Celebration amid the gloom
Political freedom has brought many rights that Namibians enjoy, but manifold challenges remain.
20 March 2019 | Local News
However, political commentator Phanuel Kaapama said while the picture is not perfect, everything is not gloomy and Namibians have plenty to celebrate.
Namises highlighted continued outbreaks of hepatitis, the alarming rate of teenage pregnancies and disturbing poverty levels as some of the challenges Namibia faces as it prepares to celebrate 29 year of independence tomorrow.
She also said increasing violence in the country is a growing concern and stems from the poor socio-economic conditions Namibians live in.
She added that Namibia can celebrate being independent and that it is regarded a friendly neighbour.
“But I really do not have much excitement; we are in trouble. Our socio-economic living conditions are to be questioned. The way hepatitis is breaking out is something I never thought could happen,” she said.
Namises added the outbreaks point to the fact that government has failed to provide proper sanitation.
“Instead people are told they must stop drinking tombo, but that it not where the problem is coming from. People's basic human rights are not met at all,” she said.
Namises believes that government's failure to declare a drought state of emergency, despite little rainfall for more than six months, is a sign that it is of touch with reality. Social commentator Ngamane Karuaihe-Upi said the failure to address gender-based violence is a serious indictment on government.
“Life goes on but we celebrate independence without drastic measures to address issues like baby dumping and gender-based violence; this is tragedy. Namibia as a country must address this through an emergency plan,” he said.
Kaapama said most critical is political freedom, which has brought about many rights that Namibians enjoy. This in particular includes the right to vote. However, challenges are there and must be addressed by government, he said.
“When you are talking about economic challenges there are quite a number that lie ahead that we must address.”