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Offbeat 20 November 2015

Offbeat 20 November 2015

I’m one of your news sources. My job is to update news on a local website three times a day. I handle international news, local news, sports news and business, and some other bits and pieces. I start the gig shortly after five in the morning, 364 days a year, including Christmas and New Year, but with the exception of my birthday.
I have done it for years now. I am maniacal about getting stuff done on time. Aside from early sports, my commitment to you is driven by the time-honoured tradition of the early papers: I will provide you with the sort of dreadful international news that is as much an eye-opener as that first strong and fragrant cup of coffee laced with sweet, sweet sugar.
If the coffee isn’t strong and fragrant, maybe you should change your blend.
I repeat the exercise most mid-mornings and afternoons, with the exception of Friday afternoon and weekend afternoons, when other people jump in to help.
The stories I gather have an undercurrent. What I try to impart is the way the world is shaping, particularly through nightmare climate change, the horrible rise of fundamentalist Islam and the myth of uninterrupted economic growth.
When you stand in the middle of a baking-hot desert that was once a rain forest, surrounded by psychotic lunatics in suicide vests, with the knowledge that all you have to your name is a phone that you can’t really afford due to the exchange rate, I want you to come to the admiring realisation, that I was right about the nature of the apocalypse.
I will probably be there next to you, with a grin, waiting for a last high-five, but my mobile will be a cheaper brand. As far as the apocalypse goes, I think zombies will be a happier outcome. I can’t imagine them burning hydrocarbons in the quest for growth of equities driven by another surge on the back of a new round of dumb mobile phones.
Of course I can’t give the full bunch of analysis that I go through to get to these points I am making, only sometimes. News needs entertainment value. Mostly, all I can do is paint a picture with dramatic stories.
This week’s story was the French attacks, a minor milestone in the ongoing river of suicide bombings and mass killings. The analytic component that I have not yet shared is the ancient religious roots of the Salafist perpetrators, though I have from time to time gathered news on the apocalyptic nature of their goals, Think Jonestown here, but with lots of weapons, in case you missed that story. Who needs to waste Cool-Aid when you can die for you beliefs in battle or lethally distributing your organs with a suicide vest.
One of the things that stood out this week was various comments that similar massacres are common in Africa and the Middle East, but not touted with a flag overlay on Facebook. If you didn’t see the flags or the counter comments on Facebook, add some different friends to your collection. To that I will add that the Nigerian girls didn’t arouse much ire from the company itself.
The French thing died down quite a bit on Wednesday with the death of Jona Lomu. As I sat and thought about the rapid transition, I realised that there is an economy to news that assigns a value in popular consciousness. The passing of Jona Lomu has the same news value as the Paris massacre, and both are far more valued than tens of dead in places like Lebanon or Nigeria.
Value supplants value in the shifting realm of news. The Paris massacre and security for the critical Paris climate talks will probably overshadow the content and semiotics of the actual talks.
I have never been a dedicated sports fan, but of late my mind has begun to take refuge in updating the sports. I’m a United fan, nowadays. Louis van Gaal is better for my composure than yet another massacre.
In the wake of Paris there were reams of words written by impassioned journalists of every stripe. Here’s my impassioned bit…
“World, you are like a timeshare salesperson at the gate. I need you to go away and leave me alone. I am weary of you now.”

About The Author


Today the Typesetter is a position at a newspaper that is mostly outdated since lead typesetting disappeared about fifty years ago. It is however a convenient term to indicate a person that is responsible for the technical refinement of publishing including web publishing. The Typesetter does not contribute to editorial content but makes sure that all elements are where they belong. - Ed.

Following reverse listing, public can now acquire shareholding in Paratus Namibia


20 February 2020, Windhoek, Namibia: Paratus Namibia Holdings (PNH) was founded as Nimbus Infrastructure Limited (“Nimbus”), Namibia’s first Capital Pool Company listed on the Namibian Stock Exchange (“NSX”).

Although targeting an initial capital raising of N$300 million, Nimbus nonetheless managed to secure funding to the value of N$98 million through its CPC listing. With a mandate to invest in ICT infrastructure in sub-Sahara Africa, it concluded management agreements with financial partner Cirrus and technology partner, Paratus Telecommunications (Pty) Ltd (“Paratus Namibia”).

Paratus Namibia Managing Director, Andrew Hall

Its first investment was placed in Paratus Namibia, a fully licensed communications operator in Namibia under regulation of the Communications Regulatory Authority of Namibia (CRAN). Nimbus has since been able to increase its capital asset base to close to N$500 million over the past two years.

In order to streamline further investment and to avoid duplicating potential ICT projects in the market between Nimbus and Paratus Namibia, it was decided to consolidate the operations.

Publishing various circulars to shareholders, Nimbus took up a 100% shareholding stake in Paratus Namibia in 2019 and proceeded to apply to have its name changed to Paratus Namibia Holdings with a consolidated board structure to ensure streamlined operations between the capital holdings and the operational arm of the business.

This transaction was approved by the Competitions Commission as well as CRAN, following all the relevant regulatory approvals as well as the necessary requirements in terms of corporate governance structures.

Paratus Namibia has evolved as a fully comprehensive communications operator in Namibia and operates as the head office of the Paratus Group in Africa. Paratus has established a pan-African footprint with operations in six African countries, being: Angola, Botswana, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa and Zambia.

The group has achieved many successes over the years of which more recently includes the building of the Trans-Kalahari Fibre (TKF) project, which connects from the West Africa Cable System (WACS) eastward through Namibia to Botswana and onward to Johannesburg. The TKF also extends northward through Zambia to connect to Dar es Salaam in Tanzania, which made Paratus the first operator to connect the west and east coast of Africa under one Autonomous System Number (ASN).

This means that Paratus is now “exporting” internet capacity to landlocked countries such as Zambia, Botswana, the DRC with more countries to be targeted, and through its extensive African network, Paratus is well-positioned to expand the network even further into emerging ICT territories.

PNH as a fully-listed entity on the NSX, is therefore now the 100% shareholder of Paratus Namibia thereby becoming a public company. PNH is ready to invest in the future of the ICT environment in Namibia. The public is therefore invited and welcome to acquire shares in Paratus Namibia Holdings by speaking to a local stockbroker registered with the NSX. The future is bright, and the opportunities are endless.