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Appendix I

Brief history of Namibia

Namibia is comprised of many ethnic groups, the largest groups today being the Ovambo, Kavango, Fwe and Subia from Caprivi, Herero, Himba, San, Nama, Damara, Rehoboth Basters, coloured and whites. The oldest people are the nomadising San people. All ethnic groups speak their own language as well as, in many cases, English (which is the official language), Afrikaans and maybe one or two languages that are similar to the mother tongue.The various groups (except Rehoboth Basters and coloured) lived in separate societies with separate cultures before 1860. They moved over different geographic areas, interacting in contexts such as trade.

The first Europeans, as far as is known, to arrive in Namibia, were the Portuguese who according to literary evidence arrived in 1485. The Dutch came in the 17th century but not until the end of the 18th century did Europeans settle in Namibia. The Germans arrived in Namibia in the end of the 19th century and made it eventually a colony, which they named German South West Africa. They ruled by dividing and oppressing the many ethnic groups, sometimes making peace arrangements with one group to outmaneuver another. The Hereros and the Namas rebelled against the Germans but the battles ended by the Germans having liquidated over 60% of the Herero and the Nama people. The pastoralists became homeless laborers on land that used to be their own. With the first World War the German era ended in Namibia. The South African Union fought with the allied forces and attacked the Germans who surrendered in 1915. The UN gave Great Britain mandate over Namibia, who in turn passed the mandate to South Africa and in 1920 South West Africa became a protectorate under South Africa. The agreement was rather open but it stated that Namibia should, under the protection of South Africa, be guided towards independence. Instead the Afrikaners and Boers increased in numbers. Between 1915 and 1920, 15 million acres of land were handed over to poor white South Africans who didn't own land in South Africa. In 1923 black and coloured people were forced to move to reservations. 90% of the population got 3.5 percent of Namibia's 57 million hectares of land, often the most arid land not useful for cultivation and cattle farming. In spite of a black opposition movement in the 1920's, conditions were very harsh for the black population. Homeless and unemployed were forced to low pay jobs in factories or on the large commercial farms. A new law made it illegal to question white employers, and contract work increased. The contract workers were forced to work for one employer, were not allowed to change jobs, not allowed collective bargaining, and could not travel independently. South Africa was not adhering to the UN agreement, but rather trying to make South West Africa its fifth province. Apartheid politics was brought to Namibia. 25 times as much was spent on education for whites than for blacks, there were better health care for whites than for blacks, signs with "whites only" marked benches in parks. In 1947 Namibia was annexed to South Africa but in 1950 the International Court of Justice (ICJ), which has its seat in The Hague, ruled that the UN had the mandate over Namibia.


1957 Owambo People's Congress (OPC) was formed by Namibians in exile, and two years later Sam Nujoma became its leader. South Africa's decision to move the black population to a new so called township on Windhoek, was the instigation to large protests. South African police shot 13 people dead and wounded many more. Sam Nujoma went in exile and the South West Africa People's Organisation, (Swapo), was created. Neither the UN nor the Organisation for African Unity (OAU) acted against South Africa's occupation on Namibia, and a couple of years later the armed liberation struggle started in Northern Namibia. In 1971 the ICJ supported Namibia's cause claiming that South Africa's occupation was illegal. The Namibian nationalists finally had international support.

After many years of intense struggle, with many casualties on both sides, the UN adopted Resolution 435 about Namibia's independence. When the Cuban and South African troops pulled out of Angola in 1988-89, Namibia could reach an agreement on independence. In 1990 Namibia was declared independent with Sam Nujoma as president and SWAPO as the ruling party.[89]

Namibia today

Namibia's first democratic elections were held in 1990, when South Africa left the country after several years of occupation. The SWAPO liberation movement won a significant majority. SWAPO's dominance was further secured at the elections of 1994 and 1998. The low participation in the election suggests an increase in dissatisfaction. Political development has been characterised by the government's attempts to bring about national reconciliation after the years of apartheid.

The country's politics are founded on respect for human rights. The constitution is based on democratic ideals, and the power to judge is separate from the power to enforce and the power to legislate. However, SWAPO's strong position, in combination with the weak opposition, has led in practice to a one-party state. This tendency has been intensified after a number of corruption scandals within the administration and on account of a change in the constitution, which gave President Nujoma the opportunity to control the country for a third period of office. The country's independent media, in spite of its small distribution and size, plays an important part in the scrutiny of the political system.

