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Caprivians want autonomy

Namibian refugees residing in Botswana have demanded that an independent body must prove whether or not Caprivians want to be part of Namibia and that those who are on trial for a separatist armed attack in 1999, be tried as political prisoners and freedom fighters.
In a petition submitted to a tripartite commission consisting of the Namibian and Botswana governments and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) this week, the group also demands that the United Democratic Party be unbanned and that discussions take place between government and Mishake Muyongo, the president of that party.
“We demand that Caprivians be granted their rights to associate and pursue their political belief. We demand for a referendum organised by the United Nations. In the interest of peace, Caprivian people shall continue to seek and appeal for an amicable approach to their political issue. The road to freedom is not easy but we are determined and courageous to face any challenges,” the group said.
The group which consists of 1000 people, said there is no peace in the region as claimed by government.
“…we would like to mention that we have nothing to do with the agenda of repatriation or the so-called peace in the Caprivi. We are not to be told that there is peace in the Caprivi, we are not waiting for that. When Caprivi shall be free from Namibian occupation, then we will be in a
position to experience peace in the Caprivi,” the refugees said.
“… the Caprivians in exile would like to inform the government of Namibia which is ruling the Caprivi by force, the government of Botswana, the UNHCR office in Botswana representing the United Nations, and the international community, that we are not in Botswana by mistake or chance, but to liberate our motherland Caprivi,” the petition further reads.
According to the group, previous meetings held with the tripartite commission over the past 13 years had proved futile because they failed to address the political “crisis” on the ground in the Caprivi strip. The meetings were aimed at the voluntary repatriation of the Caprivians to Namibia.
The group added that although government claim there is peace in the Caprivi strip, their “fathers, brothers and cousins have been languishing in prison over the past 12 years and that mass graves were discovered” in that region.
“We came to Botswana not because we were not employed, had no identity cards, suffering from hunger, development, nor peace which the Namibian Government is preaching while security forces are deployed in the villages. It is to this that, even the abundance of the above mentioned developments and promises shall not at all make us go to Namibia;- but one thing for sure to the Independence of our motherland the Caprivi Strip,” the exiled group said.
The repatriation of refugees from Botswana started in 2002.

About The Author

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.