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Government has many fragmented policies – Gawanas

Government has many fragmented policies – Gawanas

Special Advisor of the Ministry of Poverty Eradication, Advocate Bience Gawanas said that different government policies are at odds with each other and fragmented to effectively address poverty.
“Therefore, we need a social policy framework for Namibia to create a micro policy, social environment where social policies speak to one another in a more coordinated and coherent manner,” said Gawanas.
Gawanas, who is also the former Commissioner of Social Affairs of the African Commission of the African Union (AU) spoke at the official launch of a book titled: Social Protection in Namibia- a civil society perspective, written by human rights activist, Uhuru Dempers.
The book is a reader friendly resource for civil society. It’s part of a joint venture between NANGOF Trust and Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung (FES).
According to Gawanas, the problem is that there are currently “very many fragmented policies,” within the government. “If you look at the Ministry of Health, they talk about reducing maternal mortality while the Ministry of Education is talking about free education. It is disjointed on all sides,” she explained.
“Once you focus on reducing maternal mortality you have to address poverty by making healthcare accessible to pregnant women by making healthcare free,” she said adding that the lack of integrated policies creates a situation where various ministries work in conflict with each other. She suggests that the only way to overcome this is by advocating for a stronger social policy framework.
She said, because current policies in the various ministries are fragmented, the Ministry of Health does not know, for example what the Ministry of Poverty Eradication does about the same issue of poverty eradication, adding that if for example one puts emphasis on maternal mortality, they first have to find out who are those women who are dying.
Gawanas said the Ministry of Poverty Eradication is ready to work with civil society organisations and whatever they will do together they will engage as true partners to ensure that social protection issues become prominent in national discourse through regular steering committee meetings.
She explained that the ultimate goal of the government and its partners is to provide social protection by ensuring that relevant messages are filtered down to the families who are most vulnerable and often affected.

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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.