• August 15th, 2020

Front Page News

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ECN rolls out voter education

The chairperson of the Electoral Commission of Namibia, Advocate Notemba Tjipueja, says the electoral authority will ensure that special arrangements will be considered to allow people to vote beyond polling places, like those under quarantine and in health facilities who have tested positive for Covid-19.

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A cry of sorrow and grief

First Lady Monica Geingos has penned an emotional letter expressing her heartfelt condolences to the mother of two-week-old Charmaine Moss, who died last week after she was allegedly sexually violated by her own father. 

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Top spy joins ACC 

A top official at the Namibia Central Intelligence Service has been named as the new executive director of the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) following a surprise reshuffle of accounting officers yesterday.

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PDM to screen aspiring candidates

Ngaringombe said the party will allow all PDM members, supporters and sympathisers willing to serve their communities on a local or regional level to apply for nomination through an open application process that will be advertised through the movement’s social media platforms and print media. 

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Esau, ‘Fitty’ to hear bail fate

During oral submissions yesterday, their lawyer Richard Metcalfe said Esau and Tamson have proven they are worthy of being released on bail. Metcalfe submitted that Esau had an opportunity to evade the hands of justice between the period of his first arrest on 23 November 2019 and second arrest on 27 November the same year. 

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Elephants instil fear among Kabbe residents

“The situation has caused panic in the entire community as they can’t move freely, the elephants move in groups which make it difficult for people to move between villages in search of daily needs such as food, hospital visits and normal schooling for lower grades that opened in recent weeks,”

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Pro-choice activists fight back

Chanting ‘legalise abortion now’, ‘reproductive justice now’, “get your policies off my ovaries, the marchers were joined by among others revered medical doctor Helena Ndume who also called on authorities to legalise abortion due to health implications associated with unsafe practices.  

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Sewage overflow shuts down school

NKURENKURU - The Namibia National Teachers’ Union (Nantu) and the Namibia National Student Organisation (Nanso) on Monday morning forced the closure of the Leevi Hakusembe Senior Secondary School in Kavango West region, sending grade 11 and 12 learners and teachers home. 

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Geingob condoles Mandela family

President Hage Geingob yesterday expressed condolences to his South African counterpart Cyril Ramaphosa following the passing of Zindzi Mandela, the daughter of South African anti-apartheid icons Nelson Mandela and Winnie Madikizela-Mandela.

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Opposition tear into Swapo over Fishrot… question ruling party’s commitment to tackle corruption

Opposition parties yesterday accused the ruling party of lacking political will to tackle corruption at the highest level. Leaders of the National Unity Democratic Organisation (Nudo), the Popular Democratic Movement (PDM) and Landless People’s Movement (LPM) yesterday spoke out against corruption, following President Hage Geingob’s announcement on Sunday that the party has not received any cent from Fishrot for its political campaigns. 

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Nudo bans leader for ‘campaigning’ for Itula

National Unity Democratic Organisation’s (Nudo) party has banned its veteran leader Vetaruhe Kandorozu from actively participating or contesting for any leadership positions within the party for two years, after he was found guilty of having de-campaigned his party during last year’s elections.

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Questions over Psemas tender

Local medical aid administrator Prosperity Health remains optimistic that objections raised regarding the tender to administer the government medical aid would be rectified in the near future as it is in the interest of the nation. 

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Opposition gang up on Swapo

Opposition parties in the National Assembly have threatened court action against Swapo over the composition of parliamentary committees after parliamentarians failed to agree on the nomination of members. 

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War vets, chiefs roundly condemn Swartbooi

An association of struggle veterans and Council of Traditional Leaders have added their voices to the chorus of growing condemnation by Namibians shocked by the behaviour of Landless People’s Movement (LPM) party leader Bernadus Swartbooi who recently called the Founding President Sam Nujoma a “thug and liar”.

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Esau, son-in-law in bail bid 

Former fisheries minister Bernhard Esau and his son-in-law Tamson Hatuikulipi, who were both arrested in November last year for alleged corruption, have approached the Windhoek Magistrate’s Court for bail consideration.

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Swapo vetting rejects Itula ally

OMUTHIYA - A former regional councillor in the Oshikoto region, who was nominated to contest for the district coordinator position, has failed the vetting test for supporting Dr Panduleni Itula’s presidential candidacy last year. 

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Dog braai triggers blaze

According to Johannes Hausholo, tasked with roasting the dog, a strong wind blew over the fire as they were busy barbecuing the animal and the next thing they saw was a clump of grass burning and before they could do anything the blaze had spread all over.

