at each other's throats, while slinging accusations to and fro.

    The chaos ensued during deliberations on a motion brought by management committee chairperson Gabriel Kamwanka last week, which sought to reverse a council restructuring resolution taken a few months ago.

    The council had previously resolved that, as per their reapplication for municipal status, four positions would have to be advertised and filled.

    The posts, advertised in July, were for a qualified town planner, a corporate officer, a finance manager and a manager for economic development and marketing.

    This means the current finance department, which is headed by Damian Hamunyela, will be split between two managers, where one will be responsible for financial administration, assets and creditors, while the other will be responsible for revenue collection and debtors.

    The planning and properties department, headed by Orestus Shilunga, will also be split, with one manager being in charge of planning, and the other, properties.

    Hamunyela has apparently been preferred to head revenue collection and debtors, while the other finance position would be advertised.

    It is alleged he is unqualified and needs assistance from Tsumeb to balance Oshakati's books.

    Shilunga has apparently been preferred to head the planning division, but there are claims he lacks the skills for the post and is more adept at property management.

    Planning is currently being outsourced to a private company, Namibian Sun understands.

    A council source said both Shilunga and Hamunyela were unhappy.

    “Shilunga wants to head the planning department, while Damian wants the finance position, which was advertised and not the one imposed on him,” the source said.

    Emily Alweendo, who currently works in the council's finance department, is said to have been the successful candidate for the finance post.

    However, last week during a management committee meeting, her appointment was struck from the agenda after Kamwanka's motion was tabled.

    According to well-placed sources, Kamwanka tabled the motion because he prefers Hamunyela, who is allegedly his nephew and the son of the town's current deputy mayor, Ndamononghenda Hamunyela.

    That necessitated Wednesday's voting on the motion, which was rejected.

    Kamwanka had urged that the matter be struck from the agenda, as all the councillors were not present, which was also rejected.

    Mayor Angelus Iyambo said they are guided by law on how to deal with matters.

    “The (Local Authorities) Act is clear; if those that are present in the meeting and are voting in favour of the motion have not reached the 75% as required, this motion has lapsed,” Iyambo said.

    During the debate, Kamwanka also accused CEO Werner Iita of appointing two people in the procurement department unprocedurally.

    Kamwanka referenced letters in his possession that indicate Iita in fact does not have the power to make the appointments.

    Iita defended himself by saying one of the letters was a response from finance minister Calle Schlettwein.

    “Where a public entity has resorted to establishing the procurement management unit (PMU) as a division/department on the organisational structure of the public entity with graded positions in accordance to the duties outlined in the Act and regulations, it is advisable for internal human resource policies to be followed before the accounting officer makes an appointment in line with regulation 12(1),” Schlettwein's letter dated 31 July reads.

    Iita explained he indeed followed the HR policy guidelines and the appointments were thus lawful.


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  • 08/30/18--16:00: A pledge to care
  • A pledge to careA pledge to careDoctor dedicates himself to the pursuit of wellness Compassion and empathy are some of the essential qualities of a good doctor, according to a northern-based specialist. TUNOHOLE MUNGOBA

    Ongwediva-based cardiologist Dr James Nkurunziza has opened up to Careers about his demanding job as well as making a difference in the lives of patients.

    “A cardiologist is a physician who focuses on evaluating and treating cardiac diseases. We also emphasise the importance of different cardiac pathology,” says Nkurunziza, who is based at the Ongwediva Medipark private hospital.

    “We show patients the importance of following a healthy lifestyle, healthy diet and (highlight) dangerous habits that could lead to cardiac diseases. A lot of our patients are evaluated and treated in a catheterisation laboratory where we implant pacemakers as well as treat adult patients with heart attacks and blocked vessels,” he said.

    “With regards to being a physician, physicians are doctors who have completed further training in a medical specialty to diagnose and manage complex medical problems.”

    Nkurunziza first completed his general six-year medicine degree at the University of Rwanda.

    After completing training in internal medicine at the University of Witwatersrand in South Africa, Nkurunziza did not rest on his laurels and decided to pursue cardiology training.

    He did his cardiology training for three years at the same university.

    “Cardiology is one of those specialities where you can make such an impact with immediate and long-term benefits,” he said.

    “After high school, I embarked on my training to be a general practitioner in medicine for six years. After this, I had to spend three years doing an internship and community service. Since medicine is a vast discipline with multiple specialities, I felt compelled to focus on a speciality and chose to study internal medicine for four years as this is the required foundation to a cardiology training, which lasts three years.”

    Nkurunziza listed patience, compassion and empathy as the most important character traits a cardiology specialist and physician should possess.

    “There are a sizable number of cardiology patients which dictate that a cardiologist is required to work normal as well as emergency shifts; this requires you to really have a love for your job,” he advised.

    “My speciality is one of the most exciting ones in the sense that you can reverse the process of a disease that would take someone's life, especially during severe heart attack cases, and you feel excited to see your patient being discharged and going home. This is definitely has to be the ultimate highlight.”

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    The sky has never been the limitThe sky has never been the limit Senior IT audit consultant at Deloitte, Andreas Onesmus, is not afraid to go up against all the odds, in an attempt to reach all goals he has set for himself.

    After passing his Certified Information Systems Auditor (CISA) exam, and meeting the Information Systems Audit and Control Association (ICASA) requirements that qualify him as an information system auditor, Andreas moved one step closer to his


    After obtaining an honours degree in web informatics, a bachelor's degree in software engineering and a national diploma in IT from Nust, he paved his own way to success.

    “The ability to be able to help others inspires me in so many ways to be a better person. With clients, I am glad I can help with identifying risk around their technology environment, and help to mitigate the risk through control testing, among other things.

