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Tells it All - Namibian Sun

older | 1 | .... | 911 | 912 | (Page 913) | 914 | 915 | .... | 938 | newer

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  • 12/12/18--14:00: 'The Bullet' romps home
  • 'The Bullet' romps home'The Bullet' romps homeImmanuel wins second gold for Team Namibia Bernado ‘The Bullet’ Immanuel and his guide David Ndailenge finished first in the T11 100m race to win Namibia’s second gold medal at a youth games competition taking place in Gaborone, Botswana. NAMPA



    Bernardo 'The Bullet' Immanuel, a T11 para-athlete, won Namibia’s second gold medal at the African Union Sports Council (AUSC) Region Five Under-20 Youth Games on Tuesday night.

    Natalie Louw won the country’s first gold on Tuesday morning in the long jump event. Louw jumped a distance of 5.70m to claim the gold. Her teammate Chantell du Toit came second with a distance of 5.49m.

    Besides the two gold medals, Team Namibia raked in six more medals from long jump, discuss, swimming and volleyball.

    Sandro Diergaardt won a silver medal in the men’s long jump after coming second with a jump of 7.25m behind a Zimbabwean athlete, who took gold with a jump of 7.79m.

    Karlien Botha walked away with a bronze medal in the female discuss event with a distance of 36.4m.

    Meanwhile, the men’s volleyball team, who competed at the championships for the first time, walked away with a bronze medal after going down to the host nation in their final match of the competition.

    Botswana finished first in the log standings, while South Africa walked away with silver.

    In swimming, Namibian athletes added three more medals to the four they previously won.

    Heleni Stergiadis won a bronze in the individual women’s 200m medley with a time of 2:28.50. Stergiadis also scooped bronze in the women’s 200m backstroke in a time of 2:28.14.

    The Namibian 4x100m medley relay team won the country’s second silver medal with a time of 4:47.47. They finished behind South Africa, who set a new championship record of 4:25.44.

    In the overall rankings, Namibia’s swimming team finished the competition in fourth place out of the six countries. They won seven medals - two silver and five bronze.

    South Africa came first with 62 medals - 35 gold, 26 silver and one bronze. Botswana were second with 12 medals - one gold, five silver and six bronze, while Zimbabwe took third place with 18 medals - two silver and 16 bronze.

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  • 12/12/18--14:00: Aayelele yahala evi lyawo
  • Aayelele yahala evi lyawoAayelele yahala evi lyawoOlundji ohaya talika na otaya dhengwa koluhepo noonkondo Aakwashigwana yomuhoko gwAaKai !Akhoen Hai//om oye na omukumo kutya otaya ka mona ekwathelo okuza kokomisi ndjoka ya tseyithwa kOmupresidende Geingob kombinga yevi lyuuthiga. Aakwashigwana mboka oya popi kutya oya loloka okukala taya ihumbatelwa ya fa aazaaizai kaye na omadhilaadhilo oshowo omukalo gwepangelo gokuulika aantu yomihoko dhilwe oyo ya ungeunge niikumungu ye ya pamba.

    Oya popi kutya kaye na ohokwe miinima yilwe ngaahi omagadhi gokugwaya goVaseline, uunamunate wocoke oshowo uumboloto mbyoka haya pewa ihe yo yahala uuthemba kombinga yevi lyawo lyuuthiga. Elenga enene Ananias Soroseb lyoKai !Akhoen Hai/Om ngoka e li omutekulu gwelenga Fritz Aribeb #Arebeb, ngoka a dhipagwa kaaNdowishi momvula yo 1904 popepi nOkorusu, okwa pula kutya omolwashike aakwashigwana yomuhoko ngoka ihaya ihumbatewa ngaashi omihoko dhimwe. Okwa popi kutya elenga Johan Kxao /Ui/o/oo, ngoka e li omupeha minista gwaakwashigwana mboka ya kala inaya talika nale mombelelwa yOmupeha Presidende okwa kala nokwiidhimbika omakemo gawo na ina tsakanena na yo konima nkene a yi mombelewa.

    “Otwe mu shangela oombaapila naasho twa thiki mOvenduka opo tu tsakanene naye inatu mu mona. Ota hwahwameke owala uuwanawa wAaherero oshowo aapopi yeleka lyoTsumkwe Ju|'hoan, ke na ohokwe natse na otu na okwiikondjela tse yene.” Okwa popi kutya natango kashi li mondjila ngele epangelo li na iikondo ya nuninwa okuungaunga nomaupyakadhi ga taalela aakwashigwana yomuhoko gwontumba, ihe iikondo mbyoka otayi kwatelwa komeho kaanambelewa ya za komihoko dhilwe. “Aantu mboka ihaya tala komaupyakadhi getu na otaya gandja owala omayambidhidho kaantu yomihoko dhawo. Ooprograma dhoondya oshowo dhomailongo otadhi pewa aantu yalwe omanga tse Aayelele tatu si ondjala.” Elenga Josef Gomoseb, olya popi kutya aakwashigwana Aayelele mboka haya longo moofaalama ihaya mono oondya dhoshikukuta.

    Okwa popi kutya aagandji yiilonga ohaye ya fala opo ya kashangithwe ya kale taya kwata nokupewa oondya dhoshikukuta, ihe konima ngele ya shuna koofaalama nena ohaya ka kala taya metelwa uusila mboka.

    JEMIMA BEUKES

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  • 12/12/18--14:00: DHL expands its local fleet
  • DHL expands its local fleetDHL expands its local fleetLocally procured Toyotas to make all the difference Comfy, capable and cost effective Jennine van Jaarsveld, DHL Namibia operations manager - “Besides, there are only two makes of cars you ever buy: that’s a Toyota and an Indongo Toyota to be specific.” YOCHANAAN COETZEE



    DHL, through its unrivalled logistical might, has not only become the industry leader in getting stuff to destinations around the globe but has also become one of those powerhouse brands, like Omo, Colgate and Hoover, that have become the generic term for their industry.

