An Open Letter to H.E. President Dr. Hage Geingob – Namibia: Road Map to Recovery, Poverty Eradication and Sustainable Economic Liberation

AN OPEN LETTER TO H.E. PRESIDENT DR. HAGE GEINGOB

December 21, 2015

His Excellency
Dr. Hage Geingob, President
Republic of Namibia

NAMIBIA: ROAD MAP TO RECOVERY, POVERTY ERADICATION AND SUSTAINABLE ECONOMIC LIBERATION:

Your Excellency,

Preamble – The travail: The travails of Africa and her people, their struggles against the burden of deprivation, shackles of poverty, the onslaught of sickness and diseases, the pangs of hunger, the continued systematic stripping and pitiless plundering of her human and natural resources dates back to the times before the dark days of slave trade. Foreign policies on Economic Cooperation and Sustainable Developments of the Governments of Advanced Nations have continued to deliberately (as it were), raise the bars beyond the reach of Africa, given her peculiar situation of poverty, lack of development, Economic instability etc, whereas the Advanced world has never ceased to depend on Africa’s natural and human resources responsible for the significant strides that these Nations have made in their overall Economic Developments.

Africa is thus caught in this irony of starvation in the midst of super abundance. Our situation as a people is comparable to a fish dying of thirst in its natural environment.

On a larger part, the world depends on Africa for proper development, but where is Africa in the place of the gains? Statistically, the figures are heart rending.

The wealth of Africa’s natural endowments includes such resources that are classified under Rare Earth Elements (REEs) category and Namibia is not left behind on this list of “these blessed few.” Further statistics reveal Africa holding large reserves of Oil and Gas and other resources in the following order:

Gold – Africa contributes 21% of world output
Diamonds – about 46% of global production comes from Africa Botswana alone staking 22%, DRC following with 20% and the remaining 4% scattered among other producing nations on the Continent.
Copper – Africa holds 6% of world output
Africa produces 75% of the world’s platinum led by South Africa and closely followed by Zimbabwe.
For Aluminum, 5% of the world’s total output comes out of Africa. South Africa takes the Regional lead followed by Zimbabwe and Egypt.
Buxite – Africa supplies 8% of world output and that comes from Guinea whose iron ore is also acclaimed as among the world’s finest.

On the whole, the following define Africa’s standing: Uranium, Coal, Iron Ore, Tin, Phosphates, Gold, Molybdenum, Gypsum, Salt, Petroleum Phosphates, Manganese, Lead, Zinc, Fish, Titanium, Natural Gas, Hydropower, Tantalum, Graphite Diamonds, Copper, Silver, Lead, Lithium, Cadmium, Tungsten, Zinc, Salt, Cassiterite (Tin Ore), Wolframite (Tungsten Ore), Methane, Arable Land, Bauxite, Chromite, Gypsum, Nickel, Rare Earth Elements, Gem Diamonds, Vanadium, Asbestos, Coal, Clay, Forests, Quarry Stone, And Talc, Emeralds and a large unexploited reserves of different resources.

Unfortunately, under Foreign Direct Investments (FDIs), the attention of Investors focuses more on these natural recourses while successive administrations of the host Nations channel all their energies more on the same repeated circle of exports driven economy with little or no attention given to or plans made towards large-scale, home grown manufacturing or Industrial development capable of abundant job creation for poverty alleviation and its final eradication.

The question is: with all that we have as a people, sincerely should we be economically in the present position that we have now found ourselves today? No, definitely not. That we are here only confirms that something is seriously wrong and to correct the imbalance, we must clearly define what we truly want to achieve and follow through on the plan of action beyond mere words as has always been the practice as recorded in our historical accounts of past governments.

Namibia: Namibia boasts of such natural resources as diamonds, copper, uranium, gold, silver, lead, tin, lithium, cadmium, tungsten, zinc, salt, hydropower, fish and according to “The World Fact Book” on Field listing of Natural resources, there are also “suspected deposits of oil, coal, and iron ore” in Namibia.

The icing on the cake is this –Namibia has the highest reserves of Uranium, making this country #1 in Africa and 4th largest producer in the world, followed only by Niger as 2nd in Africa and 5th in the world. This standing does not suggest Namibia as a poor country, but the practical translation of this wealth or its reflection on the citizenry does not hold the reality. We should be doing better.

Vision of the Fathers: Your Excellency, our dear Nation, Namibia has suffered. It is no longer keenly needful to recount the woes and re-paint now again graphically, the gruesome picture of our mutilated fallen heroes and heroines who, propelled by their quest for Namibia’s true identity and the freedom of her sons and daughters, braved the odds and made major sacrifices in the battle for her soul.

Of these, the living minority are today, permanently “decorated” in brutal scars as their priceless trophies in the battle for the soul of our beloved country. Your good self are not unaware of those dark days when Namibia groaned under the yoke of bondage, shackled in poverty and plundered while her children famished like orphans. The vision of our fathers and the strength and courage they found to fight for Namibia’s release and the freedom of her children was fueled by the faith they had in this Nation’s tomorrow – a country of liberated people, freed from poverty to flourish in prosperity and sprawling Economic Development, capable of confronting and withstanding the modern global challenges. The tomorrow they saw that fueled their passion to fight, to suffer and to die is today.

Your Excellency, can you in all honesty say that Namibia’s present National Development and Economic Prosperity has in any way in the least justified the sacrifices of these noble men and women who gave their all for her liberty and prosperity of her sons and daughters? Is their sacrifice truly justified today?

