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Tells it All - Namibian Sun

older | 1 | .... | 898 | 899 | (Page 900) | 901 | 902 | .... | 1146 | newer

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    Let's be happy for each other's progressLet's be happy for each other's progress Everyone needs back-up, especially if they really want to reach their dreams. Even though dreams are persuasive, they can also be frail, because they come from a keenness within your heart.

    As a friend you have the influence to help someone to build that passion and help them get from one point to the next. I saw this at a recent party of Gazza's latest album and at Samuele's album re-launch too. The number of friends that came out was overwhelming. It was even more exciting to see fellow artists who have become friends go out in numbers to provide moral support for their friends.

    Nowadays it is difficult to get legitimate friends who really want to see you succeed and we should also be mindful of whom we share our dreams with. Many times people do not support their fellow artists for fear of their creativity being stolen or used. Each person has his or her glory days and we should not hold back on support needed by our friends and fellows just because we do not want to see them doing better than us. We should also be okay with the fact that someday the next person will release work that is better than yours and that is fine too. We should also make peace with the fact that someone out there will always be better and we teach ourselves to be content with our own progress in life while offering support to our friends when they call for our help.



    june@namibiansun.com

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  • 11/22/18--14:00: Women in film
  • Women in filmWomen in film Local filmmaker and director Oshosheni Hiveluah is leading the female pack in the industry.

    From Black Panther star Danai Gurira in Hollywood to award-winning director Sarah Bletcher right here on African soil, southern Africa has produced some of the most talented women filmmakers. Whether on TV or film, behind or in front of the camera, these women - of all ages and backgrounds - have pioneered and made innovations in the industry, simultaneously flying the southern African flag high. With these achievements, there is still a lot of work still to be done to ensure an inclusive and equal on-screen community, especially for women in southern Africa.

    Through dialogue and efforts such as the newly opened MultiChoice Talent Factory - a film and TV academy with hubs in east, west and southern Africa - which has selected 20 students (ten women) in the region to develop their skills, strides are being made to equip and empower young female TV and film creators of southern Africa and create a sustainable and gender-balanced industry. From the land of the brave, is Oshosheni Hiveluah, a Namibian writer and director. She is indeed one of the many southern African women changing the TV and film scene and inspiring a generation of future female filmmakers.

    Hiveluah's groundbreaking film Tjitji the Himba Girl was this year named as one of five films directed by African women that confront gender stereotypes. Among Sara Bletcher's award-winning Ayanda and Between Rings by Jessie Chisi (who is on this list), Tjitji the Himba Girl is about a rural Himba girl torn between her parent's cultural values and her dreams of becoming a talk show host, which goes against her tradition.

    With four short movies under her name and currently working on her debut feature film, the filmmaker says about the industry: “For the longest time filmmaking has been something that a lot of men have been doing but in recent years women have been coming out.” Part of the group celebrating Women's Month last year titled I Come From Womxn, Oshosheni says, “I find that it's important for me to be able tell stories that are about African women. What is our place in society? Where do we want to go? How do we view ourselves? Being given this voice, I want to portray women the way I know them. So, it's important that I am able to create real characters.”

    Other females topping the list include Yolisa Phahle from South Africa, Jessie Chisi - director and producer from Zambia, Joyce Mhango Chavula, a director from Malawi, Zimbabwean Danai Gurira and director Tumi Sejoe from Botswana.

    Staff Reporter

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  • 11/22/18--14:00: The reintroduction
  • The reintroductionThe reintroductionSamuele relives his Qonja days Samuele takes fans back to the Qonja days at the re-launch of hit album Mdakadaka. Last weekend, the Garden Inn was a whole movie as musician Samuele took his fans on a trip down memory lane. The singer performed his hit tracks reminding us once again why he is one of the greatest Namibia has.

    A few years back, everyone knew singer Qonja Ngodji thanks to his hit song, 'Koek n Jam'. Now Qonja is no longer, and Samuel and his alter ego, Gotwealth, have taken over. According to the artist, he is now grown hence the preference and choice of new name Samuele.

    “Qonja was a boy. He did and handled things like a boy. Samuele Ngodji is a man, handles things with a different eye and with understanding” he said.

    Samuele has since converted to Christianity and has been releasing gospel music. He changed his stage name to Samuele M'yamba and then to Samuele and he also changed the name of his record label Lowkey Records to Highkey Records. Asked if the Koek and Jam lyricist has any regrets from his new name and path, Samuele said it's all about the approach one takes in life.

    “It all depends, how you look at a thing, how you reason in general. One will see the loss of limelight, and another will see an opportunity. If you interact with yourself, you'll see your strengths and weaknesses, what type of people you should one keep around you and what type of information one should absorb, in order to take your career to the next level and impact the lives of people,” he said.

    The musician told tjil that he re-launched the Mdakadaka album that was initially brought out in 2008 because according to him, looking back is how one builds their legacy. Samuele had his young and old fans dancing and singing lyric to lyric to his old tunes as if they were fresh from the studio. His fellow artists Exit, Sunny Boy and Tulisan were in attendance.

    The singer will be dropping his Kool and Pool album soon and he says his fans should expect nothing but success.

    “Kool n Pool… the music will talk to individuals who are going to buy it and this is why it will sell for N$1 000. Mdakadaka is selling for N$250,” he concluded.

    JUNE SHIMUOSHILI

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  • 11/22/18--14:00: Oteya wraps up 2018
  • Oteya wraps up 2018Oteya wraps up 2018Queen Oteya on family, business and the industry The year 2018 is slowly coming to an end as there is less than a month before Christmas. In her words, here is Oteya's take on it. Oteya has been breaking boundaries and doing things out of the norm which gives hope to the industry and for music lovers getting used to live performances at concerts. The musician started off her year on a high note and then she went quiet, working in silence. The award-winner and one of the most consistent artists in the industry, Oteya, caught up with tjil to talk about the year from her perspective.



    Tjil (t): When will you release an album, are you working on one and if so, what would it be like, who does it feature?

    Oteya (O): I am most definitely going to release my album, but only in 2019. I have chosen next year as I will like to release my album at the same time I am celebrating 20 years in the music industry. My album will be a double album and that's all I am going say about it. Some songs will shock people so parental advisory is advised. Ha ha.



    t: You have been off the scene for a while now, working in silence, why did you opt to do that and what have you achieved?

    O: I have always been a mysterious artist. I actually have not been quiet; I started this year with a residency at Chopsi's for three months called Oteya and Friends and I have released a few songs. I am working on my third album. I wanted to take my time on each song to make sure that it sounds exactly the way I want it to sound and when people buy my album, each track will speak to them. I treasure my art and will only share it with the world when I am truly ready for them to hear it.



    t: As an entertainer, what is the importance of one taking time off to unwind and how does it help with creativity?