    With its titanic fleet of cars, trucks, cargo ships and planes constantly buzzing around the world like a colony of bright yellow bees, no one can match DHL’s speed and reliability.

    “The key to our operations is a reliable fleet,” says Jennine van Jaarsveld, DHL Namibia’s operations manager.

    “Downtime is disastrous in this industry, so too is high running costs. This makes it imperative to have a fleet that you and you clients can depend on, not only to get there on time but also to offer the best value for money.

    “It’s for this reason that we are extremely delighted to unveil our new fleet of Toyota delivery bakkies and we’re also proud to announce that this is the first time we’ve procured vehicles locally, further contributing to our local economy.”

    What a workhorse!

    The new additions to DHL’s yellow army are four new Toyota 2.4 GD6 bakkies, with a range of industry-specific modifications and custom load bays.

    “Not only is the 2.4 GD6 single cab an excellent workhorse thanks to its sturdy design and comfortable cabin, but with 110 Kw and 343 Nm available at a consumption rate of roughly eight litres per hundred kilometres, its efficiency and cost per kilometre make for an invaluable addition to any fleet,” says Andre de Klerk of Indongo Toyota.

    “Being chosen as a supplier to a world-class company such as DHL is the ultimate compliment. With their precise, yet demanding logistical operations requiring only the most reliable vehicles, which also offer optimum value for money, we are proud that they’ve chosen Indongo Toyota and the phenomenal 2.4 GD6 single cab as partners in maintaining their industry-leading standards,” he says.

    Driving DHL

    With the average vehicle in their local fleet clocking upwards of 5 000 km per month, these vehicles not only need to be able to make their deadlines daily, but also to offer a comfortable working environment for the drivers.

    “We are very excited about these new vehicles. Not only do we envision a 25 percent cost reduction over the medium term that we can then pass on to our customers, but along with the savings on fuel costs and service failures they also cater for the drivers by offering them a safe and comfortable working environment,” says Van Jaarsveld.

    “Besides, there are only two makes of cars you ever buy, that’s a Toyota and an Indongo Toyota to be specific,” she says with a smile.

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  • 12/12/18--14:00: Iconic Mbulunganga hailed
  • Iconic Mbulunganga hailedIconic Mbulunganga hailedA brave son of the soil PLAN veteran Mathias Ndakolo is remembered as a man who devoted his life to Namibia's freedom. Liberation struggle icon Mathias 'Mbulunganga' Ndakolo has been remembered as a fearless and dedicated son of the soil.

    He died last Tuesday in the Oshakati intermediate hospital. He was 75.

    Ndakolo was one of the pioneer commanders of the People's Liberation Army of Namibia (PLAN), who fought on the north-eastern front.

    Many remember him as a brave man who devoted his life to the attainment of Namibia's independence.

    The struggle icon was born at Iilagati, a village in the Ohangwena Region, and lived at the nearby village of Eenghango.

    Former chief of the Namibian Defence Force (NDF), Lieutenant-General Martin Shalli (retired), described Ndakolo as a great commander, who possessed many of the qualities a good leader should have.

    Shalli referred to him as a “born leader”.

    “I have an emotional attachment to the late Ndakolo. To be honest he was a great man. He was everything; a born leader. He had huge natural intelligence, wisdom and foresight; you name it,” Shalli said.

    Ndakolo was the PLAN commander for the north-eastern front and Shalli worked under him for many years.

    Shalli said it was unfortunate that Ndakolo, after sacrificing so much, fell ill during the liberation struggle and was not employable after independence, because of his condition.

    Shalli encouraged Namibians to emulate Ndakolo's unwavering pan-Africanism.

    Swapo Party Elders Council (SPEC) secretary Mukwaita Shanyengana also paid tribute to Ndakolo.

    “He was operating on the Angolan side and I was on the Zambian side, but what I know, he was a brave commander who never hesitated,” Shanyengana said.

    He said Ndakolo was a fighter and no enemy wanted to cross his path.

    “He knew how to plan and manoeuvre around the enemy and defeat them,” Shanyengana said.

    Swapo Party School rector and the party's deputy secretary-general, Marco Hausiku, said he met Ndakolo after independence, but often went to him for advice.

    President Hage Geingob has accorded Ndakolo a state funeral. He will be laid to rest at the Eenhana Memorial Shrine in the Ohangwena Region on Saturday.

    In 2007 during a Heroes' Day commemoration, former president Hifikepunye Pohamba conferred on Ndakolo the honorary military rank of NDF colonel.

    KENYA KAMBOWE

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  • 12/12/18--14:00: Be safe this festive season
  • Be safe this festive seasonBe safe this festive season With the festive season around the corner, police chief Sebastian Ndeitunga has once again urged Namibians to drive safely and report any suspicious activity to the police.

    In the first 11 months of the year, 492 people died and 5 431 were injured in 3 385 road accidents.

    During the same period last year, there were 693 fatalities and 6 562 injuries in 3 729 crashes.

    Many people will be travelling across the country in the next month as schools and companies close for the festive season.

    “It is also a fact that during this period our country experiences the highest rate of road traffic accidents, causing serious injuries and deaths to our citizens and visitors alike,” Ndeitunga said yesterday.

    He urged all road users to stay within the speed limit, maintain safe following distances, refrain from drinking and driving, overtake safely and pull off the road to rest when tired.

    “I would like to reiterate my call to all stakeholders, law enforcement officials and road users to work together towards our common goal of reducing road traffic accidents and resultant injuries and fatalities,” he said.

    Ndeitunga said the police, in conjunction with other agencies, would put in place a number of measures to curb accidents.

    He added that crime also tends to peak during the festive season.

    “Most of these criminal activities can be prevented if we pay careful attention and take some precautions to prevent the crime from occurring.”