Sounding the Empty Song: For Namibia, these woes and travails of the past are still far from over. Her freedom is only in the status of her personal identity as an entity, a sovereign Nation. Beyond this, the manacles of deprivation and hallmark of bondage are still evident upon her like an escaped convict who breaths the air of freedom while still enrobed in the prison garments.

The reflection of poverty and bondage still strongly gleams on our people thus, the efforts of all successive administrations, having done their very best to dress Namibia befittingly and present her to the world as a prosperous Nation have all fallen short, making all the promises they made prior to ascending to power seem like mere exercise of routinely sounding the empty Executive song.

In spite of their genuine efforts and good intentions, they left more promises behind than fulfilling them. These were good people who meant well for Namibia, but they all made the same mistake of looking in the wrong direction and going all alone on glory seeking quest, just to make a name in their effort to lift this Nation out of the ashes.

This great opportunity is now upon you, Cde. President, and your Administration to satisfy the yearnings of the Namibian people. We are here to support you and partner with you if you will accept our hand of partnership. We have what it takes and through a healthy collaboration, we can achieve all desired goals.

Objective: Your Excellency, the purpose of this letter is first of all to publicly declare to you my unreserved support for your developmental goal of Poverty eradication as I have also practically demonstrated in my efforts since returning to Namibia from America where I have lived for the past 26 years.

Secondly, this is my public call to the good people of Namibia to wholeheartedly join us in this war against poverty that you have declared, which is the only guaranteed economic liberation for our dear Nation.

I, Simon Kapenda, have no interest in politics; however, my entrepreneurial skills and your political position can blend into a formidable force against Poverty in Namibia.

The pains, the gains: I come from the background of knowing what pain and suffering means. I started my academic journey at Omunkete Combined School near Oshikuku in Northern Namibia. It was at the time when our dear Nation Namibia still groaned under the weight and pain of the infamous and dehumanizing apartheid regime of South Africa.

I saw the suffering of our people, I also feared greatly as the bullets of the KOEVOET zipped by over our head many times that I came close to extinction. I and my family escaped death many times during the apartheid era, but we were left with the permanent memory in our hearts and minds that became a constant yearning for freedom and liberation.

For me, it was not only liberation from the evil Regime of apartheid but from everything that wore the resemblance of enslavement – including poverty, deprivation, backwardness and every ills of life.

The pains and burdens of my heart gave me an even greater determination to race harder towards success, to be free and to achieve. When I proceeded to the United States of America in pursuit of higher Academic Excellence, I held at the core of all my endeavours the drive to master the skills and tactics of successful warfare against deprivation.

I graduated from The Ohio State University in Columbus, Ohio USA in 2009 (BSc. Economics) with decent scores regardless of my personal hardship of working full-time as a small business owner while at the same I was studying full-time. I am currently pursuing my PhD program in Economics. My intern job at UBS Financial Services Inc in 2008 was a personal self-test run that I did as a field evaluation of my skills, training and personal development, which held out successfully when I made a mark as an Investment Analyst Intern at UBS Financial Services Inc in Columbus, Ohio the whole of twelve months of 2008. Impressed by my outstanding performance, UBS made me an offer of permanent employment as an Investment Analyst at its Wall Street offices with a mouthwatering salary plus bonuses of US$2.5 million per annum which I declined due to the idea I had to launch Groot Systems (formerly Groot Group) in the same year for the sole purpose of implementing Rapid Industrial and Economic Development of my beloved birth country Namibia, under our specially structured system which we call “Groot’s Advanced Industrial Ecosystem” (GAIE).

Our Industrial plan of action, GAEI, is based on careful research and conscious planning that takes into account the current global economic realities. On the ground here in Namibia and currently making appreciable progress are Groot’s six self-sustainable and interdependent mega projects with over 20 others in the pipeline awaiting their timely release to boost self-sustainability and complementary support to our running infrastructure.

Groot’s Advanced Industrial Ecosystem is a special infrastructural system of creating a holistic developmental framework that encourages multiple industrial units to grow as self-sustainable entities while at the same time fully interdependent, each serving as an integral part of the other and collectively unleashing a fast-paced massive economic ripple effect, resulting in a Large Scale job creation and Sustainable Economic Development.

Your Excellency, through God’s enablement and His Grace, my struggles to start and successfully develop and operate my small business in the USA since 1995 as well as pay my way through school paid off eventually and I had it all going for me in the United States where I still maintain my home in Beverly Hills, a suburb of Los Angeles, California.

Nevertheless, compelled by my love for the fatherland and the vision and the costly sacrifices of the fathers of Namibia for her greater tomorrow, it became my turn to give up my comfort so, I returned to contribute my quota to help take Namibia to her rightful place among the community of Nations. This is what I have continued to do since my arrival back into the country. Since 2010, Groot has worked tenaciously towards actualization of this dream. It is on this note that Your Excellency’s declaration of an all out War against Poverty and its eventual eradication by 2020 came as a long awaited welcome development.

At Groot, our support for your laudable program of War Against Poverty is only natural as this Developmental goal seamlessly aligns with our Groot vision.

Therefore, our support for this agenda is beyond moral as we have readily plunged into the mainstream and this we have done wholeheartedly. Over the years, we have holistically spent about N$25 million in planning, traveling, consultations, infrastructure, equipment and building of systems and always focusing on the vision of Industrial Development and Economic prosperity for Namibia. We have made tremendous sacrifices all in the effort that our pains may translate to the overall gains of the good people of Namibia, for our country, our people, our pride. We are doing all these at our cost.

Our Open Score Card: This is what our efforts have yielded so far since we started out.

