Saturday, 30 November 2013
Пропавший самолет мозамбикских авиалиний разбился на северо-востоке Намибии. Все 34 человека, которые находились на борту, погибли. Обломки лайнера нашли на территории национального парка Бвабвата, передает Reuters. Он расположен в Намибии недалеко от границы с Анголой и Ботсваной. Самолет следовал по маршруту из столицы Мозамбика Мапуту в Луанду (столица Анголы). На борту находились 34 человека, из которых 6 человек - члены экипажа. Он вылетел вчера в 13:26 мск, но не приземлился вовремя. Связь с самолетом была потеряна в полете. Также сообщается, что в регионе были плохие погодные условия.
The Namibian Police coordinator in the Kavango Region, Willie Bampton has confirmed that they have found the burnt wreckage of the missing Mozambican plane. There are no survivors. A Mozambique Airlines plane carrying 34 people that went missing yesterday might have crashed, a senior police officer told The Namibian this morning. Flight TM470 took off from Maputo early yesterday and was due to land in the Angolan capital, Luanda, at 13H10 GMT, but never arrived. Kavango Regional Police Crime Coordinator Willie Bampton confirmed that they were informed by officials in Botswana that they saw smoke in the air and heard explosions yesterday afternoon. The police is now searching in the Bwabwata National Park where the plane is said to have crashed. Bampton, who is part of the search team in the Bwabwata National Park, said the area is inaccessible and the rain that fell yesterday in the area is not making it easier for them. “We are still searching. There are no proper roads, you have to go through the bush, slowly and its making our job difficult,” he said. Bampton said the Namibian police were first informed about the incident around 15h00 by officials from Botswana who initially thought the plane crashed in their country.
Friday, 29 November 2013
• A fascinating town, rich in history and culture, Livingstone was named after the famous British explorer, David Livingstone. • Before Livingstone was founded, Mukuni was the largest village in the area. Its Baleya inhabitants, originally from the Rowzi culture in Zimbabwe were conquered by Chief Mukuni who came from the Congo in the 18th Century. • The main crossing point on the Zambezi for Cecil Rhodes' British South African Company was at a place called the "old drift" just above Victoria Falls, originally goods were taken over by dugout canoe and then an iron boat with paddlers and a barge towed across by a metal cable. • A settlement became established in this area but due to malaria and many deaths it was moved to higher ground known as Constitution Hill and that area is now what we know as Livingstone town.
Message from Midgard: I am very excited to let you know that having worked on this idea for some years, my dream has at last come true. During the past four weeks I spent most weekends on the Midgard Country Estate creating one of the most beautiful and exciting 4x4 self drive tracks in Namibia. As you know, Midgard Country Estate is now again managed by Ohlthaver & List. The team at O&L Leisure Hotels & Lodges have entirely repositioned Midgard Country Estate as a down to earth, warm and welcoming Lodge with a true Namibian "sense of place" The Midgard 4x4 experience currently consists of two trails whilst more are in the planning. One is a self-drive game and nature drive along the banks of the Swakop River lasting about 2 hours excluding view-stops for the numerous wildlife sightings or sundowners you will enjoy. The other 4x4 trail is about 30 km and would take you about 3-4 hours not calculating the time you spend at the picnic spots or enjoying the spectacular views. This challenging 4x4 route will take you through mountains, soft sandy riverbeds, and mud in the raining reason. The trails were laid out for all 4x4 enthusiasts whether experienced or not. Remember, Midgard Country Estate is an easy 60-minute drive out of Windhoek and is located on 12,000 hectare of natural Namibian bush in the magnificent Otjihavero Mountains along the winding banks of the Swakop River. Established in 1937 by Carl List as a private family retreat it is today an intimate world welcoming all Namibians and 4x4 enthusiasts. One, which offers 46 newly decorated and fully equipped rooms, Carl's Dining Room & Bar, the African Boma, two swimming pools, the Pool Bar & BBQ Terrace, gym and sauna, and private skittle alley (Kegelbahn). For the kids there are sprawling gardens, a playground and so much to explore and see from vintage cars to old train carriages and farming equipment. There is tennis, beach volleyball, table tennis and outdoor chess.
Camp Linyanti has just taken delivery of their brand, spanking new 6 m Swamp Cruiser. This impressive boat, fully kitted out for guests’ comfort, has two engines – a powerful 4-stroke outboard motor, and a quiet electric motor for moving silently through the fringes of the Linyanti lagoon and waterways, viewing birds and wildlife. This is a significant addition to the activities on offer at Camp Linyanti, and a further justification for using this superbly situated, small and intimate camp in a remote and rewarding area of Botswana.
Delta Camp Tops for Sustainable Tourism! Delta Camp is proud to be the first lodge featured in a magnificent new book, Africa’s Finest, by Colin Bell and David Bristow, featuring the most sustainable and responsible safari destinations in sub-Saharan Africa and the Indian Ocean Islands. This is yet another ‘green’ feather in the cap of Lodges of Botswana, owner and operator of Delta Camp and Oddballs’.
World Tourism Day took place on the 27th September, celebrations in Livingstone started off with a march from Mukuni Park through to the Civic Center, led by the Zambian Tourist Board and Miss Victoria Falls. All residents also enjoyed free entry into the Falls, Mosi-Oa-Tunya game park and Livingstone Museum.
Take your Conference on Holiday! Swakopmund is truly an oasis on the coast of Namibia with its green palm lined streets, pristine beaches and deep blue Atlantic Ocean. The luxurious Hotel Zum Kaiser is perfectly positioned in Sam Nujoma Avenue within walking distance from the beach, legendary jetty and the centre of town. This exclusive Hotel houses 21 fully air-conditioned bedrooms, each featuring full en-suite bathrooms, television, coffee/tea facilities, bar fridge, electronic safe and wireless internet. The perfect venue to combine business with pleasure! Our Conference Centre is a modern indoor facility and can seat a maximum of 60 persons. Seating arrangements are possible in classroom, U-shape and Cinema Style with rectangular tables and matching chairs. Comprehensive facilities, basic equipment, wireless internet and refreshments of your choice can be provided for your conference needs, breakfast meetings, business luncheons and even private dinner parties. Our inviting Roof Top Terrace is the perfect place to wind down after a day of business. Sip Cocktails and enjoy delectable platters while experiencing the spectacular sunsets and views of where the towering sand dunes of the Namib Desert meets the roaring Atlantic Ocean. The Hotel Zum Kaiser offers the ideal setting for banqueting, conferencing, celebrations, and business luncheons. For Conference/Event Rates, Menus, Delegation Activity Options and pre-bookings please contact firstname.lastname@example.org Let our attentive team welcome you to our kingdom and make you feel like an Emperor.
Thursday, 28 November 2013
Новости. ЮАР, 24 ноября. В ЮАР 24 ноября проходит ежегодный фестиваль черешни. Центром праздника является город Фиксбург, куда черешню когда-то завезли немецкие переселенцы. Многочисленные гости фестиваля смогут отведать все виды черешни, выращиваемой в регионе, а также смогут попробовать массу вкусных блюд с черешней. В Южноафриканской республике 24 ноября проходит крупный фестиваль, посвящённый урожаю черешни. Фестиваль в ЮАР празднуется ежегодно, начиная с 1968 года. Центром праздника всегда был небольшой городок Фиксбург. Именно отсюда в начале 20 века черешня начала распространяться по всей стране, а привезли её сюда переселенцы из Германии. В городе Фиксбург организовывается большой рынок черешни, где продаётся ягода всех видов: тёмно-бардовая, красная и жёлтая. Здесь можно отведать джемы, варенье и компоты из черешни, а также полакомиться тортами и пирожными, пирогами и булочками с черешней. В самом Фиксбурге нет гостиниц: город маленький. Поэтому накануне гости селятся в населённых пунктах в радиусе 100 километров вокруг него, а в день фестиваля со всех сторон съезжаются на праздник. Ежегодно фестиваль посещают до 30 тысяч туристов и гостей. Всем им предоставляется возможность самим набрать черешню прямо с кустов, и многие люди приезжают на фестиваль именно ради самостоятельного сбора спелой, вкусной черешни. В конце дня вниманию туристов и гостей фестиваля обычно представляется концерт, все участники которого — местные жители. Черешня, привезённая немцами-переселенцами, хорошо прижилась в Южной Африке. Ей подошли солнечные горные склоны, большая высота над уровнем моря, где по ночам достаточно прохладно. Ведь район города Фиксбург находится на высоте 1 700 метров над уровнем моря. С одного гектара посадок здесь собирают до 10 тонн спелой ягоды. Сезон сбора черешни — сентябрь-ноябрь. ЮАР является крупным поставщиком черешни на рынки всего мира. Её везут в другие страны как в свежем, так и в замороженном виде.