    “I'm also inspired to work hard and help my parents, for all the hard work they did to get me to where I am today. I hope to make them proud every day,” he says.

    “It feels amazing, as its one of the examinations with a high failure rate, thus passing and becoming certified at my first attempt, it's an amazing feeling and it often gets hard to put it in words,” Andreas said.

    Some of his short-term goals, both personally and in the company, include travelling to Europe and gaining as much leadership to enable him to reach his long-term goal of being in a management position.

    When Andreas is not busy working, he likes to kickback and read about emerging technologies, such as artificial intelligence and augmented reality. He loves sport, especially Formula One and soccer. He is also a self-proclaimed fitness junkie.

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    Identifying and building a careerIdentifying and building a career is one of the holders of a certificate from the Information Systems Audit and Control Association (ISACA).

    Born and bred in Ongwediva, Tshikesho attended high school in Tsumeb at Otjikoto Senior Secondary School.

    He matriculated in 2011 and furthered his studies at the then Polytechnic of Namibia. He obtained a bachelor’s degree in business computing in April of 2015 and an honours degree in business informatics in April 2017 at Nust.

    He started his career at Silnam IT Solutions in 2015 as a software/business intelligence intern, and that’s when he was informed about IT auditing.

    He considers himself lucky because at that time a vacancy opened up at Deloitte.

    “I started at Deloitte in January 2016 as a junior IT audit consultant and I am currently a senior IT audit consultant,” he said.

    He is inspired by family, friends and colleagues and says these are the people who drive him to be more ambitious.

    “Coming from a less privileged background motivates you to work hard to try and get ahead in life; and for me, finding a career and building myself around it was the solution.”

    Asked how he felt when he finally held that certificate in his hand, Tshikesho said: “It’s definitely one of the best feelings I have ever experienced. I was and still am excited, as it is the start of a whole new chapter in my life and career. It feels great having achieved this milestone. The road to Certified Information Systems Auditor (CISA) status had its bumps, but it was all worth it.”

    Tshikesho’s short-term goals include moving up another notch in his CISA career and to try and get into the cybersecurity audit space.

    “The organisation that offers CISA has a few other certifications and I am considering them, so another challenge wouldn’t hurt. My goal in the company is to keep growing at Deloitte. I don’t see myself leaving this company soon,” he said.

    Tshikesho enjoys playing soccer and watching it. He is a self-proclaimed soccer fanatic. Other fractions of his free time is devoted to photography. He is always thinking about new endeavours to embark on.

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  • 08/30/18--16:00: Be wary of cults
  • Be wary of cultsBe wary of cults As the nation unites in mourning the gruesome and tragic murder of Cheryl Avihe Ujaha, there is mounting speculation it could be a cultist or ritualistic killing.

    Although scant details have poured forth regarding Cheryl’s murder, whose dismembered and mutilated body was found in a bushy area in Katutura on Tuesday, one of the many lingering fears is that cult-related activities played a role.

    The police have promised they will leave no stone unturned, as they try to track down the suspects or suspects, and as they gather more evidence.

    A generous reward of N$30 000 has also been offered for information that leads to the arrest and prosecution of her killer or killers.

    Cheryl’s heinous and merciless killing has caused untold anguish and pain for her family and the nation as a whole.

    At the same time, her death has triggered a need for deeper reflection, especially regarding the unimaginable occult practices prevailing in our society.

    Countries like South Africa have taken killings of this nature very seriously, to the point where a dedicated unit was established to investigate cases of an occult or ritualistic nature.

    In fact, decades’ old unsolved murders, including the infamous B1 killings during which at least five women were murdered and dismembered between 2005 and 2007, point to a need to segregate these types of crimes and have specialist investigators look into them.

    The activities of cults are a huge danger for all members of society and nothing should be left to chance when it comes to tackling this deeply disturbing phenomenon, which continues to wreak havoc. Law enforcement, the authorities and other stakeholders must play an active role in educating ignorant Namibians, who are continually falling prey to such dreadful practices.

    The shocking truth is that many still believe they can get rich or become successful through using occult practices, which include sacrifices and all sorts of horrific ceremonies and rituals.

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    Building a strong personal brandBuilding a strong personal brand Catherine Shipushu

    Every person has a personal brand, whether you consciously work on it or not. Put simply, your personal brand is your professional reputation or as Jeff Bezos defines it, “your brand is what people say about you when you’re not in the room”.

    In today’s saturated market, a strong personal brand highlights your expertise, credibility and differentiates you from other professionals in your field. Therefore, if you’d like to position yourself for success in your career or business, you should start by defining your personal brand.

    Building a personal brand is by no means a once-off activity. It’s an intentional, conscious process that requires commitment and consistency. Here are some tips on how to build and strengthen your personal brand in order to stand out from the crowd. While this is by no means an exhaustive list, it provides a good starting point.

    Identify your ‘superpower’

    What makes you different? In order to truly stand out in your industry or workplace, you must develop a distinct ‘superpower’ or ‘zone of genius’ that sets you apart from the rest of your peers. Think about what you want to be known for - this could be excellence, innovation or charismatic leadership. Whatever your superpower is, start building your personal brand around that unique quality and use it to elevate yourself.

    Be present

    In this context, being present doesn’t mean simply making up the numbers in the room. It refers to being actively engaged and adding value when you’re expected to; for instance in your unit meetings. You can also do this by volunteering to help out on a project or assist team members who may be struggling. Being consistently present also allows you to stand out and demonstrate your enthusiasm or expertise in a certain area, thereby building credibility. Next time an opportunity opens up in that space, guess who’ll be selected to head up the project?

