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Tells it All - Namibian Sun

older | 1 | .... | 977 | 978 | (Page 979) | 980 | 981 | .... | 1152 | newer

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  • 03/05/19--14:00: A heist most foul
  • A heist most foulA heist most foul Nearly two years after the SME Bank was closed down, its liquidators are finally honing in on the Zimbabweans who jointly stole about N$347 million from the bank in a matter of one year.

    Judge Collins Parker granted an order on Monday to attach the Namibian assets left behind by at least five of the alleged fraudsters.

    Advocate Raymond Heathcote, acting on behalf of the liquidators, asked that a lawyer serve the notice on the Zimbabweans because they are “powerful and corrupt”.

    But this is only part of the story of the demise of the SME Bank.

    Of course the plight of the former workers has been highlighted, who are now jobless; what has not gained much traction is how this blatant robbery has affected those who would now be knocking on the doors of the bank for funding.

    SME Bank was founded by government following the dissolution of the Small Business Credit Guarantee Trust (SBCGT), which was transformed into a fully-fledged commercial banking institution.

    The bank was supposed to have provided special attention to projects of small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), and those catering to rural communities, micro-enterprises and previously disadvantaged individuals.

    It also offered banking services to individuals and companies that were not necessarily SMEs, through personal banking (retail) and corporate banking, while also offering facilities to treasury and for international banking.

    This puts this heist-most-foul in an even more shocking light, as the SME Bank robbers have literally stolen money from Namibian families, especially those with ambitions to either start or grow their small businesses. It is a shocking state of affairs.

    Even more shocking, as reported by The Namibian recently, are revelations that around N$79 million of the N$200 million suspected to have been ferried to South Africa was returned to Namibia, where several individuals received it.

    This has now laid bare the fact that Namibians were actively involved in stealing from their own.

    It is equally shocking that no arrests are forthcoming.

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    Swartbooi 'un-African' - SwapoSwartbooi 'un-African' - Swapo Swapo's secretary for information and publicity, Hilma Nicanor, has lambasted Landless People's Movement (LPM) leader Bernadus Swartbooi for allegedly insulting and belittling education minister Katrina Hanse-Himarwa, as well as other Swapo leaders.

    Swartbooi claimed during a media conference last week that the return of Hendrik Witbooi's Bible and whip from Germany was part of an alleged Swapo ruse or “underhanded election tactic”.

    He was particularly scathing in his attack on Hanse-Himarwa, who he said had acted in an undignified manner when she received the whip from the German delegation.

    “Katrina was playing with the sjambok,” Swartbooi charged, adding: “It is terrible how people are lightweight with important issues. You could see the intellectual and ideological framework is basically lacking. How does a minister play with a sjambok of a revolutionary like that?”

    He ended his attack with a whip-crack when he added: “Dirty hands took the Bible and sjambok; dirty hands of a dirty government facilitated the return. That sjambok will spiritually sjambok the hell out of them.”

    Nicanor said the return of the Bible and whip should be seen in the context of “yet another milestone in the recognition of the immense contributions” of Witbooi in the fight for freedom.





    She said Swapo salutes the role Hanse-Himarwa and others have played in the negotiations and the eventual return of the Witbooi artefacts.

    Nicanor said Hanse-Himarwa “does not deserve to be insulted and belittled”.

    She said Swartbooi is similarly constantly making disrespectful remarks towards senior party and national leaders, including President Hage Geingob and former presidents Sam Nujoma and Hifikepunye Pohamba.

    Nicanor said to indulge in such attacks is “un-African, unethical” and unprofessional.

    “It is totally unacceptable that these revolutionary leaders are today being subjected to insults and disrespect by those enjoying the freedom and independence which they have brought about, at will. It is very unfortunate that young individuals such as Bernadus Swartbooi can stoop so low and resort to name-calling and defamation of character of persons who are not only older than him, but (are) indeed respected leaders both here at home and in the international arena,” she said.

    She called on Swartbooi to desist from using “vulgar language” against national and Swapo leaders.

    Nicanor said the youth of the country should also not allow themselves to be “misled by the cheap politics which can disturb our hard-won peace”.

    CATHERINE SASMAN

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  • 03/05/19--14:00: Workers turn up the heat
  • Workers turn up the heatWorkers turn up the heatUnions object to foreign contractors Organised labour and Namibia's private sector are in agreement for once – capital projects should be awarded to local companies employing local workers. Swapo-affiliated unions and the Namibia Chamber of Commerce and Industry (NCCI) have thrown down the gauntlet over billion-dollar tenders being awarded to foreign companies while Namibians continue to lose jobs on a daily basis.

    The Swapo Party Youth League, however, withdrew from yesterday's protest and petition handovers, claiming they had received several concessions from State House during a meeting on Monday.

    Hundreds of Namibian construction workers yesterday embarked on a demonstration against the awarding of tenders to foreign, and specifically Chinese-owned, companies.

    They demanded that suitable local companies be prioritised when it comes to the awarding of government tenders, as these provided permanent jobs as opposed to short-term employment by foreigners.

    The Metal and Allied Namibian Workers Union (Manwu) has given the government a week to meet its demands, or face the consequences at the ballot box.

    “Failure to respond positively to our demands will mean that you should face the same retrenchments that construction workers face come election time,” said Manwu.

    The union yesterday demanded that the Roads Authority, the works ministry and the finance ministry immediately stop the bidding process for the Hosea Kutako dual-carriageway project and instead upgrade the railway at Walvis Bay.

    “Such projects must be awarded to local contractors to support our own construction industry,” said the union. It also said that all pre-qualification conditions for public tenders must be redesigned to accommodate Namibian contractors.

    “We demand that Namibian companies be continuously provided with all big capital projects, either individually, through consortiums or joint ventures to continue creating more local sustainable jobs.”

    Manwu said they also wanted a workers' representative on the Public Procurement Board and all its committees to ensure a fair and transparent procurement process.





    “We further demand that all loan conditions entered into between the government and lenders, or any development partners, be revised and re-aligned to favour Namibian companies in terms of actual implementation.

    “All future negotiations or agreements to be entered between the government and lenders, or any development partners, should favour Namibians and the national development agenda,” Manwu said.

    The union said any foreign company that wanted to be considered for a public project must be forced to procure local materials, comply with all national laws and pay taxes.

    It said workers must be treated with dignity and their rights must be respected at all times.

    “Should foreign companies fail to comply with these demands, the licences of such foreign companies must be revoked and the tender must be cancelled.”

    The Swapo Party Youth League (SPYL) announced its withdrawal from the protest action following a last-minute meeting at State House on Monday.

    According to a statement issued by Gerson Dumeni, the SPYL secretary for information, publicity and mobilisation, the youth league's national executive committee demanded an audience to discuss the issues it had raised last week when it condemned the awarding of construction contracts to foreign companies.

    According to Dumeni it was agreed during the meeting that all road and rail project subcontracts, inclusive of plant hire and basic services, would be awarded to Namibian-owned companies.

    This arrangement would pertain to the road projects between Windhoek and Hosea Kutako, Windhoek and Okahandja, Walvis Bay and Kamanjab via Swakopmund, Henties Bay and Uis, and the Walvis Bay-Kranzberg railway project.

    “No importation of skills that are locally available,” said the SPYL.

    It was further agreed that all future government capital projects would subcontract fully Namibian-owned companies and Namibian joint ventures.

    Dumeni said it was also agreed that the Public Procurement Act must be amended.

