Windhoek-Angola has promised to honour its outstanding N$2.6 billion financial obligations to Namibia in a 2015 currency conversion agreement that saw Angola unable to pay over on time the billions owed to Namibia.
The governor of Angola’s central bank, Banco Naçional de Angola (BNA), Valter Filipe da Silva, promised President Hage Geingob that despite the ongoing economic challenges facing his country, Angola would continue to honour its repayment schedule.
Accordimg to Bank of Namibia deputy governor Ebson Uanguta, BoN received about US$51 million (approximately N$661 million) from the BNA last week.
“There are still four payments to be done. Two will be done this year and two will be done early next year. What is remaining now is slightly an amount of about US$200 million (N$2.6 billion),” Uanguta said, emphasising that all payments made by the BNA were as per the payment schedule.
Da Silva visited Geingob at State House on Friday, where he revealed that the traditionally oil dependent Angola is on a major drive to diversify its economic portfolio and is looking to its neighbours to assist in venturing into alternative yet sustainable industries.
In response, President Geingob said although the currency conversion agreement was condemned by many, the agreement is worthwhile and will come in handy during financial difficulties in both countries.
The president further suggested that the two countries renegotiate the cement sales agreement which currently limits the amount of cement Namibia can export to Angola. “I know that southern Angola will need cement and we have to revisit this agreement,” said Geingob.
The curency conversion agreement between BNA and Bank of Namibia aimed to address declining trade particularly at the once thriving trading hub of Oshikango. A shortage of US dollars, which contributed to the decline in trade, prompted the currency conversion agreement. At the beginning of 2017 the two central banks renegotiated the re-payment schedule for the approximate N$4 billion debt Angola owed Namibia following the currency exchange agreement that went wrong in 2015.
Da Silva said the ongoing oil crisis in his country is actually an opportunity to diversify its economy, specifically by strengthening bilateral agreements with neighbouring countries such as Namibia.
“Our ongoing economic difficulties can be overcome by focusing on agriculture and establishing and boosting our industrial parks,” said Da Silva, who was accompanied by BNA board members.
Da Silva asked for assistance from Namibia to boost agricultural production, particularly in the meat processing industry where he requested an increase in the number of live animals to be exported to Angola as that country aims to limit the amount of beef it imports from other countries like their traditional trading partner Brazil.
Geingob further noted that all countries in the region can improve regional integration by adding value to their resources. Geingob said Namibia and Angola were “destined by fate” to be brothers and sisters.
“We will help each other overcome the fight for economic emancipation just like we did during the liberation struggle,” said Geingob.
Da Silva also requested assistance to improve Angola’s agricultural operations, saying Angolan and Namibian cooperation needs to be strengthened “because families in both countries depend on this cooperation”.
Namibia, Elderly Woman 79 Years Old Dies After Being Tortured By Three Men
A 79-year-old woman died yesterday after she and her husband were viciously attacked and tortured in their Swakopmund home by three men.
The couple were tied up, while the woman was hit in the face and choked.
The attack happened between 08:00 and 09:00 in Richthofen Street, Swakopmund.
One suspect has been arrested. By late yesterday afternoon the police were still on the hunt for two more suspects.
According to a police spokesperson, Deputy Commissioner Edwin Kanguatjivi, three men forced their way into the house through the kitchen door.
Kanguatjivi said the men demanded safe keys from the woman, tied her up and choked her.
When the three suspects moved into another room, apparently looking for a safe, the woman’s husband came out and was knocked over the head. He was also tied up and assaulted.
The three men fled and from what could be established nothing was stolen.
The woman was taken to hospital and later died from her injuries.
According to reports the husband identified one of the suspects as a former employee. This information led the police to the suspect’s house, where he was found washing his clothes and cleaning mud from his shoes.
The shoes matched footprints found at the house.
Namibia – Mother Of Six Die After Being Mercilessly Beaten By Her Boyfriend
A 36-year-old woman and mother of six died in the Katutura State Hospital last week after close to two months in ICU following a brutal beating two months ago, allegedly at the hands of her partner.