    O: It's very important to take time off to unwind. We are creatives and need inspiration. It's crucial to take time out to get away from everything and relax and that is when our creative juices start to flow again. I love movies and spending time with my loved ones, and that helps not only to keep me grounded, but also to feel inspired.



    t: You have now been nominated in the category Stylist Female Artist Africa in the annual Abryanz Style and Fashion Awards. How do you maintain your fashion style, what inspires it and what does this award mean for your brand?

    O: I am so honoured to be nominated. It means so much to me because I believe image is everything. I invest a lot in my image and it's so good to see that it has paid off. I am fortunate to have my sister Eunice Gonzo, my makeup artist Miss Jey, my stylist Leah Misika and my designer Melisa Poulton, on my team.



    t: How was the experience of walking the runway for Melisa Poulton during the Windhoek Fashion Week?

    O: I was so thrilled when she asked me to model her clothes during the WFW. Her line is out of this world; so fun, flirty and fierce! I was nervous as I have never done anything like that before. The girls backstage where amazing and made me feel so comfortable.



    t: What is the importance of entertainers helping each other out despite the different industries?

    O: I feel it's important for all of us to work together. Those of us who are established must try and push those who are coming up by collaborating with them. They are the future who will take over us once we retire. When I look at the Nigerian Industry, they have taken over Africa because they united as an industry. It's no lie when people say 'united we stand, divided we fall'. There is so much talent in Namibia the only problem is people want to eat alone and that does not benefit the industry at all.



    t: You have reached out to international markets and have banging hits with artists from around Africa. A lot of people believe that Namibian talent is hard to export as we don't have this culture. Is this true and how has it worked in your favour?

    O: I have worked with international artists like Macky2, Zambia's Mestre Dangi, Angola's, Dj Shiru and Cindy Sanyu and Kaycee from Uganda. When you make good music, it doesn't matter which country it is from. Namibian music can be exported, we just need MultiChoice to force a contract with Trace Africa so there's a Namibian channel like Naija10 for Nigeria which plays only Namibian videos so that people from other countries can get a taste of what Namibian music sounds like.



    t: There were social media rumours of domestic violence in your relationship which you have denied. How did you and husband cope with this?

    O: There was a photo that was leaked on social media which was a photo of myself taken behind the scenes for my music video I am Gone. I wrote the song to tackle domestic violence. This issue has and is escalating in our society and I felt I needed to write a song which inspires and encourages women to leave these relationships.

    I do not condone domestic violence at all. As a society we need to stand together and say no to domestic violence. How long will we look on as our women are brutally murdered? I felt I had to do my part as an artist to offer a voice to the voiceless.



    t: How would you describe 2018 as an artist, mother and wife?

    O: 2018 to me was a rollercoaster; it had its ups and downs. I learnt to stand up for what I believe not to be right in terms of artists' treatment. Money is not everything. If you don't stand for something, you fall for everything. As a mother and wife, I do the best I can. I try to balance all those roles including being an artist. It's not easy but I try not to be too hard on myself.



    t: What are your festive season plans and how do you spend that time?

    O: Eish! If I am not performing then I will love to spend as much time with my family as I can. This is the first year we are celebrating Christmas without our dad so it's emotional. Losing him was not easy and still isn't, I miss him every day. Christmas is all about family and I am so blessed to have my family.





    PHOTOS: Otsenane_Studios

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    Tesla cuts China car prices Tesla cuts China car prices To absorb hit from trade war tariffs Tesla Inc is cutting the price of its Model X and Model S cars in China. We are absorbing a significant part of the tariff to help make our cars more affordable for customers in China- Tesla This was announced by the US firm said on Thursday, in a shift in strategy that will see it take more of a hit from tariffs linked to a biting trade war between China and the United States.

    The electric carmaker, led by billionaire CEO Elon Musk, said it will cut prices of the two models by 12-26% to make the cars more “affordable” in the world’s top auto market, where sales of so-called new-energy vehicles are rising fast.

    The move comes amid severe trade tensions between China and the United States, which has seen extra tariffs slapped on US imports into the country, including automobiles, hurting Tesla which imports all the cars it currently sells in the market.

    “We are absorbing a significant part of the tariff to help make our cars more affordable for customers in China,” Tesla said in a statement sent to Reuters.

    The move marks a shift from July when Tesla was one of the first US carmakers to raise prices in the market in response to tariffs. The firm hiked prices then on its Model X and S cars by about 20%.

    Tesla warned last month it was facing major problems with selling cars in China due to new tariffs that would force it to accelerate investment in its first overseas Gigafactory in Shanghai.

    The carmaker last month secured the site for the facility, which will help it avoid steep import tariffs.

    Prosecutors eye case against Nissan: Asahi

    The firm, which recently launched pre-sales of its new Model 3 car in China, added in its statement that the car’s pricetag would start from 540 000 yuan (US$77 928.83) for a dual motor all-wheel drive version, and 595 000 yuan for a performance version.

    Before the price hike in July, Tesla had lowered prices on its models in China in May, after Beijing had said it would cut import tariffs for all auto imports.

    -Nampa/Reuters

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  • 11/22/18--14:00: Company news in brief
  • Company news in briefCompany news in brief Steinhoff's US unit Mattress Firm exits bankruptcy

    Steinhoff International said on Thursday its Mattress Firm Inc unit, the largest US mattress retailer, emerged out of bankruptcy with access to US$525 million in exit financing, within two months of filing for Chapter 11 protection.

    Mattress Firm also closed about 660 underperforming stores, said Steinhoff, which has been working on a deal to restructure the debt of some units after revealing multi-billion-euro holes in its balance sheet.

    The store closures still leave the Houston-based company with about 2 600 stores across the United States.

    “Today’s announcement is a further positive step in the wider Steinhoff restructuring process, which continues to make good progress,” Steinhoff acting CEO Danie van der Merwe said.

    Mattress Firm, founded in 1986, had filed for voluntary bankruptcy protection in early October, gaining some breathing room to restructure and shore up its finances.

    The retail industry has seen a series of bankruptcies, including Toys “R” Us, over the last couple of years on mounting pressure from e-commerce companies like Amazon.com Inc.

    -Nampa/Reuters

    Stanbic sees June 2019 close for US$2.5 bln debt deal for Uganda's oil pipeline

    Stanbic Bank Uganda, lead arranger for the East African nation’s US$2.5 billion debt for a crude oil pipeline, expects the deal to conclude in June next year, its chief executive said on Wednesday.

    Uganda and Tanzania signed an agreement in May last year to jointly develop a pipeline that has been described as the longest electrically heated crude oil pipeline in the world.

