Republic of Namibia

eenhana gets historical shrine for war victims
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n 2005, human remains were discovered during the construction of the oxidation ponds at the town of Eenhana. This site was formerly the military base of the South African Defence Force (SADF)’s 54 Battalion during the apartheid regime. The remains discovered are suspected to be those of members of the Peoples’ Liberation Army of Namibia (PLAN), a military wing of the South West Africa Peoples Organization (SWAPO) and civilians, suspected to be members of the Eenhana population. Among the remains found were the skeletons of young people and children. The Eenhana area was known to be a key military infiltration point with the highest number of atrocities, deaths, skirmishes and gun battles during the war between PLAN and SADF fighters. SADF had established its 54 Battalion in Eenhana in early 1970s with the aim to prevent residents from leaving the country into exile and to intercept guerrilla forces crossing into Namibia from Angola. The discovery of the human remains in Eenhana and elsewhere in the Ohangwena region had stimulated a debate as to what is needed to be done to ensure that the remains are reburied with respect and dignity in a shrine to become a symbol of the history of the war for national liberation. As a result, the Cabinet Committee on Overall Policy and Priorities (CCOPP) deliberated on the matter and consultations with regional and local authorities were held after which CCOPP took a decision that the human remains found at Eenhana, Enghandja, Epuku and elsewhere around Ohangwena region should be reburied to establish a Regional Shrine to serve as a historical monument that would remain for the future generations to see and respect.

Bulletin
Government Information Bulletin August 2007

Government Information
August 2007

Many Namibians have lost their lives in the war for national resistance and liberation during the colonial rule that lasted over 100 years. Many of the victims have been buried in shallow graves and others have never been buried. There have been discoveries of skeletons and human remains in various parts of the country, in recent years, especially in the north. Battalion and who remained in Eenhana to date, retired teachers, nurses and soldiers who were involved with the colonial SADF and community members who were arrested from their homes and held as prisoners in the Eenhana base. Nurses who worked at a local hospital which was located adjacent to the SADF military camp at Eenhana, reported that they used to hear screams from the SADF camp. They suspected it came from people subjected to torture with electric shocks during morning hours. They also told of the terrifying circumstances of the tortured people who sought medical help afterwards. Due to the people’s protests against the location of the SADF military base close to the houses, hospital, school and the church, the camp was relocated to the site where it was situated up to the time of independence. From that time on, strict rules to ensure that civilians did not enter the military base were applied, except for a few nurses who accompanied patients to the military hospital/sick bay. But these nurses and patients were blindfolded when they entered the base and on their way out. In the 1980s, after Koevoet was formed, the South West African Territorial Force (SWATF) – a subsidiary of SADF, often tied bodies of the victims on the spare wheels of the vehicles and exhibited them to the civilian population of Eenhana town, telling them they were PLAN fighters. The campaign was aimed at scaring the population and discouraging people, who provided food, medicine, clothing and information, from rendering support to PLAN combatants and young people from escaping the country into exile. The community used to see the bodies carried into the military base but people have no

A model of the newly built shrine at Eenhana

To effect the Cabinet decision, a study was undertaken by the Technical Committee of the National Heritage Council, under the umbrella of the Ministry of Youth, National Service, Sport and Culture (MYNSSC), to find out what events led to the presence of the discovered human remains, investigate how the local people would like to commemorate and remember those who sacrificed their lives during the liberation struggle and instilling a sense of ownership of the project among the community of Eenhana and the region. The exercise was also aimed at ensuring that the community will care, maintain and sustain the project beyond 26 August 2007. Data collection was done by interviewing Ohangwena regional and local authorities, including the Governor and the Mayor of the town of Eenhana, elderly residents who lived in the area before the arrival of the SADF 54

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IN ThIs Issue

honorary Ranks to Veterans
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Gifts to state executives, state Property
Page 15

hishongwa high Commission to Botswana
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Government Information Bulletin August 2007

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amibians can vividly remember the inauguration of the Heroes’ Acre in 2002 in Windhoek where some of the national heroes and heroines have been buried and accorded an eternal place to rest.

Eenhana gets historic Shrine for war victims.................... From the desk of the Minister............................................ Shrine to boost development at Eenhana.......................... Road map towards the formation of the United States of Africa....................................................... Honorary ranks to these veterans...................................... Protect rights of children................................................... Government’s position on demands for compensation by the Committee on the Welfare of Ex-combatants......... NDP3 on track.................................................................... “Africans themselves should ensure safety of their skies,” says President Pohamba................................ Gender-Based Violence put on the agenda........................ SADC reviews progress on regional integration................ Fisheries responding to Seal harvesting............................ Namibia’s 3rd Report on CEDAW....................................... Namibian Standards Institution (NSI) established............ 5th Land Reform Advisory Commission inaugurated......... Namibia earns N$20 million annually from oil exploration activities.......................................................... Africa Day of Public Service and Administration in annual calendar............................................................. Information Service Delivery Survey on............................ Etosha Centenary – Grand milestone of a great jewel....... Home Affairs closer to the people...................................... Lighting up villages despite shortage in electricity generation capacity............................................................ Kalkrand Community opens centre of empowerment....... A descent shelter preserves dignity................................... Accountability and transparency needed in all government business......................................................... Namibia and Italy sign animal health agreement.............. “Use of ICT a miracle” says Nandi-Ndaitwah.................... Conference addressed ICT development in the country.... Centre to rescue and search for lost and sinking vessels established............................................................. Twyfelfontein: now a World Heritage Site......................... Hishongwa appointed Nam’s diplomatic envoy to Botswana.............................................................

Contents

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Namibia has fought a long and protracted struggle against the German and South African apartheid colonialism. Many of our people have lost their lives in battles and perpetuated massacres. Few of them have been buried with dignity, but many of them remain buried in unidentified shallow and mass graves throughout the country. During the war for liberation, we had no opportunity to bury our people with respect. Now that Namibia is independent, we are obliged to give our heroes and heroines great respect and lay them to rest in memorable places. The Heroes’ Acre is a sacred national monument that holds memories of all our fallen national leaders. We are also aware of the existence of other shrines and monuments erected throughout the country in recognition of those brave sons and daughters of our land who resisted and fought colonialism and foreign domination. In 2005, human remains believed to be those of members of the People’s Army of Namibia (PLAN), the military wing of SWAPO and members of the civilian population, were discovered at Eenhana town and elsewhere, in the Ohangwena region. In recognition of the role played by the PLAN fighters and the Ohangwena community in the struggle for freedom and independence of our country, the Cabinet has decided that the remains be buried in a dignified grave on which a Shrine will be erected to keep our memories and those of the future generations alive. The Shrine will be in recognition of women and men who sacrificed their lives for the freedom of our motherland as they supported the struggle with resolute minds and spirits, determined to bring about change forever. It will be a symbol of the resilience of the people of the Ohangwena region, in particular and the nation as a whole. Now that we are free and independent, our heroes and heroines are resting in peace, and in peace we will commit ourselves to the fight against poverty, by exploring and exploiting our natural resources such as diamonds, oil and gas. In its endeavour to develop the nation, the government is committed to capacity building so that Namibia can exploit and create wealth and add value to its resources. Rural electrification is a visible and notable element in the development of our nation as it spreads into smaller towns and villages. Electricity is not only important in the provision of light but it accelerates development by all measure. Access to information is an important factor in the creation of a knowledge-based society. The Ministry of Information and Broadcasting is conducting a Service Delivery Survey to examine how our services reach the people. The country is also promoting the use of Information, Communication Technologies (ICTs) to fight poverty and underdevelopment. Gender-based violence must also be fought tooth and nail, if our country is to enjoy peace and stability that our heroes and heroines have sacrificed their lives for.

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Government Information Bulletin: Publicising Government
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Government Information Bulletin August 2007

Shrine to boost development at Eenhana
Since the discovery of the human remains at Eenhana town in 2005, consultations have been taking place between the Ministry of Youth, National Service, Sport and Culture, through the National Heritage Council (NHC), Eenhana Town Council and the Office of the Governor of the Ohangwena region to come up with concrete plans as to what needs to be done to be able to find an eternal place for the bones.

The ground for the Shrine

Eenhana Soccer Field close to the Shrine

Preparing the ground for the burial place for the human remains discovered in 2005 at Eenhana

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decision was taken to shift the burial place from the site where the bones were discovered because of the unsuitability of the place. The site is close to an oxidation pond, which was being constructed at the time of the discovery of the bones and it is also close to the military base. As a result, the town council decided to donate four hectares of land, about two kilometers east of the town, where the remains would be reburied. With the Cabinet’s decision to give a proper burial to the remains, it was also decided that a Shrine will be erected on the mass grave as a memorable symbol to preserve the history of the people’s participation in the struggle for liberation. The Eenhana Town Council and the people of the region saw the importance of not only to erect a symbol of history but to keep the place alive as a tourist attraction and a centre for appropriate entertainment. It was found that the site was strategically located along the

road, leading to the Trans Caprivi Highway. It may, therefore, attract visitors from across the Ohangwena region and those travelling from places such as Caprivi, Okavango and other places in the northern regions, who would want to see the shrine. Once the road that connects Ohangwena and Kavango regions is developed and in full swing, as envisaged by the government, the place will be more accessible to tour-

ists. The town council has a big plan to develop the place into a live hub of activities. The space opposite to the shrine will be turned into a forest reserve and the site will also be developed into a recreational central park. A museum is also planned to be built for the preservation of artifacts and other items of importance to the historical background of the people and places of the Ohangwena region. An open space close to the site, currently used as a soccer field, will be developed into a sport complex with an open market, nearby, for local traders. The work to construct the sport complex will start this year while the park construction will commence in 2008. The Town Council Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Walde Natangwe Ndevashiya said the shrine will not be isolated or be left to turn into a white elephant but will be developed into a place of attraction for both the local people and tourists visiting the region from elsewhere.

Construction of the Ohangwena Shrine underway

Road map towards the formation of the United States of Africa
African leaders’ who attended the 9th Ordinary Session of the Assembly of the African Union (AU) in Accra, Ghana from 1 - 3 July 2007 agreed to rationalise and strengthen the regional economic communities and harmonise their activities towards the creation of the continent’s common market. The leaders also agreed to speed up the stages set in the Abudja Treaty, establishing the African Economic Community with a reviewed timeframe to accelerate economic and political integration. The meeting furthermore agreed to conduct an audit of the Executive Council, as well as other organs of the AU in accordance with the terms of reference adopted by the 10th Extraordinary Session of the Executive Council that took place in Zimbali, South Africa in May 2007. ccording to Namibia’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Accra Declaration saw the need to establish a ministerial committee to examine the identification of the Union Government concept and its relation with national governments, as well as the area of competence and the impact of the establishment of the union government on the sovereignty of member states.

