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Ford’s ‘Driving Skills for Life’ trained over 1600 young drivers throughout Africa in 2018

Ford’s ‘Driving Skills for Life’ trained over 1600 young drivers throughout Africa in 2018

Pretoria – Ford Driving Skills for Life (DSFL) has wrapped up 2018 with over 1600 motorists having benefitted from the programme across Africa.

Providing free training and instilling safe driving practices, the DSFL programme offered an excellent opportunity to gain experience in the four main primary driving skills: hazard recognition, vehicle handling, speed management, and space management.

Ford DSFL was introduced to South Africa in 2010, and the innovative award-winning programme continues to make an impact locally, with courses held this year in Cape Town, Port Elizabeth, Rustenburg and Pretoria.

It has now also been expanded to seven markets across Sub-Sahara Africa.

Heading north, the pioneering DSFL programme added Morocco to its line-up this year, along with Dubai in the UAE. In Saudi Arabia, Ford hosted the special global debut of its ‘DSFL for Her’, a new customised version of Ford’s award-winning safe-driving initiative, helping to build confidence behind the wheel as participants there prepared to be among the first-ever women to be issued a driving license in the Kingdom.

The groundbreaking DSFL for Her course followed the landmark decision last year, as decreed by His Highness, King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, to lift the ban on females driving in Saudi Arabia.

“Safety continues to be a key priority to Ford, and providing campaigns such as DSFL can only help reduce the number of road accidents, and increase young drivers’ knowledge and confidence on the road,” said Jim Graham, global manager, Ford Driving Skills for Life.

“Ford also made history in 2018 when it hosted the first-ever practical hands-on driving training for women in Saudi Arabia – DSFL for Her – specifically designed to accommodate Saudi females embarking on their first journey behind the wheel of a car. These are the kind of occasions that make Ford exceptionally proud of the success DSFL has enjoyed this year, as the programme continues its rapid expansion, and evolves to adapt to needs of the markets in which it operates,” Graham added.

Ford Driving Skills for Life has gone from strength to strength every year since its initial trials in the United States some 15 years ago, and in Asia and South Africa a few years later. The acclaimed safe driving training programme was established in 2003 by Ford Fund, GHSA, and a panel of safety experts to teach newly-licensed drivers necessary skills beyond standard driver education programmes. In 2013, Ford DSFL branched out into both Europe and the Middle East, where it has enjoyed continued success. In 2017, the programme celebrated reaching the one-millionth newly-licensed driver trained, free of charge in a Ford vehicle.

Globally, around 1.25 million* people lose their lives in road accidents each year, while between 20 and 50 million others suffer non-fatal injuries, with many incurring a disability. World Health Organisation’s statistics indicate that the vast majority of traffic accident victims are young people, and that road accidents represent the second largest cause of death in the world for the 15-29 age group.

Now in its 15th year as a signature programme of the Ford Fund, Ford Driving Skills for Life has provided free training to more than one million newly-licenced drivers in 40 countries, which equates to an investment of more than US$50 million, highlighting Ford’s commitment to promoting safety on the road.


About The Author

SADC Correspondent

SADC correspondents are independent contributors whose work covers regional issues of southern Africa outside the immediate Namibian ambit. 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.