    Be consistent

    Consistency is the secret sauce to building a strong brand. If you think about the world’s major brands, the one thing they have in common is that they’re consistent - be it their colours or advertisements. The same goes for a personal brand. If you want to be known for excellence, then you must consistently deliver excellent work. Simply put, being consistent allows people to trust you because they know exactly what to expect from you, when it comes to your work or service delivery.

    Invest in your appearance

    Experts say that it takes exactly five seconds for someone to judge you and decide whether or not they can trust you. Unfortunately, there’s usually only one chance to make a good first impression, therefore always make sure that your appearance - how you’re dressed and groomed, accurately represents your brand. If you’d like to be taken seriously as a business owner, you have to look the part, regardless of the industry you’re in. For instance, if you’re painter, it’s not appropriate to show up for formal meetings in paint-coated overalls. The same goes for professionals in a corporate environment. If you show up at work dressed in shabby or inappropriate clothing, you’re not only eroding your employer’s brand, but also your own.

    Get a mentor

    A mentor can help shape your career or entrepreneurial journey. The right mentor will guide and help you to grow, by amongst others sharing their wisdom and experience with you so that you can avoid making the same mistakes they did. Choose a mentor based on what you’d like to achieve and learn, in order to realise the goals you’ve set for yourself.

    Polish your online presence

    Your online behaviour is just as important as how you conduct yourself offline. While being authentic is a crucial part of building a strong personal brand, your social media activities may be doing more harm than good. It may seem fun, even harmless, to post those party and holiday snaps on social media. The reality is that some prospective employers now conduct online searches on potential candidates and those search results may influence their recruitment decisions. Google yourself. The results are what others see when they look you up online.

    By following the tips above and others, such as being authentic and building strategic relationships, you’ll reap the immense benefits that come with having a respected brand. A strong personal brand can elevate your career or business, and opens up a world of opportunities to make your mark in the world. You have the choice to be the Apple of your industry or just another brand whose name no one cares to remember.

    *Catherine Shipushu is a public relations and branding specialist. She can be contacted at Catherine.Shipushu@gmail.com

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    Ihuhua soars in petroleum industry Ihuhua soars in petroleum industry Sowing seeds for the development of her team Charmaine Ihuhua, the retail manager at Vivo Energy Namibia, says her faith is her biggest motivator. huhua is a St Pauls College alumnus. She completed her tertiary education through the University of South Africa (Unisa) at Varsity College in Cape Town.

    Ihuhua obtained a bachelor of business administration degree, with specialisation in strategic management and marketing.

    “I have also completed various management certificates, including the management development programme at the University of Stellenbosch Business School, and I’m currently pursuing my masters’ degree,” Ihuhua said.

    She is the retail manager at Vivo Energy.

    She started her career at an NGO, the Lazarus Shinyemba Ipangelwa Foundation, where she served as programme coordinator.

    She reported directly to the board of trustees, CEOs of different organisations, and ultimately to the then board chairperson and the country’s current mines minister, Tom Alweendo.

    During her tenure, she oversaw the smooth operations of the entity, and actively managed interactions with high-profile corporations and their representatives in the business sector, as well as governmental institutions and embassies.

    “I was empowered and mentored by Anna Ipangelwa, who provided me with guidance during my early career days,” she adds.

    Most of Ihuhua’s professional experience has been within the petroleum industry, having spent over eight years initially with Shell Namibia, and now Vivo Energy Namibia, a multinational company that distributes and markets Shell fuels and lubricants across Africa.

    As the retail manager and an overall marketer, her core function is retail network expansion.

    She develops plans and executes initiatives that support the short- and long-term sales and marketing strategies of the business.

    In addition, Ihuhua works in collaboration with other external and internal stakeholders to ensure that the brand remains relevant to consumers and that all initiatives elevate and strengthen the customer value proposition for the group.

    “I started off as a marketing implementer, focusing on retail business expansion and later the commercial part of the business. Soon after this role, I was identified and developed for the role of the marketing manager. Within a year and a half I was moved into a further development programme, where I was prepared for the role of retail manager,” she adds.

    Her inspiration

    Ihuhua’s faith is her biggest motivator.

    “My parents are my rock; they have laid a good foundation in my life, and they have taught me to remain grounded and mostly respectful.”

    She has great relationships that inspire her daily.

    “One of those are my awesome friends; they have held me up through it all, and have made sure I remain at my best, while reminding me to laugh at myself and take things easy.”

    Her relationship with her fiancé also gives her great joy.

    One of the highlights of Ihuhua’s career is the accelerated growth she has experienced at Vivo Energy Namibia.

    This has helped her develop exponentially on a mental, emotional and professional level.

    “Through my various promotions, my career aspirations have been opened to even more greatness. I am especially grateful that I have been developed as a female business leader, and hope to sow the same seeds of development for my team,” she says.

    She works in a fast-paced environment, and is available 24 hours a day, non-stop.

    “I need to remain available to the retailers across the country at all times,” she says. Her day starts at 06:30. Before she leaves for the office she checks her emails and catches up with her sales teams.

    “Once I get to work, I have to attend business review meetings and review finalised contracts and maintenance issues at our sites.”

    A significant portion of her day is spent in meetings and teleconferences, liaising with various stakeholders.

    Her job requires her to travel throughout Namibian.

    “One thing I have learnt about my job is to remain calm, patient and solution-driven; this sees me through the week.”

    Seven facts about Ihuhua

    1.She believes in leading by example, by achieving authority rather than power.

    2.She strives to always consider and promote the wellbeing of those around her, in both her personal and professional life.

    3.Her motivation is the mantra: “I have not yet arrived.” This always reminds her that she is still learning and growing.

    4.Ihuhua makes it a priority to constantly improve herself and her performance.

    5.She is a pragmatist; she does not believe in complicating situations, but rather in finding practical and efficient solutions to problems.

    6.She has an artistic flair and has a certificate in interior design. She loves pottery and other artistic exploits.