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The committee also has to look at additional sources of financing the activities of the Union, definition of the relationship between the Union Government and the regional economic communities and the elaboration of the road map together with timeframes for establishing the Union Government.

It was also agreed to involve the African peoples, including Africans in the Diaspora, in the process leading to the formation of the Union Government. The audit will be submitted to the Executive Council to make appropriate recommendations to the next ordinary session of the Assembly.

Government Information Bulletin August 2007

Honorary ranks to these veterans
John Otto Nankudhu Munika Erwin Mbambo-Munika Jonas Nawa Shiweda Mathias Ndakolo (Mbulunganga) Andreas S Kapulwa Erasmus Mbatjita Nganyone (Kokauru) Eloby Amundaba Auguste Mukwahepo Immanuel Elisa Elia Haulyondjamba Rahimise Wa-Kahimise Philipus Nandenga (Zulu) Lazarus Hashetu Shihepo Hamutele Simon Hafeni Mzee Kaukungwa Lucas Machinga Kulandata Andrew Anyanya Bongy Intamba Frederick Mwala Matongo Helao Joseph Shitjuwete Lazarus Sakaria Patric Mayumbelo Mwinga Wilhelma Niilenge Gaus Shikomba Heita S Nakuningilila Joseph Hipangerwa Johannes Shiponeni Abel Haluteni Ekonia Ndafenongo Malakia Uushona David Shimwefeleni Sakaria Ndeutapo Simeon Linekela Shihunguleni Haufiku J. Nghidipo Justus Shiimbashike Haita Nathanael Homateni Leonard L Dayakohamba Gabriel Ekandjo Festus Nghitotelwa Nghipangelwa Paulus Hango Petrus Benyamin Tomas Shihepo Alfred N Shimwooshili Chris Philipus Niipele Leonard Kanyanda John M Kafita Kataleonga J Kaukungwa Steven Nghishiko Philemon Kondja Kambala Mathew Hedimbi Nauyoma Jack S Hayoonga Tuvahitile M Reinford Masule Limota Joas Ipinge Conrad Machinga Kaela Office Chisozu Lufumile Zebedia Mwanawina Sikabelezi Dismond Sikabelezi Nestor A Iyambo Paulus N Mwahakumange Eliaser Ndapopiwa Maimbo Got-Pen Hailonga Hamwenye Asser Mwatilifange Alfons Upahee Ngeyama Tobias Petrus Haihonya Sackey Amunyela Kasela John Kasela John Bafumisi Bafumisi Ben Mutelo Jason Nghilokwa Musheko Mario Sikindo Luhowa Mbote Sikindo Sindimba Nikodemus Nakadhilu Wilhelm Hangula Naishindi Kapause Letus Sipune Shivute Willbardt Iyambo Natangwe Kondunda John Amapindi Juso Heita Inamutira Conrad Nambinga Kati Haibodi Vilho Andreas Shafombabi Noa Ndafenongo Mandume K Mweshixwa Oiva Amuthenu Isak Shoome Joseph Shaanika Uushona Festus Kaapanda Kanangolo Teodor Hanyanya Andreas Nakale Mwahaluka Lamek Ithete Johannes Musheko

Protect rights of children
Namibia joined the rest of Africa to commemorate the Day of the African Child. The day was coined to commemorate a march by young people to protest against the apartheid Bantu education thirty one years ago. In 1976 children in Soweto, South Africa, took to the streets to make their voices heard and as a result many innocent children were shot and killed by the apartheid administration.

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o commemorate the day, a ceremony was held at the Sam Nujoma Stadium in Katutura. Themed “Combating Child trafficking” the commemoration was aimed at reminding the nation that children’s rights were being violated and the situation called for action. Speaking at the ceremony, UNICEF Representative, Khin-Sandi Lwin noted that many children are still without a voice and millions of them, all over the world, are being forced by adults into prostitution, to work as farm workers, as house servants, beggars and to provide cheap and unpaid labour. “Namibia is no exception. With more and more children becoming orphans, living without adult care and the basic necessities, many children are poised to become victims of child trafficking,” Lwin said. Reports indicate that many young girls in Namibia are working as sex workers and

many of them are forced by adults, who are suppose to care for them, to work as domestic workers. The UNICEF Representative observed that in rural areas young boys are used as cattle headers and work as farm labourers without pay instead of being in school like all other children of their age. Said Lwin: “Each and every one of us must be vigilant to stop any form of exploitation of children. Communities should help authorities by reporting any incident of child abuse they are aware of. Namibian children must be protected and cared for by all of us (adults) who are entrusted to do so.” UNICEF called for a united effort to combat any form of child abuse and said the organisation will continue to work with the Namibian Police and the relevant authorities to provide resources for action.

Speaking at the same occasion, Hon. Marlene Mungunda, Minister of Gender Equality and Child Welfare, said that June 16, 1976 was when children changed history for the better, commenting their militant stance that speeded up the process towards freedom from the racist apartheid rule. “For that, we must always remember and honour them,” Hon. Mungunda remarked, adding that children are now living in a free country where all people are equal and where all children are free to go to school. “You must cherish and appreciate your freedom,” she concluded. Namibia is one of the countries that have ratified the African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child of 1990 that compels governments of the world to ensure a safe and protected childhood for the young generations.

Government Information Bulletin August 2007

Government’s position on demands for compensation by the Committee on the Welfare of Ex-combatants
Honourable Tjiriange briefed Cabinet on the meeting he held with a group of Ex-combatants and Ex-Freedom Fighters in Windhoek on 04th June 2007. n the basis of that briefing, Cabinet decided to issue a Special Cabinet Resolution and the content of the Resolution is as follows. Reaffirming that the struggle for national liberation was waged on voluntary and commitment basis and not on the basis of rewards or benefits; Recalling the many sacrifices made by the gallant sons and daughters of Namibia in the fight for national liberation; Appreciating the eventual triumph of the liberation struggle; Recognizing the great importance Government attaches to the socio-economic plight of the former freedom fighters, former exiles and former political activists; Appreciating many initiatives Government has taken in addressing the plight of former political activists, freedom fighters and exiles which, inter alia, can be listed as follows: a) In 1998, Cabinet established a Technical Committee on Ex-Combatants in order to identify and categorise unemployed former PLAN combatants’ socio-economic circumstances and recommended measures for their permanent and reasonable integration into the Namibian society. b) The Technical Committee carried out nationwide audits in all the thirteen regions and as a result 8, 777 Ex-Combatants were employed in the Public service. c)

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Further recalling the significant initiative taken by His Excellency, President Hifikepunye Pohamba in establishing the Ministry of Veterans’ Affairs; and Noting the consultative process being conducted by the Ministry of Veterans’ Affairs with all the stakeholders, Cabinet therefore resolved as follows; a) That Cabinet acknowledges receipt of the petition by the group led by Ms. Ruusa Malulu which contains extraordinary demands and which the economy of Namibia will not be able to meet; b) That Cabinet further acknowledges several demands, proposals and suggestions made by many other stakeholders, apart from the group represented by Ms. Ruusa Malulu, in addressing the social and economic plight of former political activists, freedom fighters and exiles; c)
Hon. Dr. Ngarikutuke Tjiriange, Minister of Veterans Affairs

All Ex-Combatants who are less than fiftyfive years old and are disabled were also enrolled with the War Veterans Trust Fund and receive a monthly social grant of five hundreds (N$500.00) Namibian dollars for the rest of their lives.

That all concerned should remain calm and give the Ministry of Veterans’ Affairs enough time to enable it to thoroughly study the various demands, proposals and suggestions, and develop a comprehensive Action Plan to address the needs of the designated groups and different stakeholders.

d) A good number were also integrated into the State-Owned Enterprise or taken care of through other Government programmes including the War Orphans Welfare programme, Housing Project and many others.

d) That Cabinet directs the Malulu Group to return to their homes immediately in order not to compromise public health, disrupt and interfere with the freedom of movement of other citizens in the Central Business Centre of Windhoek. Signed by Cabinet the Acting Secretary to

NDP3 on track
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The National Planning Commission team led by its Director-General, Hon. Helmut Angula, has met with international development partners and the media to brief them on the progress with the formulation of the Third National Development Plan (NDP3) on 9 July 2007. The NDP3 will be implemented in five years from 2007/2008 to 2011/2012 financial years. Ten thematic working groups that include the government, regional government officials, stakeholders from the parastatals, private sector, civic organisations and international donors are at work since March and April, this year. completed their tasks. the remaining two are progressing well. Inputs from the regions will soon be submitted to the National Planning Commission to draft a discussion paper for the planned National Consultative Session which will convene all stakeholders to discuss the draft in September 2007. The plan will be finalised and will be submitted to Cabinet for approval. It is expected that the implementation of the NDP3 will accelerate the country’s economic growth at the annual rate of between 5.1 to 6.4 percent. The implementation of the plan is also expected to create jobs for Namibians and to reduce poverty among communities. It is the expressed hope that Namibia’s aspirations to make rapid progress towards the achievements of Vision 2030 will become a reality. NDP3 is a five-year national development plan to be implemented in efforts to pursue national socioeconomic growth aspirations of Namibians using more practical methods of integrating the management and measurements of results achieved at every stage of implementation through the use of monitoring tools. The plan will use the current world-wide trend of the systematic utilization of information on implementation performance management to guide the road maps of development.

he NDP3 is focusing on the implementation of projects and programmes guided by the aims to achieve results, emanating from integrating planning with financial budgets and the performance management of the public institutions and civil servants. The plan links with Vision 2030, which aims at establishing an industrialised and prosperous nation within the national objectives, goals and targets that help the country progress towards achieving its vision. The development partners were informed that eight of the ten thematic groups have

Government Information Bulletin August 2007

“Africans themselves should ensure safety of their skies” says President Pohamba
With the establishment of the African Civil Aviation Agency (AFRO-CAA) on 28 June 2007, the safety and security of the African air space will be ensured. The AFRO-CAA is a continental aviation safety agency aimed at complementing the work or efforts of the African Union (AU), a specialised body for the aviation and other sub-regional cooperative groups in moving African states towards a single airworthiness, flight operations, aerodrome certification/licensing, personnel examinations and environmental code adopted by the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO). their individual capabilities to the extend required. The agency will also provide on-the-job training and the training of national inspectors through workshops, seminars, exchange programmes and courses. This will enhance the individual safety oversight capability of each participating member state.