    Stanbic Uganda, a unit of South Africa’s Standard Bank Group, secured the role of joint arranger and adviser together with Japan’s Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corp.

    The pipeline will cost a total of US$3.5 billion, with the balance coming from shareholders in equity.

    Patrick Mweheire, Stanbic’s CEO, said it had engaged in talks with other lenders in Europe, Japan and China and that “they have all been extremely positive”.

    “People like the project ... the economics of the pipeline make a lot of sense. I think we are looking at some time in June next year for financial close,” he said in an interview.

    Covering a distance of 1 445 km, the 24-inch diameter pipeline will start near the oilfields in western Uganda and terminate at Tanzania’s Indian Ocean seaport of Tanga.

    Landlocked Uganda discovered crude oil reserves estimated at 6.5 billion barrels more than a decade ago.

    -Nampa/Reuters

    Mr Price promotes corporate finance director to CFO

    South African retailer Mr Price Group Ltd has appointed corporate finance director Mark Stirton as group chief financial officer effective Jan.1, it said on Wednesday.

    Stirton’s appointment follows an announcement in October that current CFO Mark Blair will succeed Stuart Bird as chief executive.

    Stirton, 39-year old, has been with the retailer since June 2014 and in his current position as group corporate finance director since April 2017.

    -Nampa/Reuters

    Momentum reviewing 3 years of rejected claims

    Momentum has reviewed claims on life policies dating back to 2016 so far, which it rejected under circumstances similar to the death of slain policy holder Nathan Ganas.

    The financial services and insurance group on Tuesday backtracked on its earlier decision not to pay a R2.4 million life insurance claim to the Ganas family, due to Ganas's failure to disclose that he suffered from elevated blood sugar levels.

    The company initially cited non-disclosure of his health condition as grounds for rejecting the death benefit, although it was not the cause of his death. According to Momentum, they became aware of his condition when they requested his health records after receiving the claim - a standard industry procedure, according to the company.

    -Fin24

    Dolce & Gabbana China blunder rages on as sites pull brand

    Thousands of Dolce & Gabbana goods have been pulled from China’s biggest shopping websites and calls for a boycott of the brand are gaining traction as the uproar over the Italian fashion house’s Chinese advertising campaign grows.

    The high-fashion brand faces a growing storm in China after a video campaign it made was criticized as racist and insensitive, and incendiary messages purportedly from co-founder Stefano Gabbana’s Instagram account went viral.

    Cross-border e-commerce site Yangmatou said late Wednesday night that it had taken 58 000 D&G products off its site, saying that “the motherland is more important than anything else.” NetEase said all D&G items have been removed from its Kaola shopping platforms.

    On Internet giant the Alibaba Group’s Tmall shopping portal, a search for D&G in both English and Chinese returned no results, while a check of JD.com’s site also produced no D&G items.

    Alibaba and JD.com did not immediately respond to requests for comment. Dolce & Gabbana didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment on the pulled items.

    Dolce & Gabbana’s trouble comes at a time when global luxury brands are increasingly dependent on China to drive growth. The country’s consumers spent more than US$100 billion on high-end purchases last year - almost a third of the global total. Fears that Chinese demand for premium goods was slowing in the face of waning consumer confidence and the ongoing US-China trade war sent jitters across global luxury stocks last month, wiping out some US$160 billion in market value.

    -Fin24

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    City warns of Black Friday stampedesCity warns of Black Friday stampedes The City of Windhoek has warned retailers and consumers to take safety precautions for today's Black Friday shopping frenzy.

    The City says crowd injuries can occur during special sales and promotional events such as Black Friday sales.

    “Shop owners are responsible for providing their workers and customers a safe and healthy environment. Retailers are further advised to adopt effective safety and health management systems to identify and eliminate work-related hazards, including those caused by large crowds at sales events,” said the City.

    It said proactive measures must be employed to avoid injuries during Black Friday sales or other events where large crowds may gather.

    According to the City retailers planning a large shopping event should plan ahead and where large crowds are expected, hire additional staff as needed and have trained security or crowd management personnel or police officers on site.

    Furthermore retailers should create a detailed staffing plan that designates a location for each worker.

    Based on the size of the crowd expected, they should determine the number of workers needed in various locations to ensure the safety of the event and ensure that workers are properly trained to manage the event.

    The municipality's emergency services department and the police must also be contacted to determine whether the event site meets all public safety requirements, the City said.

    Legible and visible signs that describe entrance and exit locations, store opening times, and other important information such as the location of major sale items and restrooms should be provided.

    Also, retailers must prepare an emergency plan that addresses potential dangers facing workers, including overcrowding, crowd crushing, violent acts and fire.

    With regard to pre-event setup, the City said that retailers should set up barricades or rope lines for crowd management well in advance of customers arriving at the shop.

    “Make sure that barricades are set up so that the customers' line does not start right at the entrance to the store. This will allow for orderly crowd management entry and make it possible to divide crowds into small groups for the purpose of controlling entrance.”

    It also said that retailers should ensure that barricade lines have an adequate number of breaks and turns at regular intervals to reduce the risk of customers pushing from the rear and possibly crushing others, including workers.

    According to the City workers should be designated to explain approach and entrance procedures to the arriving public and direct them to lines or entrances.

    “Make sure that outside personnel have radios or some other way to communicate with personnel inside the store and emergency responders.”

    The City advised retailers to place sale items in different parts of the shop to prevent overcrowding in one place and to place shopping carts and other potential obstacles inside the store and away from the entrance, not in the parking lot.

    During the event retailers should provide a separate entrance for staff and make sure that all employees and crowd control personnel are aware that the doors are about to open.

    “When the store reaches maximum occupancy, do not allow additional customers to enter until the occupancy level drops.”

    It adds that a safe entrance should be provided for people with disabilities.

    In emergency situations exit doors must not be restricted, blocked or locked.

    Retailers must know in advance who to call for emergency medical response, and first-aid kits should be kept on hand.

    “Instruct employees, in the event of an emergency, to follow instructions from authorised emergency first responders.”

    In case of emergency, contact the City's 24-hour control room at 061-21 1111.



    ELLANIE SMIT

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  • 11/22/18--14:00: Food bank goes digital
  • Food bank goes digitalFood bank goes digitalSystem for beneficiaries eased All food bank beneficiaries will now be registered with a special software system. The ministry of poverty eradication has launched a software operating system that will be used to register all food bank beneficiaries digitally.

    Currently the Scope system is operational in 54 countries that are part of the World Food Programme (WFP).

    Speaking at the launch event at the Katutura Youth Complex in Windhoek this week, poverty eradication minister Zephania Kameeta repeated the call by President Hage Geingob that no Namibian should go to bed hungry or die from hunger, which was the cornerstone of the launch of the food bank programme on 30 June in 2016.