Власти Анголы наряду с другими 195 религиями объявили ислам вне закона, несмотря на то, что конституционно тут закреплена свобода вероисповедания. Начиная с октября в стране активно сносятся мечети, на данный момент их осталось всего две. Дело в том, что религиозные общины должны официально регистрировать свой статус в Министерстве юстиции, а право на это имеют только те организации, количество последователей которых превышает 100 тысяч человек. На данный момент в Анголе официально проживают 80-90 тысяч мигрантов, что не дает им возможность официально зарегистрироваться. Между тем число мусульман в стране растет из года в год. Особенно привлекательной страна кажется для африканцев из бедных стран, которые бегут сюда в поисках нефти и алмазов.
Красота, как известно, спасет мир. А отдельную страну? – С этим не так все просто. Взять хотя бы Мозамбик – лучшее и самое популярное туристическое направление в южной части Африки. Кого же оставят равнодушным пляжи в обрамлении финиковых пальм? Ответ напрашивается сам собой, когда читаешь о том, что ежегодно сюда приезжает два с лишним миллиона иностранных туристов и собственных граждан. Казалось бы, «царствуй, лежа на боку». Ан-нет. Вооруженные вылазки и похищения людей, о которых что ни день сообщают СМИ, делают свое дело: потенциальные туристы задумываются о том, стоит ли ставить на кон жизнь ради диковинных природных красот. Более «подходящего» времени «патриоты отечества» выбрать просто не могли, чтобы пустить под откос и без того чрезвычайно хрупкую туриндустрию, пока владельцы магазинов, отелей и турфирм по всему побережью готовятся к шквалу туристов из-за рубежа и из собственной страны, обещающих заполонить прибрежные городки и деревушки. Нелишне заметить, что в 2012 году туризм достиг 6 процентов в национальном ВВП. Что же говорить о том, что террористы, совершающие вооруженные набеги и похищающие людей, пока правительственные войска борются с повстанцами из группировки РЕНАМО, обрекают на гибель экономику этой страны третьего мира. Никогда еще с момента окончания войны (1992 г.) столкновения повстанцев и властей не носили такой ожесточенный характер. Внутриполитический кризис, имеющий все шансы перерасти в национальную катастрофу, не остался не замеченным иностранными дипломатами, которые предупредили своих граждан о нецелесообразности посещения отдельных регионов Мозамбика. Исключение сделано разве что для Бейры – города, который пока что живет мирной жизнью. Другое дело – курорты, большинство которых расположено к югу от зоны военных действий. Добраться до них из города становится все труднее. На 60-мильном участке автотрассы, соединяющей Бейру с южными городами, все чаще происходят нападения на гражданский транспорт. Повстанцы поджигают автобусы. Жертвами становятся пассажиры и водители, гибнущие от рук боевиков, перекрывающих магистрали и расправляющихся с невинными людьми. За нападениями стоит группировка РЕНАМО, выступившая на борьбу с коммунистическим правительством Мозамбика после окончания в 1992 году гражданской войны. Год назад из оппозиционной группировки она превратилась в вооруженное формирование, совершающее невероятные по своей жестокости нападения на правительственные учреждения, сопровождающиеся убийством гражданского населения. Как говорят в Вооруженных силах Мозамбика, на вооружении РЕНАМО находятся первоклассные боевые орудия, представляющие «чрезвычайную опасность». В ряде СМИ появилась информация о том, что боевики стремительно приближаются к Бейре (город считается административной столицей страны), наводя панику на военных. И те, ради собственной шкуры, спасаются бегством, оставляя противнику оружие. Многомиллионная собственность становится легкой добычей врага, который безжалостно грабит местное население, обращая в бегство не только армию, но и собственных граждан. На юге страны убийства и грабежи уже давно стали привычным явлением, ситуация фактически вышла из-под контроля. Ученые мужи, в поисках выхода из конфликта, обращаются к мировому сообществу с просьбой положить конец вооруженному противостоянию в Мозамбике. Так было в Кении, где международная дипломатия сумела примирить враждующие стороны, «не поделившие» результаты выборов 2007/2008 гг.. Они же, как выясняется, должны посредничать и в Мозамбике. Хуже всего дела обстоят в провинции Софала. Да и соседние с ней регионы Нампула и Маника замерли в ожидании нападений со стороны боевиков РЕНАМО. Тем туристам, которые все же отправятся в Мозамбик, рекомендуется проявлять максимум осторожности и за версту обходить зоны вооруженного противостояния, обещающего камня на камне оставить ни от экономики, ни от страны в целом. Автор новости: Всеволод Кораблев
Всего месяц дал президент Зимбабве Р. Мугабе светлокожим предпринимателям на то, чтобы они отдали своим чёрным братьям свой бизнес и уехали из страны. Так называемый закон о «коренизации и трудоустройстве» был одним из главных предвыборных обещаний Мугабе, который выиграл очередные президентские выборы этим летом. Согласно «духу и букве» закона, местному чернокожему населению достанется вся оптовая и розничная торговля, хлебопекарни, сельское хозяйство, транспорт, кадровые, рекламные агентства и агентства недвижимости, салоны красоты и парикмахерские.Иностранцев, которые не захотят отдавать свой бизнес, зимбабвийские полицейские с удовольствием будут отправлять за решётку. Эксперты считают, что подобные меры больнее всего ударят по китайским фирмам, которые практически оккупировали весь рынок одной из беднейших стран мира.
Путешественница из Китая, упавшая в ущелье всемирно известного водопада Виктория на границе Замбии и Зимбабве, отделалась лишь несколькими ушибами. Глубина ущелья составляет 25 метров, к тому же, женщина упала на скалы. Работники службы безопасности, курьирущие территорию около водопада, немедленно доставили жительницу Китая в ближайшую больницу. Однако, медицинское обследование показало, что женищна получила лишь несколько ушибов. Таким образом, её здоровью не было нанесено никакого вреда и 45-летняя женщина смогла вылететь из страны домой. Высота водопада Виктория составляет 108 метров. Несмотря на опасность нахождения рядом со столь мощным потоком воды, Виктория является одной из самых популярных достопримечательностей в мире.
Many Namibians, particularly motorists, have witnessed the gradual arrival of massive tipper or dumb bodies along the country’s national roads as they are being transported to the N$20 billion Husab Mine. These dump bodies, which are the bins on the back of gigantic haul trucks to be used on the mining site, are so huge that most times oncoming traffic has to be diverted to the side of the road to enable the massive loads to pass. Swakop Uranium, which is constructing the Husab Mine, is a Namibian company owned by China General Nuclear Power Holdings Co, China Africa Development Fund and Namibian State-owned mining company, Epangelo Mining. Once in operation the Husab Mine will use a fleet of 39 of these haul trucks. To date, eight dump bodies have been delivered to the Husab Project site. The transportation of the dump bodies poses a huge logistical challenge for Swakop Uranium as the dump bodies, which are manufactured in Johannesburg, are 14.6 m long by 10.7 m wide by 5.4 m high. Due to their size, convoys are limited to three dump bodies per trip. The route from Johannesburg takes the dump bodies through several South African towns, including Wolmaransstad, Warrenton and Upington, before entering Namibia via the Nakop border post. From there they normally travel via Karasburg, Rehoboth, Windhoek, Karibib and Usakos to the Husab site in the Erongo Region. Prior to loading the abnormal vehicles that transport the dump bodies, an application for an abnormal load vehicle exemption permit is submitted by the transporter to the Roads Authority. The application includes the proposed route, loading plan and vehicle details. The permit is then issued and coordination with the Namibian Police and the municipal traffic authorities commences. Loads such as the dump bodies are strictly controlled and police escorts must guide and direct the abnormal vehicle throughout its journey. At no time can the vehicle deviate from the route unless directed by Nampol and municipal traffic. Says Komatsu’s Gerhard Klopper: “Every step of each journey has to be carefully measured and investigated before the 50-tonne freight can be granted permission to travel. Even then, strict conditions are applied and the vehicles need to be accompanied by at least two escorts from Transcor, as well as two road traffic authorities at all times. Everything needs to be planned – from the distance that could be covered during daylight hours, to powerline heights and bridge weight carrying capacities.” Swakop Uranium’s Grant Marais, Director for Communication and Stakeholder Involvement, explained that before the first trip commenced, bridges were measured for width and weight and culverts were measured to ensure that the lower part of the dump body did not damage the barrier built on the road either side of the culvert. “In certain areas, the dump bodies have to be ‘jacked’ up so that they would clear the culvert barrier and bends checked to ensure that the lowbeds transporting the bodies could negotiate them without causing damage to the road or infrastructure. At the borders, fences and stop signs often have to be removed to make space for the trucks and replaced once the convoy had passed,” explained Marais. He added that escort vehicles are used to ensure that all road users are warned of the approaching convoy, so they could pull off the road safely and allow the convoy to travel to their next stopping point. Daily tracking reports are sent to the various stakeholders to inform them of the progress and positioning of the convoy. “The last leg of the journey furthermore requires strict adherence to the Namib Naukluft National Park regulations and the convoy teams had to attend a safety induction and awareness briefing on the park. Parts of the Welwitschia Road had to be widened slightly for safe clearance and to avoid vegetation. The dump bodies are finally loaded off at the Husab Project site by way of a tandem lift, using an 80 tonne and a 90 tonne crane,” said Marais. The convoys travel at an average speed of between 50 km and 70 km per hour. The first two dump bodies started the 2 250 km journey from Johannesburg to the mine on June 4, 2013, and arrived at the Husab site on June 28. Alternative routes are sometimes used because of road construction and directives from traffic authorities and it takes on average 2 to 3 weeks as the transporters and traffic authorities are getting more familiar with the routes. The dump bodies are manufactured by a company called Efficient Engineering, based in Johannesburg. Marais also remarked that the only other option to transport the massive loads was by road to Richards Bay (with similar logistical challenges) and then ship them from there to Walvis Bay. This option, however, was described as a much more expensive one. One of the first people to give fruition to the dream of having the very real and very big yellow machines to start the excavation of Husab’s two mining pits, is Rainer Horsthemke, Komatsu’s Operations Manager for the Husab Project. “We have received the complete components of the first two Komatsu 960E-2KT haul trucks at the premises of Wesbank Transport in Walvis Bay,” said Horsthemke. “The contract to assemble the trucks was awarded to a local company, Rotary Mining. The assembly started in August 2013 and we have a tight deadline to meet,” he added. This deadline will see Komatsu deliver 11 haul trucks to the mining teams by the end of January 2014. The Komatsu 960E-2KT haul truck is rated to carry 327 tonnes. Its diesel motor delivers 2 600kW of power (3 500 horsepower) and is coupled to an alternator that sends power to two Siemens AC (alternating current) induction traction motors mounted on each side of the back axle. The ‘T’ in the model name refers to ‘trolley-assist’, whereby the truck can couple onto overhead power lines using a pantograph mounted above the cab. “We receive each Komatsu haul truck in sections comprising the chassis with the engine, radiator and rear axle box fitted. This section alone weighs 64 tonnes,” Rainer explained.