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he agency which was launched in Windhoek, is established in the spirit of mutual cooperation between the participating African states for elevating the level of flight safety oversight and to provide the safest possible air transportation system within African countries. The agency will address the deficiencies in African states primary aviation legislation, regulations and technical standards relating to the subjects of personnel licensing and flight operation and airworthiness, certification, surveillance and harmonisation of regulations. The Afro-CAA involves participating African states that aim at enhancing the safety of air transport operations in Africa. The project has a permanent status and will be manned by Flight Safety, Airworthiness Inspectors and Personnel Licensing Officers having the mandate of harmonising the examination, personnel licensing, aerodrome certification, surveillance of aircraft, audits of maintenance organisations technical and flight training facilities. The establishment of an air safety agency was necessitated by the fact that the issue of safety in the African sky has been a worrying factor and efforts to curb further danger is long overdue. Safety is a necessary factor for the safety and security of passengers and the promotion of tourism on the continent. The agency is expected to establish a continental hub of flight safety inspectors and training courses to be able to produce a whole range of certification and surveillance functions on behalf of participating states lacking the required manpower and resources for supplementing

The agency presents an opportunity to examine the causes of air accidents and develop a strategy to reduce or eliminate accidents. The meeting took place in the aftermath of the Kenya Airways B 737-800 disaster in which nine crew and 105 passengers died.

President Hifikepunye Pohamba flanked by his wife, Madam Pohamba and Hon. Usiko Nghaamwa, Governor of Ohangwena region

African states met to address the question of safety and security concerns in the aviation industry. The European Union (EU) unilaterally banned 62 airlines from the continent from flying into EU air space. The discussions were aimed at reviewing ways and means of improving safety standards in the aviation industry. Launching the AFRO-CAA, Namibian President Hifikepunye Pohamba described the situation as a worrisome development, which needs urgent attention, saying that as responsible citizens of the African continent “we have a duty and responsibility to address this matter with our partners”.

The president contented that the meeting should be critical of the current practices with a view to attaining the highest standards possible. “Indeed, in keeping with the laid down international standards for the safety and security of passengers, this should be the priority of all the airlines,” he added. President Pohamba warned against the attitude of waiting for other people from outside the continent to compel Africa to adhere to international safety standards, saying that “we need to do this ourselves, with their help because this is what is right to do”. He is convinced that the AFRO-CAA “will provide us with an opportunity to deal with this important matter in a systematic and decisive manner”. All participating African states will contribute funds for the implementation of the agency and other contributions in cash and in kind are expected to come from the donor community.

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Gender-Based Violence put on the agenda
Gender-Based Violence (GBV) is one of the major challenges facing the Namibian nation and to address the issues, the Ministry of Gender Equality and Child Welfare organised a historic National Conference on GBV that took place from 19-22 June 2007 at the Nampower Convention Centre in Windhoek.

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he Conference was organised under the theme: “Unifying Action to Eliminate Gender-Based Violence in Our Society”. Over 370 delegates from all 13 regions attended. Representatives were drawn from different government ministries, agencies, non-governmental organisations, religious groups and traditional leaders. The aim of the conference was to come up with concrete and comprehensive actionbased strategies on how to combat GBV. The conference was officially opened by the Minister of Presidential Affairs Dr. Albert Kawana on behalf of the President Hifikepunye Pohamba. In his statement the President urged

all participants to seriously examine and identify the root causes of GBV in the society with the view to eradicate it in all spheres of life. He emphasised the importance of equal partnership between men and women in all spheres of social, cultural, economical and political life. At the same occasion Hon. Marlene Mungunda, Minister of Gender Equality and Child Welfare, called upon the Namibian nation to declare war on GBV. The Minister said the war against violence would be fought by the spirit of the Lord and with a watertight strategy. “I am certain of victory because this challenge is too big. We cannot miss it. We are instruments of peace. I

prophesy that peace, care, kindness and love will replace hatred, violence, selfishness and anger. We will recreate our world by changing the circumstances of our lives,” she said. In a statement, read on behalf of Mr. Simon Nhongo, UN Resident Coordinator, Ms. Khin Sandi Lwin, UNICEF Representative, said that although Namibia is often quick to state that the elimination of gender-based violence and crime is a national priority, the country is yet to back its words with deeds. She further said that medical doctors, police investigators and social workers should do their part to handle cases of GBV professionally.

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Government Information Bulletin August 2007

SADC reviews progress on regional integration
Namibia hosted the meeting of the Southern African Development Cooperation Integrated Committee of Ministers (SADC ICM) in June 2007, that was officially opened by the Minister of Trade and Industry, Hon. Immanuel Ngatjizeko in Windhoek. The aim of the meeting was to reflect on how far SADC has progressed in its mission to unite the peoples of member countries and bring the region together in the quest to achieve greater regional integration. the implementation of the Regional Indicative Strategic Development Plan (RISDP). At his stage, SADC is assessing whether the region is on track towards achieving the Free Trade Area by 1 January 2008. Member states are compiling audit reports to determine tariff reduction and see whether they are making progress to meet their commitments. The regional body is preparing for the establishment of a customs union market integration to commence in 2010 to be followed by the creation of a common market in 2015. Despite the much hailed speed of progress made in the socio-economic development in the region, SADC is still faced with several challenges at the Secretariat, regional and country levels in terms of implementing activities within the new structure. Analysts at the meeting observed that if SADC was to deliver effectively and efficiently, there was a need to put the entire system in motion. There has been a problem of structural coordination under which SADC has been operating across various sectors. The need to create a platform to ensure cross fertilisation of programmes and projects led to the establishment of the ICM that is aimed at addressing the issue of coordination, through clusters as links, within various sectors. ICM is also aimed at curbing the mushrooming sectoral meetings, which resulted in divergent directions, hence increasing costs. The work of the ICM has not been fully operational because of the duplication of work with other bodies such as the council and sectoral ministers. Currently only a few member states are having working national committees on integration, which are vital feeders in the work of the ICM, in place. The national committees are to help the work of the ICM in terms of ensuring equitable participation and benefits derived from regional socio-economic integration programmes and projects. Hon. Ngatjizeko called for a radical change of the operations of the ICM with a reflection on the causes of its inability to deliver effectively to ensure maximum outcomes. The economic integration agenda was triggered by the Windhoek Treaty of 1992 which defined the regional road map as deepening integration in SADC. In 2006 the SADC Consultative Conference met and re-affirmed priority areas as regional economic integration, infrastructure support for regional integration, sustainable peace and security, emergency areas of cooperation which include sustainable food security and addressing the challenge of the HIV/AIDS pandemic to be implemented on the regional integration agenda. For the region to realise its full potential in intra-regional trade, there is a need for infrastructural development aimed at unlocking the opportunities offered by the regional trading framework. SADC Heads of States will hold a brainstorming session during their Summit in August 2007 on the theme: ”Accelerating Implementation of Regional Infrastructure in the SADC Region”, to review the status of regional infrastructure development, identification of funding gaps in infrastructure and adoption of radical measures to fund regional infrastructure. Attention will also focus on the Dar es Salaam Declaration on agriculture and food security and on the Maseru Declaration on HIV/AIDS, including the implementation of the cross cutting issues, such as gender mainstreaming, environment as well as science and technology.

Hon. Immanuel Ngatjizeko, Minister of Trade and Industry

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on. Ngatjizeko expressed his satisfaction at the achievements that SADC has made on social, economic and political fronts in terms of the integration and poverty reduction, saying that positive improvements in most of the development indicators such as inflation, budget deficit, debt ratio to GDP were noticeable in the economic development of member countries.

The ICM is an arm of the SADC Council of Ministers that directs the organisation’s programmes and projects, ensuring harmonization over the four core areas that include food, agriculture and natural resources, infrastructure and services, social and human development, special programmes, trade and industry, finance and investment of socio-economic integration. The ICM is a forum, where ministers representing various socio-economic sectors, come together to appreciate, monitor and oversee

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Gender-Based Violence put on the agenda
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The conference recommended that all stakeholders at all levels must join a multicultural approach in efforts to end GBV and to integrate GBV programmes into the existing forums, institutions, structures, policies and programmes. It was further recommended to look at the customary/traditional laws and systems to identify the positive elements that will help address the new challenges posed by HIV/AIDS. Participants also called for efforts to discourage elements of culture and tradition that make women vulnerable to violence and abuse, noting that since poverty disempower women, making them even more vulnerable to GBV, sustainable and appropriate poverty alleviation measures were needed to be in place. Prime Minister, Nahas Angula officially closed the conference and congratulated the Ministry of Gender Equality and Child Welfare for taking the step in addressing GBV. The Premier urged all delegates to use the experiences from the conference and to do their best to educate others within their communities. At the same occasion the Premier also launched a story booklet which contains stories of survival and resilience told by women who have experienced GBV.

Government Information Bulletin August 2007

Fisheries responding to Seal harvesting
The Ministry of Fisheries and Marine Resources has decided to respond to a barrage of letter writing spearheaded by the Seal Alert South Africa lobby group on the issue of seal culling in the country.

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he Ministry stated that the issues raised in the letters are outdated and have become repetitive, saying that there is nothing new, neither interesting because Namibia upholds and respects the opinions of animal welfare and conservation organisations, as partners in the sustainability of the national heritage. In a press statement issued in Windhoek to react to the notion that Namibia was not adhering to the international rules and laws regarding the harvesting of seals, the Ministry accused some individuals of opportunistically using the platform as a conduct of harnessing financial resources for the sustenance of their livelihoods. “They are deliberately distorting information and presenting falsified accounts of events and facts to garnet support from those that are not well informed,” the statement noted. The statement observed that the misrepresentation of facts would affect the majority of the under-developed world, especially the rural poor, women, children and the most vulnerable societies by withholding exploitation of sustainably managed resources such as the seals. “Namibia is endowed with a heritage of wide spectrum of both renewable and non-renewable natural resources. It is worth noting that in the livelihoods of nations of the world, their economies and development are hinged on the exploitation of living and non-living natural resources,” continued the statement. The Fisheries and Marine Resources Ministry re-emphasised that seal harvesting, as with all living natural resources, is conducted in Namibia in line with the principles of sustainable use, as advocated by the “Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries” of the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations, the provision of which sustainable use of resources is contained in the country’s Constitution. To ensure responsible and sustainable management of Namibia’s living resources, the Ministry of Fisheries and Marine Resources, as a custodian of living marine resources is obliged and mandated to make use of the best available scientific information on the biological status of such resources, which is an important requirement from the United Nations Law of Sea. “This is exactly what we have been doing and will continue to adhere to. This applies to seals management as well as other mammals. As the