    Ndeitunga said crime risks during this period included housebreaking, ATM or online fraud, scams and muggings.

    Robberies and theft under false pretences were taking place daily, he said.

    “These acts of senseless violence not only pose a threat to the victims but it is also disturbing the police as the custodians of safety and security.

    “Therefore, we must protect our property, be vigilant and always scan the environment around us in whatever we do, especially when withdrawing large amounts of cash from banks, as bank officials are collaborating with criminals nowadays.”

    Ndeitunga said banks must be alert and join hands with the law-enforcement agencies to fight this practice.

    He warned people planning to travel with children that strict regulations were being enforced to curb human trafficking.

    “It is expected of you to be in possession of the required documents, such as the full birth certificate of the child, and, in the absence of one parent, a consent letter or police declaration from the absent parent must be provided.”

    He further urged people to report any suspicious or unlawful activity to the nearest police station or traffic checkpoint.

    ELLANIE SMIT

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  • 12/12/18--14:00: Company news in brief
  • Company news in briefCompany news in brief Anglo expects higher production, lower costs

    Mining group Anglo American Plc expects its production to rise more than previously expected in 2018 and 2021 while costs are seen lower for this year, its chief executive officer said on Tuesday.

    CEO Mark Cutifani said Anglo expected 2018 production to be 2% higher than its previous forecast while costs will be 5% below previous guidance.

    The company, whose products include platinum group metals, copper, and coal, said in an update to investors it expected the 3% rise in production in 2019 and a further 5% boost in both 2020 and 2021.

    After cutting debt and raising dividends over the last few years, Anglo would now drive enhanced returns through its capital allocation options, Cutifani said.

    Anglo's higher output contrasts with rivals BHP, and Rio Tinto, which in October signalled lower output for copper, a mineral expected to be in high demand from increased electrification. – Nampa/Reuters

    Egypt threatens Apple with legal action

    Egypt has warned it will take legal action against Apple if the US tech giant fails to remove alleged "restrictions" on local distributors within 60 days.

    A decree threatening action was published in the official gazette on Monday after accusations from Egypt's Competition Authority that Apple had violated the country's competition law.

    It said the company had "isolated the Egyptian market geographically" by restricting sales to distributors in the country from their counterparts abroad.

    The authority also alleged Apple had restricted "parallel imports" of its products on the Egyptian market.

    According to the authority, Apple's actions had caused an "unjustified" increase in prices of its products in Egypt, exceeding those in the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait as well as the United States. – Nampa/AFP

    Tencent Music raises nearly US$1.1 bln in IPO

    China-based music streaming company Tencent Music Entertainment Group said it raised close to US$1.1 billion in its US initial public offering (IPO) after pricing its shares at the bottom of its targeted range.

    The music arm of gaming and social network giant Tencent Holdings Ltd priced its American Depositary Receipts (ADRs) at US$13 per share, at the low end of its indicated US$13 to US$15 per share range, it said in a filing with the Hong Kong stock exchange.

    The IPO values Tencent Music at US$21.3 billion and shows how companies are defying a bout of market volatility with flotations.

    Tencent Music sold 41 million ADRs, while existing shareholders sold a further 40.9 million, the filing said.

    Tencent Music's IPO tops off a bumper year for US listings by Chinese companies, with US$7.9 billion raised before Tencent Music's debut, Refinitiv data showed. That is the highest amount since 2014, the year of Alibaba Group Holding Ltd's record US$25 billion IPO. – Nampa/Reuters

    McDonald's to cut antibiotics in beef

    McDonald's announced a plan on Tuesday for a phased reduction of antibiotics in beef, expanding a health-oriented reform to a new meat source other than chicken.

    The fast-food giant described a three-stage process where it would first undertake a study of its top 10 beef sourcing markets of current antibiotic use in livestock and by 2020 establish reduction targets.

    Starting in 2020, McDonald's will begin reporting progress against antibiotic reduction targets.

    "McDonald's believes antibiotic resistance is a critical public health issue and we take seriously our unique position to use our scale for good to continue to address this challenge," said Keith Kenny, McDonald's global vice president for sustainability.

    McDonald's, Walmart, Tyson Foods and others have already announced plans to restrict or phase out antibiotic use in chickens. – Nampa/AFP

    Credit Suisse announces up to 1.5 bln Sfr buyback

    Credit Suisse yesterday announced a share buyback of up to 1.5 billion Swiss francs (US$1.51 billion) in 2019 and plans to increase its dividend by at least 5 percent from 2019 onward, confirming its strategy as it wraps up a three-year revamp under chief executive Tidjane Thiam.

    "The actions taken during the restructuring mean the bank is now more resilient in the face of market turbulence," Thiam said in a statement ahead of the bank's investor day.

    Switzerland's second-biggest bank last year announced new 2019 and 2020 yield targets and a plan to distribute half of net profit to shareholders primarily through share buybacks or special dividends, saying it had made strong progress in an ambitious quest to become a leading wealth manager with strong investment banking capabilities.

    By attracting a growing number of entrepreneurs especially in Asia to its client base, Credit Suisse hopes to increase profitability over coming years even as it faces headwinds from shaky markets and a hit to investor mood.

    The bank has cut thousands of jobs over recent years and reduced its financing costs. – Nampa/Reuters

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    Spread of hepatitis E unique to NamibiaSpread of hepatitis E unique to NamibiaTravel history allows for vast, broad infections A lack of sanitation in rural areas, along with the travelling patterns of Namibians, has made the way hepatitis E has spread wholly Namibian. The way in which the hepatitis E outbreak has spread in Namibia is unique in the world, health experts say.

    Since the first cases were reported in Windhoek's Havana and Goreangab informal settlements on 13 October 2017, the disease has spread to six other regions: Erongo, Omusati, Ohangwena, Oshana, Oshikoto and Kavango East.

    The spread is the result of frequent travel between Windhoek and those regions and a dire lack of toilets, safe water points and poor personal hygiene.