Tses Glass: In 2012, we launched Tses Glass – a US$700 million mega Glass Infrastructure project development in Tses and the first of its kind in Africa. The immediate positive result as can be seen today in Tses is the instant transformation as Tses Village is poised to become a commercial nerve center in //Karas Region. According to Mr. Vries, then CEO of Tses Village Council, “Tses is now just full of people, it feels like an Industrial City.”

Tses Glass is structured out in two mega factories. Our Container Glass factory is dedicated to the manufacture of glass bottles, exotic wine glasses, berets, conical flasks measuring cylinders, scientific equipment of glass nature and every form of glassware designed to hold or contain.

The second Factory, our Float Glass Factory will manufacture glass for industrial needs like windows for housing, vehicles, optical glass for medical and other uses, photovoltaic (PV) for solar panels, ultra-thin glass for special purposes including but not limited to displays, computer or TV screens, cell phones, tablets, various mobile communication and hi-tech devices.

Under our Mandatory Strategic Orientation (MSO), 670 general construction workers for Tses Glass Factories are billed to complete their training and commence work fully on the Construction of Tses Glass Factories starting in early 2016. Beside the construction workers, a 300 member executive management team will lead the workforce into successful implementation of the Groot dream of Tses Glass in Tses.

All our workers and employees are paid the minimum wage of N$35 per hour, fed one meal per day and are entitled to medical facilities and other generous fringe benefits. We do this to aptly define poverty eradication in this practical introduction to improved lifestyle. In addition, we plan to provide 800 units of Prefab Houses for accommodation of our construction workers in Tses at the cost of more than N$154 million. All of this is done at our cost as our active contribution to the Nation building efforts of Government.

Tses Glass aims at driving the local economy and for the export market. When fully operational, Tses Glass will create 7,000 direct, better paying jobs and about 47,000 indirect jobs in Tses and throughout Namibia as our contribution to ending the unnecessary suffering of our people for a better Namibia.

Tses Wi-Fi: Many developmental ideas complementary to Tses Glass and the Transformation of Tses Village include a 30 kilometer radius coverage of high speed broad band free Internet access via Wi-Fi platform which will give free internet connectivity to anyone within 30km of Tses Village, delivered right on their Internet enabled mobile devices of any description. Relevant agreements have already been signed for the provision of this service. The provision of the free Internet services in Tses and Construction of 400 housing units by Groot Construction, which shall be donated to Tses Village, is our way of practically changing lives and giving back to society.

Tses Solar: Designed to be implemented under the Power Division of Groot Systems (Groot Power), the deployment of our 60MW Solar (PV) Power Plant in Tses will give a new lease of life and stable assurance of business operations in Tses. Manned by Groot Systems and partners, the N$500million mega 60MW Solar (PV) Power Plant in Tses will supply clean, safe and renewable electricity to Tses Glass factories and the Tses municipality.

Groot Construction: We envision Groot Construction (Pty) Ltd, the construction arm of Groot Systems to become a leading Namibian Civil Engineering and Construction Contractor known for its professionalism and high quality work throughout Namibia and beyond. Groot Construction is teaming up with a Philippines-based civil engineering company, to work under the Ukrainian general contractors and civil engineering companies for the construction of the Tses Glass factories. All our recruited 670 construction workers in Tses fall under Groot Construction as the local based company and its Ukrainian and The Philippines engineering partners. Groot Construction provides critical engineering and construction for infrastructure projects on a turnkey basis.

Groot Steel – Omutwewonime: In our continued quest to create value opportunities which guarantee food for our people, a roof over their heads and general improved living conditions, we focus on what holds greater advantages for us and our economy. Groot Steel is poised to employ over 800 construction workers, to start construction work on our Groot Steel 750 thousand Metric Tons Per Annum (750kMTPA) Minimill. Groot steel will produce semi-finished products like metal bars and rods which have a variety of Industrial uses including construction, automobile manufacturing, and in the production of appliances and other consumer products. Finished steel products produced from Groot’s mini mill will include rebar, wire rod, structural shapes, steel plate and steel sheets. This project holds the capacity for creating more than 2,600 direct, better paying jobs upon its commissioning. Groot Steel Minimill is sited in Omutwewonime (to become known as Onime Village).

Groot Silica in Ongwediva area: Groot Silica Sand factory is being set up for the sole purpose of producing large commercial quantities of silica sand for use in the glass, oil and gas industry and a wide range of industrial applications. Groot Silica is poised to become one of the world’s largest suppliers of silica sand with an annual production capacity of 1.5 million tons for the exclusive purpose of supplying silica sand to the Tses Glass factories and for export of the surplus production output to the world’s markets.

Presently, 950 permanent workers are undergoing the Mandatory Strategic Orientation (MSO) as a part of the 1, 500 permanent employees at the commissioning. In line with our tradition, we provide excellent working conditions for all our workers at Groot Silica with attractive minimum wage of N$35.00 per hour, full medical aid and lucrative fringe benefits which include transport and housing allowance. For more than 15 years from inception, Groot Silica contracted to supply Tses Glass with High quality Silica Sand as raw material for the manufacturing of Glass, Ceramic tiles, etc. This singular order is worth well over N$2.6 billion. There is a huge growing market and demand for Silica sand which puts Groot Silica in the center of the Economic Highway for lucrative profits.

Groot Chemicals in Odibo: At the end of January 2016, the recruitment of our 3,000 general construction workers for the construction of the Groot Chemicals factory to manufacture Urea, Ammonia, and NPK fertilizers in Odibo will commence. When completed, the Groot Chemicals factory would deliver high quality fertilizers to Namibia farmers and the SADC region. This is aimed at helping Namibia to boost agricultural production output and to enhance food security for the country. Groot Chemicals will create about 11,000 full-time manufacturing jobs to manufacture Urea, Ammonia, and NPK fertilizers in Odibo.