basis for developing our management strategies aimed at ensuring sustainable use of our marine resources and responsible harvesting practices, scientific information is always gathered and used,” explained the statement. According to the latest biological information, the seal stock in Namibia is currently in a healthy condition. The Cape Fur Seal population along the southwestern coast of Africa is not in anyway endangered. The most recent scientific information available reveals that the seal population in Namibia has enjoyed an overall recovery rate when compared to the 1993 level. Fluctuations in levels of stocks are normal in the management of natural resources such as terrestrial or sea living animals. Namibia is accused by some of the international civil organizations, lobbying for the protection of seals, of adopting a cruel way of culling seals. Since the country’s independence in 1990, the Ministry has been inviting entities to provide any alternative approach for harvesting seals. The statement noted with concern: “The request is and was genuine. We are disturbed by the silence to the requests we have made for years regarding innovative, resourceful, elegant, progressive ideas from those apprehensive about our prudent and sustainable use of all our marine living resources, particularly seals. We have been waiting to hear from them after numerous requests to provide alternatives to the subject of their complaints. They have failed to be useful. Based on their track record, we wonder whether they will be at all helpful. It is easy to talk but conservation groups have not suggested anything. They are mindful of that. Seal harvesting is an economic activity and can not be done away with rather than being supplemented or replaced by a viable method of sustaining that niche in the Namibian economy.” The Seal industry in Namibia sustain about 140 direct jobs. Seal Alert S.A is encouraged to meet people employed in the sector and witness how the sealing industry has added value to their lives. The government re-iterates that it is willing to hear from entities such as Seal Alert SA about viable supplements to the current seal harvesting activities and methodologies. Critics are warned not to forget that the process of the use of living natural resources is

preceded by terminating the life of animals by humans and the practice is not unique to seals. The Government explained that the world use various methods in abattoirs with cattle, chicken, birds, lamb and pigs, adding that wildlife, such as game get shot from a distance, fish and mollusks are left to suffocate in the air and seals are shot or hit to die instantly. “Fishing and hunting is not an activity that is unique to Namibia or developing countries for that matter. It is a practice for both developing and developed countries, ”the statement added. In the United States of America, Fish & Wildlife Service indicated that 13 million people enjoyed hunting in 2001 alone. The 13 million hunters spent 228 days outdoor, took 200 million hunting trips and spent $20.6 billion pursuing their passion during that year alone. Namibia’s animal harvesting is dictated by the abundance of the stock. “If the stock increases or decreases, measures based on available scientific evidence are taken to ensure balance. We do that with seals and other species. For example, we have investigated the mass starvation of seals along the Namibian coast in 2006 and concluded that unavailability of food was the primary cause of death in our seal population. Prudent and sustainable management of our seal resource has guided the Minister of Fisheries and Marine Resources to reduce the population of seal pubs with an amount of 5000 for 2007,” stated the Fisheries Ministry. The Ministry has created an open door policy to discuss issues of national, regional and international dimensions and it is prepared to meet people of goodwill who are willing to engage in fruitful discussions. “We call upon animal welfare and conservation organisations and other interested parties to consider this offer for an engagement with us,” added the statement. In 2000, the Minister of Fisheries invited and met members of conservation groups in Namibia for discussion to deliberate and resolve issues of concern with the aim to come up with propositions in the aspect of management of seals. The Ministry called on outside conservation groups that did not attend the meeting to stand up to a challenge to present alternative approaches, regarding prudent and sustainable management of seals.

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Government Information Bulletin August 2007

Namibian Standards Institution (NSI) established
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he laboratory will also conduct tests on Paralytic Shellfish Poisoning (PSP), Diarrhetic Shellfish Poisoning (DSP) and Amnesic Shellfish Poisoning (ASP). Failure to test for those toxins would result in the country’s shellfish products being denied access to international markets, including the EU. Namibia developed a vision of establishing the NSI more than ten years ago. The process only started after the Ministry of Trade and Industry entered into an agreement with the Swedish International Development Corporation Agency (SIDA) to establish the ”Development of a National Quality Infrastructure in Namibia” on 1 December 1997. SIDA has advanced a contribution of N$ 3.6 million at the time. The NSI will promote standardisation and quality assurance in industry and commerce. It is also aimed at improving and promoting trade, as well as liaising with regional and international bodies with similar objectives. Until now, few Namibians understood what standardisation was all about. A number of training activities on the standardisation took place country-wide involving beneficiaries from the public and private sectors, as well as interested individuals. As a result, the training sessions that were conducted up to the year 2000 proved to be invaluable to the country. The training included the development of a legislative framework, which has formed the basis for the establishment of the NSI. Several government agencies, institutions and ministries such as Fisheries and Marine Resources, Agriculture, Water and Forestry, Health and Social Services and Works, Transport and Communication, were consulted with the view to ensuring that they formed part of the process, as they would be directly affected by the activities of the NSI. The Ministry of Trade and Industry also worked closely with the Namibian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (NCCI), the Manufacturers Association and a number of Small and Medium Size Enterprises (SMEs). The SMEs were involved with the aim to impart experience in terms of becoming competitive in the regional and international markets, as their products would have to comply with the minimum standards. As the Standards Act, 2005 (Act No.18 of 2005) has not yet come into force, Cabinet has directed that the NSI must be launched as a Section 21 Company or Association not for profit making, in terms of the Companies Act, 1973 (Act No. 61 of 1973) pending the enforcement of the Standards Act of 2005. A Board of Directors of the NSI will be appointed for a period of three years and will consists of five members appointed by Cabinet in terms of Cabinet decision No. 17th/12.09.06/11. It is expected that the NSI will contribute to the growth of the Namibian economy once it is fully functional as the products and services would

Namibia will soon establish its standards testing laboratory to be known as the Namibian Standards Institution (NSI). be able to meet international standards thereby becoming competitive. It is expected that it will also create market access for Namibia’s agricultural and non-agricultural products and services. Suitable premises have already been leased at Walvis Bay to establish the said Biotoxins Laboratory and the equipment have been purchased and will be installed soon. The NSI will be developed in two phases. The first phase will be the appointment of personnel/ staff members, the launch of the institution itself and the establishment of the bio-toxins laboratory. The second phase is expected to start after three years from the launch of the first phase when the NSI will venture into further areas of its competency including the establishment of the civil, mechanical, electronic and other engineering laboratories. Namibia will be faced with challenges on its journey to establish the new national standards body. The country will first have to establish the technical infrastructure to enable it take over the regulatory function, which is currently performed by the South African Bureau of Standards (SABS). SABS is expected to withdraw from Namibia within the next three years. The Minister of Trade and Industry, Hon. Immanuel Ngatjizeko is expected to launch the laboratory soon to be followed by the appointment of staff members.

Namibia’s 3rd Report on CEDAW
In January 2007 Namibia submitted its 3rd report following the 1st and 2nd reports which were submitted in 1997 and 2005 respectively. The Hon. Minister of Gender Equality and Child Welfare, Marlene Mungunda headed the Namibian delegation to the 37th Session of the Committee of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) that took place in New York from 15-19 January 2007. s a state party to the CEDAW, Namibia has an obligation, in terms of Article 18 of the convention, to submit to the UN Secretary General a report on progress the country has made on elimination of all forms of discrimination against women. The objectives of the session were to consider reports of state parties and to engage in dialogue regarding the constraints and progress made in the implementation of the convention and identify required actions that would assist

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the state parties to enhance implementation of the convention. In her conclusion Hon. Mungunda highlighted the country’s achievements in the implementation including new progress made since the submission of the 2nd and 3rd reports. The committee raised questions mostly on the absence of data and statistics to support the information on Namibia’s 2nd and 3rd report. The committee will forward their comments and recommendation to be reported in the 4th progress report for the year 2010.

Other members of the delegation were: Namibia’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations, Dr. Kaire Mbuende, Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Gender Equality and Child Welfare, Ms. Sirkka Ausiku, Director of Gender Equality and International Affairs, Mr. Victor Shipoh, Mr. David Thomas of Namibia’s Mission to the UN, Legal Adviser, Ms. Anna-Letu Haitembu, Development Planner, Ms. Monalisa Zatjirua; and Personal Assistant to the Minister, Ms.Cecilia Annastasia Violet Hanse.

Government Information Bulletin August 2007

Namibia earns N$20 million annually from oil exploration activities
The exploration and production of oil and gas resources in Namibia has attracted huge investments resulting in substantial revenue for the country. Namibia is a potential petroleum producing country which has attracted interest from international oil and gas companies.

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he Ministry of Mines and Energy is inundated with application for oil and gas exploration and production licenses. The Ministry has already awarded 13 exploration and one production licenses to international oil companies. Revenue generated from rental fees for petroleum exploration activities amounts to N$20 million annually. Namibian is also benefiting from training services the companies provide to locally recruited staff. The exploration activities have allowed Namibia to improve its geological working terrain and there is hope that more discoveries of oil are close.

Namibia depends 100% on the imports of petroleum products procured and processed in foreign countries, especially South Africa, which also imports 90% of its crude oil from Saudi Arabia, Iran, and Nigeria. Mines and Energy Minister, Hon. Erkki Nghimtina, said that since Namibia has no refinery of its own, there is a need to establish one if the country wanted to meet and secure its local demand and that of its landlocked neighbouring countries. He said that although the Namibian market is small, it is growing at an accelerated rate, which will make it costly to import all the necessary fuel requirements

in the near future. Namibia’s daily consumption is estimated at 16 000 barrels. “Initiatives to construct a refinery with regional focus should be encouraged,” Hon. Nghimtina noted. Efforts to ensure security and control of petroleum stock are underway. A strategic stock study has been undertaken in 2004. The findings will be used as the basis for developing a comprehensive strategic stock policy. Companies are required to carry a 15 day contingency stock pile in their tanks but for strategic purposes they fill their tanks with a 30 days stock. A plan to enforce a law making it compulsory to provide the country with a 90 days stock is on the card.

5th Land Reform Advisory Commission inaugurated
The Minister of Lands and Resettlement, Hon. Jerry Ekandjo, inaugurated the 5th Land Reform Advisory Commission in June 2007, after he appointed the commissioners on the 30th March 2007 to serve for the next three-year term.