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Family of late struggle veteran lives in tent

The family of the late liberation struggle veteran, Paulus Mutiramo Muyamba, has been forced to live in a tent after authorities seemingly snubbed their request to renovate the roof of the house that was blown off by a strong gust of wind last October at Ndiyona settlement in Kavango East region.

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Speaker throws down the gauntlet

Speaker of the National Assembly Peter Katjavivi yesterday castigated and issued a verbal warning to Landless People’s Movement (LPM) leader Bernadus Swartbooi and his deputy Henny Seibeb over their “unbecoming” conduct in the August House this week.

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10 000 tippy taps for informal settlers

Rundu informal settlement households will each get a tippy tap from the UNDP-funded program being implemented by a non-profit organisation called Development Workshop Namibia (DW), which will be donating 10 000 tippy taps to promote hygiene through handwashing.

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Oshikoto roads to cost RA N$1.4 billion

Roads Authority (RA) intends to spend N$1.4 billion in Oshikoto region as a remedial financial measure to upgrade poor road infrastructure in the region, with a larger chunk of the sum to upgrade the B1 freeway from Omuthiya to Oshakati to a dual carriageway. 

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Dark cloud hangs over fishing sector

The future for hundreds of sea fisheries workers in Namibia looks bleak and uncertain as most of the fishing companies will not be in a position to operate until the beginning of the new season when the dust has settled after new fishing quotas have been allocated.

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ACC slashes local travel budget

The Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) executive director, Hannu Shipena, strongly feels the proposal by the agency to trim down its budget on countrywide educational trips is premised on the fact such trips are a waste of resources.

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Ballot papers to return in November elections

The Electoral Commission of Namibia (ECN) has confirmed it will use the manual ballot papers in the upcoming regional council and local authority elections, saying the electoral body would not be in a position to afford voter-verifiable paper audit trail (VVPAT) devices to allow for electronic voting.

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AR guns for November 2020 poll

Although the Affirmative Repositioning (AR) leadership says it is focused on the local elections in November, a political commentator is wondering whether AR will be able to translate its social movement politics into real national politics. 

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Retailer to cut 500 jobs

Retailer Pick n Pay said it was cutting about 25% of its workforce or roughly 500 jobs in light of plans to restructure the company “aimed at reversing losses and setting the business on the path of sustainability”.

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Pensioner ventures into rice farming

A 72-year-old pensioner, Samuel Amunyela, resident of Elombe in Onayena constituency in Oshikoto region is among the subsistence rice farmers able to sustain his large family with proceeds from rice farming that he also uses for his own consumption.

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Education inspector, principals cross swords

Some educationalists in Okahao circuit in Omusati region are concerned that the conflict between 20 principals and the education inspector could have adverse effects on the academic environment, including affecting the morale of educators, the pace at which they work and teacher absenteeism.

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Dausab bemoans legal aid challenges

Justice minister Yvonne Dausab has bemoaned the reduction in the budget allocation to her ministry’s directorates of legal aid and the civil litigation, saying that the current state of affairs will force experienced prosecutors to resign due to unconducive working conditions.

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ECN gets more funding

The country’s electoral body, the Electoral Commission of Namibia, received N$282 million in the current financial year, translating into N$62 million, more than the N$220 million allocated to the institution during the previous financial year. 

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Self-made farmer shares her success story

Debbie Maxuilili Ankama, aged 62, has urged fellow Namibian pensioners to invest wisely into livestock and crop farming so that they become enablers for self-sustainability and, on the other hand, so that they meet government halfway in terms in food production and security for the entire country.

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Erongo goes back to square one

President Hage Geingob yesterday said governmenet was forced to impose stricter restrictions by placing the entire Erongo region under lockdown, as a number of people were breaching lockdown rules aimed at curbing the spread of coronavirus in Walvis Bay

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Muinjangue hits back at detractors

National Unity Democratic Organisation (Nudo) leader Esther Muinjangue has called out her detractors and political rivals who claim her acceptance of a deputy minister position in the Swapo-led government was a sign she was joining the ruling party. 

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‘Prophet’ has rhino case deferred

Local so-called prophet Jackson Babi and his co-accused Frizans Naululu Dumeni who were due to appear in the Windhoek Magistrate’s Court yesterday for a bail application had their criminal case postponed to 24 July for further police investigations.