    Meanwhile, the works ministry says the main question is whether domestic and regional bidders have the capacity to carry out such large projects.

    Deputy works minister James Sankwasa explained that the government had approached the African Development Bank (AfDB) for the funding of the ongoing Transport Infrastructure Improvement Project (TIIP).

    The TIIP includes the upgrading of the Walvis Bay-Kranzberg railway (210 km) and the upgrading of section 2A (23.8 km) of the highway from Windhoek to Hosea Kutako International Airport.

    According to Sankwasa a loan agreement was signed for more than N$5.5 billion.

    He said while the works ministry was the executing agency for the project's rail component, the Roads Authority was the executing agency for the road component.

    “The agreement specifies that the procurement of goods, works and services must be done according to the AfDB procurement methods and procedures.”

    It also specifies the procurement packages. He said to comply with national laws the ministry of finance therefore granted the TIIP an exemption from the provisions of the Public Procurement Act and its regulations.

    With regard to the prequalification for road works, the ministry through the RA proceeded to issue a Specific Procurement Notice.

    According to Sankwasa the Roads Authority then received complaints from the construction industry regarding the criteria for pre-qualification for the Windhoek-Hosea Kutako road project.

    It wrote to the AfBD to convey the industry's concerns and requested the bank to relax some of the stringent requirements. It requested that certain works items be ring-fenced and exclusively reserved for local contractors.

    “In total 32 applicants submitted bids by the closing date. Among the submitted bids, 69% were received from outside SADC, 10 from SADC and the remaining 21% comprised a mixture of joint ventures with domestic, regional and non-regional contractors.”

    After conducting the evaluation in strict compliance with the AfDB's rules and procedures it was concluded that 14 applicants qualified to bid for phase two of the airport road. All of them were foreign.

    The spokesperson of the Chinese embassy in Namibia, Feng Deheng, yesterday expressed concern about the public condemnation of tenders awarded to foreigners, specifically Chinese companies.

    He stressed that all Chinese companies had followed transparent and lawful bidding procedures and said Chinese companies had made a great contribution to Namibia's economy.

    According to him Chinese companies have created more than 11 000 jobs and generated N$250 million in tax revenue since 2016.

    “I also urge Manwu and NCCI to act in a more reasonable and responsible way towards foreign companies so as to create a better investment environment, which is of great importance for the national economy,” he said.

    ELLANIE SMIT

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    Champions League trophy comingChampions League trophy comingGiggs may accompany silverware to Namibia today It is speculated that the two-time Champions League winner and current Wales national coach will be accompanying one of the sporting world's most coveted pieces of silverware to Namibia. The Uefa Champions League trophy will land today in Namibia and speculation is rife that legendary Manchester United footballer Ryan Giggs will accompany it.

    Giggs, who is the Heineken ambassador, was in South Africa this week with the trophy.

    However, Heineken had little to share regarding whether local fans who follow the Champions League will have the chance to take photos or videos up close with the iconic trophy, or whether they will be able see the man himself.

    This is despite the fact that South Africans had the chance to see the trophy that's been lifted over the years by European legends such as Zinedine Zidane and Paolo Maldini.

    The trophy was displayed at Nelson Mandela Square for three hours between 12:00 and 15:00 on Tuesday. From Namibia the trophy tour will head to Indonesia, Mozambique, China, Nigeria and United States.

    The order of travel is unclear, with the Champions League final set for 1 June in Madrid, Spain.

    According to reports from South Africa, plans were in motion to allow fans in Durban to get a taste of the trophy at a live screening of Manchester United's crunch Champions League last-16 encounter against Paris St Germain yesterday. United were 0-2 behind on aggregate going into the clash.

    According to Soccer Laduma, Heineken's Johannesburg marketing manager Lauren Muller said the tour is a unique experience for global football fans outside of Europe to come face-to-face with the trophy and to meet Giggs in their home cities.

    “Our aim is to enable fans that would otherwise not get the opportunity, to experience the unmissable action of the Uefa Champions League.”

    Giggs hoisted the prestigious trophy twice during 1999 and 2008 and is the only player to have scored in 17 different Uefa Champions League tournaments, including 11 consecutive tournaments.

    Giggs has a historic link to the league and plays a significant role in demonstrating the intense passion for the tournament.

    In other Champions League news, on Tuesday Ajax produced a magnificent performance to knock out Real Madrid. The Dutch side lost 1-2 in the first leg but won 4-1 in Spain to qualify for the last eight (5-3 on aggregate).

    Yesterday, Roma was scheduled to travel to Porto with a 2-1 advantage from the first leg. The other round of 16 second-leg fixtures will be played on 12 and 13 March.

    Once the last-16 ties are concluded the draw for the Champions League quarterfinals and semi-finals will be held on 15 March.

    LIMBA MUPETAMI

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    Khomas to host netball trialsKhomas to host netball trials The Khomas netball region will hold trials on Saturday to select an under-20 team for the upcoming Namibian Newspaper Cup, slated to take place in Mariental from 19 to 22 April.

    Interested players in the region are invited to participate in the trials, in order to compete for places in the regional netball team, as well as for berths in the regional Namibia National Youth Games team, with the date of the commencement for the games still to be decided.

    According to Isack Hamata, public relations officer for the Khomas netball region, all players should have been born on or before 31 December 2000 to qualify for selection for the regional team.

    Also, all players should take along certified copies of their full birth certificates, identity documents or passports, plus two colour passport photos. The trials are scheduled to take place at the Wanderers netball courts in Pioneers Park from 9:00 to 11:00.

    LIMBA MUPETAMI

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  • 03/06/19--14:00: Müller, Alcock scoop gold
  • Müller, Alcock scoop goldMüller, Alcock scoop gold Local karatekas Delano Müller and Giano Alcock scooped gold medals at the Africa Continental Pro Jiu-Jitsu Championships, which was held from 2 to 3 March in Stellenbosch, South Africa.

    Two other team members, Lesley !Hoaeb and Ankia Rentzke, registered fourth-place finishes.

    Team Namibia was competing in Sylvio Behring Jiu-Jitsu and the competition was organised by the United Arab Emirates Jiu-Jitsu Federation (UAEJJF).

    The competition also served as an UAEJJF world rankings event and as a qualifier for the Abu Dhabi World Professional Championships in Jiu-Jitsu series.

    Last year Müller, Alcock and !Hoaeb also competed in the same championships, which was then held in Johannesburg. Müller and Alcock achieved gold medals while !Hoaeb took fifth place.

    According to the Namibia Karate Federation (NFK), the championships had a professional set-up, was well-organised and the standard very high.

    Rentzke, who was the first woman to participate internationally in jiu-jitsu, performed excellently and said it was a phenomenal experience.

    Gideon Gurirab, vice-president of the NKF, said the championships was very professional, and that the karatekas were disciplined and competitive. He said the venue was conducive and a great international contingent of teams competed. The championships was attended by Namibia, South Africa, the United Arab Emirates, Great Britain, Ghana, Botswana, Angola, Zimbabwe, Brazil, Mozambique and Japan.

    LIMBA MUPETAMI

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  • 03/06/19--14:00: Saints in top form
  • Saints in top formSaints in top formIndoor hockey league heats up Saints women and men's teams are in dominant form in the 2019 Bank Windhoek National Indoor Hockey League. The fifth round of fixtures in the 2019 Bank Windhoek National Indoor Hockey League, which took place over the weekend in Windhoek, saw current champions Saints sweep aside their opponents, as they strive for a record number of wins.