    Kameeta said currently the Khomas food bank has beneficiaries in the Tobias Hainyeko, Moses Garoëb, Samora Machel, John Pandeni, Katutura East, Katutura Central and Khomasdal constituencies.

    He added the programme is currently benefiting about 17 000 beneficiaries in the Khomas, //Karas, Hardap, Kavango East and Kavango West regions.

    However, the ministry also plans to cover the Ohangwena, Kunene and Zambezi regions during the current financial year.

    According to Kameeta, since the initiation of the programme things have been run through a paper-based manual system, in terms of beneficiary registration and food distribution.

    This has brought many inconveniences when it comes to registration, distribution, stock control, reporting and accountability processes.

    Kameeta said the ministry, in association with the WFP in Namibia, explored the best possible mechanism to improve the food bank implementation process; and as a result, this led to the signing of a partnership agreement between the Namibian government and the WFP in 2017 in order to introduce the Scope digital management system.

    “The Scope system pilot phase started at the Katutura East constituency and the beneficiaries redeemed their first food benefits using the system last month,” he said.

    He added that the Scope system has been rolled out to the Moses Garoëb and John Pandeni constituencies, and the rollout will now continue.

    Windhoek mayor Muesee Kazapua said the majority of the city's population are living in poverty in informal settlements.

    WFP regional director Lola Castro said they have worked side by side with the Namibian government, so the country could meet its food and nutritional needs.

    The WFP also works with government to promote the adoption of technology, as a means of enhancing efficiency for the delivery of the food bank programme.

    Castro added the implementation of the programme was born from the Harambee Prosperity Plan (HPP), as a step to ensure that Namibia achieves zero hunger, which is linked to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 2.

    “For this to happen Namibia will need to implement innovative initiatives, policies, strategies and programmes. We are hopeful that the Scope will help in addressing some of those gaps and contribute to laying the foundation,” she said.

    She added there are six million people globally who are registered on the Scope platform and deploying Scope in Namibia may become a blueprint for national social protection programmes worldwide.

    Rosalia Mwashekele-Sibiya, who is the special advisor to Khomas governor Laura McLeod-Katjirua, said the qualifying criteria for the programme were revised.

    “However, we would like to see its implementation and effectiveness to make sure people who do not deserve to receive food are removed for the food bank to serve its purpose,” Mwashekele-Sibiya said in a speech read on the governor's behalf.

    “I hope the introduction of the Scope will serve as a screening tool to ensure that all non-deserving beneficiaries are removed and I am referring to the people with a permanent income from employment,” she said.

    She added that volunteerism is a way of gaining work experience and opening doors to opportunities; hence, she urged the street committee to not only look at the current benefits, but the future benefits as well.

    She further implored recipients to use the food to feed their families and not exchange it for non-essentials items such as alcohol.

    Maria Meyer, a beneficiary of the programme, expressed her gratitude for the help she has received.

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    Expert witness faces gruelling cross-examinationExpert witness faces gruelling cross-examination No end is in sight yet in the sensational Jandré Dippenaar murder trial.

    Since the continuation of the trial this week only one witness has testified, who has spent more than 13 hours in a gruelling cross-examination which is set to continue today.

    Yesterday Dippenaar’s lawyer, advocate Louis Botes, claimed to have uncovered several discrepancies in the accident report compiled by two South African experts.

    The report was compiled by accident reconstruction expert Johan Joubert and Martin Graham, who is a qualified diesel mechanic. Graham examined the mechanical aspects of both vehicles involved in the accident.

    “What was the angle of the collision? What was the principal direction of force? Do you know Newton’s laws?” Botes asked the witness. Graham repeatedly answered that he was not an accident reconstruction expert and that these questions should be directed at Joubert.

    “Please ask Mr Joubert, who also sits here in court,” Graham said several times.

    Joubert had testified previously and was also subjected to a gruelling cross-examination lasting several days.

    “You (Graham) and Mr Joubert claim to offer a course at the Stellenbosch University, but you cannot answer these questions. What do you actually teach then?” Botes asked.

    Graham repeatedly replied that he was merely responsible for the mechanical inspection and only teaches this aspect, while Joubert is responsible for measurements, calculations and accident reconstruction.

    “Then how can you claim to know the cause of the accident?” Botes asked, to which Graham replied: “I have several years of experience and considering the damage profile of both vehicles it paints a picture. Speed was a factor,” he said.

    Botes accused Graham of not investigating the accident “objectively or independently”, not making any accurate measurements and even of manipulating evidence.

    Botes referred to a scuff mark several metres long strip that Graham and Joubert had noticed on the road shoulder, a few metres before the accident scene.

    Botes charged that this scuff mark never existed.

    “That’s not true. This mark was clearly visible and leads directly to the scene of the accident,” said Graham.

    In addition, Botes accused Graham that he neither compiled “proper records nor took proper photos”.

    Botes said “important photos” were not taken, while Graham instead photographed unimportant things, such as a rainbow. “I take a lot of pictures of everything; if I see a beautiful woman I can even take a photo,” Graham replied.

    Dippenaar, who has pleaded innocent to all charges, is facing six counts of murder. He is said to have caused a devastating accident between Henties Bay and Swakopmund on 29 December 2014, in which three German tourists and three Namibians were killed.

    ERWIN LEUSCHNER

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    NPI clinic officially opened NPI clinic officially opened Justicia Shipena



    Namib Poultry Industries (NPI) on Monday officially opened its clinic at its farm, situated about 30km outside Windhoek.

    The purpose of the onsite clinic is to offer medical services to NPI employees, including occupational health therapy, primary healthcare and wellness in the workplace.

    NPI produces on average 1 850 tons of poultry products per month, enabling the company to significantly contribute to local value addition, in line with Vision 2030, as well contribute to domestic food security.

    It remains committed to Namibia and its budding poultry project has created in excess of 650 fulltime employment opportunities for Namibians.

    Ultimately an estimated 2 000 people, through the household approach, are benefiting indirectly from employment at NPI.

    Speaking at the official opening of the clinic, health permanent secretary Ben Nangombe said in 1978 the World Health Organisation (WHO), through the Alma Ata Declaration, recognised primary healthcare (PHC) as a key strategy.

    “This year the PHC approach was once again hailed as the key to achieving universal health coverage,” he said.

    Nangombe added that PHC is recognised as an integral part of health promotion and social development, which contributes to quality of life and is also seen as a cost-effective approach to delivering health services in an integrated manner.

    “All the chapters of Vision 2030, the NDPs, the Poverty Reduction Strategy and the HIV/Aids Medium Plan are based on the PHC approach, which was used to guide the restructuring of the health sector,” he said.

