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Making the reading culture a norm in Namibia

Making the reading culture a norm in Namibia

The United Nations Information Centre (UNIC) in Windhoek, handed over a book donation to the Ministry of Education, Arts and Culture (MoEAC) through the Namibia Library and Archive Service (NLAS) earlier this month.

The Centre donated books valued at N$12000 and the collection includes a variety of fiction and non-fiction books.

The Ministry of Education embarked on a drive to solicit the support of the private sector and partners to acquire books and UNIC Windhoek heeded the call in support of the national reading campaign, One Child, One Book.

Namutenya Hamwaalwa, Deputy Director, National Library and Archive Service said the reading campaign is a brand new project that the Directorate of Namibia Library and Archives Service through school library service is introducing.

“We aim to expand and deepen an appreciation of books and engage the whole local community to contribute towards fostering a reading culture in our primary schools, promote reading to support the national class reading period, fight illiteracy and seek to bring our learners, teachers and parents to a realisation of the importance of reading for personal advancement and national development and to capacitate language subject advisors, regional librarians, school librarians and teachers on how to conduct the reading period activities,” she explained.

She said that UNIC’s contribution to the School libraries project is highly valuable as School libraries are fundamental to education, offering opportunities for experiences in creating and using information for knowledge, understanding, imagination and enjoyment.

“Those are key concepts to the people who are concerned with the provision of quality education to all learners, which in itself quantifies the importance of this donation,” she added.

At the handover of the books, Anthea Basson, Head of UNIC Windhoek said an early reading culture fosters lifelong learning and enables children to grow into innovative citizens and commended the Ministry and NLAS for their commitment to enhancing literacy and addressing the low reading proficiency in the country.

Sarah Negumbo, Director of the National Library and Archive Service said their role as Libraries is to promote the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to the public.

“We are happy today that our recipients, through these donated books will help create an awareness about the SDGs among the young learners,” she added.


About The Author

Mandisa Rasmeni

Mandisa Rasmeni has worked as reporter at the Economist for the past five years, first on the entertainment beat but now focussing more on community, social and health reporting. She is a born writer and is working on her degree in Journalism at the Namibia University of Science and Technology (NUST). She believes education is the greatest equalizer. She is the epitome of perseverance, having started as the newspaper's receptionist in 2013.

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.