Delays at Kasane (Botswana), Livingstone (Zambia) and Victoria Falls (Zimbabwe) airports & useful information
Kasane Airport Building works on the new terminal at Kasane airport continue. The old parking lot has been moved and it’s is quite a distance to walk to where vehicles are now parked. The immigration officers are doing both arrivals and departures which is resulting in guests have to queue for some time. The system is very slow but we are confident that these will be a thing of the past when the new terminal opens. The estimated completion date for the terminal and parking lot is January 2014. Work will also commence on their office buildings which estimated completion date is April 2014. Work will also be carried out on the apron area so some taxiways have been closed off to aircraft and the size of the apron is halved. This means that landing aircraft have priority. Aircraft wanting to depart have to wait until the landing aircraft has landed and is safely on the apron before being allowed to taxi on the one remaining taxi way to the main runway. If there are 5 to 6 aircraft landing at one time the delay can be up to 20 minutes with passengers sitting on board the aircraft and engines running. Livingstone Airport With the terminal now three weeks into their operation, we are starting to see the clearing of immigration going a lot smoother and faster as the staff get to grips with the systems and construction of unfinished areas being completed. However, they are still faced with the challenge of 3 aircraft landing quite close to each other. The reasons for this is that these aircraft (SAA, BA and Airlink) all need to be in line with linking off international flights and tourist schedules. If any clients are chartering, please can you try and land/depart outside of the schedule aircraft times in order to make way for a quicker and smoother check-in. The old terminal has now been made the domestic terminal while the new one services international flights. Victoria Falls Airport This airport continues to be a challenge for both us and passengers. Clients are in some cases having to queue for up to 2 hours to clear immigration. As you can imagine, this is playing havoc with our transport and transfer schedules. Please can you caution your clients that in some instances it will require passengers having to wait for some time for other clients to also clear. The only way this can be avoided is to book private transfers. The new terminal is still under construction with no clear idea of when the completion date will be. As it has been unseasonably hot and discomfort levels are high, we have, for the past two weeks, been providing complimentary chilled water and chilled scented hand towels to everyone who we collect from any pickup point except for short town transfers. The procedure for a traveler is: 1. Complete an Arrival Form 2. Hand the Passport plus appropriate Visa Fee to the Immigration Officer 3. The first Officer writes out a receipt that includes details of the passport - Name, Passport Nº, Date if Issue, Expiry Date, Country of Origin, etc 4. This is handed to a second Officer who now issues the Visa duplicating the detail written out by the first Officer and issues an entry stamp 5. The traveler is then handed back their passport.
It's estimated that one in eight people worldwide live in so-called slums, which, in some cities, makes visiting these informally maintained neighbourhoods unavoidable. Although controversial, the practice of "slum tourism" has become a popular way for tourists to engage with poverty on a personal level. But why go visit an actual slum when you can simply stay at a luxury resort that looks like a slum? For the right price, discerning travellers can experience firsthand how the poorest of the poor live - without having to sacrifice first-world conveniences like WiFi, heated floors, and jacuzzi tubs. The Emoya Luxury Hotel and Spa near Bloemfontein, South Africa offers Shanty Town, a dozen shacks made from scrap wood and corrugated metal that it thinks is the perfect setting for your next corporate retreat or wedding anniversary. The resort has gone to great lengths to recreate the joys of slum living without the nuisances of crime, disease, or poor sanitation. "Now you can experience staying in a Shanty within the safe environment of a private game reserve. This is the only Shanty Town in the world equipped with under-floor heating and wireless internet access," it boasts. "For those of you worried that the presence of heating and wi-fi might not make for an authentic slum experience, don't worry! Shanty Town has made it more realistic for you by installing a famous 'long-drop' outside toilet and encouraging guests to heat water in outdoor fires. By burning toxic, life expectancy-lowering trash, I hope!" The rooms will set you back about US$82 (NZ$100) a night, which some have noted is a half month's salary for the average South African. Reviews on Trip Advisor have been mixed. While one guest praised it as a "real experience," and even enjoyed a barbecue under the stars at their shack, another cautioned that slums do not offer good value: "Do not even consider staying in the Shanty Town. For the price you can stay in a luxury bed and breakfast establishment. An average caravan park with chalets will have the same experience." SIX OTHER POVERTY CHIC GETAWAYS Vacation like a border crosser, in Mexico. In Southern Mexico, an eco-park owned by Hnahnu Indians offers tourists a chance to live out the drama and tension of an illegal border crossing. Called "Night Walk," the strange excursion lasts about four hours and takes groups on an imaginary journey through the desert and across the Rio Grande. A dozen or so Hnahnus act out different roles: fellow migrants in search of work, as well as police on the lookout for border crossers. The park has many other attractions, too - including hot springs, kayaking and camp grounds - but the Night Walk seems to be the biggest draw. In Indonesia, an authentic, bare-bones (and sometimes flooded) getaway. Travellers looking for a more realistic third-world experience may find it at "Banana Republic," a plantation village just minutes outside of Jakarta. Ten dollars per night will get you a room, a mattress, and a fan within this interconnected complex of shanty homes. Bring your own flashlight if you expect to use the outdoor toilet at night, as well as your own toiletries for the communal shower. If that's not authentic enough for you, the Airbnb posting notes that "In December, the floods arrive. Heavy rain causes the river surrounding the village to overflow... The rusty roofs leak and leave the homes damp." According to the ad, your $10 will go towards unclogging the river and repairing damaged roofs - but not before you get the chance to enjoy both. Tour Rio de Janeiro's largest favela with some of its very own residents. A Brazilian company called Exotic Tours was the first to offer sightseeing tours of Rio de Janeiro's biggest slum, Rocinha. In recent years, it began hiring local favela residents to work as guides, an effort that created a more authentic experience for travellers, and provided some income for members of the community. The company claims that some of the proceeds benefit a local school, so tourists can rest assured that they're doing their part to help Rio's urban poor. Be warned, though: Increasing tourism has helped to transform Rocinha from a sprawling shantytown into a semi-developed urban slum, so it's perhaps less gritty than the average poverty tourist might prefer. In Sweden, book a spot below an overpass like a homeless person. Gothenburg, Sweden, has more than 3,000 homeless people. Now, one company, Faktum Hotels, has mapped out 10 of their favourite places to sleep, and is renting them out to intrepid travellers who want to experience Sweden from the perspective of its most destitute. Book a corner at the abandoned paper mill, curl up under a bridge, or camp out in a public park (conveniently situated near several trendy cafes). Admittedly, the enterprise is a tad tongue-in-cheek. Hotel proceeds go towards programs that benefit Gothenburg's homeless population. Patrons aren't even expected to sleep in the spots they book - but it's probably fair to assume that at least a few bold souls have given it a try. Walk a mile in a homeless person's shoes, in Amsterdam. If you want a more textured experience of homelessness than a single night under a bridge can accomplish, you might trek on over to Amsterdam, where an entertainment company is offering city tours guided by an actual homeless person. As advertised on its website, Mokum Events "has found a homeless person in Amsterdam who experienced it all." For a fee, you can take a walk with this man, beg for food together, and hear all about the ups and downs of living on the street. And lest you question the ethics of this pastime, the company reassures tourists that "your homeless person is not unhappy!" He'll even show you where he sleeps and "point to the rubbish bins of restaurants, where at times a royal meal can be made from hearty scraps." Enjoy San Francisco's grittiest neighbourhood alongside its homeless. Most visitors to San Francisco try to avoid the Tenderloin, a downtown neighbourhood once notorious for its high crime rate but now better known for its population of vagrants. One man, Milton Aparicio, is trying to change that, by offering tours that highlight the Tenderloin's unique culture of homeless. "We'll go to a couple of shelters, day centres for children, soup kitchens, " he advertises, offering "a guided experience of what it's like to be homeless from a friendly homeless person." Like most other examples of slum tourism, it promises an eye-opening experience that will certainly lead to personal growth and enlightenment. - Gizmodo.com.au and The Washington Post
Onguma Aoba сamping Namibia: An additional campsite on the Onguma Reserve was expected to open by the end of November 2013. The team's have run into some unexpected delays, and we now anticipate the campsite to open in March 2014. The additional campsite is 3 km from the Von Lindquest Gate, and will boast a large reception area with small supply store and snack restaurant. The main areas are built with a view over a lovely waterhole, which will ensure there is always something to see. Most of the 25 stands will have individual ablution and cooking facilities, and some are designed to share a facility between two sites for parties that are travelling together.