    Although Uganda and South Sudan have experienced hepatitis-E outbreaks of similar duration as Namibia, Eric Dziuban, country director for the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Namibia, says what is unique about this outbreak is how it has spread throughout the country.

    Last week, the health ministry announced that 3 973 hepatitis E cases had been confirmed countrywide by the end of November.

    There have been 34 deaths, including 16 pregnant or post-partum women.

    “Over 80% of cases recorded in these regions were linked to Havana and Goreangab informal settlements in Windhoek by travel history,” the ministry confirmed.

    Surveys have confirmed that the hardest hit areas by the outbreak are informal settlements with inadequate water and sanitation infrastructure, where open defecation is common.

    “This calls for behavioural change of affected community members,” the ministry stressed.

    While authorities have made efforts to improve access to toilets and water, frequent vandalism has been reported.



    Take care this holiday

    With the upcoming festive season, authorities are urging hosts and organisations of public gatherings to “ensure provision of safe drinking water, hand-washing facilities with soap and running water, adequate ablution facilities with hand-washing stations and adhering to the World Health Organisation's food safety practices.”

    Dziuban underlined too that “poor hygiene and sanitation conditions, like those in informal settlements, make it difficult to contain the outbreak.”

    This month the United States embassy in Namibia, through the CDC, handed over 600 rapid test kits and personal protective equipment to the health ministry.

    The use of these kits in the field and in clinics and hospitals will allow for the immediate diagnosis of hepatitis E.

    Currently, a diagnosis is confirmed through a blood test, which on average requires more than a week to produce results and takes even longer in the regions.

    The kits will be distributed for use in the field and at facilities that have a high volume of pregnant women.

    These test kits will be particularly useful for the diagnosis of pregnant women who are most vulnerable to hepatitis E infection.

    The CDC has provided ongoing assistance to the health ministry, including inviting a number of expert epidemiologists who provided intensive capacity-building support to improve the epidemiological investigation.

    The support is set to continue with the next stage being to help the ministry conduct a knowledge, attitudes, and practices (KAP) survey in Havana and Goreangab, that will help identify the specific type of hepatitis E virus that is affecting the country.

    Dziuban said the survey's goal was “to learn what behaviours may be contributing to the ongoing transmission. By having data on actual practices and behaviours, it will allow for designing effective interventions and water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) strategies.”

    The ministry announced that a team of 16 data collectors, six field supervisors and three drivers will cover 640 households in Havana and Goreangab over a nine-day period, which began on 3 December.

    Most of the funding for the response was national but aid in various forms was received from the US embassy through the CDC, as well as the World Health Organisation (WHO), Unicef and the Red Cross.

    JANA-MARI SMITH

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  • 12/12/18--14:00: Africa Briefs
  • Africa BriefsAfrica Briefs Tanzania to sign deal for power plant

    Tanzania will sign a deal this week for the construction of a US$3 billion hydroelectric power plant, president John Magufuli said in remarks broadcast on state television.

    Egypt's El Sewedy Electric company will be involved in building the plant, Tanzania's energy minister said yesterday.

    The 2 100 MW project would more than double the country's power generation capacity. But the project's location is in a World Heritage site and has faced opposition from conservationists. They have said the construction of a dam on a major river that runs through the Selous Game Reserve could affect wildlife and their habitats downstream.

    Covering 50 000 square km, the Selous Game Reserve is one of the largest protected areas in Africa, according to UNESCO. It is known for its elephants, black rhinos and giraffes, among many other species.

    The World Wildlife Fund conservation group said in a report in July last year the proposed large-scale hydropower dam "puts protected areas of global importance, as well as the livelihoods of over 200 000 people who depend upon the environment, at risk". – Nampa/Reuters

    Millions invested in gold mining in W.Africa

    Mining companies have invested at least US$5 billion towards gold exploration in West Africa in the last decade but significant reserves are under-exploited, mineral industry experts said on Tuesday.

    Delegates at the Ecomof mining and petroleum forum in the Ivory Coast commercial capital Abidjan were told that more must be done to attract international investors to develop mining potential.

    Ivory Coast and Ghana are among the world's top cocoa producers but are now seeking to diversify their economies by mining precious metals and newly discovered reserves of oil.

    Gold is currently attracting the most investment, according to figures shared at the forum, with West Africa now the world's fourth-largest gold region. Ghana is Africa's second largest gold producer after South Africa.

    Between 2006 and 2019, new gold deposits of 79 million ounces were discovered in West Africa - the highest in the world. A third was located in Burkina Faso, followed by Ghana, Mali and Ivory Coast, the forum was told. – Nampa/AFP

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    Communities in dire need of waterCommunities in dire need of water Several areas have been identified as “hot spots” where communities are suffering from chronic water shortages and emergency water assistance is required.

    Agriculture minister Alpheus !Naruseb says the ministry continues to conduct surveys to identify places that are in dire need of water assistance.

    Areas identified as hot spots are characterised by poor groundwater quality and boreholes that are drying up because of a lack of rain.

    Otjimbinde constituency and the Omuramba community in the Omaheke Region are among these hot spots.

    !Naruseb says communities in the Otjombinde constituency, which has a population of about

    7 000 people, urgently need water.

    The ministry is conducting a feasibility study before drilling additional boreholes and extending the existing pipeline network there.

    As for the Omuramba community in the Eiseb constituency, sites for boreholes have been chosen and drilling will start immediately.

    The Daures constituency in the Erongo Region was also identified as a hot spot.

    According to !Naruseb this area is desperate for water because of very poor groundwater quality and poor recharge of the aquifer.

    “The only long-term solution is to supply water from elsewhere, which is very costly, but must be done.”

    In the Epembe and Oshikunde constituencies of the Ohangwena Region, the available water has become unfit for consumption because of high levels of fluoride and other minerals.