    Saints teams in both the men and women's premier and reserve league divisions, continue to deliver great performances.

    In the men's premier league, Saints lead the log standings with a total of 19 points, combined with a staggering 49 goals scored thus far, while conceding only four. They have a goal difference of 45.

    Windhoek Old Boys Sports Club (WOBSC), which trails Saints by 13 points, is second on the log standings. After Deutscher Turn- und Sportverein (DTS) defeated Wanderers 5-1, the two teams now share the third position with five points apiece.

    Unam on the other hand remain rooted at the bottom of the five-team log table.

    “It could be said that Saints will in all likelihood retain the title with the remainder of the teams playing for second and third place,” said Namibia Hockey Union (NHU) media officer Thomas Duncan.

    In the men's reserve premier league, DTS and WOBS are first and second, respectively, on the league table and are separated by a single point.

    However, Saints are closing in on the top two teams, as they narrowed the gap to four points after they inflicted a 7-0 defeat on Angels.

    Brandon Lensen, Isaac Fallis and Christian du Raan each secured a brace during the encounter.

    Wanderers are currently fourth, while Angels share fifth spot with Unam.

    Nust find themselves fixed at the foot of the table with no points, after Wanderers beat them 2-1.

    The women's premier league saw Saints beating DTS 3-1 in a well-fought encounter that resulted in Saints cementing their place at the top of the table with 12 points.

    They have a goal difference of 16, after scoring 19 goals and conceding only three. WOBS sit second with seven points, followed by Unam who are currently third with four points in total.

    Wanderers remain fourth, even after going down 0-9 to Saints. DTS, who also suffered a defeat at the hands of Saints, also occupy fourth position.

    The women's reserve premier league sees Saints similarly dominating the log table, followed by Angels who are currently second. Coastal Raiders are third after they beat DTS 2-1. Wanderers are fourth with seven points, followed by DTS and WOBS who are jointly fifth on the log.

    Duncan highlighted that Swakopmund's Coastal Raiders, who travelled to Windhoek over the weekend, gave a good account of themselves after they won several games.

    SPORT REPORTER

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  • 03/06/19--14:00: Company news in brief
  • Company news in briefCompany news in brief BHP buys stake in Canadian firm

    The world's biggest coking coal producer BHP has bought a US$6 million equity stake in a Canadian-based company that sucks carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, as miners' quest to become sustainable and retain ethical investors gathers pace.

    BHP, alone among the major miners has a target of net zero emissions by the second half of the century, in line with UN carbon-cutting goals.

    That is a huge challenge, especially if the emissions caused by selling its amounts of coking coal and iron ore for steel-making are included.

    Canada's Carbon Engineering (CE) has been removing emissions from the atmosphere since 2015 at a pilot plant in British Columbia and converting it into fuel since 2017.

    BHP said the direct air capture technology had the potential to deliver large-scale negative emissions. – Nampa/Reuters

    Volkswagen pays employees 4 750 euros bonus

    German carmaker Volkswagen is to pay around 100 000 employees on collective wage deals a 2018 bonus of 4 750 euros (US$5 400) each, the largest such payout since 2015 when they received 5 900 euros, a newsletter to staff said on Tuesday.

    Works council chief Bernd Osterloh said production programmes had been changed and shifts re-allocated as part of a reorganisation of all plants.

    "It is only fair that the staff gets its share of success," he was quoted as saying in the newsletter.

    The size of the payment should not be read as an indicator of operating profits at the Volkswagen passenger car brand because commercial vehicles were also included in the scheme, and the number of workers on part time contracts who receive less must be taken into account, the newsletter said.

    Volkswagen Group, which also includes the Audi, Porsche, Seat and other brands, recently released data for 2018 showing operating profit rose 0.7% to 13.92 billion euros. – Nampa/Reuters

    Campari reports slowdown in sales growth

    Italy's Campari on Tuesday reported a slowdown in fourth-quarter sales, sending shares in the drinks maker down more than 5%.

    Sales rose 2.1% on an organic basis in the October-December quarter, slowing from 6.6% growth in the first nine months of the year. Organic sales strip out currency swings and any purchase or sale of assets.

    Adjusted operating profit (EBIT) slipped 0.4% to 379 million euros, equivalent to 22.1% of sales, a slightly higher margin than in 2017.

    "Unfortunately today's in-line results may not translate into further upgrades to consensus, which could weigh on shares short term given the strong run in the past 12 months," Berenberg analyst Gonzalez Javier Lastra said in a note.

    The stock, which has gained more than 40% in the last year, was down 5.7% at 1214 GMT after touching a record high of 8.5650 euros ahead of the results. – Nampa/Reuters

    Huawei calls for common cybersecurity standards

    Huawei, in the spotlight over the security risks of its telecom equipment gear, urged governments, the telecoms industry and regulators on Tuesday to work together to create a common set of cybersecurity standards.

    The call by Huawei chairman Ken Hu came as the world’s largest telecoms equipment maker opened a cyber security centre in Brussels, allowing its customers and governments to test Huawei’s source code, software and product solutions.

    The company has similar facilities in Britain, Bonn, Dubai, Toronto and Shenzhen.

    "The fact is that both the public and private sectors lack a basic common understanding of this issue. As a result, different stakeholders have different expectations and there is no alignment of responsibilities," Hu told a news conference.

    Hu, who met with European Commission digital chief Andrus Ansip on Monday, said they had discussed the possibility of setting up a cybersecurity standard along the lines of the GDPR, the landmark EU data protection law adopted last year which gives Europeans more control over their online information and applies to all companies that do business with Europeans. – Nampa/Reuters

    Jeans maker Diesel USA files for bankruptcy

    Diesel USA Inc, the denim and accessory brand known for its jeans, filed for bankruptcy on Tuesday, blaming mounting losses, a sales plunge, expensive leases and cyber fraud.

    The New York-based unit of Italy's Diesel SpA filed for Chapter 11 protection from creditors with the US bankruptcy court in Delaware. Its parent is not part of the filing.

    Diesel USA said it has been the sole distributor of Diesel products in the United States since its 1995 launch.

    But it said it has not been spared in the recent downturn in the retail sector, having lost money for six straight years as annual sales plunged 53%, to US$104 million. Theft and cyber fraud cost US$1.2 million over three years, it added.

    Many other retailers have gone bankrupt in recent years as more consumers shop online. Recent victims have included shoe chain Payless Inc, which said last month it will close its roughly 2 500 stores. – Nampa/Reuters

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    Swartbooi ke na oohedhi dhoshiAfrika - SwapoSwartbooi ke na oohedhi dhoshiAfrika - Swapo Amushanga gwomauyelele moSwapo, Hilma Nicanor, okwa nyana omuleli gwongundu yoLandless People's Movement (LPM), Bernadus Swartbooi omolwa omatukano ngoka aningile ominista yelongo Katrina Hanse-Himarwa, oshowo aaleli yamwe yoSwapo.

    Swartbooi okwa popi pethimbo lyomutumba gwiikundaneki ngoka a ningi oshiwike sha piti kutya egalulo lyombiimbeli oshowo ongola yomuleli nale, Hendrik Witbooi, oshi li oshitopolwa shomaheko ngoka taga ningwa omolwa omahogololo ngoka oshilongo sha taalela.

    Okwa popi kutya Hanse-Himarwa okwa li tiihumbata momukalo gwesithahoni pethimbo a yakula ongola ndjoka okuza kaakalelipo yaGermany.

    Okwa popi kutya Katrina okwa li ta dhana nongola ndjoka nonando oyi na esimano enene.