Wednesday, 27 November 2013
Popa Falls reopens after renovations. The Popa Falls Resort is located within the small Popa Falls Game Reserve on the banks of the mighty Kavango River, in north-east Namibia. It is the only NWR facility in the Kavango East Region. Popa Falls eco-lodge is only 15 km from the Mahango Game Reserve, one of the most diverse and interesting conservation areas, characterized by riverine forests, magnificent baobabs and a wide variety of wildlife species, including elephant, hippo, buffalo, the Nile crocodile, reedbuck, roan and sable antelope, and the elusive Sitatunga antelope. The lodge falls within the area identified for the Kavango Zambezi trans-frontier park and is the perfect stopover when travelling between the Khaudum and Mahango game reserves. The name ‘Popa Falls’ is somewhat of a misnomer, as they are really a series of rapids. The course of the river is abruptly interrupted by rocks, creating a four-meter high waterfall, before the river enters Botswana and the Okavango Delta. The lodge is also a haven for nature lovers as it provides activities such as fishing, canoeing, boating, guided tours and unguided self-drive game tours to Mahango Game Reserve (the area borders the Okavango River, where crocodile and hippo abound), scenery drives, walking trails to name but a few. Anglers can enjoy the presence of some of the species of game fish that occur in the Kavango River such as three-spot, green headed tilapia and tiger fish. The closure of the lodge was prompted by dilapidation and it was no longer meeting international standard tourism requirements. The camp was closed for redevelopment in March 2013. Popa Falls attracts local, regional and international people. The camp is an ideal stopover for tourists travelling to Namibia’s neighbouring countries, namely Botswana, Zambia and Zimbabwe. In May this year, NWR launched Namleisure card, a discount card that gives Namibian cardholders and their family members access to 50 percent discount on accommodation whenever they are visiting or making use of NWR facilities. Apart from the Namleisure membership card, Namibians get a 25 percent discount (on accommodation only) throughout the year. In addition, it is worth mentioning that during renovation, the project employed 30 local labourers from the community. A local supplier was contracted, hence economic empowerment and cash injection into the community which supplied the grass used for roof thatching. Furthermore, members of the local community make up fifty percent of permanent employees at the camp. The costs of renovations: over N$41 million was budgeted for the project and just over N$ 35 million was spent on the actual face
Air Namibia has taken delivery of its second brand new Airbus A330-200 aircraft to boost its fleet as part of its major upgrade and fleet renewal program. The second A330-200 was handed over to Air Namibia by Airbus on Friday in Toulouse, France, following the delivery of the first aircraft in September. “We are very pleased to take delivery of our second A330-200, marking another important step in the modernisation of our fleet and our ongoing commitment to offer our customers an exceptional level of service,” said Theopolina Namases, the Managing Director of Air Namibia in a statement. The delivery of the second airbus brings the airline’s fleet to 10 modern aircraft. Air Namibia Head of Corporate Communications Paulus Homateni Nakawa said the airline was delighted to receive the second A330-200 as the aircraft had proven to be a market leader with more than 1 000 aircraft delivered to over 100 operators worldwide. “It comes at the very best time of the year. It is a gift to our passengers for this festive season, to travel in sheer comfort as they are joining their friends and family during this period of the year,” said Nakawa. The two aircraft are being leased from US-based lessor, Intrepid Aviation. The lease agreement will be for a 12-year period. The aircraft will be used on the Frankfurt to Windhoek route.
A 25-carat rough diamond, discovered off Namibia’s coast, is the most expensive item on Neiman Marcus Group’s Christmas online catalogue with a reserve price tag of US$1 850 000 (about N$18 million). The US-based Neiman Marcus Group that caters for the luxury goods market did not say when the gem was discovered, but promised the buyer the “opportunity to trace its provenance.” Neiman says, in its catalogue, “as the owner of this 25-carat rough ‘Forevermark’ Diamond, you’ll travel deep into the heart of Africa to discover where your stone began its journey more than one billion years ago”. Forevermark is the diamond brand from the De Beers Family of Companies. Whoever forks out the N$18 million will also be given the opportunity to undertake a trip to the De Beers headquarters in London. “Once there, you’ll receive your exceptional diamond in its rough and uncut form, name your diamond, learn about the unique inscription it will receive, and meet the master craftsman who will hand-cut and polish it to perfection,” Neiman says in the catalogue The buyer will also be accorded a private tour of The Crown Jewels and dine with De Beers CEO Philippe Mellier and Forevermark CEO Stephen Lussier in the Tower of London. The collective term Crown Jewels denotes the regalia and vestments worn by the monarch of the United Kingdom during the coronation ceremony and at other state functions. “Your journey continues on a vessel off Namibia’s coast, where your diamond was discovered deep within the ocean floor. You’ll then explore rough-diamond sorting houses and a children’s community project, where the local population benefits from Forevermark’s responsible sourcing of diamonds. “Upon returning to the United States, you’ll meet New York jewelry designer Maria Canale to design the ring that will exhibit your exceptional diamond,” the catalogue also says. Neiman Marcus has been catering for the luxury goods market for over 100 years. Other items in the catalogue include the 2014 car, which is an Aston Martin Vanquish Volante. There are 500 suggested gifts in the 175 page catalogue, and 40% of the items are priced under US$250, including a US$12 monogrammed mug. Namibia is world-renowned for its gem quality placer diamonds that are found along the Orange River as well as onshore and offshore along the coastline. Diamond are Namibia’s chief exporter earner for the country and is one of the biggest employers outside of government. Diamond mining contributed 73,9% to the total mining and quarrying compared to the rest of the minerals accounting for 26,1% in 2012, according to Namibia Statistics Agency.
Wildlife: it’s a real hustle and bustle here at Ojkahirongo! While the Giraffes are a common site from Elephant Lodge, we were thrilled to have the Desert Adapted Elephants walk past the lodge the on the 11th of November as well. And this while the guests were out looking for them.... The Leopard at Elephant Lodge is also extremely active, and we often hear them calling at night. Imagine our delight when we were recently surprised by a leopard kill behind our generator room! It has been reported that huge lion tracks were found only a few kilometres from the Lodge on the way to the Khumib River. We had a look at the Desert Lion Project’s website and saw that the Terrace Male is in the region. How fortunate can we be! We are proud to say that there are 4 Rhinos in the area that are spotted regularly.
We have upgraded our airstrips at both Okahirongo River Camp and Okahirongo Elephant Lodge. The airstrip at Purros has been freshly graded and we are watering it regularly, making landing and taking off of the charter aircrafts much smoother. After the initial grading and watering, we asked some of the pilots how they felt about the strip now, and they responded very positive. Now that we had a proper grading, we are confident that our airstrip is back on par! We will continue with regular watering of the airstrip which will help to maintain it. The airstrip at River Camp has been completely upgraded.
