• July 10th, 2020

Letters

Letter - An unsung peril: Tax evasion

In many countries including Namibia, the central role of government in the developmental and economic sphere is building infrastructure and establishing a suitable regulatory framework for economic activities to take place in a safe and predictable environment.

Editorial - Information is imperative in any democracy

The Minister of Information and Communication Technology, Peya Mushelenga, on Wednesday tabled the Access to Information Bill, which will remove one of the obstacles that have been hampering Namibian journalists from accessing critical information when they rightly want to inform the public.

The return of the new Jim Crow

From this side of the Atlantic Ocean, the Landless People’s Movement (LPM) firmly denounces the murder of George Floyd by the Minneapolis Police Department and demand full and uncompromising justice for his family.

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Letter - Who said Ovahimba offer free sex?

Recently, social media has been abuzz with disquieting extracts of articles, blogs and video clips portraying the Ovahimba/Ovaherero people as perverts who offer free sex to cousins and best friends – so much so that one blogger jokingly mocked: “if you want free sex, go to Namibia.”

Letter - Life in quarantine

As Covid-19 continues to spread around the globe, repatriated Namibians, such as myself, are wrestling with the uncomfortable side effect of widespread infectious disease: quarantine. A quarantine is designed to keep high-risk individuals who may have been exposed to the virus in isolation during the disease’s infectious period, to see if they became sick. Since Covid-19’s incubation period is believed to be 14 days or fewer, that is how long the quarantine period has lasted for the Namibians who have since returned home. For some, quarantine is merely inconvenient, or at worst, dull. For others, especially those quarantined without their luggage, like myself, the situation is more precarious. 

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Letter - Prioritising mental health for learners amid and post-Covid-19

Learners, teachers, parents and the government cannot wait for education to return to its traditional classroom setting. The Covid-19 pandemic appears to be under control in Namibia and some education stakeholders have agreed that schools should commence on 3 June 2020, for pupils in critical grades, especially in grade 11 and 12. However, this should be conducted in a strategic manner, taking all impacts of Covid-19 into consideration, to ensure that when school starts, teaching and learning is carried out effectively.

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Letters - The dissolution of Namibian parliament at the end of its term (A rejoinder)

Dr Vincent Mwange wrote a very interesting piece that was published last Friday (15th May 2020) in New Era. The opinion piece that was titled The dissolution of Namibian Parliament at the end of its term argues that the Namibian parliament should be dissolved at the end of its term, i.e. before the holding of the next national elections. The esteemed scholar argues that it is “good governance practice” to do so.

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Letters - The avalanche of change to the human resources industry

Today with gig economy, so much have changed in career-graded opportunities. Human resources is considered to be the umbrella of all other aspects in people management and shaping the organisations policies and developments. The geography in human resources have changed with the merger of artificial intelligence, is with these sentiments that human resources leaders or bosses needs to rethink policy developments. Human resources leaders’ needs to understand the high level of diversity contained in the economy with the understanding of the ageing population and the revolution of millenniums. 

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Namibia at the crossroad of securing tomorrow

We are at a critical juncture as a nation! Karsten Voigt, one of the great German thinkers opined, “Anyone who wants to be pioneer must first be capable of contemplation. Thinking ahead is thus nothing other than a form of contemplation directed towards the future.”

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Lockdown aftermath - survival of hybrids

Covid-19 has undeniably pushed forward the Fourth Industrial Revolution where workers are no more required to be hands on but are required to be computer savvy and mobile in terms of working from home and independently. This is on top of having other crucial social and technical skills.

Letter: Acknowledging threats during crisis communication

The First World countries have recorded the most coronavirus disease (Covid-19) cases worldwide. As of 15 April 2020, the United States of America (USA) recorded over 614 000 Covid-19 cases (the highest in the world), followed by Spain, Italy, France, Germany and the United Kingdom. USA and Italy also recorded the highest number of deaths due to Covid-19.

Letter: Countering fake news as the world fights Covid-19

We are in a time where the world is trying to find a vaccine for the coronavirus that has instilled so much panic and fear in people. Countries around the world have closed schools, universities and churches. Other countries have now decided to take serious measures such as closing down their borders. Moreover, many countries have enacted state of emergencies to control the movements of their citizens as a means to curb the further spread of the virus. 

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A letter to the frontliners

To those providing essential services (doctors, nurses, pharmacists and other health workers, soldiers, police officers, shop personnel, guards, cleaners and all those whose service is essential that they cannot stay home and thus serving as our first line of defence during this difficult time of novel coronavirus (Covid-19), I am writing to salute you for a great job you are doing.

During times of Covid-19

So far, no death/s as a result of the coronavirus has been recorded in Namibia. Only time and appropriate prevention measures will tell a different story. In the meantime, the number of positively testing cases are slowly increasing. 

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Priorities in turbulent times

Times such as these are draining as they bring instability to our emotions. This means setting priorities is not a choice but a must as it requires us to gain knowledge and be enlightened to be able to do so.

Africans should collaborate on Covid-19

The reason Coronavirus was declared a global pandemic is this crisis, the worst catastrophe post-World War II, is spreading at unprecedented levels, overwhelming health sectors in America and Europe, where health facilities are adequately funded and are world-class with modern equipment.