Groot Foods in Oikokola: Also tied to the of end of January 2016 timeline, at Oikokola, the Foods and Beverages division of Groot Systems – project owners of Groot Foods will recruit 1,500 general construction workers for the construction of the Groot Foods factory in Oikokola in Omusati Region. When commissioned, the Factory will develop, produce, package, and distribute different agricultural produce to the teeming consumers. The production and packaging of chilled and frozen food products will add value to the retail and wholesale market in Namibia, throughout Africa and beyond. The full operation of Groot Foods will generally ensure food security in Namibia and eradicate the negative trend of food insecurity and high cost of food stuff which is occasioned by continued importation of food supplies. When completed, Groot Foods factory will employ about 3,000 full-time production workers directly in Oikokola.

Groot Solar: The full deployment of Groot Silica and Tses Glass will usher in the needed time for the setting up of Groot Solar – a mega infrastructure designed to produce High Quality Solar Panels, solar Chargers, controllers, Solar Power systems for full deployment of clean, safe and renewable energy sources for local and export market. This will effectively and efficiently address the power challenges in Africa and boost small and medium scale power-driven businesses – from local hair dressers, barber shops, restaurants etc to medium size enterprises. Easy access to safe and renewable energy for domestic and industrial uses will definitely improve the quality of life. Groot solar will effectively create 3,000 direct, better paying jobs.

Grootrain: Grootrain makes its grand entry as Groot’s signature project – the flagship of all of Groot’s Industrial Developments and Grand premier deployment of the Transport Division of Groot Systems. Grootrain is a High Speed Passenger Rail Transport Service that is being developed to inter-connect Sub-Sahara and North East Africa and further link up South Africa through in-between connected Nations of South West, Central and Eastern Economic Blocs. Grootrain is coming as the long awaited realistic solution to the nagging question of efficient transportation in Africa.

While Grootrain poised to offer the convenience of easy access to fast, safe, efficient and affordable transport, Grootrain not only encourages freedom of movement for business, education and pleasure, but we also contribute a significant quota towards improved lifestyle, family stability, healthier living by drastically reducing unemployment through the creation of well over 50,000 direct and better paying jobs by 2020 in Namibia alone and more than 5 million direct jobs and not less than 20 million indirect fully functional jobs at full deployment all over Africa.

Groot Systems observes a zero discrimination policy in all our employment exercises.

Westerville: Our latest addition to Groot’s Strategic approach in Advanced Industrial Ecosystem and Rapid Economic development came by our latest acquisition of a private farm land near Windhoek for the creation of a modern upscale town designed for over 3,500 residential homes and light industries just 20km West of Windhoek.

Westerville Residential: Residential options at Westerville will cater for all life stages from young professionals to families and retirees:

• Approximately 2000 resort style apartments including 500 townhouses and 500 City Centre style apartments ranging from bachelor, one bedroom, two bedroom and penthouses.
• 1000 cluster homes
• 1000 freehold houses situated on 800m² to 1400m² stands and 120 retirement village units
• Upon full development, Westerville’s show village will comprise of 200 Resort-Style-Living apartments, 10 cluster homes and 10 freehold show houses.

Westerville City Center:
• Westerville’s City Business Center will include 5000m2 of retail space including convenience shops.
• A residential component consisting of approximately 500 apartments featuring eleven different configurations of one to three bedroom units and penthouses.
• A super basement housing more than 1 000 parking bays will be hidden beneath the city center.
• The City Center will center on a large park/piazza with other green areas located next to each apartment complex.

By lowest figures, the draft summary of our current realistic direct job creation/employment scale by 2020 shows:

Tses Glass – 7,000
Groot Steel – 2,500
Groot Silica – 1,600
Groot Solar – 3,000
Groot Foods – 1,500
Groot Chemicals – 11,000
Grootrain – above 50,000

A total of almost 80,000 direct better paying jobs and well over 200,000 indirect jobs created just for a start!

Your Excellency, the current global economic realities show a downward trend in industrial growth and full-scale sustainability worldwide with poor Nations taking the worst hit. Companies are fast downsizing with the resultant effect of more and more breadwinners of families being thrown back on the job market with a bleak future for a stable means of livelihood. However, in the middle of all of these, Groot Systems amazingly enjoys a level of Grace upon her efforts so that we are thriving impressively in spite of the present challenges.

Therefore, the earlier your administration takes this advantage and openly accepts our hand of partnership for the good of Namibia, the better and easier will it be for us to speedily implement our marshalled out plans towards our country’s development and faster actualization of Groot’s vision which resonates with your administration’s agenda of poverty eradication by 2020.

The easiest way forward: The doors of Economic Development and sustainable growth swing on the hinges of Public Private Partnership (PPP) where the government plays its role of ensuring open door policies and a friendly regulatory framework that encourages easy access to Government’s support and official Governmental backing for ease of Economic development and timely implementation of initiatives that help Government’s developmental Agenda.

Thus, such healthy collaborations not only lighten the burden of the Government in the cause of execution of its planned goals but also ensures the timely delivery on the promises tagged on it’s democratic mandate. An old African proverb says “to go fast, you go alone but to go far, we go together.”

Your Excellency, the band of African leaders from time has been the wrong choice of going all alone. Unfortunately, no one of them ever goes far in terms of accomplishments, delivery on their promises to the people and the democratic mandate of improved living conditions. Other than the length of years that they cling to the seat of power, there is hardly any outstanding deed that triggers a remembrance of their Administrations among their people.