    Nangombe urged NPI to stay committed and adhere to the business ethics that foster respect, honesty, corporate social responsibility, passion and innovation.

    “I urge the company to create a virtuous cycle of healthy employees and increased productivity and profitability for economic growth and prosperity for our country,” he said.

    Ian Collard, CEO of the NMI Group of Companies, said with the facility, they aim to provide quality health and social welfare services that are receptive to the needs of our employees.

    “We firmly believe that occupational disease and illness can be prevented, provided that risks are properly identified, managed and controlled,” he said.

    He added the clinic would serve as an occupational health, hygiene and wellness centre, which will be aimed at preventing illness and promoting good health and wellbeing.

    Collard also said sustainability is a priority throughout their group and they are committed to ecological business practices, not only for the long-term benefit of their shareholders, but also for all stakeholders.

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  • 11/22/18--14:00: 20 years of pure success
  • 20 years of pure success20 years of pure successGerine leads by example Gerine was awarded a long service award for serving at Namibia Media Holdings(NMH) for over 20 years. Octavia Tsibes



    Born and raised in Windhoek, Gerine Hoff attended Centaurus High School before she matriculated from Windhoek High School.

    Her mother encouraged her to apply for a job at Republikein as a translator and typist, and regardless of not having experience in this field, she got the job.

    “In the past 20 years, I have filled a number of positions in the newsroom, including moonlighting as an editorial secretary at one stage, before taking over the reins at Kollig, which is an arts and entertainment supplement for Republikein, and becoming supplement coordinator before I was promoted,” she said.

    After completing her high school she took a gap year and while in England did a course in beauty therapy. “When I returned to Namibia and was working in the industry for a few years, I realised that a change would do me good,” Hoff said, who is the coordinating editor of Windhoek Express (WE).

    Hoff was also fortunate to join a two-year mentorship programme called Women in News that was offered by the World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers (WAN-IFRA).

    In April 2017 she took over as coordinating editor of WE, which is one of Namibia Media Holdings' (NMH) community newspapers and is one of the youngest in the stable.

    “WE celebrated its fourth year in September and like any toddler, sometimes it still has temper tantrums. In a nutshell, along with a journalist, we make sure to get feel-good stories out there,” she says.

    In August this year WE become a Sunday newspaper. “It is the first Sunday paper to be published in Namibia in more than two decades; things have changed quite a bit,” Hoff says.

    Over the 20 years, Hoff has moved through the many ranks in the editorial department, which she is proud of.

    The project she is proud of the most is initiating and spearheading Republikein's Bridal Couple of the Year Competition.

    “Twenty years ago I never would have thought I'd still be in the industry. In actual fact, I started looking for another job within three weeks after first starting here. But it wasn't long and the job, the excitement, my colleagues and news began to grow on me. “There is a saying in the industry that once there is printer's ink in your blood, you're addicted, and that is definitely the case with me.

    “I love my job, which makes it easy to get up in the morning, to head to the office and complete a days' work. It's not moonlight and roses every day and we certainly have many heart-breaking stories that need to be covered too,” she says.

    Hoff says besides being in the office and chasing deadlines, she loves reading and catching up on her favourite TV series. She has two young children, who at this stage rule the roost. “Maybe one day my husband and I will get our life back!” she adds.

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    FNB Namibia appoints national sales managerFNB Namibia appoints national sales manager Kalla Toivo has been appointed as FNB’s national sales manager. Toivo joined FNB Namibia in 2008 as a seasonal worker in the exclusive banking department and was responsible for filing.

    Over the past 10 years he has occupied various roles ranging from a waste/collations role, telling, a consultant for corporate social responsibility (CSR), a private banker at a local bank and more recently area sales and service manager for the far north cluster.

    “As the national sales manager, I will be responsible for driving the sales strategy within the points of presence space of the bank, in collaboration with the different business units and product houses. I am excited about my new role, which involves creating an enabling environment for sales to thrive through various sales interventions, while at the same time ensuring that all set sales budgets are achieved through effective, consistent and innovative means to make sure our customers’ needs are continuously met,” Toivo said.

    He is also enthusiastic about working with people across all levels of the organisation, the learning and coaching perspective, as well as the sales initiatives, campaigns and solutions that he will drive.

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    O&L Leisure signs wage agreementO&L Leisure signs wage agreement6% increase O&L Leisure – a subsidiary of the Ohlthaver & List (O&L) Group - successfully concluded its wage negotiations with the Shop Steward Committee, and the Tourism & Allied Workers Union of Namibia (TAWUN). All parties understood each other very well during negotiations, which caused for a smooth and healthy process- Pamela Silwer, Shop Steward Committee, O&L Leisure The one-year substantive agreement affects 313 employees for the period 01 July to 30 June 2019.

    Inclusive of employees in the bargaining unit (grades 1 – 5) at Chobe Water Villas (CWV), Mokuti Etosha Lodge, Midgard Country Estate, and Strand Hotel Swakopmund, the agreement signed entails a 6% wage increase, backdated to 01 July 2018, and a 100% bonus (13th cheque).

    Shane Johr, O&L manager: group employee relations stressed on the amicable negotiation process with the Shop Steward Committee as well as TAWUN and what a huge difference such a positive and understanding relationship between the parties make. Johr said: “When it comes to wage negotiations, improving and contributing to uplifting the living standards of the employees, while maintaining the sustainability of the company, is main focus. Our people remain our greatest asset as they keep our business going despite the harsh economic times. We understand that they too need to take care of themselves and their families while the cost of living in the country is on the rise. It is important for us to make sure that we add to their standard of living and live up to our purpose of ‘Creating A Future, Enhancing Life’.”

    In the absence of the union, member of the O&L Leisure Shop Steward Committee, Pamela Silwer says they have been very happy about the negotiation process which proved for a healthy relationship between the committee and management. Silwer said: “All parties understood each other very well during negotiations, which caused for a smooth and healthy process. I am particularly happy about the relationship between the Shop Steward Committee and management of O&L Leisure, and foresee only further great strides going forward.”

    The Shop Steward Committee is made up of representatives from each of the 4 establishments under the O&L Leisure umbrella, and represents the workers at large.

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  • 11/22/18--14:00: Westair lawsuit abandoned
  • Westair lawsuit abandonedWestair lawsuit abandoned Settlement being negotiated The N$12 million lawsuit over a fatal aircraft crash that killed five people near Cape Town International Airport on 16 August 2015 has been withdrawn in the Windhoek High Court and the parties are now negotiating a settlement pertaining to costs.

    Elana Naudé, Rejancca Naudé, and Abraham Jacobus Espag had planned to sue Westair Aviation, the Namibian Directorate of Civil Aviation Authority (NDCAA), the works minister and the attorney-general for N$12 379 800.

