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Articles on this Page
- 09/20/18--15:00: _Just for laughs at ...
- 09/20/18--15:00: _Bring the spark back
- 09/20/18--15:00: _For the love of art
- 09/20/18--15:00: _Company news in brief
- 09/20/18--15:00: _Take care of your n...
- 09/20/18--15:00: _Katrina wants a fes...
- 09/20/18--15:00: _Africa in brief
- 09/20/18--15:00: _Killa B - Point of ...
- 09/20/18--15:00: _Cannabis oil: Con o...
- 09/20/18--15:00: _Tyre burst crashes ...
- 09/20/18--15:00: _1 200 rhinos in pri...
- 09/20/18--15:00: _Striving for infras...
- 09/20/18--15:00: _Global Petroleum in...
- 09/20/18--15:00: _New RCC rescue plan...
- 09/20/18--15:00: _Fresh warnings as p...
- 09/20/18--15:00: _161 govt vehicles u...
- 09/20/18--15:00: _Sowing into the you...
- 09/20/18--15:00: _What is land reform...
- 09/20/18--15:00: _Kagola believes eac...
- 09/20/18--15:00: _Jobs: What is the s...
- 09/20/18--15:00: Just for laughs at Kalabar
- 09/20/18--15:00: Bring the spark back
- 09/20/18--15:00: For the love of art
- 09/20/18--15:00: Company news in brief
- 09/20/18--15:00: Take care of your neighbour too
- 09/20/18--15:00: Katrina wants a festival week
- 09/20/18--15:00: Africa in brief
- 09/20/18--15:00: Killa B - Point of no Return
- 09/20/18--15:00: Cannabis oil: Con or Cure?
- 09/20/18--15:00: Tyre burst crashes rise
- 09/20/18--15:00: 1 200 rhinos in private care
- 09/20/18--15:00: Striving for infrastructural development
- 09/20/18--15:00: Global Petroleum invests in search for oil
- 09/20/18--15:00: New RCC rescue plan confirmed
- 09/20/18--15:00: Fresh warnings as phosphate deadline looms
- 09/20/18--15:00: 161 govt vehicles unaccounted for
- 09/20/18--15:00: Sowing into the young generation
- 09/20/18--15:00: What is land reform all about, or what could it be?
- 09/20/18--15:00: Kagola believes each achievement is significant
- 09/20/18--15:00: Jobs: What is the strategy?
Nam Comedy Circle is entering its third round at the Hilton Kalabar next week Wednesday. The popular, novel monthly event at the Hilton has Windhoek entertainment lovers talking. Whether it is about sports, politics, our various cultures and their favourite pastimes, or the latest Facebook scandal, this is the time and place to catch the latest news. More and more Namibians are learning to take themselves less seriously and are enjoying it.
Whilst the heavyweights from preceding shows are taking a brief rest, new contenders are being lined up and, once again, ladies take centre stage. Janice Tobias will open the event. Currently a law student in her third year, she has had a knack for comedy all her life and from the very beginning.
Nambabwean Courage the Comedian an experienced comic who represented Namibia at the Heavyweight International Comedy Festival in Botswana in May, will also be cracking jokes. Last but not least is Sibongile Tshabalala, or in short, Ms Sibo. Back from her world travels, Ms Sibo is ready to tickle the audience's fancy as she shares her latest escapades, her adventures and her growth.
The organisers invite patrons to get comfortable at the Kalabar latest around 19:30, with the show starting at 20:00. The Kalabar is situated on the first floor of the Hilton Hotel. The event is absolutely free of charge.
“Pure Romance offers business owners like me a platform to empower and educate women about their sexuality and sensuality. I'm an expert in that I have received adequate training to be able to facilitate in-home parties that cater to issues women face in the bedroom, through product knowledge,” she said. Here, Zama answers some relationship saving questions for tjil.
tjil (T): Is there a difference with how couples act from when they first meet to say, being married for five years?
Zama Mkhize (ZM): When you're in your first year of dating, commitment is rarely a factor, it's just two individuals sharing passion and a deep affection for the other. The bedroom is exciting in that the individuals are still in the exploration stage and there are hardly any relevant outside interferences. When a couple has been together for years, they deal with influences from family and maybe even raising kids. These influences have a direct effect on the bedroom because the slightest bit of strain directly impacts the bedroom.
T: When and why do some couples loose the spark in their relationship?
ZM: As couples progress in the relationship they are faced with outside interferences like dealing with family, having kids, finances and other aspects, to mention a few. These can cause strain and like I said earlier, whatever strain the couple experiences, directly impacts the bedroom. Say for instance you have kids, being spontaneous and having sex on the kitchen table the minute you get home from work is no longer an option. You become more restrained in that now you have to consider the little ones first. Maybe you need to make dinner and check homework first, and by the time you get to bed you're both tired so sex may lose priority or its intensity rather, in some relationships. This may influence the physical chemistry in the relationship.
T: What, in your words, is a healthy sexual relationship?
ZM: A healthy relationship is one which puts communication at the core of its principles. At Pure Romance we are taught that one can never over-communicate within a relationship. There are four pillars that are greatly emphasised: love, communication, finances, and sex. There are obviously other pillars individual couples might deem important as well, such as spirituality (putting God first in your marriage), but at Pure Romance we focus more on the four to accommodate those who do not practise religion. When you constantly communicate, you may find out what your partner wants, you also let them know what you want, and mind you, what you wanted in 1995 might not be what you want now in terms of the bedroom for example. You can re- explore one another through play, massage and adding new techniques into the mix.
T: How can a couple spice/revive their relationship?
ZM: You need to know what your partner wants and you need to communicate what it is you want as well.
At Pure Romance we don't only advocate for the betterment of all things bedroom, we encourage women to also look after themselves in terms looking good, smelling good, and feeling good.
We have amazing bath and beauty products such as Basic Instinct, which is a synthetic pheromone. It is a natural anti-depressant and sex attractant. We encourage exercise which directly speaks to health, and vaginal health, to be specific. We also greatly encourage women to touch themselves and play with toys, to explore themselves and what it is they want in terms of satisfaction.
T: What are some myths there are about using props in a relationship and how do they (props) actually help relationships?
ZM: Toys can't kiss you, they can't hug you, they can't tell you they love you and they definitely won't buy you flowers.
Toys are meant to enhance, to add on and not to replace.
Toys are meant to aid in self pleasure so that one is educated in what, how and where they want to be stimulated.
T: What is the role of romance in a relationship how importance is it?