Juliane Katombela, 36, died last Wednesday from head injuries she had sustained in an alleged fight with her boyfriend at Okahandja in May.
It is alleged that Blaauw used a pipe or another blunt object to beat her. It is also alleged that the couple had been drinking, although none of these claims could be confirmed by police or the prosecution this week, only by close friends and family.
The accused, Sambi Blaauw, age unknown, was the father of Katombela’s five-month-old son.
Following her hospitalisation in May, Okahandja police arrested Blaauw on a charge of attempted murder.
Last week, the charge was amended to murder, and he remains behind bars after bail was refused by the Okahandja Magistrate’s Court this week.
“Juliane Katombela has died from head injuries she had sustained in a fight with her boyfriend at Okahandja in May.”
His case was postponed for further investigation and the next court date was set for 4 September.
Katombela was the mother of six children, a pair of twins and another child who are in primary school, an eldest child who is in secondary school, and another child set to leave school next year.
The infant son has been living with Blaauw’s family members for some time, an uncle told Namibian Sun, after Katombela struggled to care for him due to a number of health issues she had been battling for some years.
An autopsy is scheduled to take place this week to identify the exact cause of death.
Eduard Meroro, Katombela’s uncle, who saw her regularly, said while it is not yet exactly clear what she died of, she had been in intensive care since late May, after she was beaten.
Her uncle said the family is still reeling from her hospitalisation and now, her death.
“We are very, very sad. One doesn’t know what to do. Sambi is now in the hands of the police and we can’t take this into our own hands.”
Meroro said his niece sustained her worst injuries on her head and that doctor’s had said there was bleeding on her brain.
He said it was clear a type of instrument was used to beat her on the fatal day, because of a large wound to the left of her skull.
Several family members told Namibian Sun that Katombela and Blaauw’s relationship was stormy and marked by alcohol abuse, when their fights usually reached violent heights.
“If they didn’t have a drink, they were fine. All was well. But if they drank, they didn’t get along,” Meroro said.
Another family member claimed that there had been times when Katombela was covered in bruises and other marks, and that their arguments often resulted in violence.
Family members told Namibian Sun her funeral is being planned, but no definite date could be set yet due to financial constraints.
Meroro said the family hoped to pool sufficient funds together to hold the funeral by the end of the month.
In February 2016, the gender ministry reported that over 10 000 cases of gender-based violence (GBV) were investigated by the Namibian police over the course of three years.
Incidents of common assault, rape and assault with grievous bodily harm topped the list of complaints made by women and children.
Numerous studies have shown that GBV is widespread and has reached epidemic proportions in Namibia, with domestic violence at the hands of an intimate partner the most pervasive form of GBV.
Studies found that in Namibia, “one out of three women has experienced, or will experience, GBV in their lifetime. Furthermore, it is estimated that one out of five women are in an abusive relationship,” Sister Namibia has stated.
Namibian Premier League – Mannetti calls first training camp
ALL pieces seem to be falling in their rightful places within the football circles after the Namibia Premier League (NPL) Interim Committee announced 12th May as the 2017 soccer season kick-off date countrywide.
Brave Warriors’ head coach, Ricardo Mannetti, announced a 24-member training squad, the first training of three lined up before the coach announces his eventual side to take on Guinea Bissau in June this year in the 2019 AFCON qualifiers while in the same breath gearing up steadily for the 2018 African nations Championships qualifiers against Zimbabwe.
Making the announcement at the NFA Soccer House today, Mannetti said because of the inactive national league, he has his focus on players who competed in the 2012 AFCON games in Angola, 2016 COSAFA championship and the national under-20 team that won the COSAFA championship in South Africa.
Players called for the initial training camp are warned to report for training on Tuesday at the NFA technical Field.