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LPM wants N$750 basic grant

Landless People’s Movement leader Bernadus Swartbooi has suggested that a basic income grant of N$750 should be introduced for the next 24 months to cushion the impact of the Covid-19 on the less privileged. 

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Namibia condemns brutal murder of Floyd

The Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah, yesterday urged “African-American sisters and brothers” to exercise restraint in vending their “legitimate and justified anger”. She, at the same time, expressed solidarity with African-Americans in the US.

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HAN wants responsible reopening of borders

The Hospitality Association of Namibia (HAN) says although Namibia received praise for jump-starting the local tourism sector by opening hospitality establishments, it wants to see an orderly and responsible reopening of the country’s borders to reinvigorate the crucial tourism sector.

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Govt assures learners safety

Health minister Dr Kalumbi Shangula yesterday assured parents and stakeholders that all necessary precautions will be taken to prevent the spread of Covid-19 as grade 11 and 12 learners return to the classroom tomorrow for face-to-face learning. 

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Fishrot suspects want charges withdrawn

The Windhoek Magistrate’s Court is scheduled to give a ruling on postponing the case of former Cabinet ministers Bernhardt Esau and Sacky Shanghala, as well as their accomplices accused of receiving more than N$130 million in bribes in exchange for fishing quotas.  

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AR warns against early reopening of schools

The Affirmative Repositioning (AR) movement says it does not support the reopening of face-to-face learning for critical grades this Wednesday. The country will move to stage 3 on 2 June until 29 June as part of the four-stage response plan aimed at easing Covid-19 restrictions. Cabinet has endorsed the plan to reopen schools on 3 June for critical grades such as 11 and 12 to resume face-to-face classes. Phase 2 will see the resumption of pre-primary to grade 3 on 22 June until 18 December 2020. 

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High-risk Walvis Bay under total lockdown

Walvis Bay Urban constituency councillor Knowledge Ipinge yesterday welcomed President Hage Geingob’s decision to place the coastal town under tighter Covid-19 restrictions with immediate effect, saying it was a proactive and applaudable move by government. Geingob yesterday announced Walvis Bay will revert to stage one lockdown, meaning individuals will not be allowed to leave their homes except under strictly controlled circumstances, such as seeking medical care, food and medicine for seven days to curb the spread of the coronavirus. Schools will remain closed, while public gatherings should not exceed more than ten people. 

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Kawana spews venom at newspaper report

Fisheries minister Albert Kawana yesterday dismissed, as untrue, a newspaper article claiming the ministry has already issued fishing rights to the same old holders at the expense of new applicants. An angry Kawana said the article, which carried in a weekly newspaper, was “political propaganda that emitted elsewhere”.  “There is no truth in the article. The same newspaper wrote about me a few weeks back that I was chased out of Cabinet meeting. That was a lie and this again is blatant lies. 

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Coastal rapists lurk in dunes

Police in Erongo region have cautioned women to consider their overall safety, especially when alone and seeking solitude in high-risk areas. This comes in the wake of an incident in which a 29-year-old resident of Kuisebmund was brutally raped on Monday morning while praying in the dunes at Walvis Bay.

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Blaze leaves mother and baby homeless

A five-month-old baby slept outside in a tent for the past two nights with its mother after their shack was razed to the ground on Sunday.  They will spend more frigid nights outside, as the mother, employed as a cleaner, is unable to immediately rebuild the shack from her meagre income. Two other children of 40-year-old Rosalia Andjelu are temporarily accommodated by their neighbours.  

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Commentators bemoan allocations to critical areas

While economic analysts conceded that yesterday’s budget by finance minister Iipumbu Shiimi is aimed at reinvigorating a domestic economy ravaged by Covid-19, they emphasised the necessity to look beyond the financial and social effects of the pandemic and stressed the need to put more money into productive areas.  This is despite the fact that the prevalence of Covid-19 has brought about considerable uncertainty on the domestic economic outlook and has induced a significant downturn on economic activities and public revenue, with elevated public debt as a consequence.  

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Fishcor’s Nghipunya in bail bid

One of the men accused of conspiring with those implicated in the fisheries bribery scandal to divert N$75.6 million from the State-owned National Fishing Corporation of Namibia (Fishcor) for their benefit has approached the court for bail consideration. 

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Let’s emulate Geingob - SA MP

The Democratic Alliance (DA) parliamentarian, Leon Schreiber, has called on the South African government to emulate President Hage Geingob’s decision to ban the procurement of new vehicles for government ministers and public office bearers until 2025. The DA is the South African official opposition party. 

