3 months ago

New Era Newspaper Thursday January 4, 2018

  • Text
  • Namibia
  • Nampa
  • January
  • Domestic
  • African
  • Namibian
  • Procurement
  • Lubowski
  • Windhoek
  • Workers


2 NEWS Thursday, January 4 2018 | NEW ERA BOSSES From page 1 They also raised concerns over other unfair treatment and unsafe working conditions at the mine, and the tendency of high-paying management jobs seemingly being reserved for foreigners, according to the petition. Mineworkers Union of Namibia (MUN) Rosh Pinah branch executive committee member, Petersen Kambinda, who read the petition at the protest, informed New Era in a telephonic interview that the workers have noticed with concern that their managers turn up at work intoxicated, and that they refuse to be tested for alcohol before entering the mine, while some have resorted to using a different entrance to the mine so that they can work drunk without being detected by security personnel. He narrated that last year employees blocked one of the managers after he was seen upon being forced to take the alcohol test, it was proven that ence of alcohol. Kambinda says such behaviour is unacceptable as it poses a danger to other employees. He added that after that incident the workers had more reason to believe that what they had been suspecting was true – that the managers come to work drunk, hence their refusal to take the alcohol test, and their other weird behaviour. “These people come to work and they refuse to blow, and if these drunk people are allowed to drive around the mine, what does that mean? This is a risk to the other workers,” he said. The workers demanded the immediate suspension of the four managers who are being investigated for allegedly coming ing the policy of zero tolerance against alcohol and drug abuse should not be compromised. The workers also expressed concern that the mine has repeatedly ignored advice from experts warning of possible dangers if there were any more overloads, which the workers claim caused a slope failure during December. “The walls collapsed because the mine ignored all advice from the experts – it has become a norm that procedure and policies are ignored for the sole purpose of production, whereby safety standards drop, and lead to unsafe conditions, but people’s lives should be number one before production at all times.” The petition also dealt with issues of lack of training and human development, lack of communication between Basil Read and the workers, while the workers questioned why South Africans mainly occupy management positions. rowned NDF ailor’s body ecovered Uriseb who drowned on Janu- Our Contact details and information Product of New Era Tel: +264 61 - 208 0802 Fax: +264 61 - 220 584 at the seaside lagoon the next day. Uriseb, who worked for the Namibia Defence Force Navy, is said to Cell: +264 81 156 4114 Tel: +264 66 - 256 298 Cell +264 81 217 1888 Tel: +264 65 - 238 990 Cell: +264 81 144 0646 Cell: +264 81 217 9739 Cell: +264 81 204 8078 Tel: +264 63 - 222 057 Cell: +264 81 312 5975 have jumped into the lagoon to swim but the currents and winds were too strong for him. He was swept deep into the ocean where he drowned. The incident happened at According to //Kharas Regional Police Commissioner Rudolf Isak, Uriseb and his friends went to the lagoon to have a barbecue when he decided to take a swim. Big crowd… Revellers turned up in large numbers to count down to 2018 at the City of Windhoek’s New Year’s Eve bash. Photo: Nampa Tel/Fax: +264 63 - 204 180/2 Cell: +264 81 245 9714 Tel: +264 61 - 208 0826 Fax: +264 61 - 220 584 Tel: +264 61 - 208 0822 Fax: +264 61 - 220 584 LOBBYISTS From page 1 Miller & Chevalier did work for the government between April and May USA-Africa trade-related activities and advised and assisted the Foreign Principal in the enhancement of trade and commercial relationships between Namibia and the United States, especially on matters relating to the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA).” was paid, but Washington D.C.’s The Hill newspaper hinted that the The U.S. Justice Department requires companies acting as lobbying agents of foreign governments and political institutions to declare such dealings, with details of their activities and the money received for the execution of such activities. Miller & Chevalier had assigned to Namibia its special counsel Emmanuel Tamen and P. [Paul] Welles Orr, an international trade adviser Ministry of Industrialisation, Trade and SME Development for the two months of April and May Tamen and Orr “monitored legislative and Executive Branch activities and advised and assisted the Foreign Principal [the Namibian government] in the enhancement of trade and commercial relationships between Namibia and the United States especially on matters relating to the African Growth and Opportunity Act,” reported the U.S. National Law Journal, citing what is written in the late FARA registration by Miller & Chevalier. The trade ministry’s permanent secretary Gabriel Sinimbo requested more time to do due diligence since the activities in question took place GEINGOB From page 1 “We will continue our road building and maintenance programme as a national priority, to ensure that all parts of Namibia are connected and accessible.” He said the government also aims to pursue other infrastructure development projects including airports, ports and rail development and upgrades, but this must take place in a transparent and accountable manner. “It is a time for celebration and a time for hopes and dreams,” he added. Geingob says the new year brings with it the promise of new beginnings and fresh opportunities. nearly two years ago. It has also come to light that some of the key personnel in the ministry who worked on AGOA had since resigned or left the ministry. attracted attention as it came at a time when the Justice Department is prosecuting Paul Manfort, the former campaign chairperson for U.S. President Donald Trump, for violating FARA by failing to disclose lobbying work for the Ukrainian government that predates the Trump’s presidential campaign. The prosecution of Manfort has rush to register their interests, to avoid being guilty of violating FARA laws, as is the case with Manfort. However, Miller & Chevalier is two years after doing lobbying work for Namibia “was not prompted by the current rush-to-comply that some registration related to a brief period of work for Namibia,” a spokesperson for Miller & Chevalier is quoted as saying by the National Law Journal on Tuesday this week. registration related to a brief period of work for Namibia. The engagement given the complexity of the out-of- been working with FARA to retroac- a month,” the National Law Journal “Because Miller & Chevalier represented the Foreign Principal [Namibian government] from April - Miller & Chevalier also did lobbying work for the governments of Singapore and Guernsey, in the year that was, let us prepare to embrace a fresh perspective and a renewed outlook, as we navigate our way towards a future which holds wonderful possibilities for growth and advancement.” “The hands of time move forward, never backward. Let us therefore prepare to move forward. The hands of time are ready to take us into the new year, leaving behind the stress, anxiety, regrets, disappointment, added. chapters and 365 new chances to write a new story – a story of hope, health, success, peace, love and prosperity.

