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UK presents National Action Plan to local audience

Mr Vic Van Vuuren (left) Director of the ILO office in Pretoria, stating the ILO’s views on the United Nations’ business and human rights guiding principles.

Mr Vic Van Vuuren (left) Director of the ILO office in Pretoria, stating the ILO’s views on the United Nations’ business and human rights guiding principles.

Last Thursday the British High Commission hosted a business event engaging and sharing international standard labour practices and the UK Action Plan titled “Good Business” with representatives of the British Business Group (BBG) in Namibia.
Acting Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Labour and Social Welfare, Vilbard Usiku, and the Director of the Labour Resource and Research Institute (LaRRI), Hilma Shindondola-Mote, shared their institutions perspectives on local labour practices.
Mr Vic van Vuuren, Director of the Pretoria office of the International Labour Organization shared the standard international labour practices with the group.
Launched in September 2013, the UK is the first country to present a National Action Plan to implement the UN business and human rights guiding principles.
The British High Commission said this week the UK government strongly believes that the promotion of business and respect for human rights should go hand.
The British Business Group has strong representation from across the main areas of UK business in Namibia, including the mining sector, oil and gas, marine services, infrastructure development, and tourism.
“The UK encourages all companies to review their existing grievance procedures to ensure they are fair, transparent, understandable, well-publicised and accessible by all, and provide for grievances to be resolved effectively without fear of victimisation.

It is also important for businesses to require similar good practice of their supply chains, especially in areas where abuses of rights have been identified.”
Apart from introducing the UK Action Plan, ILO regional director, Vic van Vuuren, highlighted the need to uphold international labour practices.
 “By having a solid base of labour standards coupled to a process of sound social dialogue countries will be better positioned to deal with the challenges of job creation and social security safety nets which in effect reduces poverty levels on a more sustainable basis” he said.
Hilma Shindondola-Mote, director of Labour Resource and Research Insitute (LaRRI), added, “we continue to save pockets of persistent and deepening levels of unemployment alongside workers of skills shortage in the mining, gas and oil sectors”.

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Following reverse listing, public can now acquire shareholding in Paratus Namibia

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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.