    7.She is passionate about music and travel “ I am a plaas meisie”

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    Is food security more important than cash security?Is food security more important than cash security? A recent search in Google for the exact phrase ‘food security’ came back with a whopping 24 500 000 finds, while ‘income security’ produced a list of 1 820 000 ‘hits’. ‘Cash security’ trailed way behind with only about 284 000 items.

    Very different numbers. The content of the pages at the top of the search lists was also starkly different. Sites and references concerned with food security typically focus on poor people and poor countries having enough nutrition, whereas pages on income largely deal with the certainty of having an income in the long-term. Pages on cash security, by contrast, mainly talk about thieves, safes and protecting your money. This was surprising since food, income and cash security are so related. But Google and others (Namibians included) see them worlds apart: cash security troubles those who have much cash; food security is a concern for the poor who have little food; and income security is about long-term needs for an income, such as a pension.

    And so it is with so many perspectives, policies and development programmes in Namibia. Much focus is on food security. That is what the poor need, and that is what they will get: in food packages, seeds, fertilisers, implements, farming training, baskets and pots. Come what may, self-sufficient food security is the goal. Rural people are even persuaded that food security can be achieved in places where it is impossible to grow food economically or sustainably. Much of this perpetuates and promotes poverty.

    Even customary land rights – if people are lucky enough to have them in communal areas – forbid the use of land for commercial purposes. Instead, land held for customary occupation may only be used for residential and domestic food production purposes. To be fair, it is possible for rural residents in communal areas to have leasehold rights which could be used for commercial purposes. But then again, these are never offered as an option because the Ministry of Land Reform assumes that residents don’t need commercial rights. This has been the attitude and practice for 16 years since the introduction of the Communal Land Reform Act in 2002. Again, how much of this perpetuates, if not promotes, poverty?

    We are also reminded that there is no point in giving the poor cash because we believe they don’t really need to buy much. ‘The poor are simple, ignorant people who need food and little else. Besides, any money they get is spent on alcohol. They don’t know any better.’ It is on the basis of these sorts of attitudes that the Namibian government dismissed proposals for a Basic Income Grant (BIG) years ago, and now has food packages handed out by the Ministry of Poverty Alleviation & Social Welfare in an attempt to reduce poverty. Sincerely, however, Namibia does a great job in providing social grants to the elderly, orphans and disabled. In that, there is much to rejoice.

    In another blast of prejudice, we believe that rural residents in communal areas don’t need to use land as investments. They live in 38% of Namibia’s homes. How often do we hear the nuanced comment that such simple people really live day-to-day? They don’t need to, or can’t plan ahead we are told! For that reason, communal land need not be traded and therefore has no investment value. The same is true for the quarter (26%) of Namibian families who live, but can’t own land in informal settlements. But recall that livestock have long served the need for investments, capital and savings by people in Africa. That continues today in the keeping of millions of cattle, goats, sheep and poultry by non-farmers living in Windhoek and other towns.

    What evidence do we have that the poor are stupid, irresponsible and with no need for long-term capital? On what evidence do we assume that day-to-day nutrition is their most pressing need? Why can’t people have the options that cash provides: to buy food, or medicine, or blankets, or taxi fares to a hospital, or cell phone credit to telephone for a job or advice from an uncle? Most modern necessities are as important to the poor as they are to the rich, especially in being able to get ahead: find a job, be mobile, look presentable, find a spouse, have children and to communicate with family and friends who provide social capital or support.

    Namibian society is moving rapidly from a rural, subsistence environment to one based on incomes and consumerism in urban environments. Nutrition is needed, but so are cash incomes, and more so in towns. Unlike food security, cash security provides options for both: to buy food and other necessities of life. Options available to different groups during apartheid were not equal because it was then believed that some people were better than others. That was bad! But the same belief has guided many perspectives, policies and programmes in the same vein for the last 28 years.

    Namibia should ensure that different socio-economic classes have the same options. That would be good!

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  • 08/30/18--16:00: 084 on hold
  • 084 on hold084 on holdNghipondoka blames ‘technical issues’ The much-anticipated take-off of MTN Namibia in the local telecoms market, and its expected toe-to-toe battle with state entities MTC and TN Mobile, has been delayed by ‘technical issues’. OGONE TLHAGE

    MTN Namibia’s planned 084 take-off, which would have seen it offering mobile services to SMEs and corporates by the end of August, has been delayed.

    The MTN Group is a Johannesburg-headquartered provider of voice and data services, which operates in over 20 countries in Africa, Europe and Asia.

    MTN Namibia had announced in July it would be operational by the end of August, but this has not materialised.

    High-flying entrepreneur Vaino Nghipondoka, whose Profile Technologies has a 30% stake in MTN Namibia, said they wanted to get the company’s presence off the ground without any glitches, but there were technical issues that needed to be ironed out.

    “These issues are quite technical and you cannot start if you are not quite ready,” said Nghipondoka, who is the chairperson of MTN Namibia.

    “We are working on getting that right, so that when we start we do not want to bill people wrongly, as an example.”

    He said the official entry of 084 into the market was still on track, despite MTN Namibia missing the set August deadline.

    “We are working on the technical issues, we are getting there; the market should not worry.”

    MTN Namibia managing director Elia Tsouros was unable to provide any reasons for the delay, as he was waiting for the MTN Group to provide responses to the questions sent to him by Namibian Sun two weeks ago.

    Tsouros was asked how MTN Namibia would go about penetrating the local market that is currently dominated by MTC, in which the government holds a 66% stake.

    He was also asked whether MTN Namibia would in fact be using the 084 number range, after this was initially announced, and whether piggybacking on Telecom Namibia’s network, which also houses state-owned TN Mobile, would not limit the quality or scope of its services.

