Namibia Economist (Windhoek)

16 November 2012

Namibia: Telecom Rewards Johanna Benson

Telecom Namibia has awarded the 2012 Paralympic Gold and Silver Medalist, Johanna Benson with a laptop and a 24-month free broadband Speedlink connection, valued at N$25 000 for her brilliant exploits at the London Games.

Head of Marketing Amanda Hauuanga said the Telecom Namibia gift would enable the sprinting sensation "to keep in touch with families, friends and fans around the world."Benson was attending a Telecom-sponsored Namibian Businesswomen Projects' year-end breakfast held in Windhoek on 9 November.

Oiva Angula, Telecom's Senior Manager of Corporate Communications & Public Relations, extended the company's congratulations to the athlete who was the guest of honour at the event.

"This gives me the opportunity, on behalf of Telecom Namibia, to extend hearty congratulations to Johanna, Namibia's first ever Paralympic gold medalist, for her success in London. Your gold and silver medal performances are amazing, a testament to your hard work and dedication as an athlete. We all are so proud. Well done," Angula said.

"Women not only in Namibia but the world over, because of the challenges they confront, are trailblazers, instinctual innovators and they are energetic entrepreneurs if exposed to an opportunity. You know that; many are here in this room. Their drive and their ideas must be recognised and realised, but they must be given the resources to do this and take it to scale," he added.

He said that Telecom Namibia is proud to be the main sponsor of the Namibian Businesswomen Projects. "Research and experience have shown that educating women is among the most effective ways of improving a country's overall wellbeing, and beneficiaries of various programmes of the Namibian Businesswomen Projects are energetically playing their part in the boardrooms of their companies and other spheres of our national lives," Angula said.

"We at Telecom Namibia do not believe that a company has to choose between being a successful business and a responsible one. We have a model for making a difference that works. When we combine the Telecom Namibia model with women's empowerment, we have an incredible opportunity to make a difference on the big challenges facing our country today."

Angula said gender equity and women empowerment have been the missing links in the human development value chain for too long."What is needed is the enhancing of women's financial inclusion, building enabling environments for women to thrive as entrepreneurs as well as to create opportunities for women to participate in commerce through inclusive and transparent procurement chains," he stressed.

Angula called upon Namibian businesswomen to participate fully in Telecom Namibia tendering process to grow their businesses, adding: "We are eager to increase women share on the Telecom Namibia account, in addition to making philanthropic giving toward women's economic empowerment projects.

"Helping more women live better is a defining issue for Telecom Namibia and our country. We are stepping up our efforts to help educate, source from and open opportunities for women around the country. We want women to view us as a company that is relevant to them and cares about them. We want them to be leading suppliers, managers and loyal customers," he said.

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