Thursday, January 4 2018 | NEW ERA NEWS 3 Kavara hard to replace, says Mensah-Williams John Muyamba Rundu National Council (NC) Chairperson, Margaret Mensah-Williams, has described the death of Rosa Kunyanda Kavara, who died of stroke in a Windhoek hospital, as a big loss and shock to the house of parliament. Mensah-Williams described Kavara as a dedicated member of the National Council. Kavara suffered a stroke and collapsed in a bank in Rundu on 30 December 2017. She was rushed to the Rundu Medical Centre and was later airlifted to Windhoek where she died on 2 January 2018. She was 59. “We put it in God’s hands; her legacy will continue,” Mensah- Williams said. “Of course, I was aware that Hard at work… Members of the National Council Women Caucus (from left) Melania Ndjago, Rosa Kavara, Margaret Mensah- Williams and Fransina Ghauz. Photo: Nampa she was suffering from a heart problem. Just a few years back, she had an operation. It’s really sad that she left us. She was a loyal, hardworking and joyful person and we will miss her dearly.” Kavara was elected, on a Swapo ticket, as the constituency cuncillor for Ncuncuni constituency during the 2015 elections and was successfullly nominated to represent the Kavango West Region in the was to serve as Member of Parliament from 2015 to 2020. Prior to her appointment to the NC in 2015, she served as a member of the Fourth National Council for Kavango West Region from 2010 to 2015. From 2011 to 2015 she served on the Standing Committee on Regional Development and Reports and on the National Council Women Caucus and she was also a member of Swapo Party Women’s Council Central Committee. Kavara also serving on the Standing Committee on Rules and Orders, Standing Committee on Women Caucus and, at the time of her passing, she was the Chairperson of the Standing Committee on Audit, a term that was to last until 2020. “She had passion for what she did and we were especially close as we were from the previous term together. I know that she was sad since the passing of her late husband who died about a year ago from a similar condition. From Swapo, we have lost a loyal and dedicated serving comrade and her constituency was very important to her and her wish has always been to become a member of the central committee and God granted her that before she died,” Mensah- Williams told New Era. The region will now have to send another person to replace Kavara in the NC and her constituency, until a by-election is held within three months to vote for a new councillor. “Unlike the local authority or National Assembly, who are on party lists, we are elected on the to elect a person to replace her,” Mensah-Williams said. New Era also spoke to the Kavango West Regional Governor, Sirkka Ausiku, who also described Kavara’s death as a big loss to the region and the country at large. NUNW condemns alleged purging of its members Kuzeeko Tjitemisa Windhoek The country’s biggest trade union federation, the National Union of Namibian Workers (NUNW), claims that its members are being “purged, intimidated and victimised” following the campaign and outcome of the November 6 Swapo Party elective congress. The federation, some of whose members supported presidential challengers Jerry Ekandjo and Nahas Angula and their running mates, says it is disturbed and concerned about negative media reports and allegations of political witch-hunt and victimisation against its members. Cabinet ministers Ekandjo and Pendukeni Iivula-Ithana challenged for positions at the congress, contrary to the wishes of President Hage Geingob, who himself vied for and won the Swapo presidency. President Geingob was reported to have written to the two ministers asking them to explain how they wished to continue serving in his administration, which they called ‘weak’ during congress campaigns. Geingob also accused his two ministers of violating the Cabinet principle of collective leadership – after they suggested alternatives to the president’s food bank initiative. The Namibian daily newspaper quoted Ekandjo late last month