ZM: Romance creates a sort of newness to a relationship. You are constantly working towards meeting your partner's demands through communication, exploration, pleasure and you can do all this by adding new and exciting ways.
It is important in keeping the passion alive so that you're constantly in tune with your partner's feelings, after all, that is why you are together in the first place, right?
Qonja says he became aware of his love for art from the tender age of nine. He recalls starting off by drawing comic figures of Shakes Shikongo from Super Strikers, cars and landscapes. His love for art was further motivated by his elder brother who is also an art enthusiast. Today Qonja draws during his free time when he is not busy with his studies at Nust.
“I draw because not only does it help me with my bills but because it's therapeutic and I love the reaction of my clients when they get their portraits. It really helps as a student,” he said.
To date, Qonja says he has drawn over 500 portraits and delivered them. He tells tjil he realised that he could make money from his talent in 2013 when he started watching tutorial videos on YouTube. He says the journey has not been easy as he had unhappy clients while others believe his work is not worth his prices. Qonja's prices begin from N$350 and go up to N$2 400 for canvas. So far his client list includes local entertainers such as Maria Nepembe, Luis Munana and Gazza, just to mention a few.
“You get people who say things like 'this does not look like me' and that means I should redraw the artwork. I mean I was still learning and new in the game so I had no problem,” he said. “Then you get clients who claim the picture does not depict them but they ask for a discount. So if the picture doesn't look like you, why would you want it on half price? These are the cons of my work. Paying is a problem and they don't consider the time and effort put into the artwork,” he said.
Qonja plans on expanding his work by drawing hyper realistic artwork however the material is not available in Namibia and importing it is costly. He plans on expanding his business and spending more time on perfecting his work.
“I want to get all kinds of material to allow me to draw exceptional portraits to expand my client base. I also want to take my work internationally. I will be sharing all my news on my social media pages so watch out @qondja_arts pages.
Nigeria's central bank is reviewing information provided by MTN and four banks accused of helping the South African telecoms company to illegally repatriate US$8.1 billion, with a view to reaching an equitable resolution, it said on Wednesday.
Nigeria, which accounts for a third of MTN's annual core profit, is MTN's biggest market, but has proved to be problematic in recent years during which there have been multiple allegations of infractions.
The central bank on Aug. 29 said it had ordered MTN and the four banks to bring US$8.1 billion back into Nigeria that it alleged the telecoms firm sent abroad in breach of foreign exchange regulations.
It also fined the banks. Standard Chartered PLC was fined 2.4 billion naira (US$7.86 million), Stanbic IBTC Bank PLC 1.8 billion naira, Citibank 1.2 billion naira and Diamond Bank PLC 250 million naira.
MTN has denied any wrongdoing and the banks have said they are in talks with the regulator.
Nigeria's financial regulator, in Wednesday's statement, said it would continue to welcome foreign investments, and that the sanctions imposed on the banks were not designed to restrict access to investor returns. – Nampa/Reuters
Jack Ma backtracks on jobs promise
Alibaba Chairman Jack Ma said the company can no longer meet its promise to create 1 million jobs in the United States due to US-China trade tensions, Chinese news agency Xinhua reported.
Ma had met US President Donald Trump two years ago and laid out the Chinese e-commerce giant's plan to bring one million small US businesses onto its platform to sell to Chinese consumers over the next five years.
"This commitment is based on friendly China-US cooperation and the rational and objective premise of bilateral trade," Ma told Xinhua. "The current situation has already destroyed the original premise. There is no way to deliver the promise."
Ma said trade tensions between the United States and China could last for two decades and would be "a mess" for all parties involved.
He had also said trade tensions would likely impact Chinese and foreign companies immediately and negatively, while predicting that Chinese businesses may move production to other countries in the medium-term to get around tariffs. – Nampa/Reuters
Life Healthcare to sell stake in Indian JV
South African private hospital group Life Healthcare said on Wednesday it will sell its entire 49.7% stake in India's Max Healthcare to a global investment firm for R4.3 billion, in order to focus on its operations elsewhere.
"The Company will initially use the net disposal proceeds to settle debt as well as to invest in growth opportunities in its core markets," the group said in a statement.
Investment firm KKR, through its portfolio company Radiant Life Care Private Limited, will buy more than 266 million shares in Max Healthcare at 80 rupees per share.
The deal is expected to be finalised before the end of the year.
Max Healthcare is a leading hospital group in India, operating hospitals in New Delhi, Punjab and Uttarakhand. – Nampa/Reuters
Aston Martin aims for October IPO
Luxury British carmaker Aston Martin said yesterday it was seeking a valuation of up to 5.07 billion pounds (US$6.7 billion) as it set a price range of 17.50 pounds to 22.50 pounds per share for its stock market flotation.
The company, famed for making the sports car driven by fictional secret agent James Bond, said last month it was pursuing an initial public offering (IPO), the first British carmaker to do so for decades.
The firm is expecting 25% of its stock to be floated, nearly 57 million shares.
The carmaker, which has long said it could IPO, has undergone a turnaround plan since chief executive Andy Palmer took over as CEO in 2014 as it boosts its volumes and expands into new segments.
Palmer said investors would be able to take advantage of future growth if they take part in the flotation. – Nampa/Reuters
Emerging market turbulence to hit Diageo
The world's biggest spirits company Diageo Plc expects this year's sell-off of some emerging market currencies to knock 175 million pounds off net sales and 45 million off its full-year profits, the company said yesterday.
In recent weeks, we have experienced some increased emerging market foreign exchange volatility, which has been partially offset by a strengthening of the US dollar," chief executive Ivan Menezes said in an update ahead of its 2018 meeting of shareholders.
"Based on current rates we currently expect exchange to have a negative impact on net sales of 175 million pounds and a negative impact on operating profit of 45 million pounds for the fiscal year."– Nampa/Reuters
The kind of giving I'm referring to is all kinds of artists must get involved with organisations and help to create awareness on social issues. I like what Miss Namibia opted to have as her reigning project because mental health lags behind. This is because a lot of communities don't speak about mental issues and the consequences, including depression, especially in the youth. Artists too should have a responsibility in making a difference in their fans' lifestyles and get involved in community issues.
I believe it is time we stop this culture of just wanting people to come to our shows, buy our portraits and albums but they think little about those who buy their music. I'm not saying all artists don't give back, because I know some who do. If we all pull together and lend a helping hand we can really make a difference.
Lastly let's all invest in our health by maintaining healthy lifestyles and going for regular medical check-ups. Prevention is better than cure because it's easier to stop something from happening than to repair damage after it has happened. I believe it is okay for one to have a problem but only if they are willing to accept it and seek help. It's really all about speaking out; you will find out that you are not alone.
