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Nanso blasts Smit over “racist remarks”

by Kelvin Chiringa

The Namibia National Students Organisation (Nanso) has come out guns blazing against the Popular Democratic Movement’s (PDM) treasurer general, Nico Smit over his utterances in parliament that apartheid education was better than the current one.

"The past education system he refers to and more so prefers, is one that’s defined as a colonial, racist and apartheid characterised system. This undeniably was a system that’s responsible for crimes against humanity, against black people in general and Africans in particular. A system that dispossessed, discriminated against, excluded and as a result comes with a legacy of poverty, inequality and unemployment amongst the majority black Africans,” said Nanso’s   communications and media officer, Matheus Pendapala Taapopi.

Taapopi said that the inception of the student body in 1984 was spurred by the need to organize students and youth against the Bantu education system and the apartheid regime, that was premised on dispossession, discrimination, disadvantage and exclusion.

Said Taapopi, “Nanso is therefore disgusted and disheartened by remarks of this nature hurled out by the PDM member of parliament, given our democratic dispensation.”

He reduced Smit’s utterances as being backward and unacceptable especially coming from a public office bearer.

 He also said the PDM politician is counter-revolutionary to the ideals and values of Namibia’s democracy, insensitive and undermines the order of things.

“MP. Nicolass Smit is a white privileged fellow who is a direct beneficiary of the very racist and apartheid education system. And is therefore not objective and qualified enough to lead us in terms of providing direction in our society.”

“His position is however not surprising but refreshing, as we do not expect and will demand no meaningless apology from an unapologetic white privileged man, that expresses a view he shares with his white community,” he said.  

 He said Nanso does not expect PDM to bring Smit to order because it’s a disengaged political party that harbors white minority interests.

“But democracy is twofold, a subject of processes and values, and as a student youth movement in majority that represents a greater and important constituency, PDM must know that MP, Nicolass Smit is a liability, and PDM will definitely regret racist remarks uttered and housed under their umbrella,” he said.