Most people were very tense as the date 31st July was closing in and it did not look like the Government and Youth group, Affirmative Repositioning were going to meet on common ground about the land issue.
Last week Friday has however proven that it is possible for a nation to record a winning both for government and the people. The President who most thought was too quiet for too long regarding the demands being made by the people finally sat down with AR and agreed to have 200 000 plots in 3 major towns serviced with government subsidies.
For the longest time the attitude of government has been that of “we do not negotiate with terrorists” and I guess at that time you would have seen it like that because AR seemed to have been more interested in throwing stones than having talks and most of the conversation that was going on was on social media.
However both sides saw the light before things could escalate to spear and shield and both parties could sit down to agree on something that would work for both sides.
This is the victory for the nation, for being able to sort out all differences before things could get to a stage that was once seen in Zimbabwe.
A time when a nation became so frustrated that when all options seemed to have run out and Government was not moving fast enough. Land was seized and a nation plunged into darkness. Although now the people can say that they have claimed the land that was once theirs, it is not all the people because the economy was hit and it was hit hard. It was hit so hard that over 50% of its experts had to run looking for shelter elsewhere and to think that it all started with a nation’s need for a square to call home.
Although this is a battle won, both parties are aware that it is not a war that has been won because the next step would be to BRING DOWN THE HOUSE.
AR can claim one medal for this achievement but their beings battle would be to be a constant reminded for government to work its policies and when I say work its policies I mean go to work for real this time. There is not point for talks if they will only remain that. If they will only remain talks.
More it is good that AR has been able to see the light because after grabbing land, AR would still have to look to City of Windhoek to help develop that land that would have been grabbed.
Having land goes beyond having an open cleared area. It would have taken billions of dollars to service that land, install sewer systems and set up power lines for those areas to look decent, in other words AR would have been creating another Havana because I doubt AR has the funds to set up the kind of settlements accountants, lawyers and nurses would want to live in.
However someone needs to shake Job Amupanda, Dimbulukeni Nauyoma and George Kambala’s hand before me because those boys stood by their cause until it paid off. I believe that AR was more about sending a message that would be intercepted clearly than becoming a social menace and a thorn in the government’s heel.
Only if they could have taken the bull by the horn and not only fought for land but also the greedy trend which people want to suck other people’s bank accounts dry. If their cause had included bringing down the prices of houses and rent. If their cause had included setting up a regulatory body that would have the interest of tenants and home buyers at heart.
These are the problems that are not felt by those who have more than 3 houses, houses they have been able to buy by charging N$4 000 for a one bedroom in their back yard.
This is the kind of greed that goes unnoticed because those that benefit from it are also those that are policy makers. It is a special kind of greed that goes unnoticed because no one is asked to pay taxes or register renting out a house or flat as an SME. These are all run as individual operations where anyone can put any price tag they want on any room, flat, or house and it would stand as is.
These are some of the factors that make people call Namibians people who come from a rich country yet a poor nation. Therefore we can only record last week Friday as a victory for the first battle, but beyond that AR and government cannot fold their hands and think that their work is done. BRING DOWN THE HOUSE.