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US-funded voluntary male circumcision programme expanded – set to cover more regions

US-funded voluntary male circumcision programme expanded – set to cover more regions

The U.S. Ambassador Lisa Johnson launched the new PEPFAR-funded voluntary medical male circumcision (VMMC) programme “Safe VMMC” in Namibia recently

The up to five-year, US$33.5 million programme is led by USAID and the Ministry of Health and Social Services.

Through the VMMC programme, implementer Abt Associates will expand voluntary medical male circumcision services to reach Namibian men across 11 regions.

“Circumcised men have a 60%t lower risk of contracting HIV in comparison to non-circumcised men,” highlighted Ambassador Johnson regarding the importance of this intervention for Namibia’s fight against HIV/AIDS.

The U.S. Ambassador noted that voluntary circumcision is one of many ways to protect against HIV, and that “others include pre-exposure prophylaxis, or PrEP, and, of course, the use of condoms. Circumcision does not substitute for a condom, which still provides the best protection in every respect.”

Namibia is nearing HIV epidemic control as per the UNAIDS 95-95-95 goals: It is estimated that currently 94% of all HIV-positive Namibians know their status, 96% of those who know they are positive are on antiretroviral treatment, and of those on treatment, 95% have reduced the viral load in their blood to an undetectable level – which means it is impossible for them to transmit the virus.

The President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) is the largest commitment ever by a single nation toward an international health initiative – a comprehensive approach to combating HIV/AIDS around the world.

In Namibia, PEPFAR is led by the U.S. Ambassador and programmed by an inter-agency management team that includes the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the U.S. Peace Corps.

Caption: Ambassador Lisa Johnson handed over three (3) autoclave machines to sterilize reusable VMMC kits to the Executive Director, Ben Nangombe. Each machine is valued at US$6,000. SAFE VMMC will procure 10 additional autoclave machines in FY2020 to be distributed to public health facilities in 11 regions.


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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.