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he Land Reform Advisory Commission is tasked to advice the Minister on Lands and Resettlement. The previous commission was engaged in researching experiences of other neighbouring countries in terms of land reform. As a result, the Ministry was able to make amendments to existing legislation and introduce new legislation to facilitate and improve the allocation of land rights in the country to achieve an equitable land ownership pattern. It was also able to adapt some valuable approaches to land reform and redistribution in relation to local circumstances. Addressing the commission, Hon. Ekandjo told the commissioners that they have a mammoth and challenging task ahead regarding land reform and resettlement. The commission will be faced with the problem of affordability, since prices have escalated to substantial amounts in recent years. The escalation of prices has placed a limitation

on government’s ability to obtain land for resettlement. More time has also been spent on convincing commercial farmers to reduce the prices of land offered to the state. The government is faced with the issue of expropriation since May 2003, which has proven to be a challenging exercise. Some cases on the identified farms for expropriation are still pending before the high court. “And the time it takes is long and frustrating. No wonder many of our compatriots are getting impatient and fed up,” Hon. Ekandjo observed. Other challenges that are faced by the government, with regard to land reform, and which the commission will be expected to address, are the human and financial resources. For now, the Ministry will prioritise activities in the limits of the available resources. The Ministry reiterated its commitment to land allocation where all people regardless of their status will stand to benefit. “All the people of Namibia stand equal before the constitution

i.e. those who have, those who have not and those that are in between should be catered for when the resources are being distributed,” the Minister said. The Minister commended the outgoing members of the commission stating that they have worked hard to serve the nation during their term of office, during which time more farms were acquired than ever in the history of the land reform programme because of the fast track approach that was taken without compromising and violating the existing laws of the country. It was also during their term of office that all 13 regions were instituted with regional resettlement committees and that a decision was taken to identify a consultant who would come up with uniform and relevant selection criteria. The Commissioners will work through resettlement committees set up in all 13 regions.

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Government Information Bulletin August 2007

Africa day of Public Service and Administration in annual calendar
Namibia and the whole of Africa have celebrated the thirteenth Africa Day of the Public Service and Administration which is a continental strategy to boost public administration programmes, public sector performance and good governance, on 22 June 2007. s an annual initiative aimed at raising awareness on the provision and delivery of value and quality public services to Africa’s citizens, the day is also aimed at giving recognition to the working conditions and the quality of the public servants who devote their lives to serving the public diligently. The day also services to facilitate positive interest of citizens from all walks of life in the work of public administration. Themed, ”Promoting good governance with emphasis on anti-corruption and ethics”, the day was loaded with topics meant to draw attention to the issues of good governance, ethics and anti-corruption efforts across the African public sector. In democratic societies, where good governance flourishes, there is a culture of transparency, accountability and a sense of responsibility within the civil service in particular and civil society as a whole. Being the only place where poverty is widespread and its people dying of starvation, Africa and sub-Sahara Africa in particular needs to fight the evil of corruption which hurts the poor disproportionately. Most resources, which are even scarce, in the sub-continent, are diverted from intended development initiatives into private and individual pockets. Corruption has a history of undermining government capacity to provide basic services and nurtures injustices while diminishing socio-economic peace and equality. The Deputy Prime Minister, Hon. Dr. Libertina Amathila saw the need for the public sector, non-governmental organisations and the private

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to serve as tools. Customer service charters have also been developed as some of the commitments and promises the government pledged to our citizens to promote a high level of integrity to serve the people better. A customer service charter is one way of making the users aware of the standard of service they can expect from offices, ministries and agencies and what to do if the service is not rendered as promised. Hon. Amathila said that the government needs to continuously re-examine and modify existing structures, policies, procedures, practices, and technologies in use, to align the enablers to the ethos of efficiency, effectiveness, accountability and ethical public service delivery. Since the previous celebrations of the African Day of Public Service and Administration, the country has embarked upon a number of public service reform initiatives, such as the Performance Management System (PMS) aimed at improving service delivery in the public sector, while enabling the public service to become efficient, effective and accountable. The PMS allows the government to improve communication on the roles and relations between the various agencies to articulate achievements. Government ministries and agencies have also embarked upon establishing strategic plans using the balanced scorecard framework to measure their work to the national development plans, as well as Vision 2030. The Namibian public service has been recognized across Africa and as a result, the country is tasked to organise both the continental and the SADC Africa Day of Public Service and Administration.

Hon. Dr. Libertina Amathila, Deputy Prime Minister

sector to work together to eradicate corruption, adding that the Anti-Corruption Commission must position itself as a partner in the fight to eradicate corruption, rather than being seen as the villain. The Deputy Premier said that the public service in Namibia needs to do more work to enhance ethics. “We must seriously look into the codes of conduct available, and address their shortcomings. Where we do not have codes of conduct, it is important to develop them, to assist public servants to deliver an ethic’s driven public service,” she added. To assist public servants in service delivery, a pocket guide and an electronic handbook were designed by the Office of the Prime Minister

Information Service Delivery Survey started
The Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, in line with the government policy directives on work performance, has commissioned the Multi-disciplinary Research and Consultancy Centre of the University of Namibia to undertake a Service Delivery Survey to see whether the services the Ministry is delivering are meeting the expectations and aspirations of the majority of the citizens, particularly those in the remote areas who are marginalized in terms of information provision. The survey is in response to the call by HE President Hifikepunye Pohamba for government institutions to mainstream rural development in programmes and projects, since he believes that the most economic asset of Namibia is the people. Survey enumerators are already in all the regions to administer the survey questionnaires to obtain information from respondents on how to improve services that the Ministry is rendering and to determine the needs of the media in obtaining information from the Ministry and other government institutions and agencies. The survey requires the cooperation of stakeholders, such as the regional governors, councillors and media practitioners and houses to give their support to the enumerators in the quest to seek candid responses from the people. The questionnaires also seek to determine the relevance of information that the Ministry disseminate country-wide, direction on preferred languages in which different communities want to receive the information and get information on how the Ministry can cater for the needs of people with disabilities. The survey probes on what media is accessible to the people, how to ensure that people have access to the Information, Communication Technologies (ICTs), how the Ministry can improve its system of information gathering and dissemination, to determine accessibility to affordable ICTs and training opportunities, the

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Mrs. Loini-Nyanyukweni Katoma, former Permanent Secretary of MIB signing the agreement with UNAM Vice-Chancellor

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Government Information Bulletin August 2007

Etosha Centenary - Grand milestone of a great jewel
well-being. The Centenary year of Etosha has ushered new innovations into the Ministry and drawn the attention of all Namibians to the role of protected areas and the economic importance of tourism. This momentum is imperative in recognising one of the major income spinners for the economy. Exposure of Etosha to the domestic and internal markets is central toward optimal use of Namibia’s favourable environment for tourism as an untapped destination. Namibia has maintained peace and tranquillity for 17 years since independence. The country has one of the best infrastructures in the region, including a good road network, reliable communication facilities and state of the art information and technology infrastructure, such as mobile communication and internet. While tourism is considered to be recording remarkable growth, there is opportunity to accelerate this growth which in return will yield positive investment in the private sector, unlocking vast economic potential. This will be an impetus for economic growth and diversification of economic activities for a sound future. “Our parks should become an asset not a liability. If we fail to turn our parks into assets and we allow them to become an economic burden, then we are failing to balance the economic scale,” Jooste said. “Essentially this will render the parks as non-viable entities in return reinforcing the perception that they are not worthy of public funding nor private investment,” the Deputy Minister added. “It is good timing for Namibia. It is part of our long-term strategy and obviously it gives a wonderful momentum that can be sustained toward the World Cup in South Africa in 2010 and beyond.” Etosha National Park serves as a reservoir for conserving natural resources, some of which had become extinct or endangered and are protected under the Namibian and international statutes. Namibia contributes significantly to global conservation by protecting some of the world’s fragile areas and species. The conservation of natural resources and biodiversity is not only a legacy for Namibians citizens but for the rest of the world. As such, Namibia is globally renowned and recognised as one of the leading success stories in displaying vision and promoting sustainable conservation techniques through programmes such as Community Based Natural Resource Management (CBNRM), which has resulted in projects such as Community Based Tourism Enterprises (CBTE), communal area conservancies, community forests programmes and the recently launched Wildlife Breeding Stock Loan Scheme. The Park is further promoting co-management and devolution of benefits from economic activities of the Etosha to neighbouring communities. Etosha is not only benefiting neighbouring communities, but neighbouring private sector initiatives. Currently there is new investment flowing in

The celebration of 100 years for Etosha National Park this year is a clear testimony of Namibia’s commitment to nature conservation and protection of ecological biodiversity for current and future generations. the private entities around Etosha National Park resulting in major expansions of tourism facilities in and around the Park. For the Ministry, the centenary has been a unifying factor. “We are all part of Etosha, all of us have some form of involvement and we are celebrating this collective achievement,” said Jooste. The Deputy Minister is of the opinion that Etosha National Park has come of age and hence the time is right to attract more investment, particularly from Government appropriation as a flagship park and catalyst to economic emancipation of the Namibian people. “It is extremely embarrassing that our parks remain under-funded and have to survive on meager resources,” the Deputy lamented, confessing that parks are expensive to manage. He stressed there was an urgency to invest in them and to turn them from loss-making entities to profit-making ventures and to realise their economic value. The year-long Centenary celebration is characterised by various rare activities including the moonlight walks in the Pan scheduled for August which is proving to be a popular product. The Ministry, through its UNDP/GEF-funded Strengthening the Protected Area Network (SPAN) project, is rolling out activities such as the first ever recycling project in the Park and an exhibition of artworks and artifacts of Etosha. A grand commemorative ceremony is planned for Namutoni in September, during which His Excellency the President Hifikepunye Pohamba , who is also Patron of the event, , will deliver a keynote address. The Founding President and Father of the Namibian Nation, Dr Sam Nujoma and the Right Honourable Prime Minister, Nahas Angula, as well as all chambers of State will be represented at this high profile ceremony. Milestones within a milestone. For the first time in the history of the Ministry, an award ceremony was organised in July to recognise the women and men who have contributed immensely to the prestigious profile of Etosha and other conservation efforts around the country. The Centenary event was also showcased in various international arenas, such as the ITB in Germany and the Indaba in South Africa. At the recently held Tourism Expo in Windhoek, Etosha Centenary was an integral focus of various stands. The Park also brought together scientists and researchers at the Etosha Centennial Symposium in June to review research work and scientific undertakings done on Etosha over years and to agree on future areas of deserving priorities. One of the continuous activities featured are SPAN’s Park Talks, which encourage public information sharing and provide a platform for dialogue on a bi-monthly basis. These are gaining in popularity with stakeholders in tourism and conservation circles and interested members of the public. The Etosha Centenary has become a major symbol of nation building, economic growth and social justice.