    “Apart from limited conventional water points in the area, the traditional water points have become either obsolete or have seriously poor quality water,” !Naruseb says.

    Some communities in these constituencies have to walk long distances to find water.

    According to the minister the solution is to drill boreholes in areas with good water quality and pipe it to the areas with poor water quality.

    Bids for the drilling of boreholes in these two areas will be invited soon.

    “This response will be short-term water supply assistance, while studies are under way to find a long-term solution including the utilisation of the Ohangwena Two aquifer with the availability of funds,” says !Naruseb.

    ELLANIE SMIT

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  • 12/12/18--14:00: Namvet to play politics
  • Namvet to play politicsNamvet to play politics'Can run own affairs' The leader of the organisation says former soldiers should unite to make their voices heard in the next election. The Namibia War Veterans Trust (Namvet) says it is considering entering the political fray by participating in the 2019 national elections after all attempts to engage the Swapo-led government have failed.

    Namvet leader Jabulani Ndeunyema said at a press briefing yesterday that this decision was the logical next step after former SWATF and Koevoet members were stonewalled from any meaningful and constructive discussion with the ruling party and government.

    “We have exhausted all options and unless someone is advising us otherwise, as a united SWATF and Koevoet family our next step may be a risky one,” Ndeunyema said.

    He called on all former SWATF and Koevoet members, as well as their children, to disassociate themselves from all other political parties and vote as a united block to continue their fight for recognition as war veterans.

    Ndeunyema said former SWATF and Koevoet members on the payrolls of political parties should remain there “as hibernators” until further notice.

    He estimates the former soldiers account for about 500 000 Namibians.

    “We are not going to vote in isolation but as a team for the sake of our own interests,” Ndeunyema said.

    “We are growing up and we have the competence to run our own affairs because we have learnt that politics determines who has the power and not who has the truth. We cannot continue to sacrifice for others for them to remain politically relevant.”

    The former soldiers have staged a sit-in demonstration for nearly four years and have repeatedly petitioned President Hage Geingob and other government institutions, as well as opposition political parties, which have so far remained silent on the matter.

    The latest Namvet position comes after a report by the parliamentary standing committee on constitutional and legal affairs was discussed in parliament last month.

    This report recommended that the Veterans Act of 2008 not be amended. Namvet and other former soldiers had called for an amendment that would recognise them as war veterans.

    The report further recommended that these soldiers not be given special pensions, social grants or counselling, but that they should make use of state health facilities as ordinary citizens.

    It further recommended that those in need should register with the food banks.

    Ndeunyema called the recommendations as “insane”, saying the Swapo government should “keep its Veterans' Act”, but pay out the N$36 million pension money from the South African government to the former soldiers.

    He also expressed disappointment at the Namibian government's dismissal of a proposal by the former South African high commissioner to Namibia, Yvette Myakayaka-Manzini, for a summit between the two governments to discuss an amicable solution to the issue of the former SWATF and Koevoet soldiers.

    CATHERINE SASMAN

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  • 12/12/18--14:00: B1 crash claims three
  • B1 crash claims threeB1 crash claims three Three men died on the Okahandja-Otjiwarongo road yesterday morning when their vehicles collided after one of the cars had crashed into a cow standing in the road.

    Otjozondjupa police spokesperson Maureen Mbeha said the accident occurred 7 km south of Otjiwarongo around 05:30.

    The deceased were aged 45, 37 and 30.

    “The accident involved eight people of whom three were in a Toyota double cab, three in a Volkswagen Polo and two in a Ford Ranger,” Mbeha said.

    It is alleged that the driver of the double cab hit a cow and lost control over the vehicle.

    The double cab collided with the Polo and Ford Ranger, which were driving in the opposite direction.

    Mbeha said the 30-year-old driver of the Polo, Petrus Nauyoma and Salomo Ndjimba, 45, and passenger in the double cab died instantly, while Johannes Ndjimba, also a passenger in the double cab, aged 37, died upon arrival at the Otjiwarongo State Hospital.

    The 43-year-old driver of the double cab and a 30-year-old woman who was travelling in the Polo sustained serious injuries.

    Mbeha said the 28-year-old driver of the Ford Ranger, his 42-year-old passenger and an 18-year-old occupant of the Polo survived the accident with slight injuries.

    Police investigations continue.





    NAMPA

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  • 12/12/18--14:00: At your fingertips
  • At your fingertips At your fingertips Contact details in a jiffy A life-changing event encouraged this local entrepreneur to create an app that may save your life. It dawned on me that Namibia was in need of innovation. I didn’t want any other woman in Namibia to be in my position of helplessness. - Jaylee Venter: App Innovator Yolanda Nel - After a break-in at her home three years ago, an entrepreneur decided to develop an app that provides emergency contact numbers at the touch of a button.

    “After the armed robbery, I realised that I had no contact details on my phone for anyone – not any armed forces or the neighbourhood watch – that could respond quickly,” says Jaylee Venter, who developed HomeDome after her ordeal.

    The home invasion took place on Independence Day at 03:00. Fortunately she was able to hide her phone from the perpetrators. Once she found a number, the police were not answering their phones. Thankfully Jaylee was able to phone a friend that could help her.

    “At that moment it dawned on me that Namibia is in need of an innovation. I didn’t want any other woman in Namibia to be in the same position of helplessness,” Jaylee says. Also, she realised that people are often in a state of shock after an event like this and can’t remember telephone numbers off the top of their head.

    Enter HomeDome

    Except for emergency contact numbers, Jaylee’s HomeDome focuses on trustworthy and reliable service provides in Windhoek. “In basic terms, the app is like the Yellow Pages,” she says. Here you will find all available contact information (including map locations) in a top ten list of plumbers, electricians, caterers, landscapers and many others.

    In addition, HomeDome also supplies subscribers with the contact details of Neighbourhood Watches along with emergency numbers for hospitals, police, real estate, shopping centres and entertainment for the kids.