“We must be talking about stakeholders bringing on board many other directorates so that next year, we won't talk about the WJF as a one-day and -night event but rather a jazz festival week. We will be building up to the festival itself by having exciting items by bringing in other domains of arts and exposing our artists,” she said.
Hanse-Himarwa added said that the Namibian public needs to be sensitised about the untapped potential of the creative industry. Fashion designers, dancers, sculptures and film makers according to her should be exposed at future jazz festivals. “I want to see, throughout the WJF week exhibitions mixed with jazz. This dress I am wearing is a typical artwork of a Namibian woman. Sometimes we are engaging in our arts without knowing that what we are doing is the arts. Awareness and advocacy should be about the broader creative industry and not just music,” she said.
At the official launch, she announced the artists to grace the stage which include Suzy Eises, Elemotho and Lize Ehlers as some of the local acts, and South Africans Zonke and The Soil as some of the international acts.
The 2016 WJF is organised by the City of Windhoek with the support of its sponsors such as Windhoek Lager, Standard Bank Namibia, Air Namibia, 99 FM, The Glenlivet, National Arts Council of Namibia and Ad Force. The festival will take place at the Independence Stadium on 3 November. Tickets to the festival are available at Events outlets countrywide for N$250.
South Africa's headline consumer inflation slowed unexpectedly in August, data showed on
Wednesday, with analysts saying the print could make the central bank take a less hawkish tone when it delivers its interest rates decision on Thursday.
Headline consumer inflation slowed to 4.9% year-on-year in August from 5.1% in July, and contracted 0.1% after rising 0.8% on a monthly basis, Statistics South Africa said.
Economists had expected CPI to rise to 5.2% year-on-year, according to a Reuters poll.
Libya imposes fee on hard currency transactions
Libya's internationally recognised government on Wednesday imposed a fee of 183%
on any hard currency transactions, effectively devaluing the Libyan dinar to bridge the gap to the dominating black market.
If implemented in a country in chaos where the central bank struggles to impose its will, the move devalues the official rate of the dinar to the dollar for such deals to around 3.9 from 1.4, Libya's Eqtisidiya business TV channel said.
Its impact was unclear. The black market rate stands at around 6, and the fee covers only part of the market. Family allowances will be excluded as well as possibly imports of fuel and other subsidised goods.
The gap has done much to distort Libya's oil-dependent economy, contributing to a liquidity crisis and causing corruption as armed groups with access to dollars at the official rate make huge profits through import scams.
Nigeria to suspend national airline project
Nigeria has suspended its plan to relaunch its national airline, a junior aviation minister said
The government had planned to launch the prestige project in December to make good on a promise by Muhammadu Buhari when he ran for president in 2015. He will seek re-election in February.
"I regret to announce that the Federal Executive Council has taken the tough decision to suspend the national carrier project in the interim," Hadi Sirika, junior aviation minister, said on Twitter after the weekly cabinet meeting.
"All commitments due will be honoured," he said. No reason was given for the decision.
In a separate statement, he said: "The suspension was strategic and had nothing to do with politics."
The airline was part of a plan to improve infrastructure that has suffered due to decades of neglect and underinvestment. The government says improvement will require private investment.
The plan to relaunch the carrier was announced in July. A private operator, sought through a Public Private Partnership, would manage it according to a document seen by Reuters.
Kenya's finance minister cuts spending
Kenya's finance minister Henry Rotich has cut the government's spending budget by 55.1 billion shillings (US$546.90 million), or 1.8%, for the fiscal year from July this year, a Treasury document showed on Wednesday.
The government is facing a tough balancing act after a public outcry over a new 16 percent value added tax on all petroleum products forced President Uhuru Kenyatta to suggest to
parliament to keep the VAT and cut if by half.
In the document detailing the new spending estimates, Rotich said the budget had to be adjusted because of the amendments to tax measures brought by lawmakers when they first debated it and passed it last month.
The proposed halving of the VAT rate on fuel has left the government with a funding shortfall, hence the cuts in spending.
Parliament will vote on a raft of proposals, including the 1.8% cut on spending, in a special sitting on Thursday.
Zambian Kwacha falls over size of country's debt, aid freeze
Zambia's kwacha lost more than 1% on Wednesday, hit by investor worries about the
size of nation's debt and an aid freeze by Britain and Finland over suspicion that social welfare funds may have been misused.
The currency of Africa's No.2 copper producer fell as much as 1.6% to 11.1800 per dollar on Wednesday from a close of 11.0000 per dollar on Tuesday, Reuters data showed.
"Zambia's debt issues continue to create anxiety among investors. In addition, emerging market currencies have been generally weakening," one senior commercial bank trader said.
Zambia's external debt rose to US$9.37 billion by the end of June from US$8.7 billion in December, the finance ministry said in August, a week after the International Monetary Fund (IMF) raised concerns over country's high borrowing.
The music business is a harsh industry. It requires a lot for an artist to not only make it, but also to last enough to have a lifelong career. Recognition can come pretty fast, but it also fades just as swiftly. Some entertainers soar all the way to the top only to plunge quickly, back to the bottom. Even though many leave on their own terms, there are plenty who are forced out.
These entertainers were beloved by fans and the entertainment industry until one false move totally kills their careers. A few of them willingly disappeared after life-changing situations while others were forced out of the public eye, and a few actually attempted to mount comebacks.
Killa B says he does not regret his decision to move from the city to permanently live in northern Namibia seven years ago. He says he has been doing well and he is currently in a place where he is putting himself first.
“The reason people don't see me often is because I choose that. I studied marketing and media; it's not that I don't want to market myself either. I have just put myself in a space that is okay for my life and one which doesn't make things difficult for me,” he said. Killa B, who has thus far released seven albums with three put out silently, is finally ready to come-back into the limelight (Windhoek) and will make music for all his fans and not just those based in the north.
“I released albums away from central media and just because people don't see me in the city they believe that I have left music. I have been doing music and having tours as far as Rundu that have been a success. I feel that I have been away for a while and that is why I plan on releasing my next album in the city which will be for everyone. Yes, I have had my ups and downs with the media but I know it comes with the territory. I am still here and standing strong.”
He also told tjil that he hasn't been working with certain artists because of the differences they have when it comes to quality of work. “If I'm working with you it's because I really want to. I wouldn't want to waste your time and I wouldn't want to invest where I lose out.”