Hon. Leon Jooste, Deputy Minister of Environment and Tourism

eputy Minister of Environment and Tourism, Leon Jooste said in an exclusive interview that the celebration of the centenary was a decision by Government to showcase one of the country’s resounding success stories. “The Etosha centenary carries symbolic significance showcasing Namibia’s success story in conservation,” said Jooste. The Deputy Minister, who is actively involved in organising the centenary activities, described Etosha as an embodiment of sustainable development. According to him the Park is a great asset for the Namibian people in realising their long term social and economic growth. The Park gives impetus to economic development and revenue generation for the broader economy. Jooste observed that “the Park provides a life changing experience and is a major stimulus for tourism growth in the country”. “Article 95 (l) of the Namibian Constitution makes provision for the “maintenance of ecosystems, essential ecological processes and biological diversity of Namibia and utilisation of living natural resources on a sustainable basis for the benefit of all Namibians, both present and future….” The Ministry of Environment and Tourism resolved last year to observe the Centenary of Etosha National Park to deepen awareness of the contribution of parks in general to economic growth and job creation. Parks contribute between N$1 and N$2 billion to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and as such are regarded as an engine stimulating economic growth and assisting in the achievement of National Development Goals and the attainment of Vision 2030 targets as articulated “ namely to ensure the development of Namibia’s ‘natural capital’ and its sustainable utilisation, for the benefit of the country’s social, economic and ecological

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Government Information Bulletin August 2007

Lighting up villages despite shortage in electricity generation capacity
One of the amenities that drive people from rural to urban areas is the benefits offered by electricity. With electricity people draw benefits from electric lights in their efforts to defeat darkness. With electricity people are relieved from day-to-day burdens of cooking on coal fires. The provision of electricity to communities, including rural areas has been one of the top priorities on the government agenda.

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he Ministry of Mines and Energy is determined to extend rural electrification to remote rural communities. Forty five villages received electricity in the 2006/2007 financial year countrywide. Initiatives to decentralise electricity distribution to regional and local authorities’ joint ventures, Regional Electricity Distribution (REDs), will make it easy for people to get access to electricity. Three out of the five REDs such as NORED, Erongo RED and CENORED are operational and the Southern RED and Central RED are expected to be operational before the end of 2007. The REDs are forms of electricity power decentralisation into the hands of the regional and local authority stakeholders. The implementation of the REDs is aimed at improving the electricity distribution network in the country. Once the REDs are in place, it is envisaged that the Independent Power

Producers (IPP) will be created or established to set up and operate electricity power generating facilities to sell electricity to consumers. REDs help local authorities to limit bureaucracies existing at regional and local authority levels. They help to ease the process of payment of electricity accounts, increase efficiency in attending to electricity black-outs, enhance the ability to meet electricity bill payments, lessen surcharge problems and increase prospects of power emanating from the existence of Independent Power Production. REDs will not only benefit regional and local authorities in terms of providing electricity, but also by providing jobs to local communities. The ventures will also benefit communities in terms of providing low cost incentives resulting from the creation of generation capacity and elimination of disparities in the electricity power sourcing as their capabilities will be standardised

and modernised through these joint ventures. Efforts are being made to alleviate power shortage in the country to prevent the country from running out of generation capacity. The Ministry of Mines and Energy continues to find ways and means to develop the Kudu Gas project and negotiations are underway between Namibia and Angola through the Permanent Joint Technical Commission (PJTC) to develop the Baynes Hydro Scheme. Currently, Namibia relies on imported electricity from South Africa. Since SADC countries are faced with shortages in electricity generation capacity, Namibia is also in a vulnerable position and may be affected negatively. “It might be necessary for us to make some tough choices in future to ensure adequacy, reliability and security of power supply to the country,” Minister Nghitina remarked.

Home Affairs closer to the people
The Ministry of Home Affairs and Immigration is to establish sub-regional offices in all 13 region of the country in efforts to take services to the people. s a first step, the Ministry has convened a meeting of all governors that took place at Otjiwarongo in the Otjozondjupa region in February, this year, with the aim to consult regional governors on its proposal to establish sub-regional offices country-wide. Addressing the meeting, Home Affairs and Immigration Permanent Secretary, Mr. Samuel / Gôagoseb, informed the regional governors that his Ministry decided to strategically position itself to play the supportive role that “a mother plays in each family”.

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The Ministry will identify and establish two fixed sub-regional offices and mobile registration areas in each region from where it will render efficient and effective civic affairs services. In accordance with the policy of decentralisation, the Ministry will carry the function of civic affairs to the rural people, ensure that every person above the ages of 16 is registered and holds a national identity and that every Namibian child is registered at birth and given identity on national records. The involvement of the regional councils will be to help identify some of the ongoing projects

in the region with which the Ministry of Home Affairs and Immigration could closely cooperate to avoid duplication and enhance synergy. Regional Councils will also provide office space for the establishment of the envisaged subregional offices. The Ministry will purchase mobile registration trucks to supplement the existing regional and sub-regional offices. The regional governors applauded the Ministry’s initiative to bring the services closer to people, adding that such a move was long over due and it is a welcome relief.

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Information Service Delivery Survey started
to sensitise and motivate the population to cooperate with the enumerators, calling on all NBC language services to disseminate information on the survey to ensure that the information reaches all corners of the country. It is expected that the findings of the survey will guide the Ministry on how to gather, process and disseminate government information to meet the needs of the majority of Namibians.

kind of information people want to see on the government website. The Minister of Information and Broadcasting, Hon. Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah, appealed to the media to publicise the survey and

Government Information Bulletin August 2007

A decent shelter preserves dignity
“Let us together share a dream of an Africa free from huts and shacks as shelters but rather reliable homes being championed by the poor people themselves. I personally pledge to work hard to ensure that this dream becomes a reality.” These were the words of the Minister of Regional and Local Government, Housing and Rural Development, Hon. John Pandeni, in his opening speech at the Workshop on Access to Land Incremental Housing Development by the Poor held in Harare, Zimbabwe in June 2007.

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he workshop was attended by representatives from shack dwellers and slum organisations from the Southern African Development Community countries set to commit themselves to the welfare and wellbeing of the urban and rural poor. Sharing the Namibian experience with the audience, Hon. Pandeni noted that Namibia realised immediately after independence that the housing sector displayed the most acute disparities between rural and urban areas and between population groups, with the poor having hardly an opportunity to own a house. He said the apartheid system made no effort to invest in housing for the African majority in rural areas. He added that the government initiated the process of providing decent housing for all Namibians starting with the build-together programme aimed at assisting the low-income groups to have their own houses through low interest loans. By 2002 the National Housing Enterprise (NHE) had constructed 12 666 affordable houses in 36 urban centres and had been tasked by Cabinet to construct houses for the former Robben Island prisoners, commanders of the Peoples Liberation Army of Namibia (PLAN) and people who were brutalised by the apartheid regime. “As a government, we also undertook to embark on housing programmes that are receptive to the needs of our people in terms of affordability and

accessibility. We will also continue to mobilise resources, with special emphasis on low cost housing, so as to fast-track the construction of affordable houses in rural towns, villages and settlements,” the Minister said. He noted that the provision of serviced plots to increase access to housing in towns, villages and settlements through the programme of decentralisation is central to housing initiatives. The government is assisting the Shack Dwellers Federation of Namibia (SDFN) to realise its dream of building houses for the lower income groups in the Namibian society. The government contributes N$1 million to the Twahangana Fund and is currently reviewing the amount with the aim to improve it. SDFN is working closely with the South Africans and Zimbabweans and together have created links with other organisations in Kenya, Zambia and Zimbabwe. Hon. Pandeni confirmed that informal shelter development in urban areas in Namibia are not without challenges. He said that a larger portion of households in urban areas do not have secure tenure yet, mainly because they cannot afford the costs of developing land the formal way, and the smaller local authorities do not have funds or capacity to develop the land. “As long

as land with basic services is not accessible and affordable to such a large portion of the urban dwellers, they will continue to be vulnerable, living in unhealthy conditions and remain poor. It is obvious thus that their dreams will only be realised if we in government provide affordable land and give the necessary support to their processes. Without this support, their good efforts will be meaningless, and we intend to combine efforts with all stakeholders to ensure that we achieve secure land tenure required to improve the lives of shack dwellers in our country,” the Minister explained. The Minister told the audience that the SDFN in Namibia has a success story behind it as members continue to display responsibility in the manner they save their money and pay for their services. He said that they complete their houses and they are also supporting pensioners, sick people in their saving groups and they are busy building the capacity of less privileged in Namibia to manage money, encouraging regular payments although it is not an easy task among the poor. Hon. Pandeni urged the government of countries where shack dwellers federations operate, including private sectors to support and rally behind the development efforts initiated by the poor themselves to enable them to continue their work and succeed in their efforts.

Kalkrand Community opens centre of empowerment
The Kalkrand Community has opened a new centre that is expected to serve the people from the Hardap region, especially from Rehoboth Rural as a forum for various development activities.

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he centre was inaugurated by the Governor of the Hardap Region, Hon. Katrina Hanse–Himarwa, on behalf of the Minister of Gender Equality and Child Welfare, Hon. Marlene Mungunda.

The Community Centre, which is the initiative of the people of Kalkrand, is a haven through which the people of the region will tap knowledge through training workshops and will serve as an empowerment place for orphans and vulnerable children (OVC). The centre will be open to all residents for any activities taking place in the community like workshops, conferences, meetings and also weddings. The centre will operate in association with the Community Library Service under the auspices of the Ministry of Education, and it will also accommodate staff members of the Ministry of Home Affairs and Immigration, twice a week, to work on national documents.

The Minister advised the Community to take the centre as their own property and to serve voluntarily as custodians of the centre, urging the community to devote their time on planning for better lives rather than using their time fighting and destroying one another. She expressed her profound gratitude to the Kalkrand Village Council for donating the land on which the centre is constructed. “This has been very encouraging, seeing the local authorities removing cost barriers that delay the setting up of decentralised services,’’ said the Minister. She encouraged them and other local authorities to continue delivering services with open-mindedness and dedication, calling on local councillors to have great vision to make Kalkrand attractive and a fast growing town. She added: ‘’as we rejoice in our collective achievement of the successful construction

of this much-needed centre, we must not ignore the desperate deplorable situation of our needy communities, especially the plight of women and children must be accentuated at such national events’’. Hon. Mungunda observed that despite the visible progress made in recent years with policy and legislative arrangements on national level, it was disheartening to see that most of the children and women continued to be vulnerable as they were the poorest among the poor. She indicated that in many cases the women are faced with obstacles and barriers of discrimination in the societies. ‘’It is, therefore, high time for all of us to renew our efforts and take appropriate action with the sole objective of improving the welfare of our children, placing them at the forefront of our development initiatives,’’ she advised. The Minister said the Ministry is fully aware of the numerous kindergartens and feeding

Continues on page 15

Government Information Bulletin August 2007

Accountability and transparency needed in all government business
To practice true democracy, the government sees transparency and accountability as values that contribute towards the attainment of prosperity. In democracy, openness is crucial. The government is accountable to the people it serves and acts on behalf. People have the right to know what the government is doing. The government operations follow ethics that serves the interests of the people who elected it into power.