    The patient on the emergency air ambulance flight, Gabriel le Roux, and his daughter, Charmaine Koortzen from Oranjemund, Westair pilot Steven Naudé and co-pilot Amore Espag, as well as paramedic Alfred Ward, all died when the aircraft crashed close to Cape Town International Airport in South Africa.

    Elana Naudé, former wife of the captain on the flight, sought payment of N$3 253 200 for loss of income and N$2 500 000 in damages, while the couple's daughter Rejancca asked for N$1 626 600, also for loss of income, and N$2 500 000 for damages. Abraham Jacobus Espag, the third plaintiff in the matter, is the father of the co-pilot and he sued N$2 500 000 for damages.

    The South African Civil Aviation Authority conducted an extensive investigation into the accident and its causes and produced a first report under the heading; 'Aircraft Accident Report and Executive Summary'. The findings described the actions of Westair and the aircraft crew as reckless and negligent.

    This, along with the lack of experience of co-pilot Amore Espag, severe extended flying hours of the captain, and the fact that they were not scheduled for the flight, placed the blame squarely on Westair and Namibia's aviation authorities, the plaintiffs said.

    The background to the lawsuit is an emergency air ambulance flight which departed from Eros Airport on the night of 15 August 2015 to collect the patient in Oranjemund and transport him to Cape Town.

    The captain in charge of the Cessna 441 was Steven Naudé and Amore Espag acted as the co-pilot. Both were employed by Westair. The paramedic on board was Alfred Ward.

    Between 04:29 and 05:44 on 16 August 2015 and approximately eight nautical miles north of the Cape Town International Airport, the aircraft collided with terrain after it had been cleared to land at the airport. All five on board were killed.

    The plaintiffs said the South African Civil Aviation Authority's investigation showed, “various damning findings about the negligence and/or recklessness of Westair and its lack of supervision, overseeing actions and lack of control over its employees.”

    According to them there were further damning conclusions about the capacity and competence of the NDCAA. The issue of licensing, the experience of the co-pilot and various other alleged oversights are addressed in the South African probe, all of which are damning, to the Namibian aviation industry, according to the plaintiffs.

    On Wednesday, Judge Hannelie Prinsloo postponed the matter to 21 February next year for a status hearing on the settlement negotiations on costs. Borris Erasmus appeared for the three plaintiffs while Shaun Ellis appeared for Westair and Heather Kaakunga, from the government attorneys, appeared for NDCAA, the works minister and the attorney-general.

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    I knew about Namdia - AlweendoI knew about Namdia - Alweendo Mines minister Tom Alweendo has assured parliament he in fact knew that Namib Desert Diamonds (Namdia) is state-owned.

    Alweendo found himself the butt of many a joke recently when he reportedly told a local newspaper that he did not know Namdia was a state-owned enterprise (SOE), when asked whether Namdia directors were going to pay back a portion of the N$8.1 million board sitting fees they received.

    “What happened with Namdia is that there seemed to be no clarity on its status as an SOE. At the time, the interpretation was that they were not a state-owned enterprise, hence the board fees were not in line with government guidelines,” Alweendo was quoted saying.

    He now seems to have made a 360-degree turn, claiming in parliament this week that The Namibian's article was “certainly an absurd claim”.

    He added that because of the “injudicious nature” of the media, at times, he would have let the matter rest.

    However, he now felt compelled to address the “absurdity”, because Popular Democratic Movement (PDM) MP Nico Smit had called on President Hage Geingob to establish a commission of inquiry into the matter.

    “Honourable Smit, had I been in your position I certainly would have been equally aggrieved and angry at a minister who is so irresponsible and so thoughtless not to know that Namdia is owned by the state.

    “That is now if it was indeed true that he did not know such basic details. It is the case that we have a number of challenges facing us as a nation; challenges that require us as elected leaders to bring our wisdom to bear; to show that those who have elected us to this august house did not make a mistake.

    “It is therefore disheartening, and I find it rather unacceptable, when one of us attempts to trivialise serious efforts being made at improving governance issues at some of our state-owned institutions,” Alweendo said.

    He also pointed out that Namibia is about to enter a period in which some political parties will try once again to make themselves look attractive to the electorate.

    According to Alweendo, this is a period when some politicians start to trade in “fabrication and deception”.

    “They become immune to facts. They try so hard to make their political opponents the butt of their smutty innuendos.

    “They start to shoot from the hip and to them, the end justifies the means. Such actions undermine the intelligence of the electorate; and I believe that the electorate deserves better treatment from their elected leaders,” Alweendo added.

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  • 11/22/18--14:00: Believe in the plan
  • Believe in the planBelieve in the planEducation is key but ‘gees’ is everything Namibia Media Holdings (NMH) recently rewarded its employees for their hard work and dedication throughout 2018. Octavia Tsibes

    NMH rewarded 42 employees and Yochanaan Coetzee was awarded the employee of the year 2018 title, after scoping two other awards in other categories. There were 29 categories and Coetzee was also announced as the video of the year winner and the CEO 10 moments category winner.

    He started off his career in hospitality, while also working as a freelance feature writer and photographer.

    In 2013 he joined The Weekender team at a local newspaper. His editor at that time at The Namibian newspaper encouraged him to apply for vacant, post regardless of not being qualified, and he did so and got the job.

    Coetzee is known to be a hard worker and very a positive individual; he makes sure whatever he does is done well

    Coetzee joined NMH in June 2016 as a junior journalist and after a year and eight months he was promoted to a senior journalist at Republikein.

    “When I moved to Republikein I could not write Afrikaans, I could just speak the language. I had to teach myself how to write the language and connect with a whole new audience. The editorial team at Republikein helped me throughout the learning process. After a year, and before being promoted, I learnt that hard work does really pay off,” Coetzee said.

    The newsroom knows Coetzee as ‘Yogi’ a journalist that has the ability to uplift co-workers and paint a continued positive image of NMH. “Although I am always positive, 2018 was a rough year for me because I recently turned 30 and it made me realised that life is truly a journey. You need to have a concrete plan of action,” Coetzee said.

    He said winning the employee of the year award has motivated him to keep on doing a brilliant job.

    He is always ready to assist. He is humble and learns from people from all walks of life.

    “Everyone at NMH is employee of the year if they are on the same page about where the company is headed and believes in the plan,” Coetzee said.

    Due to circumstances he could not finish his tertiary education.

    “At that time I did not have a clear idea of what I wanted to pursue, but after eight years of searching I discovered that my passion is writing and giving people the platform to tell their story, because I believe that this changes someone’s life.” He has also completed a few short courses on the fundamentals of filmmaking and social media marketing, presented by Cecil Muller.