Killa B started his career in the early 2000s. He is known for being a versatile artist and a vivid dancer before he became mainstream. Looking back and comparing the industry when he was active to now, he says the unity that was amongst the artists is no longer there. He also says the number of studios has increased, but the product (music) is not of quality and this is because producers and artists are in a hurry to release. Killa B however believes that there are talented Namibians who have culturally cultivated creativity such as traditionally infused melodies and rhythms but don't have the means to bring out.
“Producers and artists today watch YouTube channels and TV channels and after that they think they know what they want. It's not always the case because they can be culturally rich if they looked around them here at home. I am at a stage where I know I can do a lot to help those that I can as I am a producer. We used to share beats back in the days and I don't see it happening these days so what will we do about that?” he questioned.
He says being away from the city made him get a different perspective of the industry and how to run his career as a business. The singer told tjil that he also learned the importance of staying fit as a performer and when he relocated went to the extent of not consuming alcohol anymore.
“I jog every morning, I try to be active and that's why you won't see me without my muscles. I play soccer with the youth and I also motivate them on the importance of being healthy. No matter how much you have grown or how wealthy you have become, giving back where you come from is always important. I have been sober for a year and I feel so great. I wouldn't say I had an issue with alcohol personally, I just realised that it's not in line with the path I have chosen for my life.”
Killa B will be releasing his album 'Point of No Return' next month. Killa B says there will be a special track on the album titled 'Dear Life' that is emotional and he believes people will relate to it. Artists featured on the album include DJ Pother, Top Cheri and CJ from the Kalaharians who just returned home from Kenya just to mention a few.
“I chose the title because the music I'm doing now will be a first for people to hear me at such a level of maturity and growth. The album will be so great, it is a house-infused album and I'm so proud of what I have done. I am definitely here to change the music scene. It's a dream come true because I have worked with great people on this album.
The artist said he is now back on the scene and he looks forward to having performances, especially at settings like the Kasi Vibe Festival. He added he is also busy redoing some of his classic work with Kannibal that will drop soon.
The report found no evidence of recreational use of CBD or “any public health-related problems associated with the use of pure CBD”.
In June this year the American Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved Epidiolex, a CBD-based drug, for the treatment of seizures caused by two rare forms of childhood epilepsy, Dravet Syndrome and Lennox Gestaut Syndrome. It was the first and thus far only marijuana-based drug to be approved by the agency.
What is CBD oil?
CBD is one of many compounds known as cannabinoids in the cannabis plant. Researchers have been looking at the possible therapeutic uses of CBD. CBD oils are oils containing concentrations of CBD. The concentration and uses of these oils vary.
Is CBD marijuana?
Until recently, the best-known compound of cannabis was delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the most active ingredient in marijuana. Marijuana contains both THC and CBD, but these compounds have different effects. THC creates a mind-altering "high" when smoked or used in cooking. Unlike THC, CBD is not psychoactive, meaning it doesn’t change a person's state of mind when used. It does however appear to produce significant changes in the body, with some research suggesting it has medical benefits.
Where does CBD come from?
The least-processed form of the cannabis plant is hemp. Hemp contains most of the CBD that people use medicinally. Hemp and marijuana come from the same plant, Cannabis sativa, but are very different.
How CBD works
All cannabinoids, including CBD, produce effects in the body by attaching to certain receptors. The human body produces certain cannabinoids on its own. It also has two receptors for cannabinoids, called CB1 and CB2 receptors. CB1 receptors are present throughout the body, but many are in the brain. They are involved with coordination, movement, pain, emotions, mood, thinking, appetite, memory and other functions. THC attaches to these receptors.
CB2 receptors are more common in the immune system. They affect inflammation and pain. Researchers once believed CBD attached to CB2 receptors, but it now appears CBD does not attach directly to either type of receptor. Instead, it seems to direct the body to use more of its own cannabinoids.
People claim CBD oil can be used to treat a wide range of conditions, though evidence to back up these claims is often lacking. CBD may have various health benefits. This includes among others natural pain relief and anti-inflammatory properties, fighting epilepsy, cancer, anxiety disorders, type 1 diabetes as well as Alzheimer's disease.
While a variety of online blogs and articles on the supposed benefits of cannabis oil is available, limited research does not suggest it should replace conventional medicine. Another risk factor is the fact that a lack of regulation or safety tests leaves the consumer in the dark on what exactly they’re getting.
Researchers further emphasize not foregoing conventional and established treatment available in lieu of CBD-oil. In addition certain medication can potentially interact with CBD, including amitriptyline, ibuprofen and meloxicam. The decision to use CBD oil for medical purposes needs to be based on science, not marketing, a sentiment echoed by David Cassaret (MD) in his book Stoned: A Doctor’s case for Medical Marijuana: “Medical marijuana is becoming too widespread, and the risks are too great to leave the patient to fend for himself.”
(Sources: www.medicalnewstoday.com; www.livescience.com; www.painnewsnetwork.com)
@Technavio analysts forecast the global #CBDoil market to grow over 31% during the period 2018-2022, according to their latest #marketresearch report.
Over a six-month period this year, eight people were killed in accidents attributed to a tyre burst, compared to five deaths for the duration of 2017, a statement issued by the MVA noted this week.
These fatalities emanated from a total of 42 such crashes related to a tyre burst, with 29 recorded in 2017, and 13 by June this year.
“Road crashes are attributed to various factors including the condition of the road and the environment, human behaviour such as fatigue, drunk driving, and inattentiveness as well as the condition of vehicles, including working lights and tyres,” the MVA stated.
Because of the high use of vehicles in Namibia, the MVA cautioned that to ensure safety and roadworthiness by conducting daily or weekly checks to spot possible defects before using the vehicle, are crucial.
“These checks include the inspection of vehicle tyres as tyre bursts mainly occur due to improper inflation, overloading, low-quality, speeding and natural wear and tear.”
The MVA urged drivers to frequently check for signs of wear and tear and replace tyres when necessary, and to check the tyre tread depth in order to ensure optimum traction on the road even in unusual road conditions.
Visual inspections of tyres ensure there are no nails or other objects stuck in the tyre that can cause an inflation pressure leak.
Lastly, the MVA recommends drivers to ensure routine replacement, alignment and balancing of tyres. Additionally, rotate tyres to aid in the even wear and tear of the tyres.
“Amongst all other strategies that are implemented to reduce crashes on our roads, this simple yet important task of inspecting vehicle tyres regularly, can greatly contribute to the reduction of crashes which will ultimately pave the way toward achieving the Decade of Action for Road Safety goal of reducing crashes to 50% by 2020,” the MVA stated.