    Tsouros was also asked about the staff recruitment process and the need to fill critical positions, including those of a technical nature, as well as the upskilling of local employees.

    The Communications Regulatory Authority of Namibia (Cran) said this week it was not aware of any delays, in terms of MTN Namibia setting up its operations.

    “The authority has issued MTN with all licences required to provide telecommunications services and is thus not aware of any delays in setting up a network,” Cran CEO Festus Mbandeka said.

    MTN Namibia’s plan to become a mobile operator in the country was sealed in December 2017, when it was announced that Nghipondoka would take up a 30% stake and become its board chairperson.

    Cran then cemented MTN’s presence in Namibia by giving it the green light to use the 084 number range.

    At the time, Tsouros said piggybacking on Telecom Namibia’s infrastructure made absolute sense.

    “Our relationship with Telecom Namibia remains. You cannot ignore Telecom; they have the largest infrastructure in the country. We need to work with Telecom to deliver the mobile service,” Tsouros said at the time.

    He said the company would not be following the traditional approach.

    “Initially we will focus on different segments of the market.”

    The company initially plans to offer mobile services to SMEs and corporates.

    “That is our strategy. We won’t be taking on MTC directly. We are going to do things differently by bundling different services,” Tsouros said.

    He added that given the size of the MTN Group, the company will be provided with expertise from its operations in 24 countries to set up a mobile service.

    “The ability that we have is that we can turn to the group’s 24 operations in other parts of the world. If it has been done before in the group, we don’t need to reinvent the wheel, we can bring in people from different countries to help us,” he told Windhoek Observer in January.

    MTC spokesperson John Ekongo reiterated his earlier comments that they are not fazed by the competition MTN Namibia may provide when it eventually becomes operational.

    “We believe in our strength, engagement strategies, our product and solutions as we have done over the last 22 years,” Ekongo said.

    “We will continue doing that to ensure that we give every reason to our consumers to stay with us. Not because of the colour blue, but because we provide the best products, the best solutions available to them at all costs, wherever they are and however they want it.”

    While MTC is confident it can successfully stand its ground against the might of the MTN Group, telecoms companies in Nigeria, where the group derives one-third of its revenue, recently expressed their displeasure over the behemoth being granted more spectrum space.

    Visafone, a Nigerian telecoms company recently wanted to transfer its licence and resources, including its 800MHz band spectrum, to MTN, which was met with fierce resistance.

    Law firm Probitas Partners LLP, which is representing MTN’s competitors, argued the proposed transfer would inhibit competition, create a monopoly and affect the entire industry, especially as MTN and Visafone are amongst the top five telecoms companies in Nigeria.

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  • 08/30/18--16:00: Govt approves 20% taxi hike
  • Govt approves 20% taxi hikeGovt approves 20% taxi hike ELLANIE SMIT

    Namibians will have to cough up more for bus and taxi fares from tomorrow after a 20% increase was approved.

    The Road Transportation Board yesterday announced the 20% hike in bus and taxi fares across the board. This effectively means that the usual fare of N$10 will now cost N$12.

    Present at the announcement were members of the Windhoek City Police, stakeholders in the transport sector and unions representing the industry.

    Namibia Transport and Taxi Union (NTTU) president Werner January, who had been advocating for a 50% increase, stormed off immediately after the announcement.

    The chairperson of the Road Transportation Board, Percy McNally, said the board had received three requests for fare increases. These were made by the Namibia Bus and Taxi Association, the Namibia Public Passenger Transport Association and NTTU.

    McNally said the board considered the requests and consulted with the applicants as well as a group representing commuters.

    He said several factors were taken into account: the present state of the economy and ever-increasing fuel prices, commodity prices and the general cost of living.

    “Due regard was given to the fact that the last increase was in 2014 and the fuel price has increased drastically since then,” he said.

    McNally said the board also took into consideration the current global recession, from which Namibia has not been spared.

    He urged all public transport permit holders to comply with the new fare structure.

    Cedric Limbo, the director of transportation at the transport ministry, stressed that this was the official position of the government and that no other increases in taxi or bus fares would be acceptable. He said if any taxi or bus driver overcharged passengers, they would be dealt with accordingly.

    “There is no 50% increase,” he emphasised.

    The board intends to issue a tariff booklet listing all applicable fares by 31 October in order to prevent overcharging.

    Shortly after the announcement Januarie said in a statement that the NTTU would obey the rules. But he now demands that taxi owners must pay traffic fines, and not their drivers.

    The announcement followed months of demands by the NTTU, which had initially asked for a 20% hike, only to raise the demand to 50%.

    That led to several standoffs with the police, including a strike in April which led to 40 taxis being impounded. Januarie has repeatedly threatened to sue the government.

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    Ondonga: Geingob ropes in Pohamba, Nujoma Ondonga: Geingob ropes in Pohamba, Nujoma ILENI NANDJATO

    President Hage Geingob is in the process of appointing a presidential advisory committee that will include his two predecessors, Sam Nujoma and Hifikepunye Pohamba, in a bid to resolve the Ondonga leadership dispute.

    This was revealed in papers filed in the Oshakati High Court yesterday, where Ondonga king Immanuel Kauluma Elifas’s lawyer, Elia Shikongo, lodged an appeal against a court decision that the king must testify.

    The court is hearing a matter in which seven dismissed leaders of the Ondonga traditional authority are challenging their firing by the king in July last year.

    The spectre of the ailing king having to testify has sparked interventions by Nujoma as well as Geingob, who held talks with the warring factions at State House recently.

    In his notice of motion, Shikongo referred to this State House intervention, saying Geingob was in the process of appointing a presidential advisory committee to mediate the conflict.