Cde. President, every truly selfless, fore-sighted and visionary leader who takes a people-oriented posture and is both passionate for good governance and who decisively embraces the consciousness of the people’s collective mandate, would doubtless accept the hand of friendship and partnership of any notable personality or group in the private sector, who has proven his/it’s worth as a truly dependable ally in the pursuit of Democratic dividends with no further delays.

On the contrary, it proves an unhealthy situation and a resultant negative impact on Government’s laudable programs, obscuration of her good intentions/efforts and diminution of their tangible impact eventually on the citizenry, when the willing private sector is denied the needed support from government to deliver on these collective interests.

The challenges of attracting foreign participation in developmental concepts in Africa are numerous. These range from internal conflicts, security issues lack of transparency and accountability etc, but the biggest challenge is always that of distrust. However, some enterprising industrialists and visionary players are always ready to take on the investment opportunities in Africa where this distrust is removed. Where interest of Governments in such developmental efforts is evident, the confidence of investors and partners is restored and development and investments are encouraged.

Your Excellency, this is where you come in directly. We can cut back drastically on the timelines when you show proof that you are behind our developmental plans for Namibia.

Your Excellency, remember that we have done our best to keep you informed officially from our offices, of the progress made on the projects we are doing in the country. We submitted documents to your office in August 2015 as our foreign technical partners needed the assurance that the Government of Namibia is in support of our developmental plans. This, assurance is the only guarantee they can bank on that Government policies will not broker the loss of their investments in Namibia, but we are yet to hear from you His Excellency.

Cde. President, we have given a good account of our selves over these years. We have proven our good intentions for the development of Namibia and the future of generations ahead of us. We are not asking the Government of Namibia to give us money to do what we have planned to do; we will raise the money we need ourselves. We know what to do, but our partners who have the needed technology and know-how for the change we want to bring to Namibia – they need this assurance that their efforts will not be wasted or terminated half-way by Government policies.

His Excellency, all we need for you to do is simply give us your official blessing, so that we can cut back on the timelines, then all our foreign partners and others will gladly and readily come in without doubts or trembling hearts.

Our goals are not against your goals, rather they support 100% your desire to end poverty in Namibia so, why would it be difficult for you to publicly say “Yes, what Groot is doing is good for Namibia”? This is all we need, this is the only assurance that our partners want to have – no additional costs. Help us to help you realize your vision to eradicate poverty in Namibia by 2020.

The people of Namibia need good paying jobs that we know how to create and we have proven this by what we are doing so far. Take our hand of partnership and together, we can birth the Namibia that our visionary fathers saw years ago.

Cde. President, give posterity the chance to remember that it was during the vibrant Administrative leadership of His Excellency President Dr. Hage Geingob that Namibia came out of the economic woods. Let the future generations read from recorded accounts that Namibia also joined the class of the First World when President Geingob was in Power. Give the children of the next generations the surprise of reading and knowing that a President Hage Geingob caused the Nation of Namibia the loss of memory of her pains and blinded Namibia from seeing the scars inflicted by the oppressive regime of poverty she endured.

Your official blessing – this, Your Excellency, is all we ask of you. This is for our people, this is for our future. This is for Namibia.

This is what will happen with your official blessing – an open endorsement of what we are doing – POSITIVE: It will build confidence in our partners and many interested Foreign Investors to come in to Namibia to boost her Economic Development.

Industrial Boom – Several industries will run at the same time, create multiple jobs, shorten your goal of eradicating poverty by 2020 timeline. It will be easy for us to bring in developers and investors in Namibia’s untapped resources.

Here is what will happen when you refuse our hand of partnership – the disadvantages – NEGATIVE: At Groot, we will do what we are doing to help develop Namibia and we will succeed, but it will take longer. The Namibian people will wait longer without jobs, under yoke of unemployment, burden of poverty and more children failing out of school.

Foreign Investors will continue to shy away from coming in from lack of confidence due to fear of uncertainties. Vision 2030 and your goal of 2020 may not happen timely. Namibians will wait longer for needed basics/social amenities, quality education, health care services etc, etc.

His Excellency, this is sincerely thanking you in advance for your kind consideration and prompt action on these ultimate necessities.

Accept my kindest Regards,

Simon Kapenda, Founder and CEO
Groot Management Systems (Pty) Ltd
Windhoek, Namibia

Mobile: +264-81-250-9027
Email: simon@grootgroup.com
Web: grootgroup.com
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Groot Systems is a global leading infrastructure company focusing on developing self-sustained advanced industrial ecosystems for the slow growing economies.

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3000 Year-Old Large Underground Aquifer, Medicinal Herbs, Natural Gas, Oil, and Coal in Southern Namibia?

More than 3,000 years ago, where Mariental is now located, and all the way including Tses, all that veld area could once used to be a huge river with massive water, and possibly that water has now become a massive underground aquifer, possibly with more enough water for drinking, agricultural or commercial use to last hundreds of years.

My first trip to Tses in March 2012 for the discovery and establishment of Tses Glass, as we were driving with our friends from Nissi Group, I was explaining to them how unique the landscape between Mariental and Tses looks. On the left side of B1 (south bound), has this unique but distinct feature of a cut-off water, and you can clearly see where the water once reached by looking at the edge of the current land, how the water waves had curled through the upper part of the outer land, to cause the current unique isotope level of water waves as they hit the land.

And when you look at the right side of B1 (south bound), you can clearly see the plain of water, how the water once congregated the whole area, which has now become a large veld, but whatever that water was or still is, it may contain some form of chemicals or simply caused the soil not to be suitable for growing bigger trees any more, and that perhaps for the past 3,000 years, no trees have been able to grow in that area, except some isolated shrubs and grass currently in the area.