    Nicanor okwa popi kutya egalulo lyombiimbeli nongola ndjoka otashi ulike esimaneko ndyoka tali gandjwa kuWitbooi omolwa oshilonga a longa mekondjelomanguluko lyoshilongo.

    Amushanga okwa tsikile kutya Swapo okwa simaneka oshilonga sha longwa kuHanse-Himarwa pamwe nayakwawo mokukwashilipaleka kutya uuthiga mboka waWitbooi owa galulilwa moshilongo, onkene aniwa ina pumbwa okutukwa nokunyanwa ngaaka.

    Okwa tsikile kutya Swartbooi okwe shi ningi omukalondjiigilile okutuka aakuluntu yongundu mwakwatelwa aaleli ngaashi Hage Geingob , Sam Nujoma oshowo Hifikepunye Pohamba.

    Nicanor okwa popi kutya onkalo ndjoka kayi shi oshiAfrika.

    Okwa pula opo Swartbooi a hulithe po omukalo gwokutuka aaleli yongundu ye ta pula aanyasha yiikaleke kokule nomanwethemo gapuka gopolotika yombiliha, ndjoka tayi yi moshipala ombili.

    CATHERINE SASMAN

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    Ina mu gandja po iilonga kaazaizai - aaniilonga yomatungoIna mu gandja po iilonga kaazaizai - aaniilonga yomatungoYa hala omayamukulo okuza kepangelo muule woshiwike Omahangano gaaniilonga moshilongo opamwe nehangano lyaanangeshefa lyoNamibia Chamber of Commerce and Industry (NCCI) oya ningi ehololomadhilaadhilo lyopambili yeli ompinge nootendela dhiilonga ndhoka hadhi pewa omahangano gopondje omanga AaNamibia taya kanitha iilonga kehe esiku. Ewawa lyAanyasha yoSwapo, ndyoka lya li li na okukala oshitopolwa shehololomadhilaadhilo olyiikutha mo mehololomadhilaadhilo ndyoka.

    Aaniilonga yomatungo omathele oya kutha ombinga mehololomadhilaadhilo ndyoka itaya popile egandjo lyootendela kaazaizai unene AaChina.

    Otaya pula opo omahangano gomoshilongo ogo ga talike tango uuna taku gandjwa ootendela dhepangelo molwaashoka onkalo ndjoka otayi gandja iilonga tayi ka lelele kAanamibia okuyeleka niilonga yethimbo efupi mbyoka hayi pewa aazaizai.

    Ehangano lyoMetal and Allied Namibian Workers Union (Manwu) oya gandja kepangelo oshiwike shimwe oli li tule miilonga shoka aaniilonga taya pula nenge li ka taalele oshizemo pomahogololo.

    “Ngele omwa ndopa okutu yamukula nena otashi ti nane otamu ka taalela ekanitho lyiilonga ndyoka lya taalela aaniilonga kehe ethimbo uuna omahogololo ga thiki,” Manwu.

    Ehangano ndyoka olya pula opo Roads Authority, uuministeli wiilonga, oshowo uuministeli wemona wu kaleke otendela yomalila gaali gondjila yokuya kokapale koodhila kaHosea Kutako pehala naya longulule elila lyomashina mOmbaye.

    “Oopoloyeka ndhoka nadhi pewe omahangano gomoshilongo opo ku yambidhidhwe oshikondo shetu shomatungo.”

    Oya pula opo omilandu dhegandjo lyootendela dhi hwepopalekwe opo dhi vule okukwatela mo omahangano gomoshilongo.

    Natango ehangano ndyoka olya hala uuyuki megandjo lyootendela.

    Olya pula opo aakalelipo yaaniilonga ya kale oshitopolwa shoPublic Procurement Board opo ku kwashilipalekwe uuyuki.

    Mboka natango oya pula opo omilandu dhomikuli nomayambidhidho giimaliwa ndhoka dhi li pokati kepangelo noonakugandja omikuli dhoka dhi talululwe kokukwashilipalekwe kutya odha tulwa po muuwanawa wAaNamibia.

    Ehangano olya pula kutya omahanga gopondje ngoka taga ka kala ga hala okukutha ombinga moopoloyeka dhomoshilongo monakuyiwa oga pumbwa okukala taya longitha iitungithi yomoshilongo nokulandula omilandu dhomoshilongo ngaashi shokufuta iishoshela noshotuu.

    Uuna ga ndopa nena omikandapitiko dhomahangano ngoka nadhi kuthwe oonkondo noopoloyeka nadhi kuthwe ko kuyo.

    Ewawa lyaanyasha moSwapo olya tseyitha eikuthemo mehololomadhilaadhilo ndyoka dha landula aniwa omutumba ngoka gwa ningilwa mEgumbo lyepangelo mOmaandaha.

    Kwiikwatelelwwa komukanda ngoka gwa pititha kuamushanga gwomauyelele moSPYL, Gerson Dumeni, ogwa holola elelo lyopombanda olya pula eningo lyomutumba opo ku kundathanwe iikumungu mbyoka ya hololwa oshiwike sha piti sho SPYL a kondema egandjo lyootendela komahangano gaazaizai.

    Pahapu dhaDumeni, osha ziminwa momutumba kutya oopoloyeka adhihe dhoondjila oshowo omalila gomashina, otadhi pewa omahangano gaNamibia.

    Shoka osha kwatelamo oopoloyeka dhiilonga ngaashi ondjila yopokati kaVenduka naHosea Kutako, Ovenduka- Okahandja , Ombaye-Kamanjab oshowo Swakopmund, Henties Bay - Uis, oshowo Ombaye-Kranzberg.

    Dumeni okwa popi kutya natango okwa ziminwa kutya ompango yoPublic Procurement otayi talululwa.

    Uuministeli wiilonga owa pula ngele omahangano gomoshilongo otaga vulu tuu okulonga oopoloyeka ndhoka oonene.

    Omupeha minista, James Sankwasa okwa yelitha kutya epangelo olya pula oAfrican Development Bank (AfDB) opo yi gandje ekwatho lyiiyemo koTransport Infrastructure Improvement Project (TIIP).

    TIIP okwa kwatela mo elongululo lyelila lyomashina lyOmbaye-Kranzberg lyoshinano shookilometa 210.

    Natango opoloyeka ndjoka oya kwatelamo elongo lyoshitopolwa 2A shookilometa 23.8 shondjila yopokati kaVenduka nokapale kOodhila kaHosea kUutako.

    Pahapu dhaSankwasa etsokumwe lyomukuli lyongushu yoobiliyona 5.5 olya shainwa.

    Omukuli ngoka ogwe ya nomilandu ngaashi kutya okwa pumbwa okugwanithwa po oompango dhopashigwana onkene uuministeli wemona owa pitika opoloyela yoTIIP itayi pitile mondjila yoPublic Procurement Act.

    Omolwa omilandu dhimwe ndhoka dha tulwa po, Roads Authority okwa yakula omanyenyeto okuza koshikondo shomatungo, na okwa pula AfBD yi yululule ko komilandu dhimwe po.

    “Kumwe omahangano 32 oga ningi omaindilo. Mokati komahangano ngoka oopresenda 69 odhomahangano gaaza pondje yaSADC, 10 oga za moSADC oopresenda 21 odhomahangano giimanga kumwe nomahangano gomoshilongo, gomenenevi oshowo ngoka ga za pondje yenenevi.”