The government is running a market-oriented economic policy in which private enterprise and foreign investment are encouraged. Society is characterised by an extremely uneven distribution of income, mainly between the white and the black population. It is considered the country with the largest income gaps in the world. 60 percent of the population lives in absolute poverty. Formally, 20 per cent of the labour force is unemployed, and it is estimated that perhaps another 40 per cent are under employed. The government is attempting to bring about economic and social equality by extending social services rather than by means of the redistribution of economic resources. However, this is going very slow, and there is a risk that the continuing rifts in society will lead to social unrest.

Namibia is facing a number of major problems in the future. The population increase, at about 3 per cent a year, is a burden on the scarce resources, and make young people move into the towns at a fast pace. Every week, 150 families arrive in Windhoek. At the same time, the AIDS pandemic is leading to a lot of children being orphaned and fewer adults having to provide for the young. The delicate ecological balance poses another challenge. The shortage of water is the most serious environmental problem in this country. There is little rainfall, evaporation is high, and there are hardly any natural sources of water.[90] But Namibia is also a country rich in mineral resources, like diamonds and uranium. With its beautiful, vast and varied landscapes and unique flora and fauna, Namibia holds great potential as a country attracting visitors from all over the world.

Appendix II


Focus Group Students

  1. How do you communicate with SASU head office?
  2. Do you have access to Internet in your region? (Access defined by the possibility to take part of the Internet at a more or less regular basis.)
  3. How/where do you access Internet?
  4. How often do you use the Internet?
  5. What do you primarily use the Internet for?
  6. How do you search the web?
  7. How do you evaluate information? (How do you check sources?)
  8. How much does an Internet subscription cost in your region?
  9. Do you have access to conventional media? I.e. radio, TV, newspapers?

    Local Internet and Web Site

  10. Does your national SASU affiliation have an Internet connection?
  11. Does your national SASU affiliation have a web page?
  12. If so, what is main purpose of that web site?
  13. What languages are represented on the web site?
  14. Do you have access to the Internet via your national students' organisation?
  15. Do you know how to maintain/edit a web page?

    SASU and National Member Unions

  16. Are you a member of the national students org?
  17. Primary task of national students' union?
  18. Primary task of regional students' union, SASU?
  19. Importance of SASU?
  20. What do you think of the Students' Voice, SASU's Newsletter?
  21. What do you think of the SASU web site?

Questions to Students at SASU EC Meeting

  1. What do you think is the most important thing SASU has achieved during its existence?
  2. How did communication contribute to the success?
  3. List SASU's target groups – with the most important first.
  4. To which activities should SASU give priority the next three years?(list the three most important)
  5. What do you expect from future communication in SASU?

    National Students' Organisation

  6. To what extent are students organised in your country?
  7. Is information and communication part of the strategy of your own national student organisation?
  8. Do you have direct contact to all target groups or do you simply distribute information to some of them? (mention with whom you have regularly contact and to whom you simply distribute information).
  9. How do you communicate with SASU head office?
  10. Do you operate with internal communication (within your national student organisation) – describe
  11. - and external communication (with target groups outside the organisation) – describe
  12. Who is responsible for information/communication in your national students' organisation? (Is it a person with special communication skills? A board member?)
  13. Do you personally have experiences from communication activities (studies or practical experiences)?

    Use of the Internet

  14. Do you have access to Internet in your country? (Access defined by the possibility to take part of the Internet at a more or less regular basis.)
  15. How much does an Internet subscription cost in your region?
  16. Does your national SASU affiliation have an Internet connection?
  17. How often do you personally use the Internet?
  18. What do you primarily use the Internet for?
  19. Do other employed or members have access to the internet via your national students' organisation?
  20. Do you have anybody to assist you when the Internet connection at your office is "out for order"?

    Only for National Students' Organisations with a Web Page

  21. Does your national SASU affiliation have a web page?
  22. If so, what is main purpose of that web site?
  23. Who is responsible for the web site at your national students' organisation? (Web master)
  24. How is information/content gathered for the web site?
  25. Who decides about the content? (Editor)
  26. What languages are represented on the web site?
  27. How was the web site produced?
  28. What programme/s were used to produce the web site?
  29. How is it maintained?
  30. Do you have access to continuous maintenance/support? Also concerning the Internet connection in general, e-mail etc.
  31. Do you have access to training in web editing and publishing?
  32. How is web site training shared and passed on within your national SASU affiliate?
  33. Do you know how to maintain/edit a web page?

