Death of football further divides the nation

23 September 2020 | Opinion

At the time when Namibians are angry at so many things – Covid-19, high unemployment rates and general levels of poverty – sport is the one area where both joy and a sense of oneness is found.

We are increasingly becoming a divided nation, with many citizens crawling back into their tribal cocoons to seek affection, love and a sense of belonging. Blacks and whites are, often silently, in a battle for social and economic control, while the battle between men and women, fuelled by the new wave of radical feminism and the hunger to break down the walls of patriarchy, has intensified. The one sphere that stitches up these cracks of division is sport. Football, in particular, which is the staple fodder for Namibians in general, has the power to close divides like no other form of entertainment. Sport has the power to unite people in a way that little else can. It can create hope where once there was only despair. It breaks down racial barriers. It laughs in the face of discrimination. Sport speaks to people in a language they can all understand. These are facts sports minister Agnes Tjongarero ought to appreciate. When she fully comprehends this one day, she will get out of her warm leather chair and command that football resumes in the country. Killing two birds with one stone, she could help unite the nation while restoring livelihoods en masse.

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