    Sha landula sho kwa ningwa omahogololo kwa landulwa nduno omilandu noompangu dha AfBD, okwa tothwamo omahangano 14 ngoka ge li momusholondondo gwomahangano ngoka taga vulu okupewa ootendela dhopoloyeka ndjoka.

    Omahangano agehe ngoka ga tothwapo ogaazaizai.

    Omupopiliko gwombelewa yomukalelipo gwaChina moNamibia, Feng Deheng, okwa holola omaiyuvo ge omolwa oshigwana shoka tashi kondema egandjo lyiilonga yomatungo komahangano gaazaaizai unene gaChina.

    Okwa tsu omuthindo kutya omahangano agehe gaChina otaga landula omilandu noompango na oga yambidhidha noonkondo eliko lyaNamibia.

    Pahapu dhe, omahangano gaChina oga gandja oompito dhiilonga dhi vulithe po 11 000 nokuyambidhidha epangelo okupitila miishoshela yoomiliyona 250 okuza momvula yo 2016.

    ELLANIE SMIT

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    Global monetary tightening less predictableGlobal monetary tightening less predictable Marc Jones - Financial markets have become hyper-sensitive in recent months as efforts by top central banks to gradually lever up interest rates have become increasingly unpredictable, the Bank for International Settlements said on Tuesday.

    The central bank umbrella group said in its first report of the year that the stellar start to 2019 for stock markets had come after central banks like the US Federal Reserve and European Central Bank reacted to the torrid end to 2018.

    Fed officials have signalled a pause in its more than three-year run of rate hikes while the ECB is contemplating reintroducing the ultra-cheap funding offerings that were once its flagship crisis-fighting tool.

    "The very gradual and predictable monetary tightening process is on pause and has become less predictable," said Claudio Borio, head of the BIS' monetary and economic department.

    With inflation in advanced economies showing few signs of flaring up and the global economy losing steam, "the narrow normalisation path is proving to be a winding one", he added.

    The BIS links most of the world's big central banks and its reports are seen as an indicator of the thinking that goes on behind the closed doors of its quarterly meetings.

    Message

    Most of its recent reports have generally encouraged policymakers to get away from record low interest rates, but there was no such a message this time around.

    Last year's big drops in European, Asian and eventually US stocks have been replaced by a near 20% leap in the S&P 500 and China's biggest markets, reviving hopes the decade-long global bull-run may not have ended after all.

    Global stocks have reflated by more than US$6 trillion, emerging markets have done well even as China's economy has revealed cracks yet yields on uber-safe government bonds like German Bunds have plumbed depths not seen in a very long time.

    "Financial markets scrutinise central banks’ every word and deed, taking them as the cue for their ups and downs and seeking perennial comfort," Borio said. "Central banks, in turn, scrutinise financial markets to better understand what the future holds for the economy."

    Looking forward

    The report also contained a mix of specialist studies.

    One looked at how the Fed's "forward guidance"– signals on what could happen with interest rates - has "significantly dampened" the sensitivity of short-maturity US government bonds, but not benchmark 10-year ones, to economic news.

    It also found that sensitivity to news could also be suppressed when interest rates were at the Zero Lower Bound (ZLB) - effectively at zero percent - as the ECB's rates and those in Switzerland and Japan still are.

    Another looked at the reliance of emerging market economies (EMEs) on foreign bank credit. The share of credit to EMEs from foreign banks has fallen since the financial crisis reflecting an increase in credit from domestic banks.

    But it is still around 15-20% of total credit on average and the concentration of that money from the likes of the United States and Britain has risen since the global financial crisis from what was already a high level.

    "If an EME gets all of its foreign bank credit from banks headquartered in just one foreign country, developments in that country may have a significant effect on credit provision," the report noted.

    Study

    Another study found British-based funds had supplied a large proportion of bonds the ECB bought during the 2.5 trillion euro bond buying programme it is trying to wind down, while a separate one cautioned that planned replacements for the tarnished Libor interest rate benchmark may end up squeezing banks and push up lending costs for customers.

    The paper said migration to the new rates may come at a price given there is no "one-size-fits-all", a message that won't help regulators with efforts to persuade markets to meet a 2021 deadline to switch away from the old scandal-hit rates. – Nampa/Reuters

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    Travel industry seen ‘resilient’ despite slowing growthTravel industry seen ‘resilient’ despite slowing growthTrump ‘non-welcoming’ If Britain leaves the EU without an agreement, it could lose 300 000 jobs, with an additional 400 000 jobs likely to disappear elsewhere in Europe. BERLIN - The global travel industry is likely to expand by 4% in 2019 despite slowing economic growth in key areas such China and Europe, but a no-deal Brexit could wipe out 700 000 travel-related jobs, a top industry association said on Tuesday.

    The travel and tourism sector grew 3.9% to US$8.8 trillion in 2018, accounting for 10.5% of global gross domestic product, and outpacing global GDP growth of 3.2%, Gloria Guevara, president and chief executive of the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC), told Reuters.

    Based on data from 185 countries, the group forecasts steady growth of 4 percent this year, given continued demand from China, the second largest travel and tourism market behind the United States, and other countries in Asia.

    "Every crisis impacts the numbers, but this sector is very resilient," Guevara said, noting that expansion in the travel and tourism sector traditionally outpaced global GDP growth.

    Britain

    Britain and the United States were two of few countries in which travel and tourism underperformed economic growth, she said, citing uncertainty about Britain's departure from the European Union and what she called the "non-welcoming message" being sent out by US President Donald Trump.

    Travel and tourism's contribution to Britain's gross domestic product grew by just 1% in 2018, while overall GDP expanded 1.4%. The sector accounted for US$311 billion in GDP in 2018, or about 11% of overall GDP.

    If Britain leaves the EU without an agreement, it could lose 300 000 jobs, with an additional 400 000 jobs likely to disappear elsewhere in Europe, she said.

    A rebound would depend "on how soon they can fix the situation," she said, noting such a development would also keep Britain from benefiting fully from the expected creation of over 100 million jobs in the sector over the next 12 years.

    Rest of the world

    In the United States, travel and tourism as a percentage of GDP grew 2.2 percent last year, while the overall economy expanded 2.9 percent, the association reported.

    It said the travel and tourism sectors in Turkey, China, India, Thailand and France reported the highest growth rates in 2018, with Turkey reporting growth of 15% as it continued to recover from a sharp downturn after the 2016 failed coup. – Nampa/Reuters

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    Nghaamwa inspires Cunene counterpartNghaamwa inspires Cunene counterpart The new governor of the Cunene Province in Angola, Vigilio Tyova, is keen to learn good governance from Ohangwena governor Usko Nghaamwa.

    Tyova said Nghaamwa always goes beyond the call of duty to serve inhabitants of his region, and that he has done many good things, including renovating schools and providing water and electricity.

    Last year Tyova was appointed Cunene governor, replacing Kundi Paihama.

    He paid a courtesy visit to Nghaamwa yesterday, accompanied by his regional and local authority representatives.

    He said as a new governor he would like to tap into Nghaamwa's experience to help him become a good politician and servant.

    “Just recently we heard that Nghaamwa used his own money to renovate a roof at Ndilula Naikaku Primary School. This is just one of the many good things I heard he has done on his own. He has provided water and electricity to communities,” Tyova said.

    “As a new governor I would like to make use of this visit to learn from Nghaamwa. He has more experience in the exercising of regional functions and has led with his good example.”

    Tyova said Namibia and Angola have traditional solidarity, which was fostered during the colonial era and cemented via collaborations after independence.