Monday, 25 November 2013
Dear friends of Airport Lodge, It is again such time that many Namibians will be taking much needed break in order to spend some quality time with loved ones. The good news is that for the benefit of our valued customers and on popular demand Airport Lodge will remain open this festive season. However, we would like to draw the attention of our valued customers that the lodge will have a small skeleton staff compliment during the period: 23rd December 2013 - 5th January 2014. During this period our restaurant will only serves meals, subject to prior bookings for residence guests only. Thus, our valued guests and friends are urged to ensure that their booking requirements, especially meals, during the Festive Season are confirmed with us as soon as possible in order to avoid disappointment. We have much pleasure in taking this opportunity in thanking our esteemed customers and friends for their support during 2013. At Airport Lode we do not take the support of our valued customers for granted as we are very much aware that all our success during the past 18 years has and will always be because of YOU! As a token of our appreciation we have therefore decided to reward our customers and friends this Festive Season with a complimentary night for every consecutive two nights booking during the period 1st December 2013 - 31st January 2014! The good news is that we still have a few openings at our pool and entertainment area for end of the year parties, especially on week days! Sorry no availabilities for 2013 on Saturdays. But remember our new campsite offers six huge tents for camping, each comes with it own designated braai area. Thus ideal for group or family camping this festive season and the rain could not have come at a better time!! We wish you A MERRY CHRISTMAS as well as a peaceful, tranquil Festive Season with colleagues, friends, family and loved ones. Please drive carefully this Festive Season and let us safe lives. Please also know that your personal support and interest in Airport Lodge during the past year has been valued and appreciated.
Standard Bank Namibia (SBN) Board and Pindie Nyandoro, the bank’s Southern and Central Africa Chief Executive have reportedly clashed over a succession plan to replace the incumbent chief executive, Mpumzi Pupuma. Pupuma, a South African national will retire next year after heading the bank for seven years. Board sources say Nyandoro preferred Leina Gabaraane, who is, currently, the chief executive of Stanbic Botswana, to replace Pupuma without giving a chance to Namibian candidates. The Namibian has gathered that Pupuma was supposed to leave the post in June next year, after inducting the new chief executive, but is now expected to leave the country in January, six months earlier. Sources said Gabaraane was in Namibia last month to look for suitable schools for his children. But after strong opposition from the SBN Board to impose Gabaraane, the bank started advertising the post in the media last week. Sources also say the adverts are just a formality since Gabaraane has already been introduced to the bank’s top management as Pupuma’s replacement. Sources further allege that the board feels by appointing Gabaraane, the bank has disregarded Bank of Namibia’s guidelines and the government’s Namibianisation policy. “The position should have first been offered to Namibians within or outside the bank, white or black,” the board source said. SBN Board chairman Herbert Maier said advertising the position was not a formality and that it has not been offered to anybody. Although Maier said he was aware Gabaraane was in Namibia last month, he could not say why he was in the country. “The board has decided that the due process should be followed to find a suitable Namibian. Let me make it clear that we will follow this process. We plan to evaluate every candidate on merit,” said Maier, declining to comment whether the Namibian board members and Nyandoro had differences on the choice of the new chief executive. Efforts to contact Nyandoro through her Namibian and South African offices failed. The nine-member board is made up of Nyandoro, Natasha Bassingthwaighte, Birgit Eimbeck, Martha Namundjebo-Tilahun, Herbert Maier and Jeremiah Muadinohamba, Beronice Hans, Ndapewa Hamunime and Pupuma.
Saturday, 23 November 2013
В сеть норвежских супермаркетов появился новый продукт - сосиски с крокодилятиной из Зимбабве фирмы "Нарвесен". Об этом сообщает Day.Az со ссылкой на Novoston.ru. На зимбабвийской ферме "Паденга" выращивают крокодилов. С этой фермы поставляется треть производимого в мире мяса этих рептилий. Летом производитель обещал снизить цены на сосиски из крокодилятины. Это дало серьезный повод для беспокойства защитников прав животных. Ведь мясо будет добываться методами охоты, которые запрещены на сегодняшний день. Но "Нарвесен" купила мясо на крокодильей ферме. Производитель утверждает, что на него есть все документы, которые подтверждают соблюдение требований охраны здоровья животных. Одна "крокодилья" сосиска будет стоить около 39 крон. Это уже не первый продукт с экзотическим мясом. Ранее компания выпускала продукцию из мяса дикого кабана, страуса и бизона. Все ожидания превзошла кампания с экзотическим мясом - в ходе ее еще 15 магазинов присоединилась к 45 уже существующим. Самым дорогим мясом для сети оказалась крокодилятина, ее закупочная цена составила 450 крон.
ПРЕТОРИЯ, 17 ноября. /Корр. ИТАР-ТАСС Александр Нечаев/. 53-летний африканер Миас фан Плетцен родился в ЮАР при режиме апартеида, когда помогавший освободительным движениям в Африке Советский Союз считался врагом белого меньшинства. Он с детства собирал модели самолетов и мечтал стать летчиком, но не смог по медицинским показаниям. "Меня всегда поражало и восхищало, как эти тонны металла и грузов летят в воздухе", - рассказал он корр. ИТАР-ТАСС. Десять лет назад радиоинженер фан Плетцен засел за капитальный труд под названием "Энциклопедия русской авиации". 126-страничная книга включает данные и иллюстрации почти 430 российских самолетов и вертолетов с времен Первой мировой войны до современного "Сухой Суперджет-100", а также краткие рассказы о ведущих создателях российской авиатехники. Миас признается, что идея у многих вызвала недоумение. "Все спрашивают, почему вдруг южноафриканец решил писать о русской авиации? Во времена апартеида Россия была нашим врагом, и мы знали о ней только плохое. Я подумал, что должно же быть что-то хорошее. Если хотите, это было мое личное маленькое восстание против обилия литературы исключительно о западных самолетах", - сказал он. Миас русского языка не знает, что усложняло задачу. Он начал с самолетов "МиГ", затем пошли "Туполев", "Илюшин", "Антонов", "Камов", "Бериев" и другие. Шла переписка с различными конструкторскими бюро, в которой автор просил разрешить ему использовать фотографии самолетов и вертолетов. Разрешения он получил, но без собственных фотографий выпускать книгу не хотелось, и Миас собрался в Москву, в Центральный музей Военно-воздушных сил в Монино. "Я почувствовал себя ребенком в магазине игрушек. Наконец-то у меня появились собственные фотографии", - вспоминает он. В России он встретил летчика-испытателя КБ Миля Валентина Ваулина. Он написал отзыв для энциклопедии, в которой есть даже созданные, но так и не попавшие в производство самолеты, например, Ил-40. "Я очень впечатлен этой работой и рекомендую ее всем, кто любит авиацию и небо", - отметил Ваулин. В этом году Миас опубликовал англоязычную энциклопедию за свой счет тиражом всего 30 экземпляров. "Я понимаю, что немного найдется желающих специалистов читать про русские самолеты. Но для меня это не столько вопрос денег, сколько радость от завершенного проекта. Я сделал то, что задумал", - сказал он. Понятно, что он хотел бы опубликовать свой труд большим тиражом, но для этого нужны спонсоры. Миас надеется показать энциклопедию российским представителям на международной авиавыставке в Претории в следующем году. Пока же она стала экспонатом Музея ВВС ЮАР. После встречи с послом России в ЮАР Михаилом Петраковым, которому Миас презентовал свою книгу, он стал подумывать о продолжении работы. "Посол сказал мне: пусть это будет только первый том", - вспоминает он. "Я, пожалуй, продолжу исследование, поскольку появляются новые самолеты. Возможно, я еще включу планеры в энциклопедию", - сказал фан Плетцен. "Энциклопедия русской авиации" доступна на сайте miasvanpletzenpublishers.yolasite.com.
Американская охотница Мелисса Бахман оказалась в центре скандала после публикации фотографии на фоне убитого африканского льва, ставшего ее очередной жертвой. Фотографию она разместила в своем «Твиттере», сопроводив комментарием об удачной охоте в Южной Африке. При это на страничке Бахман есть множество фотографий, где она позирует с убитым крокодилом, медведем и другими животными, пишет Ирсоло. Как признавалась сама Мелисса, больше всего она обожает охоту на аллигаторов, при убийстве этих существ американка испытывает прямо-таки пьянящее чувство. Многие пользователи негативно отреагировали на пост, называя охотницу отвратительной и мерзкой, а также сравнивая с исчадием ада. Гордиться уничтожением достояния африканской страны, по их мнению, неприемлемо. Житель Кейптауна Элан Бурман подготовил петицию с требованием запретить Бахман въезд в ЮАР. По ней уже подписались 11 тысяч человек. Для Бахман охота является не только любимым увлечением, но и способом заработка. В то же время в Сети отношение к деятельности охотницы противоречивое. Одни считают ее фантастической и смелой женщиной, другие – ненормальной, пережившей какую-то серьезную детскую травму. Да и петиции против нее направляются уже не впервые. В прошлом году сорвалось выступление Бахман в популярном реалити-шоу. Канал National Geographic разорвал с ней отношения после петиции, собравшей за сутки порядка 13 тыс. голосов.