    On 9 August, Judge Maphios Cheda granted an order that compels Elifas to give oral testimony.

    Shikongo is now appealing this decision and added that the matter should stand down until the appeal is finalised.

    Elifas and his five new councillors, who are also respondents in the matter, were not present at court yesterday.

    “The king is not happy with the court order and he would like to appeal the order,” Shikongo said.

    Shikongo asked the court to strike the matter from the roll, or postpone it, so that the king could exercise his rights.

    “I point out for what is worth that, in the meanwhile, both parties received invitations from, and attended on, State House to meet with the President Hage Geingob and other dignitaries in an attempt to mediate and settle the dispute between the applicants and the respondents,” Shikongo told the court.

    “I emphasise that the president made it abundantly clear that he does not intend to interfere with the independence of the court, but intends to merely mediate a dispute.

    “At that meeting the president advised that he shall appoint a presidential advisory committee, comprising of the former heads of state, Sam Nujoma and Hifikepunye Pohamba, to mediate the dispute between the parties. This process has not yet been finalised.”

    The dismissed councillors hit back through their lawyer, Elize Angula, who said Shikongo was abusing the court process to delay justice.

    “The order of the judge is not appealable. The king is the chief of the community and he must testify on his decision and actions that have caused division within the community of Ondonga. Other chiefs have appeared before the court in the past and therefore he is also not above the law,” Angula stressed.

    “Shikongo must tell the court that the king is unable to testify in court instead of giving excuses with these applications, which are just abuses of court processes. I am opposing the appeal and the postponement; the only postponement is to when the king is coming to testify.”

    Cheda granted the king leave to appeal and also indicated that a date would have to be set to decide whether the matter would proceed to the Supreme Court.

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  • 09/02/18--15:00: Company news in brief
  • Company news in briefCompany news in brief Coca-Cola expands into coffee

    Coca-Cola Co has agreed to buy the world’s second largest coffee chain Costa from Britain’s Whitbread Plc for an enterprise value of 3.9 billion pounds (US$5.1 billion), opening a new front in its push away from traditional sodas.

    Whitbread said in a statement on Friday that the deal, which will give Coke almost 4 000 coffee outlets in the UK and across Europe, had been agreed unanimously by the Whitbread board as in the best interests of shareholders.


    Boeing wins US contract

    Boeing Co has been awarded a US$805 million contract for design, delivery and support of four unmanned drones based on aircraft carriers that will be used to refuel aircraft for the US Navy, the Pentagon said in a statement on Thursday.

    The Navy published a request for proposals in 2017 that sought a drone that could refuel, and extend the combat range, of fighter jets including Boeing F/A-18 Super Hornets, Boeing EA-18G Growlers and Lockheed Martin F-35 fighters.


    Walmart adds toys and shelf space for holidays

    Walmart Stores Inc has significantly increased the selection of toys in its stores and online for the holiday season, a company executive said on Thursday, and is expanding its toy aisles in certain markets, all to lure shoppers after rival seller Toys R Us went out of business earlier this summer.

    The world’s largest retailer will also begin its layaway program on Friday, one day earlier than last year, allowing customers to pay off purchases in installments.

    The company expects demand for its layaway program to be similar to that of previous years, said Anne Marie Kehoe, vice president of toys, while at an event in New York to reveal the retailer’s top toys for the holidays. Layaway plans can have a sizeable impact on sales and past analyst estimates suggest the program accounted for as much as 15% of holiday revenue at Walmart stores in poorer areas of the United States.


    Apple to unveil new iPhone models in September

    Apple Inc said on Thursday it will host an event on September 12 at the Steve Jobs Theater in the company’s Cupertino, California, campus, where it is widely expected to unveil new iPhone models.

    Analysts believe Apple plans to release three new smartphones this year, including one with a larger display than previous models. Analysts also expect Apple to release an iPhone with a edge-to-edge display similar to the iPhone X but using less-costly LCD screen technology.


    Third Point seeks to tap Campbell Soup board challengers

    Activist investor Daniel Loeb’s hedge fund Third Point LLC is speaking to consumer industry executives as it seeks to fill a slate of nominees to challenge Campbell Soup Co’s board of directors, according to people familiar with the matter.

    Third Point, which holds a 5.65% stake and has been pushing for a sale of Campbell Soup, is not convinced the company has adequately explored that option, the sources said. On Thursday, Campbell Soup said it planned to sell its international and fresh refrigerated-foods units, and only left open the possibility of putting the whole company up for sale down the line.


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  • 09/02/18--15:00: Horse racing at Okakarara
  • Horse racing at OkakararaHorse racing at Okakarara NAMPA

    Professor’s Supporters Club, under the auspices of the Okahatjipara Turf Club, will be hosting horse races at Okakarara in the Otjozondjupa Region on 8 September.

    In an interview with Nampa on Thursday, Timo Mujeu, one of the organisers of the event, said N$64 000 had been set aside for the competition that will feature 12 races.

    “Different horse-racing clubs are knocking at our doors for registration and therefore we urge horse owners to register their horses in advance to avoid a last-minute rush,” he said.

    According to Mujeu, the club aims to promote horse racing in the country and has called on the corporate sector to come on board.

    Registration of horses will continue until 5 September.

    Established in 2014, Professor’s Supporters Club is a social club for fans of horse racing.

    The club recently held a successful July Handicap at Okondjatu, which attracted thousands of spectators.

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    Strange developments at Tigers Strange developments at Tigers Jacobs unhappy Things seem to be falling apart for Namibia’s top coach, Woody Jacobs, at his current club. JESSE JACKSON KAURAISA

    Speculation is rife that MTC Namibia Premier League Tigers coach Woody Jacobs is unhappy with the latest developments at the club.

    A source close to the Tigers camp alleges that the club has not been communicating with the coach despite pending preparations for the 2018/19 season.

    Namibian Sun understands that the club should have started with their preparations already, but things remain on hold because the coach and the team have not met yet.

    “I can tell you that strange things are happening at the moment because the club is not even training yet.

    “My understanding is that Woody is also unhappy with the fact that the club has been holding backdoor meetings without him.

    “I am not even sure if he will be the coach of the club this coming season,” the source claimed.

    Controversy at the club is nothing new. They faced a major crisis in the first half of the season, which saw them lingering near the bottom of the table for a number of weekends.

    That resulted in the resignation of coach Lucky Kakuva, who was under pressure from management.

    As a result, the club appointed Jacobs in December last year.

    He managed to help the team out of the relegation zone, leading them to a sixth-place finish.

    It was, however, not the best of seasons for the former league champions, given that they lost 12 matches, won 14 and drew four of their 30 league games.

    Jacobs would neither confirm nor deny that his job at the club could be in doubt before the start of the season.

    “My friend, I do not know what to say at the moment, but all I can say is that sad things happen in Namibian football.

    “I can also just wait for what is going to happen because the team has apparently not started training yet,” Jacobs said.

    Tigers FC spokesperson Hafeni Hivelua rebuffed allegations that the club has not begun preparations yet.

    He maintained that all is well at the club and they do not have any internal problems.

    But Hivelua dodged a question about their relationship with the coach.

    “On the coach, do not worry about that,” he said.

    Coaching controversies in the premier league before the start of any season have been common.

    The latest was when African Stars sacked their coach, Bobby Samaria, and appointed former Brave Warriors and Kaizer Chiefs player Robert Nauseb.

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    AIBA to allow judging protests after Asian GamesAIBA to allow judging protests after Asian GamesBoxing turmoil goes on Two North Korean boxing coaches were thrown out of the Asian Games on Saturday after refusing to leave the ring and inciting the crowd after their fighter lost gold on a split decision to a Chinese boxer. NAMPA/AFP

    The International Boxing Association (AIBA) will introduce a right of protest against controversial judging “to ensure fair play” and prevent a repeat of ugly scenes that marred the Asian Games.

    Police had to move in to escort the duo, who had their Asian Games credentials immediately removed, from the Jakarta International Expo arena. They will now face disciplinary action by AIBA.

    And there were ugly scenes earlier in the week after an Iraqi fighter lost a close fight and a fan jumped over barriers and tried to storm the ring encouraged by the boxer's cornermen.

    “AIBA has a responsibility to ensure fair play and we're going to make sure that happens,” AIBA executive director Tom Virgets told AFP.

    “We're going to have a protest committee in place because even in the best of times there will be (controversial) decisions, officials get tired, it's like any other sport that is subjective.”

    Currently AIBA's technical regulations Rule 5 states: “No protest is permitted and the decisions of the referee in a bout are


    “Years ago we had a right to protest,” said Virgets. “The organisation felt it was being abused. They removed it from the rules.

    “I think we swung the pendulum too far. We should have just corrected the process to get rid of the abuses, instead we did away with the protests.

    “I think that increased the problems, because it increased the frustration by not having any avenue to see if a perceived wrong could be corrected.”

    Boxing is fighting for its Olympic future, under threat of being removed from Tokyo 2020 after a series of judging controversies at Rio 2016 when several officials were sent home after allegations of bout-rigging.

    Following Rio, all 36 judges and officials were suspended and there has been turmoil within AIBA since, with former president CK Wu of Taiwan ousted and Uzbekistan's Gafur Rahimov installed as interim president earlier this


    The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has demanded that boxing get its house in order or the sport which gave the world Olympians and legends such as Muhammad Ali, Joe Frazier and Sugar Ray Leonard faces Olympic extinction.

    “Now the AIBA executive committee has voted to have a protest allowed and right now we are investigating different tools to use in order to have an appropriate process,” Virgets confirmed.

    “The technical rules committee is working on that and in the very near future we are going to see this rule implemented across all out competitions.”

    It is not the first time boxing at the Asian Games has been dogged by controversial judging.

    Four years ago there were astonishing scenes in Incheon as India's Sarita Devi – who battered her Korean rival in a women's semi-final but still lost a unanimous decision– refused to accept her bronze medal and tried to hang it around the neck of her victor.

    Devi, who dumped the medal on the podium and stormed away in tears, was later banned for a


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    Benzema scoring freely for RealBenzema scoring freely for Real Karim Benzema scored twice and Gareth Bale notched another for Real Madrid in a 4-1 thrashing of Leganes on Saturday after Atletico Madrid crashed to defeat in La Liga.

    Benzema grabbed a second-half double and might have got his hat-trick had Sergio Ramos passed on the penalty he scored after a foul on Marco Asensio.

    Atletico lost more ground on their city neighbours as they sank to a 2-0 defeat at Celta Vigo which coach Diego Simeone described as “a major wake-up call”.

    At the Santiago Bernabeu, Bale broke the deadlock with a smart half-volley, which was briefly cancelled out by Leganes' Guido Carrillo, who converted his own spot-kick to ensure Thibaut Courtois' first Madrid contribution was to pick the ball out of his own net.

    Rejuvenated under new coach Julen Lopetegui and, perhaps, liberated by Cristiano Ronaldo's departure, Bale and Benzema impressed again. Bale has now scored three times and Benzema four from the first three La Liga games of the season.

    Together with Asensio, Real may be about to discover a new attacking trio of untouchables, even if Lopetegui rejected the idea afterwards.

    “The word untouchable does not exist in football,” Lopetegui said. “The goals were down to the whole team.”

    Real have also taken maximum points from their opening three fixtures in contrast to the same point last season when they were already five behind Barcelona.

    Leganes' underwhelming start under new boss Mauricio Pellegrino continues. They are yet to post a victory.

    Keylor Navas was named last season's best goalkeeper by UEFA on Thursday but was only deemed second choice here by Lopetegui, who handed Courtois his debut after joining from Chelsea earlier this month.

    “He has wished me a lot of luck, we get on very well,” Courtois said of Navas. “Sometimes people just want to create controversy.”

    Luka Modric took the place of Isco, in a midfield three with Casemiro and Toni Kroos. Bale and Asensio supported Benzema up front.

    Real's confident start saw Asensio skip in behind but his lifted finish floated just over, before Bale's cross was too quick for the straining head of Benzema at the back post.

    The first goal came after Ramos' pass found Dani Carvajal as the furthest man forward and the full-back's clever header back towards the penalty spot wrong-footed everyone except Bale. The Welshman arched his right leg over the bouncing ball, his finish just enough to beat Ivan Cuellar.

    Real looked in control but, against the run of play, Leganes earned a lifeline when Casemiro tripped Javier Eraso in the box. Carrillo sidefooted left as Courtois dived right.

    Benzema was unlucky to restore the lead when his fired shot was denied only by the foot of Cuellar but the striker did not have to wait long. Three minutes into the second half he headed in Asensio's cross from the left after winning a tussle with Leganes' Jonathan Silva.

    Referee Jaime Latre initially blew for a foul but, after consulting VAR, the replay showed Silva had been the aggressor and the goal


    There was no doubt about Benzema's second. He exchanged a one-two with Modric on the edge of the area and, drifting right, dragged his shot left, back across goal and into the bottom corner.

    He might have had his hat-trick had Ramos opted to delegate penalty duties after Asensio fell over a thoughtless challenge from Leganes captain Unai Bustinza. But Ramos took the spot-kick and made no mistake.

    Atletico coach Simeone said he “assumed responsibility” as his side went down to goals from Celta's Maximilian Gomez and Spain forward Iago Aspas.

    Atletico drew their opener against Valencia before making amends with a 1-0 home win over Rayo Vallecano but they have now dropped points for the second time this season.

    “Celta played very well,” conceded Simeone. “We didn't trouble them, they were sharp and obviously afterwards they knew how to defend their advantage.

    “We lacked precision with the chances we had, that's why we failed to score.

    “It's a major wake-up call, for me mainly because against Rayo we weren't good in the final 10 minutes... But I'm not worried, I'm calm.”

    Reigning champions Barcelona took on Huesca at the Camp Nou on Sunday.


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    Ump confiscates cheat sheet from PhilliesUmp confiscates cheat sheet from Phillies Like a student trying to gain an edge on a final exam, Philadelphia Phillies reliever Austin Davis referred to a cheat sheet on the mound Saturday as he faced the Chicago Cubs.

    Umpire Joe West reacted like a testing-room proctor, taking the piece of paper away from the left-handed rookie.

    Davis, who wasn't ejected, was using notes from Phillies scouts on how to pitch to Cubs batters. West ruled the paper to be a violation of Rule 6.02(c)(7), which prohibits a pitcher from having “on his person, or in his possession, any foreign substance.”

    “I know all the players now carry a cheat sheet like this,” West said, according to MLB.com. “Until the office tells me, I can't let the pitcher do it. I can't let him do it. I saw him take it out and I went, 'What the heck is that?' I said, 'You can have it back after the game, but you can't have it now.' I didn't want to throw him out. I know it's foreign, but he's not trying to cheat.”

    Davis wound up throwing two innings and allowing two unearned runs to close out Philadelphia's 7-1 home loss.

    Davis said of the cheat sheet, “This is something I create. We have our meeting where we go over the hitters. I take that information and put it on a card so I don't have to try and memorize it, and use my mental energy to get ready for the game. Then I just take a glance and go.

    “Our analytics department works really, really hard to come up with this stuff for us, and I want to use it because they work all day to come up with stuff to help get guys out. And if I have an answer to get a guy out, I want to know what that is.”

    First-year Phillies manager Gabe Kapler told reporters that other Phillies outfielders and infielders use similar sheets, adding that Arizona Diamondbacks veteran pitcher Zack Greinke does so, too.

    “I think it's actually a really good thing for baseball,” Kapler said. “I don't really quite understand (the confiscation). I mean, it's not like he's trying to hide anything. He's standing on the back of the mound, pulling this card out of his pocket and using it to help us attack hitters.

    “Our catchers have them on their wrists. It doesn't make sense to me, but I understand that rules are in place for a reason, and we have to comply.”

    Cubs manager Joe Maddon said, tongue in cheek, that he wasn't bothered by Davis's paper as long as the pitcher wasn't using it to scuff the ball.


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    UN chief condemns escalating violence in LibyaUN chief condemns escalating violence in Libya United Nations chief Antonio Guterres on Saturday called for an end to violence in Libya in accordance with a UN-brokered ceasefire agreement.

    According to a health ministry toll at least 39 people have been killed and some 100 injured in five days of clashes among rival militias, which broke out Monday in suburbs south of Tripoli.

    “The secretary-general condemns the continued escalation of violence in and around Libya's capital and, in particular, the use by armed groups of indiscriminate shelling leading to the death and injury of civilians, including children,” a statement from Guterres' office said.

    “The secretary-general calls on all parties to immediately cease hostilities and abide by the ceasefire agreement brokered by the United Nations and the Reconciliation Committees.”

    In a joint statement Britain, France, Italy and the United States have said they “warn those who tamper with security in Tripoli or elsewhere in Libya that they will be held accountable for any such actions.” The Libyan capital has been at the centre of a battle for influence between armed groups since the fall of Libyan leader Muammer Gaddafi in 2011.


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