Forecasting 2008

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Last year brought in some changes – some welcome and others less so. But what does 2008 hold for us?

By Catherine Sasman

WINDHOEK

Should people not know this yet, 2008 is a leap year, with the planetary constellations aligning themselves so that the sun is positioned directly above the earth’s equator.

Interesting about this year, is that February will start and end on a Friday. The last time the month of February had five Fridays, was in 1980, and the next time this will happen is in 2036.

Myths about leap years would have it that women can make marriage proposals only in leap years. In some places it is, however, considered to be bad luck to get married during a leap year. And there are countless other myths about what to do – or not – during a leap year.

But practical Namibians are less flustered by such goofiness, and are more concerned about the more mundane things such as turning the cents and dollars to make ends meet.

“It will be a dull year on all fronts,” was Abner Xoagoseb’s deadpanned remark. “This year will bring nothing exciting. Namibia will not win the African Nations Cup, and there are no medal hopes.”

A potential disaster area – and major challenge – for this year, he felt, would be in the educational sector, where more than 53 percent of learners writing Grade 10 last year, have disappointingly failed.

A young man on the streets preferring anonymity shared his concern. “The Government should spend more money on education. I good teachers are leaving the profession; I hear this at most schools.”

An elderly Engela Opperman hopes for better hospitals and medical services, as well as higher salaries for the law enforcement agencies.

Looking into the Crystal Ball

In lighter mood, those moving in the metaphysical world, predict a mixed bag of things for Namibia.

“Many people will have very serious financial and personal problems this year,” predicted clairvoyant Meirav Hartmann-Olsen. As a whole, she said, the planet moves into a more conscious and holistic harmony. Problems arise because people need to find a balance with the balance and harmony being created. Creative-wise, she said, things will move ten times faster.

South African-based mystic medium, Sue du Randt, believes that there will be no major changes in Namibia during 2008.

“This year will be more or less the same as the year before. The Government will operate as it has during 2007, there will not be any major fireworks [upsets],” she predicted.

For 2009, however, she predicted many changes: changes around the ownership of farmlands; “I see a big building being raised in Windhoek, which should be completed by the end of the year or at the beginning of next year” [presumably the completion of the new State House].

And then, venturing into next year, as a spill over of the maneuverings during this year is an election that will bring about major changes – at least in the faces present in Parliament, du Randt predicts.

“I see many people in top positions will be kicked out. At municipality level there will also be many changes,” said du Randt.

But, she said, this will be a good year for Namibia’s soccer.

She further predicted a slight increase in the crime rate. The elusive B1 killer, or killers, she said, is currently taunting challenging the police. And if the police do not combine its efforts and information with everyone concerned, the killing of sex workers will escalate in an unprecedented fashion. The killer(s) she said had been quiet, going underground after the intensified public furor last year as a tactic to put the police on a false track. The killer(s), she said, will in all likelihood – as with all other such cases – return to their killing habits with more force and vigour if not caught.

Du Randt is of the opinion that more than one person is responsible for the B1 killings. She also believes that the police have interrogated all of them at one or the other stage.

“These people are extremely intelligent, they know what they are doing. The trouble is finding sufficient evidence to nail the killers, because they do not leave behind any DNA.”

And she predicts that the killers will murder up to ten women if these women do not organise themselves in such a way that others know their whereabouts – and who-abouts – when they go out with clients.

On the weather front, Du Randt predicts an early winter for Namibia.
But the rainy season may be kinder to us.

Jennifer Moetie at the Meteorology Department said the rainy season would bring normal to above normal rainfall during the peak months (January, February and March), petering out during April.

This is due to the sea surface temperatures in the Pacific Ocean and a weak La Niǟ

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