In August, Namibian Sun reported the death of three police officers who died in an accident while travelling towards Omaruru.
The cause of the accident was attributed to a tyre burst, which led the driver to lose control over the vehicle, causing it to overturn.
Over the same weekend, a one-year-old baby girl died after the driver of a vehicle she and four adults were travelling lost control and overturned the car after a tyre burst.
In January, an accident near Katima Mulilo was reported in which four people died. The accident was attributed to a tyre burst.
This was announced during a national meeting on rhino security attended by custodians of black rhinos and private owners of white rhinos.
Environment deputy minister Bernadette Jagger said in the past five days, three suspects were arrested at Divundu in the Kavango East Region for the illegal possession of three rhino horns. One suspect was also arrested at Katima Mulilo for the illegal possession of five pairs of elephant tusks.
“Unprecedented levels of elephant and rhino poaching across Africa are being experienced and Namibia is no exception. This threatens these species and the ecosystem they inhabit,” said Jagger.
She said wildlife trafficking has become a million-dollar criminal enterprise that has expanded to more than just a conservation concern.
According to Jagger, the increasing involvement of organised crime in poaching and wildlife trafficking promotes corruption, threatens peace, strengthens illicit trade routes, destabilises economies and communities that depend on wildlife for their livelihoods.
Elaborating on the National Rhino Custodian Programme that was established in 1993, she said this has been Namibia's greatest conservation success ever and is largely due to private citizens working together with government in an exemplary way.
The custodian programme now hosts 500 black rhinos in 28 sub-populations, which occur from the Orange River to the Kunene Region.
“We are aware that custodians are concerned about the risk of poaching, including the safety of themselves and their personnel and the lack of mechanisms from the side of government to offer more assistance and create greater incentives for keeping black rhinos,” Jagger said.
She explained that although all black rhinos remain state-owned, the programme enables private persons with land to apply for custodianship.
She said strategic black rhino translocations have been carried out under the programme since 1993.
This has not only expanded the rhino range but also established a viable breeding population. It has also contributed to the stimulation of high density populations in national parks, from which most of the animals have been sourced for the programme.
Jagger said the number of black rhinos under custodianship has grown to such an extent that the programme has become its own source of animals for further translocation, and a few animals could even be translocated back to national parks, as required.
According to her the southern white rhino is present in some of Namibia's national parks, while the private sector has also played a vital role in re-establishing populations on free-hold land.
“White rhinos can be privately owned in Namibia, the ministry strictly controls all imports, exports, internal movements and hunting of white rhinos through CITES.”
The number of privately-owned white rhinos have increased steadily over the past years to over 700 animals on 69 freehold properties by the end of 2017, mainly through the imports from South Africa.
“Poaching has severe economic implications through adverse impacts on tourism, trophy hunting and the conservation of the species,” said Jagger.
She said short and long-term strategic measures in place to help combat wildlife crime involve matters of human capacity, surveillance patrols and detection, investigative and intelligence work, criminal investigations, legal frameworks and prosecutions.
It also involves community care and engagement, monitoring and database support, as well and proactive planning and adaptive management.
The company consists of six people at its head office in Windhoek and has been able to distinguish itself from its peers through its unique and specialised investment philosophy and investment offerings.
This is elegantly explained by HangalaPrescient CEO, Alfreda Wentworth, who said: “Our success lies in the strength of our clearly defined philosophy and investment process.
“Our investment philosophy is centred on capital preservation, robust risk management practices and consistently striving for real returns for retail and institutional investors.”
Leake Hangala, the executive chairman of the Hangala Group, explained that the group has secured a multinational technical partner with the best global standards and practices.
“These practices and standards, combined with our Namibian expertise, ensure that we can provide our retail and corporate clients with the best services and innovative products,” he said.
HangalaPrescient investment management manages three unit trust funds, the HangalaPrescient Money Market, Income Provider and Absolute Balanced Funds, and invites Namibian pension funds, medical schemes, companies and individuals to invest with it.
HangalaPrescient offers investors the Best of both worlds - a real Namibian footprint backed by global expertise, ensuring investment growth with a focus on risk management.
HangalaPrescient Infrastructure Manager (Pty) Ltd has successfully raised N$500 million for infrastructure financing in the sectors of energy, ICT, water, transport, health and education.
The company is excited to continue playing a pioneering role in the private equity sector, which will see private capital invested in the country's much-needed infrastructure development, expansion and maintenance.
HangalaPrescient has become part of the DNA of the country's financial services anatomy and will thus significantly contribute to the Namibian capital market development, job creation and economic growth.
Its objective is to ensure that HangalaPrescient brings appropriate financial solutions to all Namibians across the country.
In a statement released on Wednesday, Global Petroleum said it signed a petroleum agreement as operator in Block 2011A. State-owned Namcor has a stake of 10% in the block, while Aloe, a privately owned Namibian company, has the remaining 15%.
“It is clear that oil and gas industry interest in offshore Namibia has accelerated greatly in recent months and we are therefore extremely pleased to have succeeded in what has been a long-term aim for the company - acquiring Block 2011A adjacent to our existing acreage,” said Peter Hill, chief executive officer of Global Petroleum.
Global Petroleum already has an 85% participating interest in a petroleum license which covers offshore blocks 1910B and 2010A offshore Namibia. The company acquired these assets from Jupiter Petroleum (Namibia) in November 2011. Namcor has a 10% carried interest and a private company, Bronze Investments Namibia, has a 5% free carry.
The company said the combination of the two licences for blocks 2011A, 1910B and 2010A gives Global an aggregate of 11 608 square kilometres offshore northern Namibia and makes it one of the largest net acreage holders in the region.
“Block 2011A is situated in an area of offshore Namibia which is considered by Global and the industry to be highly prospective, as evidenced by recent farm-ins involving major national oil companies and international oil companies, and especially by the Cormorant well currently drilling close by,” Hill said.
Global Petroleum referred to drilling on Tullow’s Cormorant prospect in Block 2012B which recently commenced.
“The Cormorant well is approximately 40 kilometres from Block 2011A and the Tullow block is contiguous with the south-east corner of Block 2011A. Cormorant is ranked by Wood Mackenzie as one of the ‘15 most anticipated conventional wells in 2018’’.
“Aside from the wider prospectivity of its new acreage, the company [Global Petroleum] expects that the play to be tested by the Cormorant well extends into Block 2011A, and so positive results from Cormorant should provide Global with significant read across. Further south, Chariot’s Prospect S well is due to spud later in the year where a successful outcome should further enhance the oil and gas industry’s focus on offshore Namibia,” the company said.