MISA Questions

  1. Do you consider the Internet a feasible tool for communication in the region?
  2. Is the Internet used as an intermediate tool for information and communication in the region? I.e. is the information on MISA's web page published in local conventional media, i.e. radio, newspapers or TV?
  3. What are the main complications and limitations in using the Internet in the sub region?
  4. Do you have regular information exchange with conventional media?
  5. What is the main purpose with the MISA web site?
  6. Which is your main audience? Who are you aiming at?
  7. Possibility of organising information exchange with SASU?
  8. Experiences with networking and national chapters in region.
  9. Is the climate regarding freedom of the press and expression changing?

Questions to Conventional Media

  1. Do you have regular information exchange with Internet based media?
  2. If so, which ones?
  3. Do you publish material from the Media Institute of Southern Africa, MISA?
  4. Do you use the Internet as an information resource base?
  5. Do you consider the Internet an important resource?
  6. Do you publish material on the Internet?
  7. Do you cooperate with SASU? Publish their material?
  8. Is the climate regarding freedom of the press and expression changing?
  9. How is the government boycott affecting the newspaper?

Appendix III

Educational Institutions, Organisations and Abbreviations

Educational institutions of the focus groups

University of Namibia (UNAM) a national university with seven major faculties, agriculture & natural resources, economics & management, education, humanities & social sciences, law, medical & health and the faculty of science.

Polytechnic of Namibia (PN) is a leading national institution for applied technology with courses in business & management, communication, legal & secreterial studies, engineering & information technology, natural resources & tourism.

Institute for Higher Education (IHE) is a private institution with courses such as tourism & management, financial & computer management and business administration.

Windhoek College of Education (WCE) provides tuition for a basic education teacher diploma.

Windhoek Vocational Training Centre (WVTC) provides courses in electronics, air conditioning and motor-mechanics.


Community Library Services

David Bezeudenhuit High School

Digital Freedom Network (DFN)

Ibis (Danish development NGO)

Information and Communication Technology (ICT)

Media Institute of Southern Africa (MISA)

Ministry of Basic Education, Sports and Culture (MBESC)

Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Information and Broadcasting (MFAIB)

Ministry of Higher Education (MHE)

Namibia National Students' Organisation (NANSO)

The Namibian Open Learning Network (NOLNET) (A network comprised of four major Open and Distance Learning (ODL) institutions in Namibia): Centre for External Studies at the University of Namibia, Centre for Open and Lifelong Learning at the Polytechnic of Namibia, Namibian College of Open Learning National Institute for Educational Development

Non-governmental Organisation (NGO)

SchoolNet Namibia (Namibian ICT NGO)

Southern African Students' Union (SASU)

South West Africa People's Organisation (SWAPO)

Student Representative Council (SRC)

Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida)

WorldTeach (American volunteer teacher NGO)

Appendix IV

Personal interviews:

Namibian College of Open Learning (NAMCOL):

Mr Ed Du Vivier, Advisor for Institutional Development to the Ministry for Basic Education, Sports and Culture, 010814

Mr Efraim Dawids, manager of the computer lab at Yetuyama Centre at NAMCOL, 010813

Mr Erving Williams, developer of Internet based long distance education. 010813

David Bezeudenhuit High School in Khomasdal, Windhoek:

Theo Whittaker, organiser of the computer lab, computer instructor, 010708

The Namibian, independent daily newspaper

Mr Jorn Stabi, Webmaster, 010803

Media Institute of Southern Africa, regional office, MISA:

Mr Kaitira Kandjii, Regional Information Officer, 010801

Mr Rui Correia, Managing Editor and Webmaster, 010801

MISA National Chapter in Namibia:

Eve Black, Board Member, 010815


Mr Joris Komen, Director, 010806

Haroldt Stanley Binda, representative for Namibia National Students' Organisation (NANSO) in SchoolNet 010806

Hilary Wilder, volunteer IT teacher from the American NGO WorldTeach, 010807

Africa Groups of Sweden

Bente Pedersen, Coordinator, Windhoek, Namibia

Marie Dahl Adolfsson, Information Officer, Windhoek, Namibia

Telephone interviews:

Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Information and Broadcasting

Wilma Deetlefs, Head of Department, (H.O.D), 010815

Ministry of Basic Education, Sports and Culture

Dr Robert West, Strategic Plan 2001-2006, 010815

Community Library Services

Benny Watson, H.O.D, 010815

Ritva Niskala, NOLNET librarian, 010815

Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency, Sida

Tina Etzell, Programme Officer, Democratic Governance, Swedish Embassy, Windhoek, Namibia

89 Dahl Adolfsson, Mari (2001) Från kolonisation till självständighet 011117 Peter H. Katjavivi (1988) A History of Restistance in Namibia. Unesco.

90 Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency