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New Era Newspaper Tuesday March 6, 2018

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  • Namibia
  • Windhoek
  • Namibian
  • African
  • Venture
  • Procurement
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  • Tender
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8 FEEDBACK Tuesday, March 6 2018 | NEW ERA Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Forestry Query: What is the current situation of water in Namibia and can government guarantee that there is no cause for concern for both households and industries in terms of water shortage? Response: It can be described as manageable but yet demanding in terms of ensuring availability of the required quantity and quality. The fact we have late rains this year requires alternative plans to be in place in case poor rainfall is experienced during the remaining period of the rainy season. The ground water levels have dropped but only a few boreholes are reported to have dried up unlike the previous two to three years. The surface water sources (rivers) such as Kavango and Orange are quite low but the prospect looks good which is true with the dams as well. Most of them have not reached critical points like last year. Water is a natural resource that depends on weather patterns and/or prevailing climatic conditions. As such, it is not easy for government to predict the amount of rain the country will receive to replenish the country’s water sources. Needless to say, government cannot de- and households not to be concerned in terms of water shortages. However, the government is fully committed to serve the nation as stated in the NDP5 as well. Since 2016, the government has been working around the clock through the established Cabinet Committee on Water Security and the Technical Committee of Experts to secure security of water supply. It is therefore doing everything possible to ensure that all households in Namibia as well as the industries have water to survive. Namibia being a very dry country depends on annual replenishments from rain. This means, resources i.e. rivers, dams and/or ground water aquifers could be very low or even run dry. Query: What is government doing regarding the water situation in order to ensure that what was experienced over the past year does not repeat itself? Response: Plans are being implemented ranging from upgrading water transfer schemes such as Karst to Windhoek, development of new schemes such as the expansion of the Windhoek aquifer (drilling of numerous boreholes in Windhoek), feasibility studies for major projects such as Kavango link and coastal water supply and the implementation of trans-boundary water projects such as Kunene trans-boundary water supply project and the Stampriet ground water project. The GRN has also committed to drilling of boreholes and laying pipelines in the northern part of the country, depending on availability of funds. Query: Ministry of Agriculture, are there plans to buy the Areva Desalination Plant for about N billion totally scrapped out? Response: The government considers every available option. The outcome of the coastal water supply studies will tell whether it is a viable option or not. Please take note that GRN is not aware not therefore comment on it. Query: Government was pushing for the completion of Neckartal dam and it was envisaged the date of completion was supposed to be around December 2017. How far is this project before Namibians could reap the fruits and why was the dam not completed as envisaged? Response: The completion of the Neckartal dam was supposed to be March 2017, but was initially postponed to December 2017 and currently it is estimated to be completed by June or latest October 2018. The delays in completing the construction of the dam were mainly caused by court challenges at the start of the project, delays in payments due to budgetary constraints and weather conditions that hampered work during the rainy season. After the completion of Phase II of the project more fruits will come from irrigation schemes and its Those will only be realized after the irrigation scheme is developed. Preparatory work in that regard has started, leading to the design of the scheme. The December target could not be met and it is not always easy to be spot on with the dates for large projects such as Neckartal dam. Ms Margaret Kalo, Senior Public - Roads Authority Query: Roads Authority, I wonder if people are paying someone to award them tenders. Where can an SME get bank guarantees? We are already suffering in our own land while some other people are enjoying life to the fullest. We are running like hungry dogs to make ends meet. Response: In response to an SMS complaint published in the Namibian Newspaper, “Have your say” page published on the 6th of February 2018, about the Roads Authority (RA) Tender Procedures and allegations of corruption, the RA hereby dismisses such allegations and at the same time wishes to provide clarity on its Tender Procedures and requirements for bank guarantees to eliminate any future misunderstandings on its Tender Procedures and awarding of tenders. The Roads Authority’s procurement procedures are guided by the Public Procurement Act, Act No. 15 of 2015. The Public Procurement Act was implemented on 01 April 2017. As a public entity, Roads Authority must procure goods and services under the provisions of the said Act. In terms of the Public Procurement Act and Regulations, a bid security is required under the following circumstances: entity - a) must include in a bidding document the requirements for a bid security where: i. the value of the procurement contract ii. time is of the essence and failure of the successful bidder to sign the procure- b) may include in a bidding document the requirements for a bid securing declaration where the value of the procurement Sub Regulation 33 (1) (l) where a bid security is required, a requirement that - (i) a bid security in the form of a bank guarantee must be issued by a commercial bank in order to be acceptable by a The Roads Authority strictly adheres to the guiding principles stipulated in the Act. Therefore, it is rather unfortunate that some of the bidders are of the opinion that this is a requirement of Roads Authority and not the fact that RA must comply with the provisions of the Act. Roads Authority also understands the concerns of SMEs not having bank guarantees, Unfortunately, as stated earlier, a bank guarantee is a requirement only in certain instances. Whenever a bank guarantee is required as part of the bidding document, this requirement will be indicated in the bidding document and the bidders are then required to take that form to the bank for signing and the completed form to be submitted together with the bidding document. Failure to submit a completed bidding document with a bank guarantee (when required) that bidding document. It must also be stated clearly here that the RA holds its procurement process in accordance with the rules and regulations that govern it and that successful bidders are awarded on the basis of meeting the requirements and all due process is done in a fair and transparent manner. In conclusion, SMEs are encouraged to contact the Procurement Policy Unit of the Ministry of Finance to request training on how the bidding process works. Query: The Roads Authority responds of the Citizen Satisfaction Survey Report Response: The Roads Authority (RA) has taken note of the article published in The Namibian newspaper dated 20 February 2018 under the heading “Govt fails delivery test.” This article contained out a Citizen Satisfaction Survey for business. It is rather unfortunate that the newspaper article focused squarely on the weakness areas, whereas there were many areas of strength that were also highlighted in the actual report. Having said that, we at RA appreciate the areas of strength highlighted in the report of which all were rated with just to mention a few – communication, ity, adequate information materials, clear signage giving indications/directions general client safety on NaTIS premises. The RA values citizen feedback on its of the report and most importantly for bringing the concerns of our customers to our attention. We have taken note of the areas such as recovery, access and responsiveness where we performed poorly according to the report (rating As a public entity we are committed to the goals of improved service delivery as outlined in the Harambee Prosperity Plan (HPP) and as such, we take due cognisance of the challenges highlighted in the report and give our commitment to working hard on improving on our shortcomings. The HPP calls for Effective Governance and Service Delivery, citizen satisfaction ratings of government performance to visionary direction we concur with at RA and all entities under our umbrella. It is therefore re-emphasized that the RA is fully dedicated to upholding the highest aspirations of our national agenda, including exceptional service delivery. The RA remains committed to service excellence and strives to work hard on improving our areas of weakness and in the same vein continues to strengthen the areas of strength where we performed well. -