Under the Block 2011A work programme, in the first two years of the initial exploration period, Global Petroleum will carry out various studies and will reprocess all existing seismic in the licence area, which includes a 3D seismic data survey shot in the western part. The studies and reprocessing will enable the reservoirs in the Welwitschia structure and elsewhere in the acreage to be mapped with more confidence, and the leads to be identified more accurately, the company said.
Global Petroleum said at the end of two years, it has the option either to shoot a new 2 000 square kilometre 3D seismic data survey in the eastern part of Block 2011A, or alternatively to relinquish the licence.
Current RCC board chairperson Obren Sibeya, who took over from Fritz Jacobs who had championed the Jiangsu Nantong Sanjian deal until the government unceremoniously pulled the plug in May, told Namibian Sun this week that they were working on a new rescue plan.
“The RCC is at an advanced stage of finalising its rescue plan, which will first be discussed by the full board, the shareholder and thereafter communicated to all other stakeholders,” Sibeya told Namibian Sun.
“At this stage I cannot divulge any concrete information as contained in the plan, until the full board has deliberated on the draft rescue plan and has accordingly informed the shareholder.”
Sibeya added that because the transport ministry was finalising a bill that would see the RCC being placed under judicial management, the treasury had already been instructed to pay employee salaries.
The RCC was also honouring its obligations to its creditors, with the assistance of the government, Sibeya said.
“The shareholder, together with RCC, has been working together in the process of settling the verified claims of the creditors of the RCC. It is through this process that the RCC managed to stop auctions of its properties.”
In October 2016, it was reported that the RCC faced liquidation if the government did not urgently inject capital.
At the time, the RCC's liabilities were reported as N$775 million, while its assets were valued at N$190 million.
The government, through the transport ministry, pulled the plug on the RCC/Jiangsu deal a few months ago, after stern opposition.
The beleaguered RCC had increasingly come under fire for arranging off-balance-sheet financing from Jiangsu to the tune of N$580 million.
Repayment would have taken place in the form of participation by the Chinese company in current and other identified future projects for “five years or earlier”.
The 47% stake that would have gone to the Chinese firm in these projects was worth an estimated N$2 billion.
Judicial management delayed
The so-called judicial management bill, which will seal the fate of the RCC, is not expected to be tabled during the current session of the National Assembly.
The National Assembly session resumed last Tuesday and a number of bills are expected to be tabled, including those on financial institutions and markets, transfer duties, public enterprises, deposit guarantees and obsolete laws.
The RCC bill does not appear on the list.
Transport ministry spokesperson Julius Ngweda said certain aspects of the bill were still being worked on.
“We are still busy working on it; that is why it is not on that list,” he said.
Transport minister John Mutorwa was advised by attorney-general Albert Kawana to change aspects of the bill in July, a previous media report indicated.
Under judicial management, the current RCC board would be stripped of its powers.
When he announced that the RCC would be placed under judicial management, public enterprises minister Leon Jooste said: “The RCC has many creditors who will, while the company is under judicial management, have to wait to see their claims against the company settled.
“The judicial manager will proactively seek ways to restructure the debt of the company and respond to the financial demands of the company.”
Jooste said the judicial manager would be empowered to make far-reaching decisions on the company's business transactions, covering all aspects of its operations, human resources and financial management.
“Namibia should not be conned into believing that mining off the Namibian coast will be any different,” David Russell said, while adding the documents to be commented on included “massive repetition of selected opinions of the mining company's appointed consultants and reviewers, which is tiresome to wade through”.
The environment ministry has announced that the closing date for submissions is 28 September.
This follows a ruling on 21 June by environment minister Pohamba Shifeta, which set aside the environmental clearance granted to Namibian Marine Phosphate (NMP) on September 2016.
The environmental clearance was issued by the environmental commissioner Theofillius Nghitila for the so-called Sandpiper Project that is located about 120 km southwest of Walvis Bay.
According to Russell, well-respected Namibian marine scientists have reviewed the documents made available by the ministry and NMP regarding the project and have expressed several points of concern.
He said the main concerns include the fact that the documents reveal a fragmented, non-collated and unconsolidated environmental impact assessment (EIA).
“There is massive repetition of selected opinions of the mining company's appointed consultants and reviewers which is tiresome to wade through. The different sections dealing with aspects of impact are not integrated, but divided into different volumes adding to the repetition, lack of collation and confusion.”
Russell said there is also a similar lack of coherence in terms of the planned activities related to the EIA versus what was actually carried out.
“It is thus impossible to find the actual scientific results observed amidst a lot of unnecessary information.”
For example, critical research done at sea and written up in NMP verification report had been rejected by Nghitila as it was not good enough, because it was simply information based on a desktop study.
This report was submitted after the original EIA.
“Yet the public and scientists are now expected to base their comments on these cumbersome documents, which will likely be used to make a final decision about whether or not to grant environmental clearance again,” said Russell.
He said the scientific methodology in the verification report is faulty in many of the presented studies and was also lacking, so that interpretation of the results obtained becomes invalid and meaningless for the assessment of impacts.
“Likewise much faulty logic was used in the interpretation of impacts. This was not identified by the reviewers appointed by the mining company, nor by the observers that took part in the at-sea verification study.”
Russell says the prediction of impacts in the marine environment is difficult, even with thorough and robust baseline science.
According to him, NMP tabulates the potential impacts to the Namibian coast to be low, therefore requiring no mitigation.
“Namibia could be in a dangerous long-term situation, if it considers allowing marine phosphate mining to begin now and escalate into the future.
“The public should be aware that no careful monitoring and/or regulation of the mining activity will take place, until a national regulatory authority with the knowledge, expertise, capability and authority to both monitor and regulate seabed mining at mining site(s) is established, but is as yet non-existent.
“Important economic activities that are reliant on a healthy ocean could be at risk,” Russell added.
The anomaly was uncovered when the office of the auditor-general recently presented the findings to the national assembly.
The ministry's records reflected 4 252 vehicles with a value of N$1.4 billion on 1 April. However, this did not match the closing period amount of 4 091 vehicles, valued at N$871 million.
“The difference of 161 vehicles with a value of N$590 million remains unexplained,” the office of the auditor-general said in its report of the ministry.
This is the second time that a ministry has not been able to account for vehicles, with the health ministry being unable to account for 100 vehicles earlier this year.
The audit also found that unauthorised capital projects totalling N$114 million were undertaken by the department. These projects included the formulation of nationwide transport planning (N$82 million), the construction of the Ngoma – Nakobolelwa gravel road (N$22 million), construction of the Endola – Eembo gravel road (N$2.3 million) and the rehabilitation of the Mariental – Keetmanshoop road (N$1.3 million).