    He said Namibia has a level of social development that youth can look up to.

    He said he would like to emulate this good example to ensure the people of his region also have the same benefits.

    “It is our political obligation to facilitate trade and social exchanges, in order to strengthen the links that bond the countries together, to ensure good economic and trade exchanges. Togetherness in development will guarantee us mutual development and the exploration of advantages,” he said.

    Nghaamwa said Ohangwena has a population of 228 385 inhabitants, as per the 2011 population and housing census. The region has 266 schools and three district hospitals, 33 clinics and 142 health outreach points which can also cater for Angolan nationals.

    He also took Tyova on a tour around Eenhana to show him some developmental projects.

    The political administrative area of the Cunene Province encompasses six municipalities, 20 communes and 237 villages, with an estimated population of 999 800 inhabitants.

    ILENI NANDJATO

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    N$67k judgment against SilukaN$67k judgment against Siluka A judgment in the sum of N$67 926.50 was granted yesterday against fisheries spokesperson Malauli de Wet Siluka in the Windhoek High Court in favour of short-term insurer Santam Namibia.

    Santam, in its claim filed during June last year, told the court that it had insured a Toyota Yaris three-door vehicle for Siluka from 24 January 2014 to 1 October 2014. On 20 September 2014, at around 23:30, the vehicle, while driven by Siluka, was involved in an accident.

    Santam says it was informed of the damage to the vehicle on 23 September. Moreover, the company told the court that “on 14 August 2014 and again on 23 September 2014, Siluka represented to it that he was the title holder of the insured motor vehicle, in that he failed to declare to the company that the vehicle was in fact the subject of a hire-purchase agreement.” Santam says the representation made by Siluka was false because he knew he had a hire-purchase agreement with Bank Windhoek and that the bank was in fact the title holder of the car.

    However, his representation, Santam says, was material and was made with the intention of inducing the insurer to pay him a settlement of N$67 926.50.

    Santam made the payment to Siluka on 12 November 2014.

    “But for the representation, [Santam] would not have paid Siluka the sum.” However, the company said that on 17 February 2015, it had to pay Bank Windhoek, as title holder of the vehicle, the same amount it had paid to Siluka.

    “Notwithstanding due demand, the defendant had failed to repay the plaintiff the said sum of N$67 926.50 or any part thereof,” Santam said.

    Siluka did not defend the matter before Judge Marlene Tommasi and was not represented by counsel.

    Santam further asked for 20% annual interest dated from 12 November 2014 and costs.

    The order was granted. Borris Erasmus appeared for Santam.

    YANNA SMITH

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  • 03/06/19--14:00: A pilgrimage to Hornkranz
  • A pilgrimage to HornkranzA pilgrimage to HornkranzEvidence still abounds of Witbooi's resistance The German onslaught on Hornkranz nearly 126 years claimed the lives of more than 80 people - most of them women and children. There is a bliss one cannot put a price on that envelops the rocky plains of Hornkranz, the former headquarters of the late Nama chief Kaptein Hendrik Witbooi.

    If it were not for the history books, one would scarcely believe that a brutal battle was fought here nearly 126 years ago.

    The German onslaught left Witbooi wounded and claimed the lives of more than 80 people - most of them women and children.

    On 12 April 1893, German imperial forces launched a ruthless crackdown on the Nama people after Witbooi had refused to sign a protection treaty to surrender territory to the Germans.

    In response to this refusal, German troops killed and plundered at Hornkranz. They took livestock and other possessions and also burned down houses.

    Namibian Sun visited Hornkranz this past Friday - a day after the official handover ceremony of Witbooi's Bible and whip, which had been repatriated from Germany, took place at Gibeon.

    The Germans robbed a wounded Witbooi of these artefacts at Hornkranz.

    Hornkranz is a settlement surrounded by rock faces; it is a quite a rocky place indeed.

    And so occasionally one finds rocks stacked up to form a wall or shelter. This was seemingly done by Nama fighters, who were trying to defend against the relentless onslaught by German forces, who fought with superior weapons.

    Fascinatingly it is in the close vicinity of these half-moon hideouts that Namibian Sun found cartridge casings - most of them marked 'Westley Richards No.2 Musket'.

    Riva Cloete, whose father bought Hornkranz from a certain Malan in 1999, was our tour guide.

    According to him these cartridge casings are frequently found “all over the place”, but mainly around the hideouts.

    Westley Richards & Co Ltd was established in 1812 by celebrated Birmingham gun maker William Westley Richards.



    Treasure hunt

    There are precious stones to be discovered during a visit to Hornkranz. It is remarkable to think that most of these have survived for more than a century.

    Riva says there is a place in the veld where one can see rock paintings. It is not clear whether these were painted by the San or the Nama. It is virtually impossible to go there with a vehicle because of the rocky patches.

    “If you take time to walk through the veld you can still find pieces of the clay pots the Nama people used at the time,” he said.

    “A few years ago I found a water pipe made out of blue rock. It was so nicely made; I am almost certain it was made by the Nama people but someone took it from the house so I cannot show you,” he said.

    We encounter graves scattered in a 600-metre radius around the main house, which was built long after the battle.

    The German graves are beautifully marked and decorated, albeit in a humble fashion, while the Nama graves are marked by rough stones that have been pushed into the ground.

    “Since we started living on the farm about 19 years ago we have only seen German soldiers visiting these graves. No one else came,” said Rebekka Cloete whose husband Peta bought the farm.

    “The Germans come here almost every year, then they come and paint the graves of the German soldiers, but that is it,” she said.

    Rebekka said visitors are welcome at the farm to view the graves and explore history.

    She and her son showed Namibian Sun a bend in the river where a retaining wall was built.

    “It is said there was a dam somewhere here and they built the wall to collect the water from the underground fountain. We are not sure who exactly built this wall, but it should have been the Germans because Witbooi knew the area and he knew where to get water,” Riva said.

    History tells us there was an important spring in the Goab River at Hornkranz.

    During the early 1800s, the Nama and Ovaherero used the Khomas Hochland valleys as travel routes, because water was readily available there.

    There is also an old dam at the main house, which according to the Cloete family was probably used as an underground prison.

    “It looks like something that was built by the Germans and is believed that it was used as a prison,” said Rebekka.

    On the side of the dam there are signs of a little staircase, which has now been covered and closed with stones.

    Hendrik Witbooi, fondly known as Auta !Nanseb, was a chief of the

    /Khowesen clan.

    He was born in 1830 at Pella in the Northern Cape and died on 29 October 1905 in a skirmish with the Germans near Keetmanshoop.

    Imperial Germany colonised Namibia, then known as South West Africa, between 1884 and 1915. During this time they committed the Nama-Herero genocide and killed more than 60 000 Nama and Ovaherero.

    JEMIMA BEUKES

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  • 03/06/19--14:00: Africa Briefs
  • Africa BriefsAfrica Briefs Uptick in SA economy ahead of elections

    South Africa's economy grew by 1.4% in the fourth quarter of 2018, the statistics authority said Tuesday, easing pressure on the ruling ANC ahead of crucial elections.

    According to StatsSA, gross domestic product (GDP) was up 1.4% in the fourth quarter compared with the same period in 2017, bolstering overall economic growth to 0.8% in 2018 over 2017.

    The finance, real estate and business services industries led the growth. Agriculture, mining and construction industries, key economic sectors of the mineral-rich country, recorded negative growth in the third and fourth quarters of 2018.