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he electorate often wants to know how their institutions operate. In democracy, people have the right to be informed of assets acquired and disposed off. The people witness presentations of gifts to members of the executive, legislative and judiciary by individuals, private and international organizations. It is not uncommon that people begin to insinuate that the gifts given to the office bearers become their possessions. Sometimes the electorate become suspicious of these kinds of deals, thinking that the people they put into power enrich themselves by receiving gifts from various sources. Gifts are given as a token of appreciation of the performance of institutions or individuals who work in those institutions. For those who chose to give gifts or chose to make these presentations as a matter of courtesy and civility, they have criteria that they use to decide whether to give a gift or what kind of gift to be given to a person, institution or organization. As a courtesy and appreciation of other people’s performance, the Namibian government also presents gifts to individuals and institutions elected to be exemplary or otherwise. Since one of the functions of the President is to promote trade and investment within and outside, it sometimes happens that gifts are given to him.

As a transparent and accountable government, the Namibian Government has put a mechanism in place to account for such gifts. The Office of the President, specifically the State House maintains a register of gifts in which all gifts given to the President are recorded regardless of their value so that every gift is accounted for. Speaking in the National Assembly during the 2007/2008 budget presentation, Dr. Albert Kawana, Minister of Presidential Affairs, said, “the President does not choose gifts that are given to him and such gifts are accepted as a matter of courtesy and civility.” Dr. Kawana said that arrangements have already been made at the new State House complex to display some of the selected gifts in a public place specifically designed for the purpose. This, he said, is intended to ensure transparency, honesty and accountability, adding that apart from accounting for the gifts received, the Office of the President also accounts for the gifts given to other dignitaries. Exchanging gifts is a long standing practice, not only in Namibia but worldwide. Rules and
Every gift presented to the President is recorded and kept as State property

procedures governing gifts to members of parliament are the same rules that apply to the executive members. “Currently there is an obligation to disclose, during the reporting period, all gifts or free services rendered from a single source whose value exceed N$1000.00,” Dr Kawana noted adding that the Executive has put in place, just like parliament, sufficient controls to ensure that there is no abuse of gifts and other free services rendered to its members.

Kalkrand Community opens centre of empowerment
Continues from page 14
schemes in and around Kalkrand, which are supporting the children by providing food, clothing and other basic amenities. ‘’It is my conviction that all of you, collectively, will use this facility to its full capacity to maximise the beneficial services you already provide in this regard. This centre, in particular, must become the light house for this community,’’ Hon. Mungunda said. If this centre is used efficiently and effectively, said the Minister, it will enable the users to earn the much needed income and be empowered for economic independence, adding that the centre will provide people with the opportunity to have equal access to business opportunities leading to better living conditions. The construction of the Kalkrand Community Centre constitutes a major contribution to the improvement of the condition of women and the community at large. It is expected that the centre’s proper use will enhance the inherent strengths, including the capacity for self-sustaining activities. The Minister advised the community: ‘’we must guard against artificial divisions in our communities. We must guard against exclusion and work toward unity of purpose in all circumstances’’. She is strongly convinced that when people work together in strong partnerships, they are able to bring about positive changes in their lives. ‘’Our ultimate goal is to ensure a comprehensive development that includes and involves all sectors of society, ensuring social justice, preservation of human dignity and the fulfilment of the rights of each and everyone, both male and female,” added the Minister. She called upon members of the Hardap region to ensure that they join hands and work in harmony, peace and love to get the winning end results and make the centre a place of victory and success. The building was constructed at a cost of N$2 650 million, including feasibility studies, the documentation phase, construction and furniture. She emphasised that it is only when the community and government joined hands that one could ensure that the centre’s engine run on all cylinders, thereby bringing about visible development to the area. The Minister expressed concern about buildings that deteriorate while in the hands of communities, noting that any developmental project that is not cared for and maintained by the community, faces the risk of being run down in a short time. She urged the centre users to consider and initiate sustainable income generating activities and to guard against vandalism and other activities of criminal nature. ‘’The Centre has to be preserved for future generations and must, therefore, be used in a manner that contributes to the development of the Kalkrand Community, in particular, and the Hardap region at large,’’ concluded the Minister.

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Government Information Bulletin August 2007

Use of ICTs, a “miracle,” says Nandi-Ndaitwah
Information and Broadcasting Minister Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah says the use of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) is known to have immeasurable power to affect change in the way business should be done. “It is not new to hear or read that lives are being saved through e-medicine, that agricultural production is benefiting from e-agriculture and that new worlds unfold for learners that are exposed to e-education,” she said. “ She stressed that e-government is also known to have improved service delivery and enhanced communication. “The new ICTs are truly a miracle,” she emphasised. The Minister made these remarks at a twoday National Conference on ICTs for Poverty Reduction and Sustainable Development, on 2 August 2007 in Windhoek. Namibia also hosted an ICT team, led by the South African Minister of Communications, Dr. Ivy MatsepeCasaburri to learn from their experience during the conference. The conference looked at the ICT status, challenges and revised the country’s ICT Policy in an effort to realise Namibia’s vision of a knowledge-based and technology driven nation. It also identified ways in which ICT can contribute to poverty reduction and sustainable development and how they can assist the country in achieving Vision 2030. Nandi-Ndaithwah said Namibia is committed to the development of human capacity and the creation of ICT applications and digital content in local languages to ensure a comprehensive approach to building a Global Information Society. “Namibia has done a lot to ensure the implementation of the Policy and the promotion of ICTs in the country since the adoption of the country’s ICT Policy in 2002, she added”. She commended the Office of the Minister for working on the e-Governance project with conviction that it will enable the Government to improve service delivery to the Namibian people, especially those communities in remote rural areas. The Minister said to achieve its goals and objectives, Namibia must have strategies for the development of local content, for poverty reduction and for the implementation of the Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) Policy. “The challenges are many in the deployment of ICTs and the time we have is little, because each day wasted widens the knowledge gap and the digital divide”, she said adding that with cooperation such hurdles can be overcome.” Nandi-Ndaitwah was delighted that Namibia has reached consensus on the need for an independent ICT regulatory authority and that the issue was debated at length during the workshop on the drafting of the Information Communication Bill, on 25 July 2007. The ICT conference recognised the need for the implementation of compulsory computer classes in schools and agreed that the Internet domain registration issue needs to be resolved and well regulated. The conference also noted the significance of increased and better communication between players in the communication field and the government. The Minister called on stakeholders to submit the full report of the conference to her office as soon as possible to accelerate the process of the production of a balanced and vibrant ICT Policy. She said the implementation and roll-out of ICT countrywide is expensive and cumbersome, but the ICT sector is cross-cutting and every sector has to find the best ways of using ICT to help it meet the challenges in a globalised world. The Minister said ICT is a crucial tool in achieving the eight millennium development goals aimed at among others the eradication of extreme hunger and poverty and combating HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases. She, however, said Namibia needs advice, technical and financial assistance from developed countries and international organisations in rolling-out ICT infrastructure.

Namibia and Italy sign animal health agreement
Dr. Nickey Iyambo, Minister of Agriculture, Water and Forestry and Dr. Amaldo Abeti, Italy’s Ambassador to Namibia, recently signed a technical agreement on cooperation in the veterinary field between the two countries.

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he agreement aims at strengthening cooperation in the field of veterinary medicine with a view to keep infectious diseases under control and to assure the safety of animal food, considering the mutual interest for extended trade in live animals and products. Dr. Iyambo reaffirmed the Government’s commitment to animal health. “Animal health is an important aspect in Namibia and I hope that the signing of this agreement is the start of good things to come,” said Dr. Iyambo adding that since Namibia is still a young country which needs assistance to develop further, this agreement comes at the appropriate time.

Speaking at the same occasion, Dr. Otto Huebchle, the State Veterinarian said that Namibia would benefit from the Italian experience, since she is closer to list A of the animal health of the World Health Organisation. The agreement, amongst others, will ensure the facilitation of the exchange of information on animal health and hygiene aspects relating to production and processing of animal origins, exchange of bacterial and viral strains used for manufacturing biological products and the organisation of training courses also through

the use of web-based technology. “Due to its political stability and infrastructure, Namibia is a vital centre in the region for the Italian Government to get access to and I hope that my successor would continue to implement this agreement,” said Dr. Abeti during the signing ceremony. The agreement came into force on 27 June 2007 and is valid for five years. It will be renewed for a further five years if none of the parties nullifies it.

Government Information Bulletin August 2007

Conference addressed ICT development in the country

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(From left) Information and Broadcasting Permanent Secretary, Mbeuta Ua-Ndjarakana, Minister Netumbo NandiNdaitwah, Prime Minister Nahas Angula, South Africa’s Minister for Communications, Dr. Ivy Matsepe-Casaburri and Namibia’s Deputy Minister of Information and Broadcasting, Raphael Dinyando.

Government Information Bulletin August 2007

Centre to rescue and search for lost and sinking vessels established
Namibia and its coastal Southern African neighbours including South Africa, Mozambique, Madagascar, Angola and the Comoros have signed a multilateral agreement on search and rescue services in Southern Africa resulting in the inauguration of a maritime Search and Rescue Coordination Centre in March 2007 at Walvis Bay.

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he centre is aimed at coordinating emergency operations as well as receiving maritime safety information between ships and shores to enhance safety of both cargo and fishing vessels in the regional waters. As a response to liberalised global trade and efficient exploitation of offshore natural resources, there is a need to create a conducive environment for increased maritime traffic. The centre has been long overdue due to the accidents that have been occurring in the Namibian waters in recent years. The Ministry considers the creation of the centre as one of the priorities the Ministry of Works, Transport and Communications is addressing. The worrisome incidents that have occurred in the Namibian waters include the sinking of the Moeb Bay vessel on 7 June 2002 in the Luderïtz area. In the incident 19 crew members died with 12 bodies recovered, 7 still missing and only 9 surviving the ordeal. Namibians would still recall the collision between a container vessel, Umfolozi and Ingwenya that took place close to the port of Walvis Bay on 16 September 2005.