The department could also not account for N$3.3 million paid out to 57 community members across the country to compensate for loss of land as a result of construction of roads.
“The authenticity of the amounts paid could not be verified as the payment vouchers were not provided for audit purposes,” the report said.
At the department of works, the office of the auditor-general could not account for proof of payment of a house that was owned by the ministry in Swakopmund. “Without the proof of payment and bank statements, the auditors could not ascertain whether the buyer paid the purchase price,” the report noted.
Over at the ministry of defence, N$138 million was unaccounted for. N$198 million was budgeted for the purchase of spare parts for the ministry's aircraft. The audit could however only verify a total amount of N$60 million from the expenditure vouchers presented for audit purposes. “This has resulted in an unexplained expense difference of N$138 million,” the report said.
The ministry of defence also finds itself having to pay for vehicle damage resulting from unauthorised use of these vehicles.
“The audit found a total of 21 motor vehicle accidents occurred which were due to unauthorised use resulting in an estimated damage cost of N$129 991. Furthermore the ministry is yet to repair 75 vehicles at an estimated cost of N$775 054 as a result of unauthorised use,” the report said.
Museta hails from the Zambezi Region, where she completed her secondary schooling.
She completed her tertiary education at Unam, where she obtained a BSc in geology and chemistry, the University of Cape Town, where she obtained a BSc honours in general geology and the University of Pretoria, where she obtained an MSc degree in applied geology.
After spending only a year as a geologist-in-training, Museta was appointed as a geo-data geologist at the Rosh Pinah mine, while the training normally takes three years.
She said at Debmarine every project she has worked on has added immeasurable value to the company, to such an extent that she have been rated among the best geologists in the firm.
“In high school I was never an enthusiast of the conventional careers geared towards women; I was more passionate about the science field, particularly natural sciences,” she says.
Museta, who is married and the mother of four boys, says the mining industry is male-dominated, so as a woman it is difficult to find your niche.
“Having to spend time way from my family has not been easy.”
She says one has to find a balance between your career and family life, to ensure that neither is compromised.
This has been very challenging for her.
Museta has adequate and versatile experience in the mineral resource management principles of various commodities, for example base metals, iron ore and marine diamonds.
She also has vast experience in the geo-statistical and financial evaluation of mineral resources, coupled with adequate insight into open-cast, underground and marine mining environments; and she is a perfectionist.
“I have a weekly to do-list which helps me in managing my daily tasks. However, as a project geologist my typical day varies based on what is required from the project that I am working on at that particular time. The activities vary from geological interpretation of sampling results, the validation of sampling data, resource estimation or resource-generation-related projects,” she says.
Museta likes gardening and landscaping.
“It is very therapeutic and relives stress after a long day at work. It is also a very good form of exercise; in essence it helps me stay in shape as well.”
She says that one should know what you want to become in life and have a clear vision of how to get there.
“To accomplish your goals you will have to work hard and know that you will encounter obstacles, but you can overcome them,” she says.
One of her plans is to expand her skills and knowledge in mineral resource management, so that she can continue to grow in her career within Debmarine Namibia and add more value, where required.
She also wants to transfer skills to young geologists who join the company.
Among other things, the articles described the poor soils and low potential for crop and other agriculture over much of the country; how most Namibians are moving from rural areas to urban lifestyles in search of cash security, not food security; how most livestock do not produce revenue, but are used as savings and capital; and the multiple values of property ownership denied to about two-thirds of all Namibian families. These are all big issues that affect much of our land. And they are important to most Namibian lives.
The essays have also sought to raise questions that require objective answers if all citizens are to have opportunities of a decent living. We need to be honest about why the majority of Namibians can’t own land where they now live, how so many First Nation Namibians (a.k.a. San or Bushmen) were dispossessed of their land rights since 1990; why most rural families in communal areas earn little or no income from their farming activities, or why we reward traditional authorities with exclusive, often tradable rights over communal land.
The essays have discussed important considerations surrounding land reform, but have said little about land reform itself … who counts and who doesn’t in the debate, what land matters and what doesn’t, who is accountable and who not, and who may win and who could lose.
Land reform is selective
Most discussions and arguments about land reform are narrow, focused largely on the so-called politics of land. This is an opaque, polite way of saying that land is about power and wealth. More specifically, land reform is largely about transferring farms from several thousand previously advantaged people to several thousand mostly presently advantaged people. That’s the main goal, and it affects less than 3% of all Namibian families.
The remaining 97% of households derive virtually no benefit from land reform. By contrast, the direct and indirect economic costs of land reform may bring them some hardship. Sadly, many recipients of resettlement farms are not farmers, and most farms are too small to function as economically productive farming units.
Two arguments justify the repossession of freehold land: to restore ancestral land rights and to achieve equality. It is important to note that it is the ancestral land rights of only some groups that matter. Those of marginalised San and other groups are unimportant. Their land rights were either lost in the distant past, or their recent losses after 1990 are deemed legitimate because they were approved by traditional authorities. No one seems to care! Some land rights are worth repossessing, others are not.
And two arguments are offered to stir up populist demand for land. One is the idea that every family can make a living from farming, despite the fact that most land can only be farmed profitably if the farms are big, the farmers are serious, and the farming methods used are appropriate. (This is even true for mahangu, where several hundred hectares are needed per farm if it is to be profitable and provide a decent income).
The second argument is that every family needs a piece of rural land, which it can call home. That ideal is harder to counter, but how much productive land would be left if the whole county was carved into plots? As impractical as both ideas are, politicians exploit them to raise disingenuous expectations.
An advantage of so much focus on freehold farms is that other pressing issues can be swept aside, excluded from the public eye and debate. Then, there is no need to be bothered by other land rights, land values and uses, recent expropriations, household poverty, or the massive growth of squatter settlements where hundreds of thousands of Namibians have no land or security, and few – if any – services. Politicians and populists can happily waddle forth, oblivious of the pain that affects the great majority of Namibians.
Land reform is not about equality
It is widely claimed that land reform is about equalising land ownership. We are told too that the liberation war was about land, and thus we expect much to have been done to increase equality since independence. True, black ownership of large freehold farms has increased proportionally, and so equality among the relatively few freehold farm owners has increased. But the exact opposite is true for class divisions among the great majority of Namibians.