Players are: Loydt Kazapua (African Stars), David Peterson (Tigers), Charles Uirab (FNB Orlando Pirates), Edward Maova (Civics), Romario Ndjavera (Tigers), Larry Horaeb (Black Africa), Ferdinand Karongee (Tigers), Da Costa Angula (unattached), Charles Hambira (Tura Magic), Tiberius Lombard (Tura Magic), Riaan !Hanamub (FNB Orlando Pirates), Edmund Kambanda (Unam), Benjamin Nenkuva (Tigers), Johannes Shiwedha (Nampol), Oswaldo Xamseb (Tura Magic), Katiti Hakuria (African Stars), Ronald Ketjijere (African Stars), Dynamo Fredericks (Black Africa), Pandeni Kandjabanga (Golden Bees), Donald Geiseb (Civics), Itamunua Keimuine (Tura Magic), Mapenzi Muwanei (Tigers), Fransico Manuel Almeidha (United Stars) and Muraperi Joseph Mbudhi (United Stars)
Road traffic authorities out in full force
About 50 traffic officials will be deployed on the B1 and B2 roads to screen 500 drivers per day for alcohol and to check 500 vehicles for roadworthiness every day. This means over the festive season an average of 7 500 vehicles and 7 500 drivers will be screened to provide valuable baseline data for future road traffic interventions and speed checks will be done at all eight points on a daily basis on both B1 and B2 roads. In terms of the above, the Namibian police started deploying traffic officers already from last November onto the B1 and B2 roads and such traffic policing activities can be seen in Windhoek, as well. As in the short-term interventions between last August and October, eight strategic points on both the B1 and B2 have been manned by officers from NAMPOL, Roads Authority, Local Authority Traffic Units, Motor Vehicle Accident Fund, NRSC and Private Emergency Response Service Providers. In its mandate of promoting road safety in Namibia, it has become a culture for the National Road Safety Council (NRSC) in conjunction with its stakeholders to carry out the Festive Season Road Safety Campaign to curb the road carnage during the festive season. This year’s campaign was launched by Minister of Works and Transport, Alpheus !Naruseb in Otjiwarongo at the beginning of December. The campaign has been scheduled to run from November 16 until January 15, 2017 to stabilise and reduce the spiraling road crashes and their resultant injuries and fatalities on the B1 (from Windhoek to Ondangwa) and B2 (from Okahandja to Swakopmund) national roads. The theme for this year’s festive season road safety campaign is “I Pledge” and the slogan is ‘Road safety, My Responsibility’. During this festive season the focus is mainly on speed management, vehicle fitness and driver fitness as well as driving under the influence of alcohol. The campaign is undertaken as a multi-stakeholder effort drawing on the lessons from the short-term interventions last August to October. The NRSC believes proper planning and communication is of essence. The launch was jointly organised by the NRSC and the MVA Fund in collaboration with public, private and non-governmental entities. The Namibian police also recently launched their road safety and crime prevention operations for the upcoming festive season. The campaign has been running from November 16 to January 17, 2017. During the launch deputy inspector general for operations, James Tjivikua, reiterated the importance of safety, especially on national roads, as well as in cities and towns. This operation is being conducted by the MVA, Windhoek City Police, the NRSC, the Road Fund Administration (RFA) and the Roads Authority (RA). During the last two festive seasons, 653 accidents were recorded resulting in the death of 112 people and 2 494 injuries. Residents of the Khomas region have recorded some of the highest accident rates over this year so far. “As you are all aware, the effects of a road traffic accident shall never be under-emphasised. Accidents cause death and serious injuries to victims who, in most cases, happen to be breadwinners in their families. This negatively affects the society they lived in and, most importantly, their dependents,” Tjivikua stressed. Tjivikua further urged drivers to make sure their vehicles are road worthy and to refrain from drinking and driving or using their mobile phones while driving. Drivers and passengers should always wear their seatbelts, long-distance drivers should have co-drivers, road users should be vigilant, cyclists should wear protective helmets and pedestrians should cross the roads cautiously. According to Tjivikua, the campaign will focus on eight different areas: abuse of alcohol and drugs; dangerous driving; safety of vehicle occupants; public transport and load management; vulnerable road users; vehicle fitness; patrol duties and accident response time. As it is that time of year when suitcases are packed and families are ready to set off to various destinations for the holidays, a few safety tips from the