Therefore, I won’t be surprised if there’s a load of coal, natural gas, or oil in that veld area between Mariental all the way passing Tses, especially on the banks of the Fish River.

But only a comprehensive and detailed scientific study could prove my stated hypothesis wrong. It will be good to have a team of international scientists to check this out.

Namibia is richly and infinitely endowed with diverse mineral resources for the well-being of the Namibian people, as well as some awesome herbs that could be used for medicinal purpose to possibly cure some of today’s most common diseases and illness around the world.

Cry, My Beloved Country, Namibia! Where Will Namibia Be in 20 Years?

It’s like everyone is laying asleep under a giant tree and a roaring hungry lion is coming near to devour everyone but no one seems to see the danger.

I have nearly perfectly analytically predicted the death or capture of Osama bin Laden, which I blogged on my personal blog. I have also perfectly predicted the resignation of Former President Musharraf of Pakistan, of which I also blogged on my personal blog.

I also analytically analyzed the War in Afghanistan, of which both CNN and CBS Evening News followed and covered for one-long week based on my analytic blog. I also predicted the firing or resignation of Coach Tressel, Ohio State University’s once-famous Football coach, and very recently, I have analytically predicted the death of Steve Jobs. All these I have posted on my personal blog.

I use analytic and regression formulas (based on Econometric Models) combining advance calculus methods and predictive forecast tools to come up with the end results, a probability of what might become or happen with the issue in question.

And as I analyze and zoom up to 20 years from now; the way the current situation in Namibia, with more and more young people turning to alcohol, more than 50% of kids not graduating from high school, the current graduating students from Namibia’s tertiary institutions are not really graduating, having attained quality education which is in par with the world’s standard (students don’t wanna learn, follow the recent scandal at Unam with students trading grades for sex), all those factors and more; my predictive forecast end results for Namibia don’t look good. I don’t know were Namibia as a country will be in 20 years or less from now. And that makes me very sad.

Because, overall, our current awesome leaders as they get old and some go rest with our God, there might not be anyone to really take over the leadership. To whom can they pass the Torch?

When we were coming up as young people as well as our elders in Namibia under apartheid, our only aim and objective were; Freedom from the Apartheid South Africa. That’s all we cared about and we worked hard and sacrificed to attain that Freedom.

But now, those who call themselves “Born-Free”, those who were born after 1990, I can’t understand where their minds are focused. What are their ultimate goal? Because as I see it now in Namibia, most of them are all hip-hop wannabees, it’s all about alcohol, sex and party. What’s happening with them? What’s happening with Namibia’s youths today?

The only thing I pray for is for God to please help us realize our current development of the Groot ecosystem, so we can help transform Namibia’s economy into a world class developed country with more jobs creation, better paying jobs for the families to have good income so they can perhaps have more time with their children at home. As it all starts at home.

And this has to happen fast. But, developing a country’s economy is not all about setting up buildings and infrastructure, it’s also developing and training the minds of the people of the country so their mental attitude and moral aptitude, spiritual academics can be ready to transform them to what’s being developed. This is partly known as; Neuroeconomics.

Namibia Under SWAPO; It’s a Better Country!

If I have to write a book detailing my experience in developing the Groot ecosystem in Namibia, and my travel experience to different countries since I was young, what could I possibly write about?

I look around; in different countries wherever I travel, even here in the US where I’ve been living for the past 20+ years. I can honestly and unequivocally say that Namibia is one of the best countries in the world. And it’s not because it’s my birth country, it’s just a fact.

I only wish that the world’s largest economies actually recognize and applaud what SWAPO, the governing ruling party, has done to Namibia since its independence from South Africa’s apartheid government in 1990.

Yes, I know, my whole family is a die-hard SWAPO supporter and even myself, I grew up as a SWAPO supporter. I was President of NANSO at my high school in Namibia, and I’m still a SWAPO supporter (well, in the US I’m a democrat; liberal), but I’m not writing this because of my support for the Party. I’m writing this from an unbiased perspective.

The country has good infrastructure, from digital fiber communication technology to well-maintained highways, Wireless-Cable and Satellite TV, and more. Yes, some say most of the infrastructure were developed by the apartheid South Africa, well, it’s reasonable to assume so, such as highways, etc., but the SWAPO-government has kept and maintained them well. But above all; Namibian themselves are some of the nicest and peace-loving people in the world.

I have written many blog articles focusing on the current socioeconomic factors in Namibia. And I have highlighted the possible causes of these factors throughout my blog writings and how we can all help fix the economy. But one thing that some people may not always consider is the fact that the SWAPO government has set up all the necessary institutions to help ease with the establishment of good business and governance.

Businesses, small businesses, are the engines for a robust economic growth, and the government has made it easy for anyone to set-up and start a business in Namibia. But the big problem in Namibia is not up to the government to create and set-up businesses, it’s due to lack of entrepreneurship by the Namibian themselves.

More and more Namibians simply rush after government tenders for fast and instant cash, offering services and products that were developed by entrepreneurs in other countries.  That’s a lazy way of earning a living. They don’t produce real products, focusing on developing innovation, that actually add great value to the economy for more job creation. But not all the Namibians run after tenders, there are some awesome entrepreneurs in Namibia, such as Frans Aupa Indongo, etc., but these are mostly older people, not the young generation.

Also, the biggest problem that is raving Namibia is the heavy use of alcohol.  Alcohol use is destroying Namibia, which leads to increased HIV, domestic violence against women. Alcohol yields less productivity, hence lower aggregate GDP. Especially, the young generation or as they call themselves; born-free, they are more into alcohol, than anything. Imagine what will happen to the country if this trend continues for the next 30 years.