Необычную сцену между слоном и бегемотом запечатлел фотограф дикой природы Рианом ван Шалквиком в заповеднике в Виндхуке, Намибия. Ван Шалквик, который работает врачом в небольшом городке на северо-востоке Намибии, проводил выходные в заповеднике с женой Бонни. Впечатляющие сцены развернулись в воскресенье после обеда, когда все другие посетители уже покидали заповедник, сообщает bigmir.net. Читайте: Турист снял на видео кровавую схватку акулы с крокодилом "Я фотографировал гиппопотамов в воде, когда подъехал персонал и разложил траву, потому что животным нечего было есть. Сразу около 20 гиппопотамов вышли из воды и начали есть. И тут большой слон выскочил из кустов и побежал к траве. Сначала он вел себя спокойно, но потом занервничал и напал на подходящих к нему бегемотов", — рассказывает ван Шалквик. Когда мать-бегемотиха подошла слишком близко, слон решил принять радикальные меры. Хотя вес взрослой самки бегемота может превосходить 1,5 тонны, слон с легкостью подкинул ее хоботом. Бегемотиха приземлилась на спину и покатилась к воде. После этого слон просто стоял и качал головой, а бегемотиха спокойно удалилась в воду.
Так власти намерены предотвратить разграбление могил. Власти города Йоханнесбург в ЮАР хотят разрешить установку сигнализации на могильные надгробия, чтобы предотвратить разграбление могил, сообщает южноафриканская газета The Times. Кроме этого, будет усилена охрана некоторых кладбищ. Ожидается, что первые приборы на надгробия установят уже в январе 2014 года. Поставщиков могильных противоугонных сигнализаций власти города уже нашли — это компания Memorial Alert. Ее директор Марк Прингл объяснил, каким образом работает сигнализация. Надгробия оснащаются специальным датчиком, который фиксирует кражу самого надгробия, статуи или вазы, и посылает хозяевам могилы смс-уведомление. Благодаря этому же датчику, можно будет определить местоположение украденного. В последнее время в Йоханнесбурге участились случаи разграбления могил. Только за последние несколько недель с кладбищ Авалон и Уэстпарк, где находятся могилы известных граждан ЮАР, были похищены как минимум 20 надгробий.
Friday, 22 November 2013
The FNB House Price Index has increased by 3.4% according to FNB Namibia. Overall house prices moved upwards mainly due to the demand for large properties at the Atlantic coast. The large coastal homes' prices increased by 85% from the same period last year. Property prices in the coastal region increased by 8.5% in May bringing annual growth rate to 12%. The house prices in Windhoek, Gobabis and Okahandja contracted during the period due to land delivery improvement. The cumulative developer activity for the central market stands at 307,380 square meters of land with a maximum yield potential of 717 free standing houses - a definite improvement from the last year. In the north of Namibia property prices continued on downward trend decreasing by 3.4% from the previous month or 4.9% from the same period last year. In the southern Namibia property prices remained as volatile due to thin volumes. House prices continued to increase at a much slower pace than during last year.
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Thursday, 21 November 2013
Miss Tourism Namibia 2013 Ophelia Emvula is calling on the Ministry of Environment and Tourism as well as the Namibian Tourism Board (NTB) to support small non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and youth forums whose aim is to improve the Namibian tourism industry as well as help improve Namibia as a tourism destination. Speaking to the Economist this week, Emvula who recently returned from the Miss Tourism World pageant which was held in Equatorial Guinea last month said she looks forward to working with the youth across Namibia not only as an ambassador but also as a Namibian citizen. “I am currently part of the Swakopmund Youth with a Vision Youth Forum which is a group of young people that have cleaning campaigns as well as seminars that teach the public on how to create cleaner tourist cities. I look forward to working with the youth in other parts of the country on such projects therefore I am calling on the government and other parastatals to help fund such projects” she said. Emvula also said that in her capacity as the current Miss Tourism Namibia, she too will play a big role in promoting a tourism oriented outlook to young Namibians by holding seminars on maintaining the environment. She is also looking to working closely with the Swakopmund municipality where she hopes to get a platform to find out what programs are available for the youth in terms of tourism, as well at the NTB and tourism directorate. She also urged the government to mobilise and promote other places as tourism cities in the country as there is a strong need for the discovery of tourism attractions in the domestic market. Emvula is part of the Miss Tourism Namibia Pageant’s mandate of raising awareness and promoting of city tourism, whose aim is integrate tourism as a key pillar in urban areas. Emvula’s reign will come to an end next year at the Miss Tourism Namibia 2014 pageant when another tourism ambassador will be chosen on 7 June at the Windhoek Country club. The pageant is set to coincide with the Namibia Tourism Expo.
Limited trading at the N$92 million mall in Keetmanshoop commenced last Friday already, although the complex will only be opened officially in April next year. Tracey Eagles, the executive for marketing, transformation and customer strategy at Old Mutual, said construction, which is fast drawing to an end is well on schedule thanks to subcontractors that have not wasted any time. Eagles also made mention of the fact that the Shopping Centre was designed and constructed to be scalable in future based on the anticipated growth in the southern region with a demand for more retail and office space. Residents appeared overwhelmed with excitement, saying the construction of the new mall has been long overdue, although some argued that its size may be a lot smaller than what they had anticipated. “As you can see we cannot even contain ourselves… We are really grateful for the clothing shops and cannot wait for Shoprite to open. But the biggest advantage is that jobs are created for our children and that with more shops here prices will be regulated and we will not be forced to buy at Pick n Pay and Spar even if we cannot afford it… We are also tired of Chinese shops and even crazy store now with Christmas coming,” said Jenny Resandt. The construction was carried out by NMC Construction, which operates as the main contractor, Hugo Scheepers Architects as the principal agents responsible for the design of the new mall; Windhoek Consulting Consulting Engineers as the project engineers and Dawid Nel Quantity Surveyers. The planning consultants are the firm Stubenrauch Planning Consultants, while Old Mutual Properties are the overall development managers.
Eskom on Tuesday night warned that its power system was severely constrained due to the loss of additional generating units from its power stations and the extensive use of emergency reserves but it was not immediately clear if the announcement would have any negative effects on Namibia. NamPower MD Paulinus Shilamba declined to comment on the issue because he said he was on leave while Tangeni Kambangula, the spokesperson of the company did not respond to a request sent to her to comment on the situation. “The power system is severely constrained today (Tuesday) due to the loss of additional generating units from our power station fleet and the extensive use of emergency reserves. This has necessitated the need for Eskom to declare an emergency in terms of the approved regulatory protocols,” Eskom said in a statement posted on its website. Eskom said it was following the protocol in terms of its emergency procedures in order to secure the power system. “We have alerted our key industrial customers and have required them to reduce their load by a minimum of 10%. While we will make every effort to avoid load shedding, we are hopeful that by applying these measures we will achieve the required load reduction necessary to protect the national grid, Eskom said. The company called on its customers in South Africa to switch off geysers, pool pumps, air conditioning and all non essential appliances from 5pm to 9pm. “Load shedding schedules will only be utilised for the duration of the constraint and Eskom will provide regular updates on the status of the power system,” said Eskom. NamPower imports between 50% and 70% of the country’s energy requirements from the Southern African region. The main local source of generation is Ruacana Hydro Power station. NamPower imports energy from Eskom in South Africa, Electricidade de Mozambique (EDM), Zimbabwe Electricity Supply Authority (Zesa), Zambia Electricity Supply Corporation Limited (Zesco) and the Societe nationale d’ electricite (SNEL) of the Democratic Republic of Congo. NamPower plans putting up several power-generation plants but most of these will start generating only after 2017 due to several delays. The government has decided to go ahead with the development of the Baynes Hydro Power station, set to cost at least N$13 billion and the Kudu Gas project, estimated to cost at least N$13,8 billion.
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Monday, 18 November 2013
THE government splashed N$284 000 on the construction of the bronze statue of former President Sam Nujoma, which was unveiled at Omugulu gwo-Mbashe in August this year. This was announced by the Minister of Youth, Sport and Culture, Jerry Ekandjo, in parliament last week where he also defended government’s decision to award various tenders for the construction of statues to foreign companies. Historians and visual artists recently said the government’s failure to commission local sculptors in creating national monuments was robbing the country of its true pride and heritage. Ekandjo, who refused to reveal to The Namibian in September this year the total cost of the Nujoma statue, was cornered by Rally for Democracy and Progress Member of Parliament Anton von Wietsheim to reveal the costs. The minister was asked to tell the house how much was forked out to pay for Nujoma’s statue and why locals are repeatedly sidelined from national heritage artistic projects. Ekandjo was also asked to inform the nation on how many Namibians have been appointed to partner with foreign firms in crafting statues. Ekandjo said: “One does not just engage Namibian artists just for the sake of engagement. There are many enumerable elements involved like professionalism, culture, philosophy, finance, etc. These people who did this are the best; one of the best in the world,” he added. The 7,5 metre statue of Nujoma was sculptured by Mansudae Overseas Project (MOP), the same North Korean company that was also contracted to craft the “Unknown Soldier” at Heroes’ Acre on the outskirts of Windhoek. Cultural historian and author of the book ‘National Monuments in Namibia’ Andreas Vogt in September this year described government’s refusal to use locals to produce national monuments as being short-sighted and “a danger to the nation’s heritage”. Von Wietsheim also asked Ekandjo to inform the legislative house about the total cost of all the statues erected by the government so far and the cost of future statues the government is planning to erect. The minister only responded by saying:”We budget for it.” The RDP MP also questioned whether state monuments shouldn’t reflect national culture and should, therefore, be created by Namibian artists, which will create a sense of pride and ownership. Ekandjo, instead, took on Von Wietsheim for questioning President Hifikepunye Pohamba’s announcement that the Reiterdenkmal statue in Windhoek will be removed. The culture minister said: “This statue is not cultural or heritage. The statue was erected in honour of those who exterminated our people, so it should go.” Ekandjo refused to answer further questions. The Reiterdenkmal statue was erected in honour of German soldiers and civilians who died in the 1904-1908 genocide and was inaugurated on 27 January 1912.