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  • 11/22/18--14:00: Africa news in brief
  • Africa news in briefAfrica news in brief IMF approves disbursement of US$15.4 mln to Malawi

    The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has approved the disbursement of US$15.4 million to Malawi as part of a three-year loan arrangement to assist the southern African country’s economic and financial reforms.

    The US$108.2 million three-year arrangement was approved in April this year and the current draw brings the total disbursements under the arrangement to US$30.9 million, the fund said.

    “Malawi’s program performance has been satisfactory. Program-supported structural reforms advanced and most performance criteria were met,” IMF deputy managing director Tao Zhang said in a statement late on Wednesday.

    -Nampa/Reuters

    Zambia's copper output up

    Zambia’s annual copper output rose 10.4% in September to 631 359 tonnes, the central bank in Africa’s second-biggest producer of the industrial metal said on Wednesday.

    Some mining companies operating in Zambia include NFC Africa, majority owned by China Non-ferrous Metals Company Limited (CNMC), Canada’s First Quantum Minerals, Glencore, Barrick Gold and Vedanta Resources.

    -Nampa/Reuters

    South African power utility's new strategy to be finalised in February

    South Africa’s struggling state power firm Eskom will finalise its new strategy in February, its chief executive Phakamani Hadebe told parliament on Wednesday.

    Cash-strapped Eskom is battling to emerge from a period of steep financial decline, during which its debts have ballooned while its electricity sales have fallen.

    It implemented controlled power outages this year for the first time since 2015.

    The new strategy will assess whether its current business model is sustainable, or whether it should be broken up into separate entities overseeing power generation, distribution and transmission.

    In September, Eskom delayed the date at which its strategy would be submitted to its board.

    -Nampa/Reuters

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    Corruption - A social disease (Part 149): Rent control and the housing crisisCorruption - A social disease (Part 149): Rent control and the housing crisis Johan Coetzee - This article focuses on the recently established rent control boards in context of the urban housing challenge.

    It borrows extensively from an interview with Rowland Brown by Radio Wave on the topic on 20 November 2018. The author and Brown are management board members of the Economic Policy Research Association.

    Let us contextualise rent control. A shortage of urban housing is a critical challenge in Namibia. Since Independence the challenge has escalated.

    The population in Windhoek increase yearly with about 2 200 people. About 40 000 people are living in informal housing (shacks) in our capital.

    People flood from rural areas in anticipation of a better living to mainly Windhoek, Swakopmund and Walvis Bay.

    Shack dwellers do not have sanitation, contributing to the recent Hepatitis E outbreak. They have neither water nor electricity. Some live in riverbeds and get washed away during unpredictable floods. In short - a humanitarian crisis in our midst.

    RIGHTS, DEMAND AND WEALTH

    People are entitled to have access to decent and affordable accommodation in terms of the Constitution, with reference to Articles 8, 16 and 21 respectively, especially where human dignity and decent living are mentioned.

    Housing is primarily an economic commodity. If the demand is more than the supply, then the price increases. We have experienced housing prices peaking a few years ago. Prices still remain unaffordable for most people.

    All over the world housing is a wealth creator. If people have access to money, they tend to invest over and above their bond payment and in the process pay of their bond earlier and can then afford to buy additional property for rent and/or speculation.

    Since we have a national poverty challenge, most people cannot afford decent housing. Those that can afford a second property is very rare.

    To service a plot of 600 square meters in Namibia costs about N$100 000 to N$120 000. This can be done cheaper by giving basic training to a huge number of unemployed people and consulting engineers that currently struggle to make ends meet due to the contraction of the industry by more than 40% since 2017.

    The most expensive farmland in Namibia has been sold for N$10 000 per hectare. This means N$1 per square metre.

    During the auction of plots in Academia, land has been sold for about N$1 800 per square metre. The municipality of Windhoek is effectively making a profit of 1 800%.

    SEVERE PARADOX

    Making enormous profit from land in a country where poverty is a national disaster is a paradox of severe proportion and a disgrace to especially shack dwellers, the poor and unemployed.

    Other housing ingredients are also at play in the rent control challenge. Namibia's tax to GDP ratio is one of the highest in the world. When the urban land shortage is put in perspective of massive corruption scandals involving billions in post tender overspending, i.e. Walvis Bay petroleum facility and Neckartal, it seems money is not a problem for making land more affordable.

    In terms of available land, we have more than enough urban land. So if money and land are not obstacles: Why is the demand for serviced urban land so high and the supply not forthcoming to suppress the price of land?

    Municipalities have a monopoly in servicing land and continuously under supply land to create scarcity, and to capitalise on enormous profit at the expense of Namibians.

    To service urban land to develop property involves about 22 steps. These steps have recently been increased with the implementation of the amended Sectional Title Act (Act 2 of 2009) that came in effect in 2014, making it even more bureaucratic than before to develop property. By adding more steps to the process, the delays increased and due to such delays a developer pays more interest to the lender (mainly a bank). Amidst a construction collapse the increased cost is passed on to the customer. The end result is that land is even more expensive.

    HOUSING POLITICS

    The Affirmative Repositioning (AR) Movement has pressed for the implementation of rent control in an attempt to make housing more affordable. A few rent control boards were created recently.

    The criteria that will most probably be implemented is that rent should not exceed 10% of the total bond amount. For example, if the bond is N$2 million at 10% over a 20 year period, the bond payment is approximately N$20 000 per month for the landlord. The maximum allowable rent then equals the bond payment.

    At the moment, rent for accommodation is suppressed due to the dire economic situation. Rent control will not ensure affordable housing. Houses of N$2 million are on average rented out for far less than N$ 20 000 per month. An estate agent, Sue Mouton indicated that there is a shortage of houses to rent in especially the eastern areas of Windhoek.

    As rent control boards realised that the criteria of 10% of the total bond amount is ineffective to suppress rental prices, the criteria will most likely be reduced to 9% or 8%, and could end up at 5%. The foreseeable decreasing trend of allowable maximum rent will in effect mean that to invest in property will not create wealth anymore.

    Property rights is one of the fundamental elements of any prosperous economy. Domestic investors may as a results invest outside Namibia - a trend that already escalated since the revision of the Namibia Investment Promotion Act of 2016 started. Less property will be developed and the shortage of housing will increase.

    The urban housing crisis cannot be addressed by rental control boards. These boards will escalate the urban housing crisis with less houses being built and more people living in shacks. Capital invested in property will leave Namibia at an unprecedented level over the years to come.

    Rental control boards is a symptom of an artificial monopolistic system with perverse effects that are embedded in the context of short sighted bureaucrats that constantly under supply urban land. The land crisis is further exploited for political reasons by the AR Movement that has not thought about the long term implications of rent control.

