Select Page

Weekly Weather Overview and short-term outlook to Friday 07 February 2020

Weekly Weather Overview and short-term outlook to Friday 07 February 2020

Visual: Spaghetti plume of 26 different predictive models to forecast the El Nino Southern Oscillation.

Source: International Research Institute for Climate and Society. Model consolidated by the Climate Prediction Centre in the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration of the US Government.

Recent Developments

For the first time in a very very long time, predictive models by which global weather developments are forecast, are showing a noticeable convergence. This week’s visual shows a similar trend among those highly specialised models which a large number of agencies spread across the world employ to predict the so-called El Nino Southern Oscillation(ENSO) in the equatorial Pacific.

These models are very technical but for those so inclined, the methodologies are generally available and can be read by any person with an interest in the nuts and bolts of understanding the bigger picture. In short, all the models incorporate various weightings of sea surface temperatures, deep water temperatures, downwellings, upwellings, wind speed and direction, cloud formation, convection and barometric pressure.

For Namibians, the only important aspect is whether these models agree or not. And this is the big change that has been observed during January, not in the actual weather but in the way the models handle the variables on a daily basis.

The consolidated spaghetti plume shows that all the incorporated models tend to show the same outcome. This is rather oversimplified but in December, the same model still showed wide variations from week to week and between the constituent models. In fact, the IRI/CPC model has converged to such an extent that both the dynamical and the statistical components show comparable outcomes.

Dynamical models refer to those that are based on current observation (day to day changes) while statistical models refer to those that are based on similar historical events.

The same broad analytical picture applies to Namibia. From own experience we can tell that weather forecasts have been all over the page for the past year. Often there was very little or zero coincidence between the forecasts and the outcomes, and at other times, different outlooks gave such contradictory views that it was hard to believe they all referred to southern Africa.

Over the past six weeks or so, this has gradually changed. For instance, while there were good expectations for rainfall across large areas in the North during last week, the outlooks agreed that this will be restricted to the areas north, north-west and north-east of the Etosha / Grootfontein line. The control is found in the relatively dry week in Babatwa and the eastern Caprivi part of the Zambezi region, also a forecast element for which there was general agreement.

This does not mean that it will suddenly start raining across Namibia but it does indicate that the predictive models now show a higher degree of confidence in their outcomes. In practical terms it means we can start trusting the forecasts for the rest of the season.

On the Radar

From Sunday to Monday, the 500 mB surface has come down from 5880 metres to 5850 metres. This may seem like a very small distance, given that it is relatively high up (around 18,000 feet) but it is a critical physical switch.

Rainfall conditions improve as the week progresses, starting on Tuesday reaching its highest potential on Wednesday with a strong bias in the western half, and then gradually shifting to the eastern half as the next approaching South Atlantic high pressure cell starts having an impact on the coastal plain by Thursday.

The outlook is favourable for the entire country above the escarpment on Tuesday and Wednesday, and for the northern half continuing on Thursday and Friday. For the next twelve days, cloud formation should be good which means that there is always a chance for thunder showers even if these may be isolated.


About The Author


In Memoriam. The weekly weather column is maintained in honour of the legacy of John Olszewski, the widely respected and well-known weatherman of Namibia. After writing the weather column for more than twelve years, he has left an indelible mark at the Economist, and the technical ability among the editorial staff to "read" the maps that he used so often. - 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.