NEW ERA Empowering students to INSIDE USINESS This news is your business Letshego posts impressive results Windhoek Letshego Holdings Namibia posted its maiden annual results following its successful listing on the Namibian Stock Exchange on September 28, 2017. Letshego Namibia has recorded double digit growth in both revenues and NUST MoU to Windhoek The Namibia Financial Institutions Supervisory Authority (NAMFISA) and the Namibia University of Science and Technology (NUST) have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) in which NAMFISA committed to support NUST students with Work Integrated Learning opportunities. The agreement takes effect from March 2018. Speaking at the signing ceremony, NAMFISA said; “Internships have become a key component at many institutions of higher education. The value of internships has grown in reputation over the years for several reasons. They are often considered a win-win situation for students, universities and employers. Working alongside a seasoned professional allows students to take on meaningful tasks with real responsibility. Technical competencies are reinforced, analytical skills are improved and the students are able to experience creativity required in today’s world.” NAMFISA says it believes in capacity building for the Namibian market, particularly the authority, in conjunction with the Bank of Namibia, undertook a skills gap study in 2017 analysts, investment managers, actuaries and market research analysts to mention a few. The MoU focuses explicitly on the area of collaborative effort in providing students with a high quality of educational experiences in workbased environments. Speaking at the occasion, the Deputy Vice Chancellor: Academic Affairs of NUST, Dr Andrew Niikondo said; “We are signing this agreement as a joint statement of intent aimed at improving the scale and value of work-integrated learning so that Namibia can better meet the challenges and opportunities facing our economy and society. I want to assure you, NAMFISA management and staff that we, at NUST, are fully committed to aligning our educational goals, research objectives, and training strategies and programmes and services to best global practices and standards.” Citing the Founding President of the Republic of Namibia, Dr Sam Nujoma, Matomola in closing said: “Our country can only achieve success, when the critical areas of socio-economic development.” projections that were included in the IPO prospectus. The holding company’s core business, the ‘deduction at source’ borrowing solutions, performed well last year. Letshego Namibia realised a satisfactory 14 percent loan book growth in this segment, up N5 million from N.1 billion in 2016, to N.4 billion in 2017. C h i e f f o r L e t s h e g o Namibia, Ester K a l i , s a i d , “ L e t s h e g o Namibia is very much in the investment and growth phase of its journey, and as such, we are proud to report a promising and of Annual Results for 2017. This was significant in helping us build a lasting legacy through our inclusive IPO, by 17 percent 14 percent year-on-year percent year-on-year decreased from 4.4 percent to 3.9 percent due to better recovery rates LetsGo value proposition to a targeted base of customers Letshego Bank Namibia commenced Namibian cents per share for the year payable to all shareholders and subsequent successful listing on the Namibian Stock Exchange.” Kali added, “Ekwafu Letu – the name given to our IPO meaning “our support” – was an ideal platform for us to demonstrate Letshego’s a number of Letshego’s core philosophies, such as extending our reach to Namibians located far and wide, empowering individuals with increased awareness around the merits of managing their hardearned money effectively, and enhancing customer experience with a simple, affordable and appropriate offer.” Kali continued that Letshego Namibia is committed to to increase customer choice and experience, reduce concentration risk and increase income and growth potential through multiple channels. In 2017 Letshego Namibia launched the ‘LetsGo’ value proposition to a targeted base of customers, and will continue this roll-out parallel to the implementation of its access channels. “Namibia’s continued investment in skills development and systems has strengthened the organisation’s operational platforms and choice in access channels for customers. We endeavour to deliver an exceptional level of customer experience by identifying opportunities to grow our market share and enhance of our existing solutions through solution,” Kali added. Kali concluded the 2017 results announcement with, “Our ongoing efforts to provide more inclusive offerings to the formal, informal and MSE segments of Namibia are already delivering positive growth and dividends for the business, despite us still being in the early stages of growth on the MSE segment. 2018 is expected to be another milestone in Letshego Namibia’s journey as we celebrate 10 years of improving lives. Our commitment to our customers remains unwavering and we look forward to celebrating another decade of dedicated and sustainable growth.” Photo: Strauss Lunyangwe

New Era

New Era Newspaper Vol 22 No 167