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Arrest warrant issued for murder accused

AN arrest warrant has been issued for a 48-year-old man who yesterday failed to show up for his scheduled judgement hearing in the Windhoek High Court. Jan Moses Uamunika is charged with murder for the alleged killing of Rehoboth farmer Joseph Adriaan Shorty Barth, who was 69 years old at the time of his demise in 2017.

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Nampost denies its courier transports alcohol

Namibia Postal Holdings Ltd has strongly dismissed suggestions its courier service is involved in the transportation of liquor during the lockdown. Nampost spokesperson Wilson Ashikoto made these remarks following an enquiry after this publication learnt through the Oshikoto regional police that courier vehicles were among those transporting illicit alcohol and other counterfeit products.

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Gawanas rekindles abortion debate

Namibia’s Bience Gawanas, who has been elected to the International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) board of trustees, said the country should continue the debate on whether abortion should be legalised or not. Gawanas was at the weekend elected to the IPPF board.

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Four nabbed for stock theft

OMUTHIYA - The police on Saturday through an undercover operation managed to apprehend four stock theft suspects. They have been allegedly terrorising farms in the vicinity of Tsumeb over the past months. 

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56 arrested for violating Covid-19 regulations

A total of 56 individuals, including well-known musicians, were part of people arrested in Windhoek over the weekend for contravening the Covid-19 state of emergency regulations. Khomas police chief Commissioner Joseph Shikongo confirmed to New Era yesterday that some of those detained paid a fine of N$2 000. 

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Elephant found dead in Kavango East

The ministry of environment has started an investigation after an elephant was found dead on a farm in the Kavango East region. According to ministry spokesperson Romeo Muyunda, the elephant was found dead in a crop field with its tusks intact at farm Nanava within the Linena constituency over the weekend. 

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Schools step up virus precautions 

Several Windhoek schools have stepped up cleaning measures to prevent the potential spread of Covid-19. Teachers and other institutional workers reported for work this past week to help prepare the classrooms for face-to-face learning, as well as to continue with alternative teaching methods. 

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Eiseb farmers cross swords over fence

A disgruntled farmer, Robbie Hoveka, residing in the Eiseb Block, a settlement in Omaheke region, has accused another farmer Barney Karuuombe for using his influence and position to break the law and do as he pleased by cutting down a fenced area meant to prevent livestock from straying to other farms in the area.

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Himbas, San left out of N$750 grant

The majority of OvaHimba and San communities are saying they did not receive the N$750 emergency income grant (EIG) that government paid to people on the basis they lost income and the unemployed since the outbreak of the Coronavirus pandemic.

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Ministry rejects request to resume classes 

The education ministry has rejected a formal request by private schools to resume with face-to-face learning amid the Covid-19 pandemic. The request came days after government announced that face-to-face classes would only resume by 3 August later this year as part of measures to help contain the spread of Covid-19.  

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Worker accused of murdering farmer awaits judgement

A farmworker, who is on trial for allegedly killing his employer on his farm in the area of Rehoboth nearly three years ago, will have to wait to hear the verdict in his case after the court postponed the ruling. Windhoek High Court Judge Eileen Rakow was scheduled to give judgement in the matter yesterday. 

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ECN aware of virus while planning November poll

Electoral Commission of Namibia (ECN) chief electoral and referenda officer Theo Mujoro said the electoral body is closely following developments around the Covid-19 pandemic with a view to develop mitigating strategies to lessen the virus impact on the upcoming regional and local authority elections scheduled for November.

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City cop charged with rape gets bail

Formal bail application proceedings are not to determine if the applicant is guilty or not but rather to prove if he/she is a good candidate for bail.  These were the remarks of Magistrate Shaatuna Kalla before granting bail to City police spokesperson Fabian Amukwelele (37) last week in the Katutura Magistrate’s Court. 

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Masks not a substitute for other virus measures

Health minister Dr Kalumbi Shangula has warned that the mandatory wearing of masks should not be seen as a substitute for other measures aimed at preventing the transmission of Covid-19. Shangula urged people to continue wearing masks and observe other measures like washing of hands, frequent use of sanitisers and maintaining social distance. 

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EIG applicants besiege finance ministry

While more than half a million needy Namibians were approved for the emergency income grant (EIG) of N$750, hordes of the more than 394 000 unsuccessful applicants continue to inundate the Ministry of Finance with queries as to why they have not benefited from the Covid-19 relief grant.