Motor Vehicle Accident (MVA) Fund to ensure your road trip runs smoothly are in order: Ensure Your Car Is Problem-Free and Roadworthy – Check the fluids in your car – the engine oil, coolant, brake fluids and windscreen water levels to avoid unnecessary breakdowns. – Check that all car’s lights and signals are functional. – Ensure that you have all emergency equipment inside your car, and that everything works properly. Emergency equipment includes fully charged cellphone, spare tyre and emergency tools (e.g. flashlight, screwdrivers, pliers an adjustable spanner, first aid kit, re extinguisher and reflective warning triangle). – Ensure that your car is CLUTTER FREE. Keep free lying items away as these can obstruct you while driving. – Ensure that all seatbelts in your vehicle are working. Tyre Safety – Make sure the tyres have the correct speed rating compared to the speed of your car. – Check your tyres for wear and tear. – Before you travel check if your tyres, including the spare wheel, have the correct pressure – Make sure you have a wheel spanner that fits your wheel studs – Inflate your tyres with nitrogen for cooler running – Check if your locknut keys are in the car. Use The Road Wisely – Plan your route in advance and rest well enough before embarking on a journey. Make sure that your vehicle is in a roadworthy condition before embarking on a trip. Check that all the lights, indicators, windscreen wipers, brakes and tyres are in a good working condition. – Seat belts help prevent severe injuries in case of an accident. Ensure that you and everyone in the car is wearing a seatbelt. – Where possible, do not drive after dark. – Do not take unnecessary risks such as overtaking more than one vehicle at a time. – Take safety breaks every two hours in order to avoid driver fatigue. – If you are going to drink, do not drive – rather use a designated driver. – Always be alert about pedestrians alongside the road. – Be visible – always drive with your lights on, even during the day. – Do not overtake more than one vehicle at a time. – Speed kills. Adhere to speed limits at all times. – Be courteous to other road users. Call the Accident Response Number 0819682 to report road crashes from anywhere in the country.
Cop allegedly stabbed to death by wife
A 59-year-old police sergeant at Outjo died Saturday morning after his wife allegedly stabbed him with a broken bottle during a quarrel on Friday afternoon.
Warrant Officer Maureen Mbeha confirmed the death of the sergeant to Nampa.
Mbeha said the deceased police officer was identified as Zebedeus Kasuto.
“Close relatives have been informed of his death,” Mbeha said adding the 52-year-old wife of the deceased had been arrested on a charge of murder.
She is expected to appear in the Outjo Magistrate’s Court on Monday.
It is still not known what the two were quarrelling about, she explained.
She, however, said it was during this heated argument on Friday afternoon that the suspect allegedly picked up a broken bottle and stabbed her husband (Kasuto) on the left side of the neck.
Kasuto was taken to the Outjo State Hospital the same day but succumbed to the injury in the early hours of Saturday morning.
Police investigations continue.
Namibia – Kunene suspends top administrator
The Kunene Regional Council has suspended its chief regional officer, George Gamseb, pending an investigation at the council.
The chairperson of the council’s management committee, Julius Kaujova, confirmed to Namibian Sun that Gamseb was suspended this week and was being investigated on a number of charges, including maladministration.
He was served with a letter placing him on forced leave on Wednesday.
Gamseb was also ordered to stay away from the regional council building until further notice.
“Yes, it’s true that he was put on forced leave. He has many issues being investigated why he did not fully implement a number of council resolutions. As a council we feel that there is incompetency and deliberate ignorance of mandate. We are also investigating issues of his appointment,” Kaujova said.
Namibia – One Dead, One Critically Injured In B2 Crashes
A chain collision involving three vehicles on the B2 road near Usakos claimed the life of one person on Friday.
Chief Inspector Jatikua Tjiramba also confirmed that the driver of a car that left the road between Okahandja and Karibib on Saturday is in a critical condition.
In the three-car pile-up James Ngoshi (38) died on the spot.
The passengers of the two other vehicles sustained minor to serious injuries and were taken to the Usakos and Swakopmund state hospitals.
Detective Chief Inspector Erastus Iikuyu said a Toyota Etios with a Walvis Bay registration, driven by Ngoshi, overtook a white Kia about 54km from Usakos. He swerved off the road to avoid hitting a car approaching from the opposite direction.