    The overall positive performance of the fourth quarter is a sharp contrast from the first two quarters of 2018, when the country slipped into recession.

    The economy generated R4.87 trillion in 2018, with the fourth-quarter growth contributing R1.26 trillion of that amount. – Nampa/Reuters

    Zim allows mines, others to import own fuel

    Zimbabwe on Tuesday allowed mining companies and other businesses to import their own fuel following shortages that have gripped the economy in the last six months due to a severe US dollar crunch, a cabinet minister said.

    The world's top two platinum producers Anglo American Platinum and Impala Platinum Holdings are some of the big mining companies operating in Zimbabwe, which will be able to buy their own fuel.

    Zimbabwe's central bank provides between US$80 and US$100 million a month in scarce US dollars to fuel companies to import the commodity. By allowing companies to buy their own fuel, the government expects to ease pressure on demand for US dollars.

    Long queues that resurfaced last week after a brief lull continued on Tuesday and Mutsvangwa said the government had been forced to take 8 million litres of diesel from the country's strategic reserve to supply the market.

    Despite previous promises by the central bank and energy minister to end the fuel shortages, Zimbabwean motorists have got used to queuing for hours for the scarce resource. – Nampa/Reuters

    Sibanye unrest: Police called in

    Growing unrest at Sibanye-Stillwater's South African gold operations has left nine people dead since workers downed tools in November, prompting the country's mines minister to call on the police to step in and protect the local community.

    Mineral resources minister Gwede Mantashe has requested the assistance of the minister of police to "restore and safeguard the safety and security of the community" in Carletonville in the west of Johannesburg, the mines ministry said.

    The Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (AMCU) has been on strike at Sibanye's bullion operations since mid-November and plans to extend the strike to its platinum mines as well as all other mines where the AMCU has members.

    Sibanye-Stillwater said last month it could cut nearly 6 000 jobs at its gold mining operations, where AMCU has been on strike since mid-November over a wage dispute.

    Firms including AngloGold Ashanti, Harmony Gold, Anglo American Platinum who received a strike notice are awaiting a labour court ruling which will decide if mineworkers' can embark on an industry-wide strike. – Nampa/Reuters

    Hundreds stranded in Nairobi airport strike

    Hundreds of travellers were stranded at Nairobi's international airport yesterday as riot police were deployed and teargas fired to disperse striking workers.

    With flights grounded since midnight, passengers were advised yesterday morning not to come to the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport - East Africa's busiest according to the Kenya Airports Authority (KAA) - until further notice.

    Inside the terminals, strikers faced off with police who fired teargas as they moved in to arrest union officials they accused of inciting workers.

    Passengers waiting for flights, some for hours, were asked to leave the airport, and gathered in parking and waiting areas outside the building.

    The workers, who had not announced their labour action beforehand, are angry about the planned takeover of the airport, operated by the state-run KAA, by national carrier Kenya Airways. – Nampa/AFP

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    Neckartal handed over to government in SeptNeckartal handed over to government in SeptFinal touches by Salini The dam is set to become the largest water storage dam in Namibia, carrying about 960 million cubic metres. Salini needs to test if the other features of the dam are working or in operation, such as the hydropower generation plant. – Beatus Kasets, CRO: //Kharas Regional Council KEETMANSHOOP – The chief regional officer of the //Kharas Regional Council, Beatus Kasete, says the newly-constructed Neckartal Dam will be handed over to the government in September this year.

    In an interview with Nampa after his visit to the dam recently, the newly-appointed CRO said Salini Impregilo, the Italian company building the da, informed him that the dam is 98.8% completed.

    The visit to the dam was part of Kasete’s familiarisation visits within the region to acquaint himself with projects that are completed and those in progress after his appointment as CRO in November last year.

    “The dam is completed 98.8% and according to Salini, they need to test if the other features of the dam are working or in operation, such as the hydropower generation plant,” said Kasete.

    Last October the minister of agriculture, water and forestry, Alpheus !Naruseb, said the dam was 100% complete and “only awaits rain”.

    Neckartal Dam is located in the Berseba Constituency and its construction started in 2013. The dam will cost government more N$5.7 billion once completed and will supply water to a 5 000 hectare irrigation scheme. The irrigation scheme project is expected to employ around 800 employees and over 1 000 during harvest time, according to the ministry.

    The dam is set to become the largest water storage dam in Namibia, carrying about 960 million cubic metres. It is three times the size of Hardap Dam near Mariental in the Hardap Region, which is currently the largest dam in the country. - Nampa

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  • 03/06/19--14:00: How SME Bank was looted
  • How SME Bank was lootedHow SME Bank was lootedMillions treated like monopoly money The brazen cooking of books, the cover-ups, and how the cookie crumbled. Advocate Raymond Heathcote, acting on behalf of SME Bank liquidators David Bruni and Ian McLaren, said in court this week that the case read like a step-by-step guide to robbing a bank.

    Court documents set out the modus operandi of those involved in the misappropriation of N$247 million (or N$347 million if 20% annual interest is factored in), based on the paper trail left behind by the Zimbabwean fraudsters.

    An intricate web of smoke and mirrors was devised to conceal illegal transfers of money, testified Tania Pearson, the legal advisor of the SME Bank who was retained by the liquidators to assist in tracing the stolen millions.

    In her lengthy submission to court, Pearson said the fraudsters gave false recipient names and reasons for payments in internal records and on payment instructions, which created the impression that the transfers were in respect of genuine SME Bank business.

    In fact, Pearson stated, the accounts to which transfers were made belonged to different entities.

    “As a result, the details appearing on the SME Bank's bank statements (although false) also correspond with the SME Bank's internal, but false records, although the misappropriated funds ended up in the bank account of an entirely different person/entity involved in the misappropriation,” Pearson stated.

    Virtually all of these fraudulent transactions were concocted in the bank's finance department, whose staff consisted exclusively of Zimbabwean nationals, or in the office of CEO Tawanda Mumvuma, also a Zimbabwean.

    Former finance manager Joseph Banda and his fellow Zimbabwean assistant, Chiedza Goromonzi, were also given verification powers in the treasury back office, purportedly to stand in for people who went on leave.

    Pearson pointed out that strict segregation of duties of the finance department and the treasury back office was introduced in the global banking sector after the collapse of a major European bank in the 1990s. That was done to prevent, or at least reduce, the possibility of fraud in banks. The precaution is contained in the Basel Accord, which the Namibian banking sector acceded to.



    The cover-up

    Among the 'cover-ups' detailed in Pearson's affidavit are fictional transactions with Mamepe Capital and Benoni-based model Kalandra Viljoen's Asset Movement and Financial Services (AMFS).

    On investigation it was found that Mauwane Kotane's Mamepe Capital in truth only received N$30 million of the SME Bank money. It was initially claimed that Mamepe Nominees (a non-existent entity) had received N$150 million for investment and purportedly invested it with the notorious VBS Mutual Bank in South Africa.

    AMFS, a cash transfer outfit, received N$78.9 million of the stolen SME Bank money.



    AMFS

    AMFS entered into a service-level agreement with 'heist mastermind' Enock Kamushinda's company, Crown Finance Corporation, on 13 July 2016.

    This agreement was signed by SME Bank CEO Mumvuma.

    While Kalandra Viljoen did not sign the agreement, the SME Bank millions were nonetheless transferred to AMFS, of which AMFS delivered N$64 million in cash to a certain George Markides, who in turn “delivered” cash to various recipients. Kamushinda's companies, Crown Finance Corporation and Heritage Investments, received direct EFT transfers of N$2.8 million and N$2.27 million from AMFS.