    According to Jaylee, putting the overall structure for HomeDome together and finding trustworthy SMEs to add to the app took about a year, while another year went into completing the design to the point where it is today.

    The app has an additional feature where the community can rate the service they experienced from listed service provides. “Their input is the cornerstone for the top ten listed companies in each category. This helps ensure that only the best of the best is available to everyone.”

    Ease of use

    The app is extremely user friendly. Once downloaded you simply tap the icon on your mobile phone’s homepage and it will take you through the standard terms and conditions. Upon agreeing to the T&Cs, the app will open on its home page where you will see two buttons. Top left is a button that displays a list of different sections along with information and an application form. The top right “arrow” button will allow you to share the app via Skype, WhatsApp, SMS, email or Bluetooth.

    Jaylee says an additional “Emergency Button” will be added in the near future.

    “The app is for every home owner and tenant. It takes little to no space on your mobile and is free to download,” Jaylee says. “It may not be a necessity today, but you may need it tomorrow.”

    With HomeDome you can find a trusted company to help you with your home situation in a flash – at your convenience and within your budget.

    The only costs involved are for the companies who wish to advertise on the mobile app platform. Currently advertising is free until February 2019. Public download is free to the public and will remain so for the foreseeable future.

    Ploughing back

    Jaylee says she is inspired by the beauty of Namibian people and the country’s endless possibilities in terms of economic growth, through community and governmental support. This is also why she likes giving back in her free time.

    “I spend most of my free time assisting and technically supporting a private school for disabled and autistic children. The rest of my time is spent on innovating and upgrading the app with new and useful ideas,” she says. That is also why, as of March 2019, HomeDome will be giving the community an opportunity to vote for one of three charity organisations chosen by the HomeDome team to receive a donation.

    The app is currently available on Google Play, under HomeDome. She says the iStore is currently doing a review of the app, but the plan is to launch it on that platform sometime this month.

    So, don’t delay – download this app today, and keep all your emergency contacts safely in one place.

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    Our big-spending defence ministryOur big-spending defence ministry Recent calls by parliamentarians in the National Council to increase the defence budget make for interesting reading. Onesi constituency councillor Titus Kanyele recently suggested more funds are needed to bolster the country's defence ministry, in order for it to, among other things, buy modern weapons to defend the country. There is no denying that defence is an important priority and government has a responsibility to protect the sovereignty of the nation, by enhancing national security and improving military infrastructure across the country. It is also indeed true that the cost-effectiveness of Namibia's defence budget spending is debatable, given the other pressing priorities such as lack of affordable land and housing that the nation is grappling with, as well as the ridiculously high civil service wage bill. For the current financial year, the defence ministry was allocated N$6 billion and an additional N$124.5 million in the mid-term budget review announced in October. According to finance minister Calle Schlettwein the money will be used for utilities and transport-related expenses. The world over, budget spending on defence has been closely watched and governments have been called out for not providing transparent and detailed explanations for allocations in their defence budgets. Obviously, some allocations are cannot be divulged owing to national security interests. But this lack of transparency can also easily spark corruption within the ministry, which may inflate defence budgets at the expense of other sectors such as health and education. There must be a transparent process, which includes making actual spending readily available to the public. The status quo has resulted in more questions than answers and there is a need to have an open and visible process, with the reasons for spending clearly outlined. Clearly, taxpayers deserve to know how their hard-earned cash is spent. This big-spending trend on defence can longer continue unabated, especially when it is not in the public interest.

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    Another tough half-year for NictusAnother tough half-year for NictusRed six months for retail, property Headline earnings per share, a gauge of a company’s profitability, for the latest half-year was 3.30c, down 7.3% from the same period in 2017. Jo-Maré Duddy – The recession continued eroding the profit of Nictus Holdings in the first six months of its current financial year, but its impact was less severe compared to the same half-year in 2017.

    The locally-listed group reported an operating profit of nearly N$8.3 million for the six months ended 30 September 2018, about N$2.1 million or 20.2% less than the same half-year in 2017. Last year, operating profit plunged by about N$7.5 million or 42% compared to the first half-year of 2016.

    Nictus’ retail and property segments suffered operating losses after taxation for the second consecutive half-years, with especial retail taking a knock.

    Retail recorded an operating loss after taxation of nearly N$7.4 million – about N$1.9 million less than the loss of N$9.3 million reported in the six months ended September 2017. In the same half-year in 2016, retail made an operating profit after taxation of about N$2.9 million.

    Nictus’ property segment suffered an operation loss after taxation of about N$1.8 million in the past half-year compared to a loss of nearly N$2.04 million in 2017 and a profit of about N$2.9 million in 2016.

    The group’s insurance and finance interest ended the September half-year with an operating profit after taxation of nearly N$11.5 million, nearly N$1.1 million or 8.7% less than the same six months in 2017. In the same half-year in 2016, the segment reported a profit of nearly N$18.7 million.

    Figures

    Compared to the first half-year of 2017, overall revenue dropped by nearly N$27.1 million to about N$406.7 million. Comparable interim results show a fall of about N$34.5 million in overall revenue from 2016 to 2017.

    Cost of sales of the latest half-year was nearly N$296.6 million, down nearly 7.9% from last year.

    Nictus’ gross profit came in at nearly N$99.3 million, a decline of about N$6.8 million or 6.4%.

    Basic earnings per share (EPS) was 3.39c, 12.9% lower than the 3.89c of 2017. In the same half-year in 2016, EPS was 21.74c.

    Headline earnings per share (HEPS), a gauge of a company’s profitability, for the latest half-year was 3.30c. This is 7.3% lower than 2017. In 2016, HEPS was 19.31c.

    At the end of September 2018, Nictus had assets in excess of N$1.7 billion, an increase of 2.2% compared to a year ago. Cash and cash equivalents amounted to nearly N$407.2 million, up 5.3% compared to September 2017.