When Ngoshi swerved back onto the road he smashed head-on into an oncoming Ford Ranger bakkie carrying Michael Kasheeta (50) and an 11-year-old boy who was rushed to a Windhoek hospital.
The Kia driven by Hilga Daveres (42), accompanied by her son Sandro Daveres (18), crashed into the back of the Etios.
The same road claimed the lives of two schoolgirls and the driver of a bakkie that overturned last week.
Statistics provided by the Motor Vehicle Accident (MVA) Fund show that 492 persons died in 2 932 car crashes between January and 18 September.
Meanwhile, on the Ondangwa-Oshikango main road at the Onhuno T-junction a pedestrian identified as eight-year-old Alfeus Johannes died after he was hit by a silver Volkswagen Golf.
It is alleged that the boy was among a group of children who crossed the road. Johannes hesitated and when he finally crossed the road he was hit and died on the spot.
Namibia – Police declare gun amnesty
Namibians have until 18 November to surrender all illegal firearms, ammunition and war materials to the police without being prosecuted or face the wrath of the law.
Police Inspector-General Sebastian Ndeitunga, officially declared Amnesty for the surrendering of all illegal firearms, ammunition and armaments in Namibia.
He said that a decision was taken by Cabinet to publish a government gazette authorising amnesty to surrender all illegal firearms to the authorities.
The period of surrendering these weapons in terms of Government Gazette No 165 has already started from 18 August and will continue to 18 November for all Namibians to surrender any illegal weapons.
Ndeitunga said that the government is concerned about the proliferation of illegal weapons and ammunition that have been discovered by police during operations conducted nationwide.
According to him, the reason why there are still so many illegal firearms in Namibia is because of the Angolan and South African war conflict when war materials were acquired by many citizens.
He said from 2013 to 2015 police have confiscated 560 illegal firearms.
He was, however, unable to say how many illegal weapons have been confiscated this year already.
“This year is a big number, but they may still be tied up with investigations in court cases,” he said.
He said the police conducted an extensive operation on illegal firearms and arrested certain individuals who were found in possession of machine guns, ammunition and war materials.
He stressed that under the Arms and Ammunitions Act, the possession of machine guns by members of the public is prevented.
These types of weapons, Ndeitunga said, are only allowed to be in the possession of the Namibian Police, the Namibian Defence Force and in some cases the Correctional Services.
Ndeitunga stressed that they are, however, very concerned about the increasing numbers of firearms as these dangerous weapons are out in public domain and posing a threat to the safety and security of citizens.
“Illegal firearms in irresponsible hands are a great concern and are used in violent crimes,” said Ndeitunga.
He explained that an amnesty was declared in 1992 where members of the public were engaged to surrender all illegal firearms and war weapons in their possession without delay. In spite of this, certain individuals are still in possession of such arms.
Ndeitunga especially urged farmers to hand in illegal firearms adding that there has been a problem with the farming community and them having illegal weapons and war materials hidden on farms.
Namibia – Wernhil stabbing video goes viral
The last two weeks have seen violent clashes between homeless people at the Wernhil Park taxi rank.
The only known victim of the violence is in a critical condition at the Katutura State Hospital, according to a police spokesperson, Chief Inspector Kauna Shikwambi.
In a video circulating on social media, a man can be seen stabbing another man several times on Monday afternoon. The police confirmed that the victim was stabbed four times in the chest.
Even after the police had arrived, the man with the weapon continued stabbing the other man.
The police had to overpower and disarm the suspect before loading him into the van. Soon afterwards gunshots are heard in the video footage.
There is no mention in the police report on the incident of anyone admitted to hospital with a gunshot wound.
The suspect has been charged with assault with intent to cause grievous bodily harm and is being held at the Windhoek police station. Police investigations continue.
The taxi rank is owned and managed by the City of Windhoek. City spokespersons could not be reached for comment, as they were all attending a workshop this week. Representatives of the O&L group and Broll
Namibia, which own and manage the Wernhil Park shopping mall, said they were aware of the incident and shared the public’s concern about safety in the area.
They both said that they would work with the City Police to ensure that customers are safe when they use the taxi rank.