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XINHUA NEWS SERVICE REPORTS FROM THE AFRICAN CONTINENT

 

Namibia to prioritize wildlife protection against rise of crimes

WINDHOEK Namibia (Xinhua) -- Namibian Minister of Environment and Tourism Pohamba Shifeta on Tuesday highlighted wildlife protection at reserves against the rise of “syndicate-based wildlife crime.”

“Wildlife crime in Namibia has reached a new quality of violence and enhanced frequency of incidences. Well-organized gangs enter vulnerable areas, crime syndicates organize the trafficking of horns and tusks through complex networks, leading to foreign markets,” Shifeta said in Windhoek.

“If the current syndicate-based wildlife crime is not brought under control it will trigger a vicious cycle which results in enhanced rural poverty,” he said.

Shifeta added that the government had increased presence of the anti-poaching unit in certain national parks and other conservation areas.

He made these remarks in the light of clarifying an incident earlier this month, when a tourist in the Bwabwata National Park was injured by gun shots fired by an anti-poaching patrol team.

A police investigation into the case is currently underway.

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Namibia expects heavy maize loss from pest outbreak

WINDHOEK Namibia (Xinhua) -- Namibia is set to lose about 5,000 tonnes of maize to pest outbreak, Eddie Hasheela, Chief Agricultural Scientist in the Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Forestry, said Tuesday.

According to Hasheela, it is estimated that this year, the northern and northeastern regions, the country’s main maize producers, will produce about a quarter less than their annual production, which is estimated at about 20,000 tonnes.

Fall armyworms and American bollworms have invaded maize fields in regions including Zambezi, Omusati, Kavango West and Kavango East since early this year.

More losses are expected, with the damage and pests impact still hard to assess, Hasheela said.

Meanwhile, containing the pests has been difficult, despite farmers having received government assistance to spray the crops to control the insects, he said.

“The biggest challenge is the big moles flying in the air, and would reproduce once the temperature become favorable. And the chemicals would only work once sprayed by all farmers at the same time, in the right quantity and way, which is when the pests are still young and haven’t entered the plants,” he added.

Outbreak of the worms was also reported in other SADC countries like Malawi, Zambia, Zimbabwe, South Africa and Mozambique.

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Maternal deaths worrying in Namibia: health minister

WINDHOEK Namibia (Xinhua) -- Namibian Health Minister Bernard Haufiku said Monday that the country is not doing well to curb the maternal mortality in the country as over 3,500 mothers died during pregnancy or giving birth between 2012 and 2015.

Speaking at a press conference in Windhoek on Monday, Haufiku said that too many mothers are losing their lives thus the country is required to fast track measures to control the situation.

He said that the leading cause of death was bleeding after delivery, which is something that can be managed with better skilled staff, better drugs and availability of specialists.

The underlying causes of maternal and neonatal deaths are varied and include the lack of skilled personnel, as well as the long distances and delays in seeking care.

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Chinese business community donates to anti-poverty fund in Namibia

WINDHOEK Namibia (Xinhua) -- The Chinese business community in Namibia donated 600,000 Namibian dollars (about 47,000 U.S. dollars) to an anti-poverty fund on Friday.

“I feel like it is my obligation as part of the community to do what is in my capabilities to help those in need,” said Stina Wu from the Chinese business community in Namibia while delivering the donation.

“For a long time, we have done the best we can in various forms of charity to plough back to society, give back to the country I love and the people of this people that I love,” said Wu.

Namibian First Lady and founder of the One Economy Foundation Monica Geingos explained what the Foundation is all about.

The One Economy Foundation is a Section 21 organization at the Ministry of Trade, Industrialization and SME Development, which has the mandate to break the cycle of poverty.

“Ninety-eight percent of what One Economy Foundation makes is handed over to its beneficiaries.” said Geingos.

Also speaking on the occasion of the donation, the Charge d’affaires ad interim of Chinese Embassy to Namibia, Li Nan, lauded the Chinese business community for making donations for the fight against poverty in Namibia.

“This donation represents the goodwill and friendship from the local Chinese community and represents a true feeling of the Chinese people at large,” said the diplomat.

           

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