• December 11th, 2019

‘I am tired of seeing our continent crumble while we have people who can help build it’



Paheja Siririka

WINDHOEK – Gawie Abner Sacky Kanjemba says he is tired of looking at the African continent crumbling while there are people who can help build it. Kanjemba is a young Namibian based in France, acquiring extensive knowledge on energy with the main focus of analysing policies.

“There are efforts to make Namibia’s working force more youthful; I am hoping to use this as a stepping stone to enter positions where I can help in strategy and or policy/business development, ” said Kanjemba. 

He says the idea has always been to equip himself to sit at the “big table” in terms of strategy to be able to contribute to designing, engineering and directing the course of development.

When dealing with issues of energy investment, the driving question is usually if it’s economically viable. Kanjemba says the numbers just do not add up in our favour, especially for a country that is sparsely populated and with only 2.7 million people. “To expand our scope and incorporate the whole region (Southern Africa) so that the numbers tip to our side.”

Kanjemba pointed out that engaging other parties in the region are an issue of policy design. “We have high costs of energy supply, limited investment opportunities and a lack of both incentives and national targets for developing and improving its energy sector,” he adds.

He was however worried that it seems like the environment at home is not able to absorb people like him to utilise their skills. “Naturally, we would go where we could be most useful,” he says.

The 28-year-old has a law degree from the University of Namibia (Unam) and was conferred with a master’s degree, MA/MSc in International Energy (Project Management & Emerging Economies) this year at Sciences Po in Paris. 

“I decided to complement my legal background with an interdisciplinary master in energy, that combines elements of finance, economics, business, law and politics,” said Kanjemba. He serves as a policy and energy analyst at the International Energy Agency in France. 

He indicated that people in the legal fraternity tend to have a tunnel view on issues. But Kanjemba’s studies allow him to wear hats in different disciplines. 

“I did this with master exchanges at Stanford University and Peking University. At these institutions, I was able to focus my studies to touch on issues of infrastructure, technology, other extractives, emerging economies and project management,” he said.

“All these are policy issues that we have to balance out and have a collective strategy that directs how we are going to maximise Namibia’s benefit from its energy resources. There is a lot of ‘chess play’ involved, and we must have the best minds involved so that we win as much as we can.”

He said energy is the lifeline of any country, hence it is very important to secure the energy needs before embarking on other national strategies.  Kanjemba made an avowal and agreed that motivational speakers and inspirational quotes are nice. “But please be a bit more rational and realistic in your pursuit to make something of yourself,” he concluded.


Staff Reporter
2019-10-02 07:35:29 | 2 months ago

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