WINDHOEK Namibia (Xinhua) --
Diamonds have played an important role in
Namibia’s history, and after 27 years of independence, the
country has regained control of this natural resource and
included many disadvantaged young Namibians in the beneficiation
There are young
Namibians who are today doing the cutting and polishing of
diamonds, with many able to do the diamond processing planning,
which requires high-level skills but generate more values.
One such individual
is 31-year-old Saviour Kaunda who has been part of the industry
for the past ten years, where he started off as a diamond
polisher and has since risen against all odds to become the
first diamond marker in the country.
“Before, I was
struggling to even pay rent, and I was living with my aunt, but
I focused on my work and now I stay on my own and I am paying
for my brother, who is at university. I am also looking after my
two boys,” Kaunda said proudly.
The young man is now
able to work on a diamond from its rough to the polished state,
a skill that takes many years to perfect with some never
actually getting there.
Kaunda is among over
100 previously disadvantaged Namibians, who have carved out a
niche for themselves, while working at a manufacturing company
in the capital Windhoek.
“My inspiration is
that I want this industry to support each and every Namibian ...
I would like to see my fellow Namibians involved in the diamond
industry. For me it has changed my life, both financially and
educationally,” Kaunda said.
“In future I would
like to manage a factory, where I can buy stones, plan and train
other Namibians in this industry,” he said.
and during the first few years afterwards, the diamond industry
in Namibia was saturated with expatriates while black people had
been excluded from positions of substance in the lucrative
Back then, only
local whites and foreigners had sufficient skills or knowledge
to be at the upper ladder of this wealth-bringing, complicated
and delicate industry, while blacks were restricted to more
dangerous and back-breaking, pick-and-shovel mining jobs.
Things began to
change only when the Namibian government after independence
prioritized the “Namibianisation” of all aspects of the diamond
Over the years, the
rise of more Namibians in the trade aligned well with the
mandate of Namibia Diamond Trading Company (NDTC) for Namibia to
benefit directly from the diamond trade, rather than sending
rough diamonds abroad for value-addition and having foreigners
control all of the technical knowledge related to the field.
The older generation
did not live to see the full benefits from the diamonds they
discovered, but the Namibian nation of today is rising to see
the shining side of the mineral.
Namibian president highlights
WINDHOEK Namibia (Xinhua) --
Namibia’s President Hage Geingob said Tuesday
that poverty had continued to wreak havoc in Namibia.
Speaking at the
country’s independence celebrations in Rundu town, northeast
Namibia, Geingob said his government would concentrate on
fulfilling the needs of underprivileged and vulnerable groups by
bringing relief through the existing and new social relief
government has increased the old age grant from 1,100 Namibian
dollars (87 U.S. dollars) to 1,200 Namibian dollars this year,
an amount which has doubled from 600 Namibian dollars in 2014.
“This initiative has
made meaningful impact in reducing poverty levels, not only
amongst out senior citizens, but our children as well, since
many of our children are under care of senior citizens,” he
The government is
also exploring measures to accelerate industrialization and job
creation, as well as rolling out the food bank program.
According a report
titled “Namibia Poverty Mapping”, released in 2015, Namibia
registered a general decline in the incidence of poverty of 11
percentage points over the 2001-2011 period, with national
incidence of poverty declining from 37.9 percent to 26.9 percent
over this period.
The report stated
that an estimated 568,418 people are said to be poor. This
indicates 125,277 fewer people living in poverty at the end of
this 10-year period than would have been the case if the poverty
rate had remained unchanged.