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Maintain calm and practise good hygiene

I was fortunate to engage with a few people on social media regarding the novel coronavirus (declared a pandemic by the World Health Organisation), which has now also tested positive on Namibian soil as of 13 March 2020.

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Opinion - Coronavirus: Are Namibians ready?

The spectre of Covid-19 has befallen the world, creating a wave of global shock with reported cases mounting to approximately over 200 000 worldwide, claiming over 8 000 lives (World Health Organisation, 2020). Furthermore, according to the WHO approximately 151 countries have reported cases of Covid-19 of which 30 are from the African continent.

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Opinion - An attack on Geingob is an attack on the State

The recent attempts to oust democratically elected President Dr Hage Geingob have reference. The AR has launched a programme of action throughout Namibia to oust the Namibian government, yet all the state institutions and offices accept these actions as constitutional and as part of democracy. 

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Namibian faces intergenerational crisis

“O Lord help us who roam about. Help us who have been placed in Africa and have no dwelling place of our own. Give us back our home,” reads an excerpt from a prayer that Chief Hosea Kutako wrote to the United Nations with Rev. Michael Scott in 1945.

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Remediation works wonders

In all my 10 years of international education experience I have never seen results so immediately visible and compelling. Last week, I travelled to Botswana to visit a youth organization called Young love which is implementing a remediation program called “Teaching at the Right Level” that is spreading like wildfire across India and Africa. Ricella Mburuu, originally from Khorixas, is an education student at the University of Namibia and went with me.

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Men and women should be equal

No person may be discriminated against on the basis of sex. This is affirmed by Article 23 (3) of the Namibian Constitution that states, “It shall be permissible to have regard to the fact that women in Namibia have traditionally suffered special discrimination, and that they need to be encouraged and enabled to play a full, equal and effective role in the political, social and economic and cultural life of the nation.”

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Fallacy of canvassing for the position of mayor of Windhoek

The sovereign and democratic state of Namibia is founded on supremacy of the constitution and rule of law, which prevails over the dictates of men.  Notwithstanding the sovereign nature of the Namibian populace, the sovereign powers must be exercised within the ambit of the Constitution and applicable laws to enjoy legitimacy. 

Bribery: A serious and deplorable crime

Let me make it clear from the outset that when I refer to foreigners in this article, it is not because I am against foreign nationals, I am referring only to those foreigners who apparently acquire Namibian national documents through bribery. 

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The wayward child

After an uneasy pregnancy and long hours of labour pain, there was a great celebration when baby Kandeshi was finally born. Kandeshi was born into a broken family of school dropouts.

Does limiting access to the courtroom erode media freedom?

In a letter dated 17 December 2019, the Judge President of the High Court of Namibia, Petrus Damaseb, asks the Law Society of Namibia for ‘comments and suggestions before he can finalise an Amendment to the Rules of the High Court of Namibia, High Court Act 1990 for approval by the President of the Republic of Namibia for signing’.

Informal sector is an untapped gold mine

Besides the collapse of many sectors and the unprecedented retrenchment of thousands of workers, especially in the construction, mining, and retail sectors, one happens to wonder why our policymakers are still high on the idea of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) being the only messiah of our ailing economy.

Opinion: Zimbabwe’s forgotten children

We recently celebrated World Children’s Day on Monday 20th November, which is supposed to help promote the rights of children and improve the lives of disadvantaged children across the world. I am deeply dismayed as to why no one has spoken out for all the little boys and girls of Zimbabwe who are currently living way below poverty, with some going a whole day without eating.

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The dangers of concealing

If a pastor from a charismatic church had committed the crime of rape as we have seen circulating in news outlets these past few days, there would have been an endless outcry for their termination.

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Be your own woman

It is often with envy that I look at other women and their seemingly perfect lives and perfect families. Neatly turned out for church, family functions, not a scuff mark on their trousers or shoes, hair and clothes

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Rising to the occasion for Sanjo

A few years ago, I was approached by management and staff of Sanjo Senior Secondary School in Zambezi Region to serve as its patron. I have much interest in education for I believe it’s key to success. I accepted

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Appreciating our country

Our public discourse is very much dominated by negative narratives on our country and the way we go about things. However, I am of the view that there is so much we as Namibians should appreciate our country for. Hence, the purpose of this article is to try to make our people aware of what a good country, in all relative terms, we are living in. I will confine myself to a few areas including the political, economic and social factors which I think we should be appreciative of. 

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Thinkers are needed

Descartes’ old maxim goes like this: “I think, therefore I am.” Much has been said and written about that and some have even suggested that we need to add to the maxim the element of belonging and perhaps

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Nujoma turns 90: My thoughts

It’s worthy celebrating the 90th birthday of Dr Sam Nujoma, first President and founder member of Swapio Party, commander-in-chief of PLAN, first president of the republic, first commander-in-chief of our armed forces and first chancellor of the University of Namibia. 

