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Riruako’s Son Backs Chief Kapuuo on Paramount Chieftainship

By: Vetondouua Tjivikua

The son of the late Paramount Chief, Kuaima Riruako, says the Ovaherero people in the diaspora stand behind ousted Ovitoto chief Vipuira Kapuuo as the acting Paramount Chief.

According to Prince Kejaja Riruako, the senate meeting held in Aminus at the start of this month, which saw Prof Mutjinde Katjiua installed as the successor to late advocate Vekuii Rukoro was unlawful and should be set aside.

Before the senate, Kapuuo had filed High Court papers seeking to stop it.

Riruako, who wrote a petition in this regard, said it is an insult to his late father and the late paramount chief Vekuii Rukoro to call Katjiua a chief because he was not appointed according to the proper designation channels.

He said he wrote the petition to raise concerns about the meeting at Onderombapa where the new designated paramount chief Mutjinde Katjiua was appointed.

He told The Villager that channels and protocol must be followed when a new Paramount Chief is selected to succeed the incumbent interim one.

According to Riruako, the Ovaherero Traditional Authority (OTA) constitutional act laid forth by his father and Chief Uiiue Hoveka in 1991 stated that the central committee will be served by one chief, three traditional councillors and a secretary nominated by a chapter’s traditional leader.

He said the central committee’s mandate derives from the local chief’s council.

“We as the Ovaherero community at home and in the diaspora call upon the acting Ovaherero Paramount chief Kapuuo to do everything and use every means possible to inform and educate all Hereros about our norms, customs, values and history pertinent to succession”, he said.

He further said the Tjimbingue meetings between 1863 and 1868 respectively laid a foundation for how the Ovaherero community should handle successions.

“The foundation also greatly emphasises the power of the Chiefs’ Council and the senate as structures of delegated authority from the different communities,” he said.

Riruako called on Kapuuo to publicly condemn any meeting he did not call, authorise or facilitate.

He further said chief Kapuuo should also publicly condemn the alleged Onderombapa chiefs’ council meeting of 10-12 December 2021 and Onderombapa senate meeting of 4-7 March 2022.

Katjiua and chief reverend Boas Tjingaete were appointed as designate paramount chief and acting paramount chief at the 10-12 December meeting.

“Chief Kapuuo and the chiefs’ council as custodians of our community’s authority will unrelentingly guard, protect and preserve our heritage, history and norms until that custody is vested in a substantive Paramount Chief”, Riruako said.

Riruako said the Ovaherero diaspora also demands that Kapuuo engages and informs all Ovaherero people that the Ovaherero nation, at an appropriate date and time, will convene, nominate and appoint the best-suited candidate as their next designated paramount chief.

Quizzed on whether he has approached the OTA with his petition and demands, Riruako told The Villager, “Katjiua forced himself into the chair, but he is not legitimate. Even now, as we speak, he and his faction have been taken to court to answer how he has conducted himself.”

When approached for comment, Katjiua said he was not available as he was busy.

OTA Acting secretary-general Nandiuasora Mazeingo also said he was in a meeting and could not comment at the time of publication.

Julia Heita

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