First, land occupation in communal areas is now far more skewed than before. Vast areas previously open as safety nets for poorer local residents have been appropriated for the exclusive use of tens of thousands of cattle belonging to wealthy urban owners. Many other open areas have been expropriated into hundreds of individually fenced off farms that enclose commonage grazing and waterholes. For example, perhaps a quarter or more of communal Otjozondjupa, Oshikoto, and Omaheke are effectively owned by a several hundred families in each region. Worse still, over half of Kavango East and Kavango West is owned by about 400 hundred families, while close to 31 000 families in rural areas of these two regions are barred from even having customary land rights! What clearer signs do we need to show that the Namibian commons have failed – enslaved to a few.
Second and at the same time, property and housing in urban areas has become extremely unequal. In 1991, 88% of all urban homes were formal, brick houses while only 12% were shacks. That proportion of informal shacks rose to 32% in 2011, and now stands at about 41%. At current rates of increase, there will be more shacks than formal houses in urban areas by 2025.
Namibia’s policies on land and land reform hardly play to the needs of the majority. Indeed, much is to their detriment: no commercial or investment rights in communal land; almost no access to affordable urban land; and communal land a free for all and the rich! Looking forwards, will Namibia continue along an emotive, political path, or one endowed with practical considerations and ethical fortitude?
What for the future?
Let us imagine a land conference in Namibia where the deliberations are guided by human rights activists, compassionate leaders, and specialist scientists who understand agronomy, underground water, household economies, societies, climate, poverty, urbanisation, agricultural economics and pasture science. In attendance would be politicians who apply their minds to facts before making decisions that improve the livelihoods of the people they represent.
I suspect that delegates to this conference would make these sorts of decisions about land reform in Namibia:
· All Namibians and all land rights would be treated equally before the law. The continued dispossession of San and other poor people would be stopped immediately.
· All citizens may buy, sell and rent land anywhere in Namibia, and free from any barrier based on tribal, class or ethnic considerations.
· Those living on and using the land would enjoy full ownership rights, giving them incentives to develop and manage their properties in accordance with their wishes and the possibilities offered by their land.
· Property sizes in both rural and urban areas would be determined according to what is economically viable and productive according to the reasonable needs of their owners and the nation. The allocation of small farms which perpetuate poverty and dependency will be discontinued.
· Recognising the low productive potential of most Namibian land for agriculture and other rural economic activities, urban migration and economic growth and development in urban areas would be encouraged. A related goal is for greater numbers of Namibians to have access to improved services in urban centres.
· For those in need, plots of urban land would be provided for free as a matter of urgency. The plots would be fully owned by the recipients.
· All Namibian land is to be administered by accountable officials elected or appointed for their expertise in managing land in the public interest using the most reliable and modern methods to document land rights. Divisions between communal, customary land and modern land rights and management would be abolished, just as the Namibian state abolished apartheid in 1990.
· Measures would be pursued to convert dormant capital (in the form of livestock and land) into productive revenue - which would contribute to the economy and to the owners of the livestock and land.
· The economic value of all Namibian land would be developed sustainably for the benefit of the families who reside there and own the land, and also for all citizens to benefit from the use of public taxes derived from land production.
· All policies, programmes and legal provisions regarding land would be guided by the overall desire for Namibia to provide all its citizens with a decent living while using land sustainably. Barriers to that goal must be removed with immediate effect.
· Any policy guided by assumptions that rural and/or lower-class citizens have lesser needs for property, prosperity and prospects for the future would be declared null and void.
Their final statement might read: We, the delegates to this historic land conference, declare our wish for further provisions in the years to come that will continue to make Namibia better, and Namibians happier.
Leena Ndahafa Kagola is the learning and development practitioner responsible for marine training at Namport.
Her role includes analysing learning and development needs, followed by the planning, implementation and monitoring of learning and development interventions for the realisation of the company’s organisational strategy.
She is also seconded to the new container terminal project team as the human resources project coordinator and is responsible for manpower planning.
“This function enables the placement of the right talent at the right place and time for optimum performances,” she said.
Kagola started working for Namport in November 2008 as an HR assistant and progressed up the ranks to the current role she occupies.
She recently obtained a master of science degree in maritime affairs, specialising in maritime education and training, from the World Maritime University in Malmo, Sweden.
In addition she holds a master of business administration degree from Regent Business School.
Through the International University of Management she completed her honours degree in human resource development and management. She also completed an international diploma in logistics and transport management at the Namibian-German Center of Logistics (NGCL).
Kagola has undergone a supervisory development programme with Unam and obtained a certificate in public management and governance through the Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI).She further obtained professional training in port management with the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNTACD).
Kagola told Careers she believes that each achievement is significant, but says her most outstanding achievements during her career path so far was obtaining two masters degrees at a relatively young age.
She also mentioned her secondment to Namport’s biggest project - the port expansion.
Kagola said the biggest challenge she faces at her workplace is representing different stakeholders with a variety of stakes or interests in the project, which requires sound interpersonal skills coupled with a comprehensive understanding of organisational culture and port operations.
“I always perceive problems as opportunities for growth,” she said.
Besides being in the office, she enjoys reading and mentoring young people.
“It is my passion and it’s something I want to expand going forward, so that I make continuous positive impacts among our youth.”
In line with youth empowerment she has established the Monday professional network at Namport called ‘Lunch and Learn’.
For many years job creation in this country has been woefully off target and more and more Namibians are losing jobs at a larger scale than never before. Companies have been forced to unexpectedly shed jobs because of a poor performing economy and in the midst of the country slipping into a technical recession. Although government has ensured that there is money directly available to programmes that help the vulnerable, such as old-age pension payouts as well as other social grants, there are significant economic challenges prevailing at the moment. We are yet to see a comprehensive stimulus package aimed at reviving our economy. The actionable plans emphasising how the economy should be industrialised, including broad-based economic empowerment, are not yielding the necessary results. It is true that government has an important role to play in the economic activity of any nation, including by helping the private sector to create the bulk of jobs.
This must be accompanied by facilitative policies and an enabling environment. Therefore it is essential that the welfare of citizens is not compromised by the poor prioritisation and allocation of resources that tend to benefit only the elite. What this country needs is a national mass job creation project. And pumping money into the economy must be done in a responsible manner to avoid unnecessary wastage. Job creation projects must be in the best interest of all Namibians, and not just a selected few instant millionaire tenderpreneurs and foreign companies, who end up dominating these contracts.
This includes foreign firms bringing their own labour and equipment, at the expense of deserving locals. The approach to job creation must change for the better, if we are really serious about pushing for more reforms to improve our economy, which is not yet characterised by equitable benefit sharing in the midst of high levels of inequality.