A tribute to the Queen of Church Music

Musical chords from organs and pianos add flavours to hymns and they uplift the spirits of worshipers during church services, giving them the imaginations of the songs of angels and cherubs. This is particularly true when one has the likes of Tuovi-Kaarina Pennanen behind the church organ keyboard.   

Effective internal control systems in the Namibia public sector

Internal control refers to the whole system of controls, established by the management, in order to carry out the business of the enterprise in an orderly and efficient manner, to ensure adherence to management policies, safeguard of the assets and ensure as far as possible the completeness and accuracy of the records (Chorifas, 2005). 

Racism is not a game

Whether by design or by some mistake, the matter of racism seems to spark temporal outrage, to then later settle in some archives and herbinate until the matter is reinvented as a tropical force of nature beyond human control.

No white farmer in Namibia ever stole land 

LETTERS - I am writing this because I cannot believe in the scenario as being described in the New Era editorial of [last week].  I, being a German-speaking born Namibian, and also being a farmer who has bought all his farms well after independence, have not witnessed or spoken to anybody in the recent days, joyously celebrating the dismissal of the [Ovaherero/Nama] court case in New York. 

Ethiopian tragedy must unite the world

LETTERS - We join the international community in mourning the 157 passengers and crew who perished when an Ethiopian Airlines Boeing 737 MAX 8 crashed on Sunday morning en route to Nairobi from Addis Ababa , six minutes after take-off.

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The tragedy of Governance in Sudan 

Peaceful demonstrations broke-out all over Sudan on 19th December 2018. Many Sudanese cities and sometimes villages took part in this public protest movement against the government of field marshal Omar Al-Bashir. 

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Climate Change manifestation into drought

The climate change topic has been well elaborated on for years now. It appears to be evident that the effects of climate change on agriculture are observed in many parts of the world. The arid regions  of  southern  Africa  of  which  Namibia  is  part, the  effects  of  climate  change  have  been observed. Agriculture in Namibia rests on both livestock and crop, of which the livestock industry pre-dominates. Both these industries are vulnerable to the unforgiving climatic conditions such as drought and floods, including concomitant events such as pests and disease outbreaks.

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Open Letter to All Motorists in Namibia

Your attitude makes a difference to road safety. In all consciousness of the peak time for road accidents, we express the urgent priority to take the necessary precautions to reduce the high number of road accidents on our roads during the festive/holiday season by practicing safe and cautious driving. 

Africa’s blue economy

The first global conference on the blue economy is being held this week in the Kenyan capital of Nairobi, bringing together some 4,000 participants from around the world to discuss and learn how to build a sustainable ‘blue economy’. Held between 26-28 November, it is under the theme: “The Blue Economy and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development”.

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Teacher interviews riddled with nepotism and favouritism

In September, the Ministry of Education, Arts and Culture gazetted a number of teaching posts country-wide. This prompted unemployed qualified teachers and prospective teachers to apply. However, the process of shortlisting interviewees and appointing the outstanding candidate seems to be subjective, corrupt and time-wasting. 

Income disparity a ticking time bomb

“Do the right things properly to succeed,” roared Theo Ben Gurirab, then Speaker of the National Assembly, in 2012. He was discussing the big problem of income disparity where some citizens have a lion’s share of income in the country. Income disparity in general, and poverty in particular, are not just about income. 

Spend wisely this festive season

To have a memorable holiday season, shouldn’t mean you need to go into debt, and by keeping your finances under control you can keep the other challenging aspects of the holiday in check as well. 

Traditional authorities becoming too political

I have learned with dismay and shock the ongoing intervention of traditional authorities in political parties’ internal affairs. Traditional leaders have turned political leaders, their statements at public gatherings are not cultural or traditional related anymore, but too political. 

Thank you  for the pens

On behalf of Olukolo Primary School  I want to extend our heart-felt thank you for commitment by friends of our late former learner Desiewaar Heita (let his soul rest in peace) for collecting a lot of pens for our learners.

Go well, little brother!

It is with great sadness that we at the Ministry of Information and Communication Technology have learnt of the passing away of one of the few amongst us, a professional, committed, a highly objective media practitioner, who was our media colleague of many, moons.

Can a boss manage emotions in the workplace?

It is not that emotions have no place in the workplace, or maybe not at all? Maybe when we weight them but emotions are emotions, or are they different? I look at two: Constructive emotions can be motivating and can enhance understanding. But excessively intense emotions block effective communication and hinder problem solving. 

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Why the best time to invest in Africa is now!

Africa is the most profitable region in the world. A report by the UN Conference on Trade and Development states that between 2006 and 2011, Africa had the highest rate of return on inflows of Foreign Direct Investment: 11,4 percent. This is compared to 9,1 percent in Asia, 8,9 percent in Latin America and the Caribbean.

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Discipline nurture Stabilisation

Socrates have proclaimed that discipline is the highest level of education that can be attained by an educated human being. Yet, still, discipline can still be held in exception of education background. Many times, we have come across with sentiments about discipline, issues about discipline as well as conducts about discipline. From my point of view, I define discipline as an art of adhering and honouring the defined and established norms (law) and customs of a particular culture for a certain society, nation, community, institution and so forth.