    All these payments, it is alleged, were initiated from Mumvuma's office, and were indicated in the internal systems as 'investment Mamepe Capital Asset Managers'.



    Mamepe

    Although Mamepe Capital only appeared on the scene on 7 April 2015, in hindsight earlier fraudulent transactions were ascribed to it and recorded as if they were “investments” - not with Mamepe Capital but with a non-existent entity called 'Mamepe Capital Asset Managers'.

    These fraudulent transactions were first recorded as building costs, computer equipment, computer software costs, freight charges, marketing consultancy costs, professional fees and security expenses.

    On 18 July 2016 Mumvuma completed an application for investment, purportedly on behalf of the SME Bank, in VBS Mutual Bank in South Africa, which was also robbed of N$1.8 billion.

    The investigations found that only N$10 million of the SME Bank's money was ever transferred to VBS Bank, and not the N$150 million that was claimed.

    And yet, Mumvuma, Banda and Kotane left a trail of false documents indicating that N$150 million had been 'invested' with VBS by Mamepe Capital Asset Managers on behalf of the SME Bank.



    Pawpaw hits the fan

    Despite numerous queries and demands by external auditors BDO Namibia for information on these so-called investments, things came to a head in September 2016 when the Bank of Namibia (BoN) questioned the SME Bank's inability to repay N$140 million to NamWater.

    The BoN also questioned the SME Bank's liquid asset ratio that was below the prudential limit of 10%. The BoN then warned of an impending targeted risk-based examination of the SME Bank, mainly focusing on its liquidity risk management. Mumvuma then wrote to VBS requesting a transfer of N$37 million to the SME Bank. VBS did not comply with this request.

    With pressure mounting, Mumvuma, Kotane and VBS Bank's CEO Andile Ramaphunga devised a scheme in which the managing director of JM Busha Asset Managers was asked to transfer N$60 million to the SME Bank.

    This N$60 million was then transferred into the SME Bank's account held at VBS Bank. VBS in turn then transferred various amounts to several entities and institutions.

    These transfers included N$37 million to the SME Bank, N$10 million to Peregrine Equities and N$20 million to Mamepe Capital, which it in turn transferred to the SME Bank, purportedly as a matured investment.

    These transactions, Pearson stated, had “zero sum effect”, but in fact created further liability for the SME Bank.



    CATHERINE SASMAN

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    Namibia fingered in spy probeNamibia fingered in spy probe American cybersecurity company McAfee revealed this past weekend that its experts, who are on the trail of North Korea's Operation Sharpshooter, had uncovered that Windhoek IP addresses had been used in global cyber-attacks.

    Sharpshooter is a cyber-espionage operation by a North Korean group calling itself Lazarus, which is reportedly backed by that country's government.

    The group is also known as Hidden Cobra and Guardians of Peace and has been linked to a cyber-attack in 2014 on Sony Pictures, one in 2016 on Swift banking services and a WannaCry attack in 2017 in which cybercriminals demanded a ransom to release the data of targeted companies.

    America's Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) last year accused North Korean computer programmer Park Jin Hyok of cyber-attacks and linked him to the Lazarus group.

    McAfee analysts that deal with advanced threats revealed in December last year that 80 organisations in the telecommunications and energy sectors, as well as governments and militaries have been targeted.

    The United States, Switzerland and Israel were at that stage in Lazarus's sights.

    Raj Samani, a chief scientist at McAfee, said the command and control code, as well as the data of the server used in the cyber-attacks, had revealed new information about how the attackers had developed and used control infrastructure to spread computer virus programmes.

    The data was supplied to McAfee by a government institution for analysis.

    One of the findings was that Sharpshooter had started early in September 2017 with cyber-attacks and had targeted more countries than originally thought.

    McAfee senior chief engineer Christiaan Beek said getting access to the command and control code of the attackers was an exceptional opportunity.

    “It supplied information about the infrastructure used in the cyber-attacks. The data is usually confiscated by law enforcement and is seldom available to private analysts,” he said.

    “These attacks started a year earlier than previously thought and now focus primarily on financial institutions, governments and critical infrastructure. The latest attacks were mainly on Germany, Turkey, Britain and the US.”



    Windhoek links

    McAfee said further that the cybercrimes can be traced back to “IP addresses in Windhoek”.

    “This is why McAfee Advanced Threat Research analysts suspect the attackers behind Sharpshooter had tested their implanting and other techniques in this part of the world, before they launched a broader campaign of attacks,” a statement said.

    An IP or internet protocol address is a unique number similar to a telephone number that computers use to send information across the internet to other computers.

    Andrew Fordred, a cyber-expert and former intelligence officer in in the South African police, said the attacks, which implanted computer viruses using Trojan malware, could have taken place outside Namibia.

    “They could have done it outside Namibia and the victims whose IP addresses were used were probably not aware of it.

    “It's also possible that the IP addresses were used in the test phase, before wider attacks were launched against the United States,” Fordred said.



    Ties

    Pressure mounted on Namibia during 2015 and 2016 over North Korean company Mansudae Overseas Projects (MOP) being active in construction projects in the country.

    The United Nations panel monitoring the Security Council's sanctions against North Korea reported in 2016 that Mansudae was a front for weapons firm Korea Mining Development Trading Corporation (KOMID) and that Namibia was in violation of the sanctions.

    Mansudae was registered in Namibia in 2004 as MOP Architectural & Technical Services (Namibia) and raked in huge building contracts, including government's State House project.

    Hugh Griffiths, the coordinator of the UN panel, said in 2017 in an interview with CNN they were waiting for more than a year for written and documentary proof that the North Koreans had left Namibia.

    Diplomatic sources said in October 2017 there was no reason to doubt the Namibian government's word that the North Koreans had withdrawn earlier that year.

    RONELLE RADEMEYER

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  • 03/06/19--14:00: How did we get here?
  • How did we get here?How did we get here? There is not an iota of doubt that the economic pinch has bitten hard.

    The construction industry is literally on its knees.

    Jobs have been lost as government-funded projects either dried up or are awarded to international companies, particularly Chinese contractors who continue to dominate our construction industry.

    In March last year it was already reported that nearly 17 000 people - mostly in construction and fishing - lost their jobs during 2016/17.

    The jobs were shed due to retrenchments and the non-renewing of contracts, according to Affirmative Action figures submitted to the Employment Equity Commission (EEC). In the construction sector, 3 411 contracts were not renewed, while 913 jobs were lost due to retrenchments. These figures have surely spiked to a point of a crisis, as businesses continue to endure hard times due to a poor performing economy.

    This extremely worrisome state of affairs led to a peaceful march by organised labour unions and the Namibia Chamber of Commerce and Industry (NCCI) to highlight the plight of workers and the continuous overlooking of Namibian contractors, as foreign companies are preferred for most government projects.

    During the demonstration workers, mostly under the banner of the Metal and Allied Namibian Workers Union (Manwu) and the private sector, were in agreement that capital projects should be awarded to local companies. We have in the past voiced our concerns regarding the lack of consideration for local companies when it comes to awarding huge state tenders. Our leaders have done little to appease this unflattering state of affairs, especially when it comes to advancing the interests of the country above that of foreign entities, particularly Chinese contractors.

    As a result, China has positioned itself strategically in Namibia and the question remains whether its seizing of local contracts has really benefitted Namibians. We can never compromise on the fact that Namibia must come first, especially during this economic dry-spell, which has led to thousands of job losses across sectors.

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