Our top stories of 2014

30 December 2014 | Local News

January · Ghetto revolution A residents’ association representing informal settlements emerged as challenger to political parties in Windhoek’s local authority elections. · Alarm bells over new Parliament building Civil society questioned whether the building of a sparkling new Parliament at a cost of hundreds of millions is a priority in a country battling service delivery challenges, poverty and inequality. · Crash victims to be buried in Namibia Some families of the 33 victims who died in Mozambique Airlines Flight TM470 that crashed in Kavango East in November last year opted to have the remains buried in Namibia. · Headman commits suicide during tense meeting An attempt to solve a territorial dispute ended tragically when one of the people involved committed suicide in the presence of emissaries who were sent to find a solution. February · Exposé: China blocked ACC’s bursary probe Chinese authorities through their embassy in Windhoek blocked the Anti-Corruption Commission’s (ACC) investigation into how children of Namibia’s elite – including President Hifikepunye Pohamba’s daughter – were controversially awarded scholarships in 2009 to study in China. · Kaura recalled from NA, expelled from DTA The long political career of former DTA President Katuutire Kaura came to an abrupt end when he was recalled from the National Assembly and kicked out of the party he had served as president for 15 years. · Evil killer confesses The Oshakati man who decapitated his girlfriend after brutally murdering her with a kitchen knife claimed in a confession to a magistrate that they had argued over her threats to harm his baby he had with another woman. · Municipal land to get special land sale policy The City of Windhoek said it is drafting a policy which will guide it when selling municipal land to national leaders. · ‘Why Dillish and I broke up’ On the eve of Valentine’s Day, Stephen Gaeseb opened up about his breakup with Big Brother Africa winner Dillish Mathews – and revealed that a couple had already split in December last year after arguing about flirtatious SMSes he had sent to a Nigerian woman. · Government goes to war over food prices Namibia will soon have a retail charter to control exorbitant food prices, including the cost of chicken – a move that will bring welcome relief to struggling families across the country · Pensioners heartbroken over zero increase The heartbreaking news that government will not be increasing the N$600 old-age pension this year has left the elderly to soldier on in poverty and misery. March · Classes dismissed for Namibian students Namibian students enrolled at Ukraine’s Crimea Medical University had their classes dismissed as Russian troops in that peninsula vowed to remain put amid threats by the US and its western allies to react to the standoff. · Taking aim at the Germans The Namibian Head of State and several traditional leaders used the same platform – a memorial service for the return of 35 skulls and human remains from Germany - to launch a scathing attack on the former colonial power. · Swapo reshuffles its think tank The ruling party Swapo made changes to its think tank ahead of a crucial meeting to start drawing up the party’s election manifesto for the November elections. · Namibian government must deal with horse The German embassy in Namibia and the German Cultural Council distanced themselves from the debate around the controversial Reiterdenkmal, saying they want no part of it. April · Cash for Robben Island tales Namibians who were jailed on Robben Island refused to donate their memoirs to the new Independent Memorial Museum without payment. · DTA leader pushes wife-swapping law DTA vice-president Kazeongere Tjeundo said he will propose a wife-swapping law in Namibia after the November elections. · Health Ministry wants immunity from lawsuits The Ministry of Health is pushing for a new law which will give the minister, permanent secretary and all the State medical staff immunity from being sued for negligence. · Quake prophet runs for cover ‘Prophetess’ Elizabeth Sacharias, who took out a full-page advertisement in a newspaper claiming that Namibia will be hit by an earthquake, ran for cover after her prediction fell through. · Nanyemba’s remains finally come home Nearly 31 years after his mysterious death, the remains of Peter Eneas Nanyemba arrived in the country from Angola along with those of four others who died during the liberation struggle. May · Sex workers want to pay tax Rights Not Rescue director Nikodemus Aoxamub, who has been involved in the sex trade for nearly 34 years, said: “Sex work is a profession and government must decriminalise it, so we can operate in a safe and conducive environment.” · Ministers sabotaged my PM work – Nahas Defence Minister Nahas Angula broke his silence about how his time as prime minister was sabotaged by other politicians, ahead of the jostling for positions at the 2012 Swapo congress. · Sabotage claims hit mass housing The National Housing Enterprise (NHE) received no single cent by May from government towards the payment for mass housing projects, which sources branded as a deliberate sabotage of the ambitious housing initiative. · Baby stolen, murdered Residents of Omuthitugwalwani village in the Omusati Region reeled in shock after the lifeless body of a child, who was stolen from her mother under false pretences, was found in the bush. · Uncertainty over voting machines Five months ahead of the country’s general election, huge obstacles emerged to the proposed use of electronic voting machines (EVMs), including the absence of a law to use them. · Female cop ‘sexually assaulted’ for 8 years Nampol’s top brass have been accused of failing to protect a female constable from unwanted