By: Ludorf Iyambo
President Hage Geingob says he spends 30 per cent of his time solving traditional authority fights. Geingob said this during a curtsy visit by Ondonga traditional authority at State House on Wednesday.
Geingob asked other traditional authorities in Namibia to take a good example from Ondonga traditional authority.
“Currently, we are seeing a tendency to accuse the (urban and rural development) minister who is just doing his job. The poor person is now being attacked, and we have to defend him. It is not his mistake that people are fighting among themselves.
“When they fight, they come to you to act, and when you do not act, they will talk. When you interfere, they will say you interrupted. We cannot interfere in traditional elections. That is not our business,” said Geingob.
Geingob said this regarding urban and rural development minister Erastus Uutoni, who was, this week, accused by the Ovaherero Traditional Authority (OTA) of trying to hijack their leadership to use it for political interests.
OTA spoke person Ruben Rukambe said Uutoni attempts to impose chief Kapuuo on the Ovaherero people because of his mere horrific and titular position of chairman of the chief’s council, from which he has now been suspended by the chief’s council.
During a courtesy visit from the Ondonga Traditional Authority representatives, the President said the Ondonga delegation should give an example of how it is being done. He said the government knows the roles of traditional leaders as they are the custodian of the cultures. He added that a nation without culture cannot be a nation.
“As I always say, we belong to tribes; we must be proud of that. We belong to ethnic groups; we must be proud of that. It is when we become tribalistic that is the time it becomes a problem,” said Geingob.
Moreover, the President said Namibia is a country of different ethnic groups; hence no one can deny that.
The King of Ondonga, Fillemon Shuumbwa, told the President that there was no particular reason behind their visits, but merely to give official thanks to the President after he visited Ondonga on two different occasions.
Geingob attended the official inauguration of King Fillemon Shuubwa Nangolo in 2019 after Nangolo became a successor of the late Immanuel Elifas Kauluma, who passed on March 2019. He also attended the opening of tombs of King Nehale’s soldiers at Namutuni this year.
The King told the President that he and his delegation would be ready to act and carry out instructions that might come from the President.
The King further said that as Namibia strives to make sure that all Namibians have food to eat, the Ondonga Traditional Authority has created 100 hectares of agricultural fields, of which 50 hectares are currently active.
“We got sufficient rainfall this year, and we are expecting a good harvest. This will help the government on food relief programmes,” said Shuubwa.