    Nictus’ board of directors proposed no interim dividend for the period under review, the same as for the comparable half-year in 2017.

    Comment

    Nictus says although its retail segment suffered a loss for the first six months of its financial year, results have improved.

    “There was a further contraction in the motor industry and this reflects in the segment results. The release of new Isuzu and Opel range of vehicles are positive developments,” the group says.

    Regarding its property companies, the group says the installation of a solar system on the Nictus building will result in a “significant cost savings” for the segment in future.

    Commenting on its insurance and finance segment, Nictus says the results were in line with expectations. “There have been regulatory changes from the Namibia Financial Institutions Supervisory Authority (Namfisa) in terms of levy collections that resulted in an increase of costs associated with the regulator. Further changes in respect of legislation are expected and this will affect the insurance and finance industry as a whole,” Nictus says.

    Nictus Holdings-Nam is listed on the Local Index of the Namibian Stock Exchange (NSX). It ended Tuesday at N$1.80 per share, nearly 4.8% lower than the beginning of 2018.

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    Iilonga hailed as steadfast, courageousIilonga hailed as steadfast, courageous Tributes are pouring in for struggle veteran Petrus Iilonga, who died on Tuesday evening at the age of 71.

    Iilonga was a former trade unionist and political prisoner on Robben Island, where he was incarcerated for seven years from 1978 to 1985.

    President Hage Geingob tweeted yesterday that he learned with sadness of Iilonga's passing. Comrade Iilonga led workers in their immense contribution to the liberation of Namibia.

    “His work as a member of the executive is widely appreciated. Sympathies to [his] family, comrades and friends. May his soul rest in peace,” the head of state tweeted.





    Veteran politician and former Robben Island prisoner Ben Ulenga said Iilonga was “a friend through thick and thin”.

    “I cannot quite believe it that he has passed on. I know he was sick but I heard that he was getting better, so I was very shocked to hear this morning (yesterday) that he has passed on,” he said.

    Ulenga said they had worked side by side during the liberation struggle and after the country gained independence.

    “When I think of our time on Robben Island, I remember a steadfast and trustworthy person, a comrade and friend. He will surely be missed,” said Ulenga.

    National Council chairperson Margaret Mensah-Williams also expressed her condolences on social media.

    She posted a heartfelt message on Facebook, saying: “It is with a heavy heart that I learnt about the passing of Comrade Petrus Iilonga. He was a true patriot and a freedom fighter. May his soul rest in eternal peace.”

    Veteran journalist Gwen Lister said on Twitter that Iilonga was on old friend.

    “Always wearing his iconic beret; he was a better trade unionist than the politician he later became. RIP old friend.”

    Iilonga served as a deputy minister in many ministries after independence and was also awarded the Ongulumbashe Medal for bravery and long service in 1996.

    Between 2000 and 2005 he served as deputy environment minister and went on to serve as deputy labour minister from 2005 to 2010.

    In 2012 he was appointed deputy minister of defence, a position he held until recently.

    JEMIMA BEUKES

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  • 12/12/18--14:00: Cops heavily in debt
  • Cops heavily in debtCops heavily in debtN$40 million paid to micro-lenders every month Police chief Sebastian Ndeitunga says there is no money for fuel or rape kits, no protection from mosquitoes and no cars for police officers, who are mired in debt owed to micro-lenders. The police chief, Lieutenant-General Sebastian Ndeitunga, yesterday gave President Hage Geingob a frank overview of the tragic state of affairs in the force.

    According to him the police force has been crippled by cost-cutting measures introduced by the government.

    Ndeitunga also told the president that N$40 million is deducted from police salaries every month to pay micro-lenders.

    “The officers, they took loans from micro-lenders and this is deducted from their salaries. They took out the loans to pay for their needs. And this may even lead to people committing suicide,” he said.

    Ndeitunga expressed concern over what he termed a “state of capture”, especially when one looks at the rate of corruption in the country.

    The police chief emphasised that his staff are so stressed that they cannot even be joked with.

    “They can even tell you, 'I do not eat patriotism, my family is hungry'. They are so stressed, when you joke with them you can see the stress on their faces,” he said.

    Ndeitunga reminded the president that the police are voters too, especially border guards living in poor accommodation.

    He added that budgets had been cut without proper consultation with the implementing officers.





    As a result, there is no money for fuel or rape kits, no protection from mosquitoes and no cars for police officers.

    He also pointed out that the Special Reserve Force, which must protect the nation in the event of emergencies such as terror attacks, are under-capacitated and in need of proper care, including food and danger allowances.

    They also need proper training and the calibration of their equipment.

    “Our helicopter pilots do not get flight allowances, which is an international standard,” he said.

    The president attempted to interject and said senior officials had the right to allocate the available money to key areas.

    However, Ndeitunga was undeterred and said, “many people do not know the inside of policing.”

    According to Ndeitunga, there is no money for subsistence and travel allowances (S&Ts) when officers are expected to attend court cases.

    He said the S&T budget had been diverted to essential areas such as investigation, which is the backbone of police work.

    As a result, some police officers cannot attend court cases.

    “Sometimes the High Court cases take two weeks. An officer is there without anything.”

    Ndeitunga also lamented the fact that there is no money to send detectives and other specialists for refresher courses.

    “We have big cases here of commercial crimes but we do not have proper capacity. We have Dr Paul Ludik here; if he goes today then we will have a problem at the laboratory.

    “We are building a state-of-the-art laboratory here in Windhoek. When it is completed we will need proper equipment and scientists. And we will be one of the best in the region, but we need to train and capacitate our youth,” said Ndeitunga.

    Ludik is the head of the National Forensic Science Institute, which falls under the police.



    Budget

    In the current financial year, the safety and security ministry was allocated N$5.2 billion, of which N$3.1 billion was for personnel expenditure. A staggering N$400 million is spent per year on VIP protection, while the critical forensic science services division receives about N$21 million annually.