But overall, the SWAPO government has continued to keep Namibia as one of the peaceful and safest countries in the world. No wonder Namibia is a household name in Hollywood among the US celebrities.

Did I say Namibia is one, if not, the cleanest country in the world?

As we pursue with the development of our Groot ecosystem in Namibia, we are looking at all the factors that can help improve economic growth fast, but highlighting the good things in the country should be constantly noted to help attract Foreign Direct Investment.

I should also give credit to the Namibia Multiparty System; the opposition parties allow an enforcement of good governance. They help function as checks and balances. Countries with no opposition parties or less political parties tend to be not so well-balanced in terms of governance.

I hope more and more Namibians get to set up and grow their real businesses so we can help contribute to the economic growth and development of the country. “Ask not what your country can do for you but what you can do for your country”.

Let Me Annoy and Offend You; My Time in Namibia!

This blog may annoy or offend some of you, but I am posting it any way.

Firstly, I’m a Christian and I’m happy that I am.

The end of August will be 12 months since I arrived back in Namibia in nearly 20 years. And for that, it has not been easy for me to fully adjust. Firstly, I had to get used to a lot of things again, even crossing a street for me has been hard as I always have to look at the wrong side of the traffic as I cross the streets, just to find cars coming fast towards me from the other side.

My body has to get used to the weather here and my stomach has to also get used to the food. I had to get it in my system again to get used to seeing more and more people walking by foot, walking long distances coming and going to work. The first day I arrived here, when my brother and friend picked me up from the airport, when we got to Katutura, tears just started rolling down my eyes, just by seeing how some people are living; some with no running water, no electricity, no toilets, and mostly, just too much alcohol.

I had to get used to seeing people loaded in the back of trucks like animals, being transported from and to work. I have to get used to seeing people working doing hard manual labors, such as fixing roads but digging with handpickers, etc., instead of using machinery to do the work.

As time goes by, I eventually got used to how some things are; but the most difficult thing for me, is to work on this Groot project. It has been like hell. Firstly, most people just didn’t and still don’t understand how and what it is; I always have to explain everything; word for word. It’s as though we are inventing a new system whereas, we are just copying what is happening in other countries. Even the airport, Heathrow, in England, it’s nearly developed similar to what we are doing here in Namibia, but because it’s never been done here before, it’s such a mystery to most people. But then the question is; what will it take to bring down the unemployment rate from the current rate of more than 54% to about 4%?

All the days that I’ve been in Namibia now, everyday of each week, I have to explain how things work. I sit down with government officials on regular basis, news reporters, etc. Initially, news reporters used to write garbage and junk about me and our project, but after I have spent a lot of time educating them on how this economic and rapid industrial ecosystem development stuff work; now you rarely read anything about me in their newspapers. Because now they somehow understand how things work, not like they used to do; go through our Facebook page and my Facebook profile and just copying what we write and then try to put in their so ‘well-uniformed’ commentary.

And then I have to face some politicians and those politician-wanna bes; who question me and continue to question me behind my back about what “my real motive” for working with the Americans to develop this project in Namibia. “Why the Americans, what do the Americans really want”, all these stuff. Like now, with the Groot O League in the North, more and more ‘politician-wanna-bes’ in the North are questioning ‘my real motive’ for us to host the Groot O League Tournament. My question is; when will Namibia be able to beat South Africa’s Bafana Bafana or even Angola? How can we develop Namibia’s sports from the grassroot level?

Why can’t one just do something good and unique for his or her country, Namibia, without being judged or questioned about his or her motive? I thought Namibia is a market-driven, capitalistic system, and free enterprise market economy where anyone can start and operate a business, any business? What if the investors or contractors are Europeans or Chinese? “No man’s an Island”. If you want to develop your town, region or country’s economy and you have no outside linkage but only rely on your local investments, then think again, because it will never work. Example; why is Africa and even anywhere else in the world; coastal cities and towns are more developed than the interior of the continents? Answer that for yourself.

And by the way; our contractors and investors are diversified; made up of the Africans, Americans, Europeans, and Asians. There’s no sinister here when coming to our Groot development, it’s just pure business and to help our government, our people, and our country. “Ask not what your country can do for you but what you can do for your country”.

It has been very difficult for me adjusting myself to being here again, even driving in Namibia, especially that I don’t know how to drive a manual car, has been a lot of pain, and driving on the right-hand side is even more painful for me.

So, for me; everyday since I’ve been here for the past 11 months, has been a miracle. God has been awesome to me; and if I have to testify how God has been gracious and merciful to me, it’s amazing. He has always provided and cared for me; and He continues to open doors for me, He’s making things more easier for me. He’s given me a spirit of patience, humbleness, understanding, and obedience.

I’m very thankful to my Aunty, my friends (you know who you are, all of you and I will never forget all that you have done for me), and my family (I’m so thankful for my family). More and more, I’m more than grateful because, Jesus is awesome, everyday is a miracle, it’s a testament for his Goodness. For me, it’s like I’m one of the people of Israel, brought out into the desert and each day, God has provided for me, just as He provided for the Israelites in the desert.

I’m a living testimony of the goodness of the Lord Jesus Christ. He has blessed me and has given me so much, I can never ask for more. I sometimes wonder, why me? Such as this pending deal, it’s one of the biggest deals in my life. I’m grateful, because God, the Maker of all things, has bestowed me and abundantly blessed me.

Yes, He has loved me first, even before I was born and love myself. He has fulfilled every desire of my heart and much more. And for that, I thank Him and I will forever Praise His Holy Name.