Telecom Namibia has joined forces with German Internet provider Deutscher Commercial Internet Exchange (De-CIX) and NewTelco SA, a Jasco Group company, to establish international access points in South Africa and Namibia to the German Internet exchange (DE-CIX). This comes on the back of a recent move by Telecom Namibia in partnership with NewTelco SA to establish Points of Presence (PoPs) in South African and European communication hubs last year. The access points will connect to the De-CIX Apollon platform, the world’s largest Internet Exchange, providing direct access for Namibia and South Africa to more than 550 networks connected to the De-CIX node. Jasco will provide the physical platform to enable this interconnection. The establishment of this Internet Exchange is expected to deliver multiple benefits to customers of Telecom Namibia and to the economy of the region as a whole. “We are very excited about the partnership with NewTelco SA which enabled Telecom Namibia to interconnect its PoPs to the world’s largest internet exchange, the DE-CIX. This interconnection will provide us with the ability to provide a speedy, reliable and robust connectivity to European digital ecosystem and beyond. It also dramatically improved routing efficiency and the quality of the Internet experience for end-users,” says Isak Ouseb, Senior Manager: Product Management at Telecom Namibia. “Our partnership with NewTelco SA is a pioneering step in connecting Africa to the world, removing the reliance on third parties to connect internationally and driving down the cost of communications for the continent. This is just the first step in revolutionising telecommunications in Namibia. Further phases, such as additional PoPs and the extension of our national infrastructure will enable us to further extend these services,” Ouseb added. The establishment of these access points will create an optimal enabling environment for exchanging local, regional and international Internet traffic, facilitating Namibia’s vision of becoming the ICT hub in the West African region. It will also allow for more efficient use of available infrastructure and capabilities, and will support the building of centralised infrastructure for content localisation. Other benefits include substantial cost savings for network operators through a reduction in long-haul traffic costs, better resiliency and security of network infrastructure, massive reduction in latency and a reduced risk of outages, resulting in improved customer experience in Namibia and the region. “In the past, traffic to and from Namibia either could not connect, or had to be routed via multiple different countries, depending on how service providers were connected to each other. With the establishment of the IXP, traffic is now under the direct control of Telecom Namibia, and can be sent directly over their own traffic routes to the De-CIX aggregation point, and from there to all of the European service providers connected to the hub. This lowers the cost of routing, with a knock-on effect to customers, and also improved speed and reliability. Given the close historical links with Namibia and Germany, having a direct connection makes sense from an economical point of view. The IXP will provide a direct interconnect between businesses in Germany and their customers or branches in Namibia, improving business,” says Eckart Zollner, Head of Business Development at Jasco. The IXP facility will not only function as an Internet Exchange switch, but will also enable data centre services to be offered, which will open up new avenues of business for both Telecom Namibia and other operators in the country. The three-party agreement between NewTelco SA, Telecom Namibia and De-CIX was signed in August 2013 and the inter-connect has now been fully implemented effective from the beginning of September, enabling Telecom Namibia to begin rolling out new services and solutions to its customers.
Strand Hotel Swakopmund, Namibia O&L Leisure Breaks Ground N$ 342 million investment in tourism future of Namibia O&L Leisure Hotels & Lodges, a subsidiary of the Ohlthaver & List Group, held the ground-breaking ceremony of the new Strand Hotel Swakopmund. The old Strand Hotel had been demolished in 2008 and the O&L Group and O&L Leisure team set out to conceptualize and design the new Strand Hotel Swakopmund ensuring the iconic, cultural and historic aspects of this amazing Mole site, were truly appreciated, respected and protected. In his address, Executive Chairman of the O&L Group, Sven Thieme expressed his delight at being able to deliver on the O&L Group purpose and promise of ‘Creating a future, enhancing life’ – through the Strand Hotel Swakopmund. He said: “Over the past years Namibia has made great progress in the development of our country and in particular the tourism industry. The recently concluded COP11 and Adventure Travel World Summit are testimony to that and is in no small measure thanks to the Government’s Vision 2030 Goals, among others. They are a powerful incentive for real, tangible and collective action that was only possible because we have all worked together and continue to do so. We should all be proud of what has been accomplished.” Thieme added that it was important that everyone should collectively take development in their hands thereby empowering the people, enhancing inclusive and sustainable growth, environmental sustainability and living up to equity and good governance. He added: “I firmly believe that with an integrated approach where economic, social and environmental elements reinforce each other, we can achieve a developed Namibia - much faster than we think! As such, the Ohlthaver & List Group of Companies – through our O&L Leisure Hotels & Lodges subsidiary - is extremely proud to further invest into the Namibian economy through the development of the Strand Hotel Swakopmund. This exquisite Namibian product brings about a number of opportunities such as employment creation, building innovative and sustainable businesses in Namibia and in this case the Erongo Region thereby boosting the country’s global tourism profile and contributing to socio-economic wealth and ultimately profiling Namibia as a major tourist destination. The new Strand Hotel Swakopmund will offer a unique fusion of Namibian and International hospitality. Giving a true sense of place, and encompassing the warmth and authenticity of our people, the Strand Hotel Swakopmund symbolizes the aspirations of our nation, our ability to persevere, and our right to shine in the international arena.” Bruce Hutchison, Managing Director of O&L Leisure in his address quoted Winston Churchill from one of his famous speeches after a battle lost and said: “Never, never, never give up!” He applauded Sven Thieme for his patience, persistence, commitment and dedication and daring to dream. Hutchison continued to say that Namibians are known for their hospitality, so it was only befitting that the Hotel became a gateway, open to welcome local friends, regional neighbours and international visitors. He continued to say that the O&L Leisure team’s conceptual thoughts and design briefs were guided by the understanding of the site on the Mole, a destination which anchored the historic section of Swakopmund and a site which over the years had become part of every Swakopmunders’ and many Namibians’ lives. ”The entire development was designed and will be built to International 4 star hotel standards as the success of our business model calls for us to cater not only for the International market, but most importantly, also attracting local Swakopmunders, Namibians and regional visitors. [WebSite Strand Hotel Swakopmund] Our objective is to offer all hotel residents and restaurant customers’ true Namibian value for money.” He added that the exterior architecture had been inspired by Swakopmund itself and was based on a contemporary interpretation of the historic German architecture so prevalent in town. “The hotel was set to fit in perfectly with the historic beauty of the town, complimenting it and blending in, to truly become part of this Namibian jewel. The building has been designed to look and feel smaller by dividing it into 3 sections and setting each back from the other enabling the entire sea front area, along the Mole, to become individual weather protected terraces all open to the general public as they are invited to enjoy their Mole. The interior concept can be best described as completely residential in feel and structure. I describe it as wanting to create a non-hotel Hotel - making you feel as if you are in a very warm and welcoming home - elegant, tasteful and un-pretentious setting out to make all feel very welcome and entirely comfortable”, concluded Hutchison. Minister of Environment and Tourism, Uahekua Herunga congratulated and thanked the O&L Group of Companies and O&L Leisure for their achievement: “I know that the process has been laborious but Rome was not built in one day either, and O&L Leisure is a company that ensures everything is in place before embarking on such an ambitious task. You have made sure that all parties in and around Swakopmund are happy and you have taken all players into consideration – from the residents of Swakopmund to the municipality and the regional council and now you have buy-in and approval from all w!hich means that your construction can only go smoothly.” He added that the new Strand Hotel would most certainly feature prominently on the list of tourist operators and would mark a highlight in the calendar of tourists visiting Namibia. He urged all players in the tourism industry to work together and to ensure that Namibia becomes a tourism destination of choice for the world. “NTB, Air Namibia, NWR, HAN, Ministry of Tourism, immigration officials and numerous more are responsible to ensure that tourists choose Namibia as a preferred holiday destination, have a pleasurable experience, spread the word among acquaintances and even become regular visitors. He further added that his ministry’s door was always open and his people were eager and willing to listen to challenges, solutions and any plans to enhance the industry. “After all, commitment of all players to the same goals within the industry in this country will ensure that the tourism industry flourishes and with it the country, its people and the economy”, concluded Minister Herunga.