    Accommodation

    Accommodation for police officers has been a crisis for many years.

    Ndeitunga reminded the president that there was a serious need for proper police housing.

    He suggested that all empty government buildings, such as the Ramatex complex, be turned into accommodation for police officers.

    According to him the salaries of urban police officers are gobbled up by high rent.

    Geingob said it was unacceptable that police officers lived in shacks and then had to guard ministers in their “palaces”.

    “Next year I think we must start to do something. We have declared war against squatting at the second national land conference. Some police officers have to come from shacks,” he said.



    Tribalism

    Ndeitunga added that tribalism was a serious problem in the country and equally so in the police force, which prompted him to implement a quota system to ensure the equal representation of all tribes.

    “People are so tribalist, which is why I have suggested that we set up a tribalism commission. I want someone to be taken to court and jailed for tribalism. It is becoming a security threat; it divides and discriminates against people. If we do not take serious steps, then we will become like other African countries,” he warned.

    JEMIMA BEUKES

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    Shifting Red Line 'a long-term strategy'Shifting Red Line 'a long-term strategy' An interim strategy has been developed to control outbreaks of foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) in the Northern Communal Areas (NCAs), as the shifting of the veterinary cordon fence to the Angolan border remains a long-term strategy for now.

    While speaking about access to markets for livestock and livestock products, agriculture minister Alpheus !Naruseb said the shifting of the veterinary cordon fence (VCF) or Red Line required clear minds and a well-thought-out strategic approach.

    He said gradually moving the Red Line further north to the Angolan border was a long-term strategy.

    “However in the interim, a medium-term approach has been devised.”





    According to !Naruseb the ministry will continue with vigorous vaccination campaigns in the NCAs to control FMD and lung sickness.

    It also aims to establish “disease freedom” as far as these diseases are concerned.

    !Naruseb said vaccination against FMD would be intensified in the FMD-infected zone, which covers the Zambezi Region and the Mukwe and Ndiyona constituencies in Kavango East, in order to reduce the frequency of FMD outbreaks in these areas.

    These areas are prone to outbreaks because of the presence of free-roaming African buffalo that are carriers of the FMD virus.

    “Moreover, the vaccinations are complemented by intensifying the surveillance of animal movements,” !Naruseb said.

    He said access to markets for livestock and livestock products would be enhanced.

    This will be done by establishing abattoirs in the NCAs in order to enable the movement of deboned beef from the NCAs for export to areas south of the Red Line and to regional and international markets.

    Therefore, the ministry has an ongoing project to construct, upgrade and renovate all abattoirs and meat-processing facilities in the NCAs.

    These are located at Opuwo, Outapi, Oshakati, Eenhana, Rundu, Katima Mulilo, Ongwediva and Bukalo.

    Upgrades started at the Oshakati and Katima Mulilo abattoirs on 1 September and once these are completed they will be handed over to operators.

    According to !Naruseb the ministry will also establish feedlots in selected areas in the NCAs, where livestock can be fed with quality fodder supplied from a Green Scheme irrigation project to improve their condition before slaughter.

    This will be done to improve the prices that communal farmers receive for their livestock.

    The minister said access to markets would be increased through the compartmentalisation of certain areas along the Red Line.

    The ministry has identified Karikubis in Kavango East, the Mangetti East farms in Kavango West, the Mangetti West and Onalusheshete farms in the Oshikoto Region and the Ombuga area in the Oshana Region for this compartmentalisation exercise.

    The Omutambo Mawo area in Omusati and Sesfontein in the Kunene Region were identified for the creation of disease-free compartments to enable the marketing of livestock and livestock products on both sides of the Red Line.

    “These compartments will be fenced off using livestock-proof double fences and the directorate of veterinary services will implement biosecurity measures to maintain disease freedom,” !Naruseb added.

    ELLANIE SMIT

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  • 12/13/18--02:26: Economy remains in the red
  • Economy remains in the redEconomy remains in the red The Namibian economy grew by -0.8% in the third quarter of the year, marking its 10th consecutive quarter in the red.
    According to data released by the Namibia Statistics Agency (NSA) this morning, the consumer remains under pressure with growth in wholesale and retail in the past quarter coming in at -5.8%. This is the 8th consecutive quarter of negative growth for the sector.

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    Inflation continues steady climbInflation continues steady climb Annual inflation in November was 5.6%, up from 5.1% the previous month and higher than the 5.2% of the same month in 2017.
    Especially food inflation increased, recording an annual rate of 4.9% compared to 3.0% in October and 2.6% a year ago.
    The Namibia Statistics Agency (NSA) released the latest figures this morning.

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    Ambunda moves up to featherweight for rematchAmbunda moves up to featherweight for rematch International Boxing Organisation (IBO) super bantamweight champion Paulus Ambunda is moving up to the featherweight division to exchange blows with Muhamad Ridhwan on 29 March next year in Singapore.

    The Namibian hopes to follow in the footsteps of American boxer Mickey Garcia by dominating three weight divisions, and becoming the first Namibian to do so.

    As a professional, Ambunda held the WBO bantamweight title in 2013 and the IBO bantamweight title in 2015 and 2018, and is now looking to dominate the featherweight division.

    “This is a great opportunity for the 38-year-old Ambunda. You hardly find such opportunities and we are glad to be where we are through hard work,” said Immanuel 'Imms' Moses, his trainer from AC Boxing and Fitness Gym.

    Moses said it is a great opportunity for him to get a shot at the World Boxing Council (WBC) belt and to fight in the featherweight division, and create a chance to become a champion in three weight divisions.

    In September Ambunda put up a strong showing against Ridhwan, and clinched the IBO world title by split decision.

    Both Ridhwan and Ambunda lasted the full 12 rounds, but it was the Namibian who edged the contest, with the judging scoring the fight of 115-113, 112-115, 116-111 in his favour.





    LIMBA MUPETAMI

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