Although there was no life lost in this incident, it caused pollution on the shore. These incidents involving sinking of fishing vessels, fire on board and collisions between vessels have left a dark cloud hanging over Namibia’s maritime safety record. This prompted the Ministry of Works, Transport and Communication to establish a search and rescue coordination centre to cater for both national and international needs at sea, as well as between sea and shore and to strengthen regional cooperation in the area of maritime search and rescue operations. As party to a number of international conventions, including Convention on Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) of 1074/78, the Convention on Search and Rescue (SAR) of 1979, the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) of 1982, the 1944 Convention on Civil Aviation and the 2000 Florence Conference on Maritime Search and the Global Maritime Distress and Signal System (GMDSS), Namibia is under obligation to provide SAR services to the people and vessels in need of such services within the area of responsibility. Speaking at the signing of the agreement and the inauguration of the centre, Hon. Joël

Kaapanda, Minister of Works, Transport and Communication said that he was aware that regional co-operation is crucial to the success of international trade, to which maritime transport is a key factor. “I am confident that the establishment of a Maritime Search and Rescue Coordination Centre for the Southern African region would contribute significantly to both regional and international trade. This is a positive sign for ports like Walvis Bay which is increasingly becoming a regional hub,” the Minister added. Some Namibian vessels are already equipped with GMDSS communication equipment on board to ensure better communication via the centre. Minister Kaapanda urged those vessels that have not yet complied with the regulation to do so as soon as possible. The Minister imparted the message of hope to those involved in the maritime operations to allow no loss of life at sea because of lack of communication. He said: “Companies should ensure that crew members are properly trained and that exercises and drills are regularly conducted as required by law. They should ensure that every radio operator on board the vessel is properly trained and certified to operate the GMDSS.”

Eenhana gets historical Shrine for war victims
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evidence as to where the corpses were buried. It has also not been established as to where members of the Koevoet killed in battles were buried. The study also learnt that people were arrested from their homes and taken into the SADF military base and were never seen again. “They were believed to have been tortured to death and their bodies were never brought to their families,” the study stated. Residents of Eenhana and surrounding areas suffered the brutality of SADF and have appealed to the government to look into their plight, as some of them were left homeless and lost some of or all members of their families during the course of the liberation struggle. Although not released, a long list of names of people who suffered traumas was provided to the National Heritage Council, including that of a lady who lost four of her children and her husband at the hands of the apartheid machinery. The lady is still alive and still lives in the town of Eenhana and was one of the respondents of the study. “Respondents further stated that the SADF used to go into southern Angola to steal cattle and drive them into the Eenhana military base. It was also said that some members of the civilian population have been seen going into that military camp in pursuit of their stolen cattle, but that no one ever saw them coming out,” narrated the report findings. The study found that people welcomed the erection of the Regional Shrine at Eenhana, as they feel that it is a recognition that will bring them closer to the government. “We are happy that our government has not forgotten about our suffering, and our role and our contribution to the liberation struggle”, stated the report quoting the respondents. The Shrine is envisaged to be a memorial symbol of the liberation struggle in multi-dimensional aspects, including the acknowledgement of the courage of PLAN combatants and the civilian population which supported them. The Shrine will not only be used as a venue for the commemoration of national days, especially those that are linked to the liberation struggle but will also be used as an educational centre for learners and teachers to engage in knowledge transfer. A museum display centre will also be erected to ensure that complete information about the site and what it represents is provided. The site will also be used as a regional tourist and visitors’ attraction and the place will be developed to satisfy the needs of visitors to the site. The Eenhana Town Council has provided a piece of land, free of charge, on which to develop infrastructure for entertainment such as a souvenir shop, a kiosk or restaurant, a children’s play ground and an open space with a terraced seating for the public to use during the commemoration of national days to add value to the site.

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Government Information Bulletin August 2007

Twyfelfontein: now a World heritage site
By Rhingo Mutambo

Once a small dot on the Namibian map, Twyfelfontein, in the Kunene region, has not only become the country’s first UNESCO World Heritage Site, but is expected to popularise Namibia and attract tourists from all over the world to admire the thousands of historical rock art at the site.

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wyfelfontein was registered as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in June 2007.

The function which took place in New Zealand’s Christ-Church, was attended by, among others, Namibia’s Minister of Youth, National Service, Sport and Culture, John Mutorwa, Permanent Secretary, Dr. Peingondjabi Shipoh and the Environment and Tourism Deputy Minister, Leon Jooste, to present the final proposal for Twyfelfontein to become a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The delegation also included the National Heritage Council (NHC) Director, Karl Aribeb, Chief Justus Garoeb of Damaraland, in which Twyfelfontein is located and a technical team. Aribeb noted that the process of preparing the proposal for Twyfelfontein to be inscribed as World Heritage Site was cumbersome but worthwhile. A country which intends to nominate a candidate site for inscription must first accede to the World Heritage Convention of 1972. A country - party to the Convention is then required to identify candidate sites and draw a tentative list for submission to the World Heritage Council. The country must have a committee to oversee the process. Once the nominations are complete, the country has to compile two motivational documents; the Nomination Dossier and the Property Management Plan, for submission to UNESCO. In the Nomination Dossier a state party must state, in writing, why the property must be inscribed as a World Heritage Site and demonstrate the outstanding universal value of the property. A nominating member country is also required to proof the authenticity of the property and demonstrate how the site in question will be managed. While the Property Management Plan must answer questions relating to the management of a site, the Nomination Dossier must indicate whether the

site is protected under any National Legislation and whether it has a proclaimed “Buffer Zone” or a demarcated area of jurisdiction to control intrusive business developments. Twyfelfontein has a defined buffer zone and is protected under the National Heritage Act, section 54. Twyfelfontein has a buffer zone of 9194 hectares, and it has a core area of 57.4 hectares where most of the administrative work takes place. It comprises of visitor’s facilities, an information centre, a reception, toilets, a kiosk and viewing platforms. Illegal grazing and establishment of tourist developments in the core area of the site is prohibited to prevent damage to the rock panels, the status of the shrine and avoid interference with the visitors’ space. There are seven lodges within the Twyfelfontein buffer zone. Twyfelfontein is situated in a transitional zone between the Namib desert and the semi-arid area in the Kunene region. It has rock paintings which date back to between 2000 and 3000 years. The site comprises roughly 2 500 rock engravings on 212 slabs of rock, as well as 13 panels containing a number of rock paintings, including the prehistoric rock carvings, with over 2 000 figures documented. Urging all the stakeholders to be committed and dedicated to the maintenance of the status of the site, celebrating the achievement in Windhoek on 23 July 2007, Mutorwa reiterated that “it was a challenge to reach the top, but it is more challenging to remain at the top”. “If we are de-registered from the World Heritage register, it will be an embarrassment to the nation. It has to be a national effort to remain there,” he added. The NHC is working on another four sites, including Brandberg mountain area, located south of the Namib desert, the Welwitschia

Mr. Karl Aribeb showing the demarcation of the “Buffer Zone” on the Twyfelfontein map.

plant, a drought resistant plant that grows mostly in the Namib desert and the Fish River Canyon, one of the world’s largest canyon’s, which can also be nominated for the World Heritage monuments in future. Aribeb was not satisfied with the low turn out of local visitors to Twyfelfontein. He revealed that only 5% of local tourists visit the area as compared to the 95% international visitors. UNESCO recommended that Namibia need to consider hiring a rock art expert to monitor the rock art panels, train staff at the site and undertake assessments on the transformation of rock panels to ensure that they are well preserved. Twyfelfontein has 15 trained tour guides paid by the NHC from the income generated from the site.

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Twyfelfontein rock art

Visitors at Twyfelfontein

Twyfelfontein rock engravings

Government Information Bulletin August 2007

hishongwa appointed Nam’s diplomatic envoy to Botswana
Former Deputy Minister of Higher Education, Training and Employment Creation and SWAPO veteran Hadino Hishongwa was appointed as Namibia’s new High Commissioner-Designate to the Republic of Botswana, on 25 July 2007.

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adino has accumulated many years of diplomatic experience while serving as SWAPO Representative in a number of regions including East Africa, West Africa, the Nordic countries, Austria and West Germany, as well as to Australia and the Pacific, at different times from 1972 to 1987. He also served as SWAPO Secretary for Youth from 1987 to 1992. After Namibia’s independence, he served the country in many capacities in the Government. He was a member of the National Assembly from 1990 to 2005. He served as Deputy Minister of Labour and Human Resources Development from 1990 to 1995, Deputy Minister of Lands, Resettlement and Rehabilitation from 1995 to 1997, Deputy Minister of Youth from 1997 to 2000 and Deputy Minister of Higher Education, Training and Employment Creation from 2000 and 2005. Commissioning Hadino as Namibia’s new Head of Mission in Botswana, President Hifikepunye Pohamba said his mission there should be another step in expanding and consolidating the bilateral relations between the two countries. He expressed happiness that Namibia and Botswana are currently working together on the establishment of fibre optic access to broadband satellite communication and the establishment of a dry dock space at Walvis Bay to facilitate the movement of goods to and from the landlocked neighbouring country is well under way.

Pohamba said Hishongwa is one of the trusted veterans and field commanders of the People’s Liberation Army of Namibia, (PLAN), who fought for Namibia’s independence during the struggle. He assured the nation that he has no doubt that Hishongwa will perform the task assigned to him diligently, wisely with dignity and with the same vigour that he had shown during his years of service to the people and Government of the Republic of Namibia. The President said Namibia and Botswana have enjoyed close ties of friendship and co-operation for many years, adding that Botswana rendered invaluable material and diplomatic support during Namibia’s struggle for freedom and independence. They hosted many Namibians who were forced to leave their motherland to go into exile. “Today, our two countries are working together, not only at the bilateral level, but also as good neighbours and as members of SADC and the African Union. We share common views on many issues, such as the socio-economic integration of our region and on international aspects, including the reform of the United Nations system as guided by the African Common Position,” he emphasised. President Pohamba further pointed out that there is also an increasing level of co-operation in the field of education between Namibia and Botswana.

He, however, said there are other areas that should be strengthened including trade, commerce, investment and the tourism industry. “The growing number of visitors crossing the border between Namibia and Botswana necessitates the improvement of facilities on both sides of the common border. Concerted efforts from both countries should be made to promote the growth of this industry for the mutual benefit of our peoples” he stressed. Hence, the President used the opportunity to announce that H.E President Festus Mogae of the Republic of Botswana has been invited to attend the official opening of the Mata-Mata border post between Namibia and South Africa in October this year. He said the Botswana-Namibia Joint Commission on Defence and Security scheduled to meet in Swakopmund from 3 to 5 October 2007, coupled with the highly successful visit to Botswana by the Chief of the Namibian Defence Force, Lt. Gen. Martin Shalli in April 2007, to attend the 30th celebration of Botswana’s Defence Day, demonstrates the excellent relations between the two countries. Pohamba advised the High CommissionerDesignate that the foundation has been already laid for him to build on. He also encouraged him to use the Namibian Constitution, and foreign policy objectives as a guide in his execution of duties.

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Hishongwa commissioned High Commissioner to Botswana

President and Amb. Hishongwa’s family members

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