Saturday, 16 November 2013
The Minister of Agriculture, Water and Forestry, Honourable John Mutorwa has called on all stakeholders to take positive action towards integrated development and management of the environment, water and other natural resources. Mutorwa said all decision makers at all levels and sectors should make use of factual and objective scientific research and analysis to address climate change and its impacts. The Minister was speaking at a three day Stakeholders Consultative Conference of the Zambezi Environment Outlook held in Windhoek earlier this week. The Zambezi Environment Outlook provided a current update and introduced new and emerging issues following the widely acknowledged State of Environment Zambezi Basin 2000 which was the first environmental assessment of a single ecosystem in Southern Africa. The basin is considered a source of livelihood for many of the people across the eight SADC member states, which Namibia is part of. The conference focused on stakeholders’ participation and input on issues such as biodiversity, climate change, tourism, land and agriculture amongst others. According to Mutorwa, the conference comes at a time when the country was experiencing drought in some areas and in other cases floods in the Zambezi River has also displaced communities and destroyed crops. All these factors, Mutorwa said, contributed to the destructive changes on the basin’s state of the environment.”We thus need to urgently find appropriate strategies, individually and collectively, to sustain and protect these resources so that they continue to meet the current needs as well as those of generations to come,” Mutorwa told the stakeholders during the opening of the conference. He added that the basin represent the best of what the SADC Region has to offer, in terms of natural resources because within the basin’s large expanse or surface area, there exist many natural resources ranging from water, land, soil, forests, wildlife and the minerals that are plentiful under the soil. “These define our Region’s main economic activities, including hydropower, agriculture, forestry, mining, fisheries, manufacturing and tourism,” said Mutorwa. According to Mutorwa, the Zambezi basin is undoubtedly a vital resource that holds potential for closer cooperation of the eight member states in areas of environmental sustainable governance, agriculture, cultural heritage preservation and general socio-economic development. He said such cooperation also promotes peace, security and sustainable economic growth. Since 1998, Namibia has been producing the State of the Environment Reports with the last one produced in 2004. The current Integrated Water Resources Management Plan was launched in 2012 and was succeeded by the Water Policy White Paper of 2000, the Water and Sanitation Policy of 2008 and the Sanitation Strategy of 2009. The Namibia Water Resources Management Bill is expected to be promulgated in Parliament this year and will in turn govern the utilisation and management of the country’s water resources.
Namibians can now enjoy an exhilarating outdoors experience at some of the country’s elite lodges at a price set specifically for them. Olthaver and List Leisure Hotels and Lodges now offer affordable rates for Namibian residents at both Mokuti Etosha Lodge and Midgard Country Estate. According to Bruce Hutchison, Managing Director of Olthaver and List Leisure Hotels and Lodges, the idea of repositioning the prices was to help every Namibian to experience tranquility experienced by other visitors at the two lodges. “We truly want all Namibians to enjoy what our many visitors from overseas do and believe that these exclusive offers will help them do so,” he said. He said that the mission of Olthaver and List Leisure Hotels and Lodges is to offer a genuine sense of place, experienced with warmth, sincerity and a sense of being hosted. “With Namibians, what you see is what you get. We want to empower our employees to welcome our guests by hosting them, not serving them,” he said. Hutchison added that Olthaver and List Leisure Hotels and Lodges are not cookie cutter brands but are committed to providing a true Namibian experience. In addition to the price adjustments, the Olthaver and List Leisure Hotels and Lodges also revamped its website for both lodges as well as the new development, the Strand Hotel to be build in Swakopmund. The websites offer quick and easy access to essential information about destinations. They offer real time availability, online booking and secure payment possibilities and are now more interactive. According to Olthaver and List Leisure Hotels and Lodges General Manager for Marketing and IT, Thomas Mueller, Namibian companies still market their services through the traditional channels. Namibia needs to get ready for the paradigm shift, we need to integrate old ways of marketing with new strategies in order to attract new customers and retain old ones,” said Mueller.
The Hospitality Association of Namibia’s (HAN) this week announced that it will host its 15th annual Tourism Trade Forum on 27 and 28 November 2013 in Windhoek. The forum consists of a congress taking place on 27 November and is followed by the awards gala on 28 November. The forum is sponsored by Standard Bank Namibia and Namibia Breweries Limited (NBL) who contributed an amount of N$65,000 and N$60,000 respectively. Secondary sponsors are Marsh Namibia and Bannerman Resources, each giving a contribution of N$25,000. The theme of the congress is “Translating Namibian tourism to the world” and is intended to attract different representatives in the hospitality industry mainly from Germany and South Africa but also from the rest of Europe. Topics to be discussed at the congress include factors relating to the local tourism industry and how it relates to international tourism. Most pertinent are local ownership, capacity, levies and the slump since 2008. Tourism rates for the 2014/2015 tourism season will also be discussed during the forum. Seven speakers, of which three are from abroad, are expected to give presentations at the congress. During the awards gala dinner, tourism operators will be honoured for their achievements. A new award has been added this year in the category for best concession operator. In his address Managing Director of Namibia Breweries,Wessie van der Westhuizen said that NBL has had a long-standing relationship with HAN which represents all major players in the hospitality industry. He said: “It is a natural association to see the brewers of truly authentic Namibian beers partner with the establishments that host guests in Namibia. Unlike the fast paced, commercial lives many people experience daily – Namibia is a destination that offers authentic warmth, hospitality from people who are true to themselves, their culture, beliefs and values – and overall the tourism experience is one which they appreciate because it is far removed from their daily lives.” This year NBL has also pledged N$1 million as commitment for the Adventure Travel World Summit through its Windhoek Lager brand.
Friday, 15 November 2013
Namibian Coastal Conservation and Management (NACOMA) recently released theDorob National Park rules and regulations for visitors to the coast during the festive season. The Dorob National Park was declared in Government Notice No. 266 of 1 December 2010. Being one of the most unique parks in the world, the Dorob National Park along the central Namibian coast caters for various leisure, tourism and sports activities while also providing for conservation measures and specific conservation areas. Visitors to the Dorob National Park, who wish to enjoy the various leisure, sports and tourism activities in the park are notified that they should familiarize themselves with and obey the regulations, laws and rules, contained in the information pamphlets. For further clarification they can also consult with the coastal offices of the Ministry of Environment and Tourism at Swakopmund or Walvis Bay. Holidaymakers are encouraged to enjoy themselves but within the respective laws, rules and regulations. These apply in all cases, whether travelling on proclaimed roads, relaxing on beaches or angling along the coastline. Anglers and beachgoers are advised to utilize the access roads to the beaches, clearly indicated by road signs at turnoffs between Swakopmund and Henties Bay, and Henties Bay and the Ugab River. By keeping to these access roads, unnecessary tracks in the desert can be avoided. The Ministry of Environment and Tourism has pledged to maintain these access roads and a plan is in place to provide corrugation maintenance equipment for stakeholders to support Ministry of Environment and Tourism. Quad bikes and other motorised bikes are prohibited on beaches between Walvis Bay and Swakopmund, in all areas north of Henties Bay, and on the beaches at the seafronts of Henties Bay, Wlotzkasbaken, Swakopmund, and the Namibia Wildlife Resorts (NWR) camp sites. They are also not permitted in the area between Omaruru River and the Ugab River, however they may drive 10 km upstream of the coast within the Omaruru River. Permits are not required for the use of a vehicle in other permitted areas or when driving on park routes in the Dorob National Park however people need to familiarize themselves with the regulations. It is a serious offence to leave bait or food scraps anywhere in the park or to feed wild animals as this upsets nature. Overnighting or camping in the Dorob National Park is only allowed in officially designated areas and by virtue of a permit issued by the Ministry of Environment and Tourism. A permit should also be obtained from the Ministry of Environment and Tourism when people want to conduct any trade or business within the boundaries of the park. This also applies to competitions, events or any commercial undertakings.
14.11.13 Live sperm whale was stranded south of Henties Bay yesterday. The mammal was about 7,5 metres long and weighed an estimated 25 tonnes. It was not known why it was stranded except for bloodstained waters in the region of the animal’s belly, which was on the ocean side. Any wounds were not visible to the eye. Marks on the whale’s side and back also indicated that it may have either been attacked by possible killer whales, or that it may have been struck by a boat propeller. Further speculation was also that it was a cow and may have been giving birth – hence the blood and the animal’s weakness – but that too could not be confirmed. Although the whale had been alive for several hours from the early morning till yesterday afternoon, chances of its survival were very small. In the beginning, the animal still attempted to use its fins and tail to struggle from its stranded position in the early morning, but its attempts became weaker as time went on. Heavy breathing that could be seen from the blowhole on top of the head indicated that the animal was exhausted. The conclusion was that nature would take its course and that the situation of the large animal made it nearly impossible to be moved into deeper waters. Whale strandings along Namibia’s coast occur once in a while. The stranding of a deep sea species like the sperm whale are, however, extremely rare in Namibia.