    Due to party infighting and elections in 2019, the ruling party is seemingly caving in to pressure from the AR.

    Namibia is in a serious urban land and housing crisis that is going to affect not only shack dwellers but all property owners and our meager FDI will reduce further. We should start by removing the municipal bottle neck for serviced land as one of the options as part of a series of actions that should follow.

    References

    Brown, R. 2018. Rent Control: Radio Wave interview, 20 November, Windhoek.

    Mouton, S. 2018. Rentals: Estate Agent interview, 19 November, Windhoek.

    jcoetzee@nust.na

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  • 11/22/18--14:00: A weight of expectation
  • A weight of expectationA weight of expectation At least three former liberation movements in southern Africa are preparing for general elections to be held next year. Mozambique has already indicated that it will hold presidential, legislative and provincial elections on 15 October 2019, while South Africa is likely to hold its elections during winter. Namibia, as customary, has preferred to hold elections towards the end of the year, and it will be no surprise if November emerges as the voting month. In the upcoming elections, the ANC of South Africa, Frelimo of Mozambique and Namibia’s Swapo remain favourites to continue as ruling parties in their respective countries. However, these revered liberation movements are facing increasing criticism and challenges over high levels of inequality, corruption and unemployment. Angola’s MPLA, Zanu-PF of Zimbabwe and Chama Cha Mapinduzi of Tanzania also found themselves in the same situation. In Namibia, Swapo still commands huge support across the country and there is no glaring picture suggesting that its support is waning, compared to its sister parties in South Africa, Zimbabwe, Tanzania and Mozambique. The six former liberation movements have been accused by commentators of reproducing the past, instead of offering true alternatives to serious challenges facing their countries. This is more so, considering the growing number of young voters who do not remember the pain of colonialism and oppression. In addition, many voters also feel betrayed by their current leaders who are clearly failing to deliver social justice to tackle poverty and combat corruption, arguably one of the most serious cancers slowly eating the flesh of these former liberation movements. There is without doubt a massive weight of expectation for these political groupings to deliver on electoral promises, while reinventing themselves to be relevant in the eyes of the voters. A failure to do will mean decline and death.

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  • 11/22/18--14:00: Ignoring the naysayers
  • Ignoring the naysayersIgnoring the naysayersKeep calm and stay humble When it comes to making sacrifices for the sake of yielding of fruit, Indongo Indongo always rises to the occasion. Elizabeth Joseph





    National Training Authority (NTA) research and planning manager, Indongo Indongo, has taken great strides to ensure that his legacy lives on.

    Indongo was born and raised at Onayena settlement in the Oshikoto Region. He is the second of 12 siblings.

    “Growing up was not an easy journey, as I lost both my parents at a very young age. Growing up an orphan, there was no or limited resources to support my childhood needs.

    Time passed and life happened, but in 2004 I was accepted at the University of Namibia (Unam) where I did my bachelor of science degree, majoring in statistics,” Indongo said.

    His matric results were impressive and he was offered a bursary by the Sam Nujoma Foundation to do his first degree. He is a holder of a masters’ in public health and is currently studying an MBA at the University of Cape Town (UCT).



    His corporate journey

    His career took flight when he started working at the labour ministry in 2008 as a statistician. Over the past decade, his career has elevated rapidly, and he proudly speaks of his work for NGOs in the fields of TB, malaria and HIV/Aids. The NGOs are the Society for Family Health, CDC - Special Programmes, Project Hope and the Millennium Challenge Account.

    “Under these programmes I picked up a lot of experience in project monitoring and evaluation, as a statistician these two actually go hand in hand. Now, I am working for the Namibia Training Authority as a manager of research and planning,” he said.

    Doing the deed

    “As a manager for research and planning, I oversee the process of evidence and intelligence-generation in the field of technical vocational education and training (TVET), as it is related to skills gaps and the shortage in different sectors.

    “Basically, this involves carrying out industry-based research, engaging different stakeholders, both locally and internationally, and packaging these findings for the integration of the training packages. In addition, I oversee the work of industry skills committees (ISCs) - there 10 ISCs for different sectors of the economy - who are NTA Board Committee on Skills Development in TVET,” Indongo said.

    Stones in his path

    Although Indongo cannot recall a particular setback in his career thus far, he does believe that the country’s inability to grow at a rate that makes it possible for it to accommodate everyone, including trainees, has been a thorn in the side of many Namibians, including himself.

    “It is sad to see so many sectors in Namibia shrinking and people losing their jobs.

    “It is obvious that some of the trainees from our vocational centres will find it difficult to find meaningful employment. However, there is a bit of hope now that the government has prioritised TVET.

    “We are starting to see some deliberate efforts being put into TVET - from start-ups, apprenticeships and the recognition of prior learning, as well as the general expansion of vocational centres, including the reintroduction of pre-vocational training in high school,” Indongo added.

    Victories

    “On accomplishments, life is a learning journey. I am young and there is still a lot that I want to accomplish. Throughout my career, I have picked up a lot of experiences in different fields and had opportunities to meet global experts.

    I have been investing heavily in myself through formal education, short courses and other platforms. Young people should never stop learning. The fourth industrial revolution will see the entire landscape of skills being transformed and young people need to be ready for this!” Indongo said.

    A typical day

    A typical day in the office usually starts with a strong, but sweet cup of coffee. Given that every day holds its own struggles and triumphs, a day can never start without coffee, according to him.

    “The Namibia Training Authority is one of the best parastatals, which is well-managed, and we are executing our mandate well. By now, all Namibians know that our president, His Excellency Dr Hage Geingob, has prioritised vocational education as a catalyst for accelerating development toward industrialisation.

    “So, we have specific milestones in both the Harambee Prosperity Plan and Fifth National Development Plan, with strict timelines and targets that should be met. At times, it gets really busy but I have amazing colleagues who are committed to the implementation of NTA programmes,” Indongo said.

    “In our department, and in NTA in general, if a certain milestone is not achieved and there are normally good reasons why they are not achieved, we all take and share the blame. Equally when good achievements are celebrated, we all celebrate in a team spirit. It is a strategy of our CEO.”

    Indongo loves and is inspired by hardworking individuals and people who always avail themselves in an instance of crisis.

    Indongo’s future plans are simple: Keep calm and stay humble!

    “My plan is to ensure that I do my part in the implementation of our five-year strategic plan including the TVET transformation and expansion strategy (15-year plan). I want to see vocational education transformed, accelerated and developed in rural areas in Namibia,” he said further.

    During his spare time, he enjoys watching soccer and boxing. He is also active in politics and is currently serving as the Swapo Party Youth League (SPYL) branch secretary for the Nico Bessinger branch in the Khomasdal district.

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