sexual advances and other abuse by a superior officer, which led to her having a miscarriage in 2007 and being diagnosed with anxiety disorder. June · NFA’s Muinjo named in FIFA bribery scandal The Namibian football boss has been named along with other 30 African football administrators in a damning report alleging bribery and corruption to Qatar’s 2022 World Cup bid. · Tributes pour in for Chief Riruako Politicians and members of the public paid glowing tributes to the late Nudo leader and OvaHerero Paramount Chief Kuaima Riruako who died in early June. · Shooting spree at Omusati village A man went berserk at a village in the Omusati Region, allegedly raping a girl before starting shooting indiscriminately at people and cattle. · Vice-president, referendum legislation on the cards The Law Reform and Development Commission embarked on an aggressive reform of the country’s laws, including those concerning the handing-over of power between presidents and challenges to election results. · Lubowski’s murder linked to gambling, diamonds and arms Explosive new revelations have emerged regarding the murders of Swapo’s Anton Lubowski, ANC’s Dulcie September and SA Communist Party leader Chris Hani, whose deaths in 1988, 1989 and 1993 respectively have now all been linked to the international arms industry. July · Hands off gay sex – Venaani The opposition politician says it is none of the government’s business what consenting adults do in the privacy of their bedrooms. · Katali’s bid for cheaper fuel In a bid to bring cheaper fuel to Namibia, the Ministry of Mines and Energy has embarked on several meetings with oil-rich nations that may soon bear fruit. · HH slaps RDP with N$600 000 rent bill The RDP leader, Hidipo Hamutenya, reportedly demanded close to N$600 000 from the party for renting an office at his home in Olympia. · Local NGOs owe Europe millions Cash-strapped local non-governmental organisations are in hot water after not using European Union donor funds for the intended purposes. · Cops hunt drug money The Bank of Namibia is helping local and international agencies to investigate suspicious financial activities linked to drugs and organised crime. · Oshikango sex industry laid bare Prostitution seems to be one of the few businesses still booming at the border town, luring young girls with the promise of easy money. August · ‘Truck jumper’ HIV shock Out of the 1 879 truck drivers tested for HIV/Aids last year, 129 were found to be positive, as long-distance routes inside and outside Namibia continue to spread the deadly disease. · Hage, Venaani go toe-to-toe Swapo’s presidential candidate Hage Geingob apologised after launching a scathing Facebook attack on DTA’s McHenry Venaani. · Heroes ache for recognition Opposition parties fumed over what they say is government’s continued refusal to recognise people that they have put forward as heroes and heroines, including chiefs, politicians and sport stars. · Struggle kids: ‘You’ll have to kill us all’ There was widespread condemnation of the killing of a struggle kid during a bloody clash with police in front of the Swapo headquarters in Katutura. September · Battered old guard bow out Swapo made public its keenly anticipated list of candidates for the National Assembly following its electoral college, with many senior politicians making an exit. · Starving patients dump ARVs People living with HIV are choosing to throw away their medication rather than face the side-effects of taking it on an empty stomach. · Apartheid laws finally face chop Over 50 laws that discriminate against black people are still in force in Namibia, long after they were repealed in South Africa. · Swapo scores own goal Analysts warn that Swapo is sailing into troubled waters ahead of the general elections by instituting an investigation into its electoral college. October · Ban adoption for same-sex couples - MPs Same-sex couples in Namibia have come under fire from parliamentarians, including calls for them not to be allowed to adopt children. · Lucky Hage hooks his Monica High-powered Namibian businesswoman Monica Kalondo confirmed her relationship with Prime Minister and Swapo presidential candidate Hage Geingob. · Moneybags Dos Santos gets Namibian banking licence Banco BIC, Angola’s biggest bank with links to the billionaire first daughter Isabel dos Santos, has been granted provisional authorisation by the Bank of Namibia (BoN) to conduct business as a banking institution in the country. November · ECN shuns Mujoro on foreign voting The ECN says Namibians abroad will be allowed to vote on November 14 in the country’s general elections. · Occupy Kleine Kuppe Youth leader Job Amupanda occupied a plot in Windhoek’s Kleine Kuppe suburb and invited other “young professionals” tired of paying rent to join him. · Dillish is special - Kafula Despite outrage against a decision to give BBA winner Dillish Mathews a heavily discounted prime plot, the mayor of Windhoek is adamant that she more than deserves the “token of appreciation”. December · Opposition slaughtered Opposition politics in Namibia suffered a crippling blow as Swapo confirmed its dominance during the country’s general elections. · Torch passes on to Hage After days of counting, Hage Geingob officially emerged as the country’s president-elect, marking a remarkable comeback from the political wilderness he was consigned to in 2002. · Meet Namibia’s youngest MP Vipuakuje Muharukua is only 30 years old, but in March next year he will take up his seat in Parliament as one of the DTA’s five MPs. · Zimbabwe link to Shaduka Fresh information about the whereabouts of the fugitive wife killer has emerged, including that he had been in Zimbabwe and that he had been warned that the police were coming.

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