denying that he had violated any statutes. Several local authority councillors were also demoted last month, the NUNW alleged. “They (workers) are being threatened with demotion and dismissal from their positions at work or at some of their elected positions such as local authorities,” alleged the federation secretary general, Job Muniaro. He said NUNW has observed, with grave concern, that this “unfortunate, negative and undemocratic” development of political “cleansing and purging” has already started playing itself at local authorities and is quickly spreading like “cancer” across the entire government. “Political witch-hunting and purging deserve to be condemned in the strongest terms with all contempt it deserves, as it undermines social coherence, national unity, peace and stability in a democracy such as ours in Namibia,” said Muniaro. He said NUNW welcomed and appreciated the conciliatory and NUNW secretary general Job Muniaro comradeship tone and spirit of which the 6 th Swapo party elective congress was concluded. According to Muniaro, the federation believes perpetual factional Party is not healthy for the economic development of the country, particularly where such “witch-hunt” is against workers who are the engines of development. our political party consumes a lot of energy, scarce economic resources and time, which are supposed to be invested or channelled towards the development of our country’s workers and the Namibian nation at large,” he added. He said the coalition hopes that Swapo would walk strong into the future without being undermined and compromised by political witch-hunting and purging of some of her members for having exercised their rights and obligations of inner party participatory democracy. “We hope everything is politically well and will remain inclusively well in our Swapo Party. The Swapo Party 6 th elective congress was concluded and closed on a positive note of ‘Omake’ clapping hands and singing ‘Let us unite, let us unite in the name of Namibia,” he said. Gym members not happy with rebate cancellation WINDHOEK Fitness centre members are unhappy with the Namibia Financial Institutions Supervisory Authority (Nam- that medical aid funds were not permitted to offer gym rebates and other wellness programmes as part 15 December 2017. In an interview with Nampa on Tuesday, Virgin Active Gym Operations Manager, Brylen Beukes, said the cancellation came as a surprise as they were not consulted before its implementation. Beukes said since the rebate cancellation came around the festive season when everyone was on indication of retraction yet by gym members. “However, I am convinced that some members will quit the gym Beukes. Virgin Active Gym member, Gaby Ahrens said the decision to stop the rebate would force people to stop living a healthy lifestyle, as they were motivated to go to the gym knowing that the medical aid would refund the expenses. “I will now be forced to see which gym is cost-effective just to continue living the healthy lifestyle I have come to maintain,” she said. Another gym member, Zocks Nghikundwa said it was unfair for people who hardly use their medical aid for medical treatment, but rather for the gym. “The more one is in the gym, the less likely a person is to visit hospitals because of the healthy lifestyle that comes from exercise,” said Nghikundwa. Namibia Health Plan (NHP) Finance Manager, Joel Handuba, said the rebate programme was meant to encourage their clients to live healthily. “Now with the cancellation, for a client this means a less healthy lifestyle and more medical claims,” he said. Handuba explained that NHP used to refund members up to 80 percent for 20 gym sessions, meaning the client Derailed... Medical aid funds are no longer allowed to offer rebates to members to pay for gym sessions. would pay N0 for the gym and get back N0 from NHP. Members of NHP, Namibia Medical Care, Nammed Medical Aid, Heritage Health Namibia and Prosperity Health are affected by the cancellation of gym rebates. – Nampa

New Era

New Era Newspaper Vol 22 No 167