If there’s anything that I can ask from the Namibian people, it’s for them to just take a day off and pray. Just to pray and ask God to help speed up the process and make ways for issuance of all the permits and licenses needed for the development of the Groot Town Center ecosystem. Because, in reality, as you have read throughout my blog postings and our Facebook page, our Namibia’s ecosystem development is the ultimate and only solution to help with the rapid reduction of the high rate of unemployment in Namibia now; boost the well-being of all the Namibian people, and help fast track the realization of Namibia’s Vision 2030 in about 5 years instead of 19 years from now.

If you’ve not already done so; accepting Jesus Christ as your Personal Savior could be the best thing that has ever happened in your life. For me, it’s more than awesome!

Unless Namibians Are United, Nothing Will Change With the Current Worsening Unemployment Rate

The TRUTH: Unless the people of Namibia, the business community and the entire government of Namibia unite to work toward a common goal; to help eradicate poverty by creating sustainable decent paying job opportunities, nothing will change from the current troubling socioeconomic issues.

During the apartheid era, the majority of the Namibian people were united as one under SWAPO, they were united in one spirit for one common goal; freedom from the oppression. And Namibia achieved that common goal.

And, now, it’s time for Namibia, all of Namibia to work together; whether it’s Vambos, Hereros, Namas, Damaras, Kavangos, Caprivians, Whites, Rehobothers, etc., it’s time for the Namibian people to embrace one unity and work in one spirit with the government, business community and work for one common goal; economic independence.

We have come up with the ONLY solution, the Groot Town Center ecosystem, yes, you can do your own independent research, analyze the entire macro economy for the country Namibia, and you would see that our solution (see it and download it here) is the ultimate and only solution to help Namibia realize this urgent needed common goal; a creation of decent paying and sustainable employment opportunities, efficient electricity supply to both rural and urban centers at cheaper rates, poverty reduction, improved healthcare and education system, overall to help make Namibians, all of the Namibians, to be better off, and live the Namibian dream.

Can we please work together? The people of Namibia, the government of Namibia, the business community of Namibia, the nonprofit organizations of Namibia; can we all make this our top priority and say; let’s all do it together, and in 5 years, we achieve and realize more than just Vision 2030.

Can we do it? Who’s with us, Groot Property Group? This is not about just being a private for profit company, even if we are; developing a commercial project, and yes, we will make money from this, everyone who wants to work on this will financially benefit from it, it’s not just a commercial project, it’s a platform, a marketplace where everyone can trade, sell and buy and make some money.

During the apartheid era; we all used to exclaim that; United We Stand, Divided We Fall, and now, whatever happened to that? What’s happening to Namibia? What’s happening to you, your family, your job, and your business? Are you now better off than yesterday?

What’s is it that we seriously need to do to help our government realize Vision 2030? We have the solution, and it’s the development of Groot Town Center ecosystem. Let’s embrace one another and work on this for a common goal; to make all of us, ourselves better off.

It’s time to take off our shoes and work together with our government and help make our country an even a better place where everyone can live and realize his or her dream of prosperity, a dream of not needing water or wood to make fire and cook food, a dream, where you can get sick and not have to die because of the fault of a poor healthcare at some State hospital, a place where you don’t have to walk to work because you can afford to buy your own car.

If we want change, let’s please work together; as One Namibia, One Nation!

In Two Months, No More Dubai Import Cars for the Namibian Market, Why?

In just two months from now on, no cars that are more than 5 years old bought in Durban and or registered in Botswana would be allowed to enter Namibia. Why?

Here is the thing, and a very sad thing in my opinion. In Namibia, as the unemployment rate skyrockets past the 54% mark, some people have found a way to become self-employed, by buying and selling cars.

They go to Durban, buy cars in Durban, those generally from Dubai, and because there’s no interstate commerce relationship between South Africa and Namibia when coming to cars bought in Dubai, actually, let me retrieve a bit back.

When a car is imported from Dubai to Durban, it would have a registration plate for Dubai. When a buyer buys the car in Durban (Durban has the largest harbor in Africa), the buyer is not allowed to register it in Durban. So, in order to bring the car to Namibia, the car must be a SADC registered, hence they come to Botswana and register the car there. They pay over N$6,000 to register the car in Botswana.

Once the car is registered in Botswana, it would be a SADC registered, hence it’s allowed to enter Namibia. When it enters Namibia, the owner is only required to pay about N$500 to register the car for whatever town the owner is from in Namibia.

For all the years, Namibia has been losing out of millions of dollars in registration fees for cars from Dubai, while Botswana has been reaping all the financial benefits (no wonder Botswana has more than US$7 billion of cash reserve). If Namibia had allowed Dubai imported cars to be registered in Namibia, all that money would have been allowed to come and or stay in Namibia.

For those who have been buying cars in Durban and resell them in Namibia, have been those who have been looking to make a decent living since they may not have had jobs in Namibia. And those who buy them, are perhaps those who would otherwise not have been able to afford buying cars through traditional bank financing or cash, due to the fact that they may be the low paid wage Namibians. Hence they could only afford to buy these import cars from Dubai.

But in two months time, from today, June 6, 2011, Namibia will perhaps no longer allow imported cars to enter Namibia via Botswana that are perhaps more than 5 years old. And this will cut right directly into the money making scheme of the unemployed Namibians who have been living off of this little venture of buying and selling cars from Dubai.

There’s a saying that Dubai has been dumping these old cars in Africa, because perhaps in Dubai, cars that are more than 5 years old are not allowed to be driven there, and because of that they have been dumping them in Africa.

But why won’t the government of Namibia allow the buying and importing of these cars if the cars are road worthy? Why are they putting these people out of business and send them back to the unemployment line? These people have found a way how they can legally feed their families but then their ventures would be stopped and eliminated?

Namibians, what say ye about this?