Govt under fire for 'liberation struggle favouritism'

Some communities feel government only commemorates events related to the liberation struggle led by Swapo.

29 July 2020 | History

JEMIMA BEUKES

WINDHOEK



A report by the parliamentary standing committee on constitutional and legal affairs has revealed that some communities feel government only commemorates events related to the liberation struggle led by Swapo, such as Cassinga Day and Heroes' Day, while the same honour is not afforded those who perished in the 1904-08 Nama and Ovaherero genocide.

“While all occasions are both of national and historical importance, some communities felt that the genocide, which saw hundreds of thousands of Namibians being killed, raped, tortured and robbed of their land, small livestock, cattle and wealth by the Germans, does not receive comparatively high-profile recognition on a consistent basis,” the report said. The parliamentary committee has proposed 28 May as Genocide Remembrance Day. However, Namibians appear to be divided on which day the genocide should be commemorated, with the Ovambanderu/Ovaherero and Nama Council for Dialogue pushing for either 23 April or 2 October.



Divided opinions

On 2 October 1904, German imperial general Lothar von Trotha declared genocide against the Ovaherero people, and extended this termination order to the Nama people on 23 April 1905.

While the rest of the country leans towards 28 May, the Oshikoto, Ohangwena and Oshana regions suggested Cassinga Day or Heroes' Day to commemorate the genocide. According to the report, the Office of the Prime Minister strongly cautioned against comparing tragic episodes in the history of Namibia.

However, it has suggested that the committee and parliament may consider combining the proposed day with an existing public holiday, for example Human Rights Day.



Favouritism

The report pointed out that communities in //Karas have accused government of favouritism, saying it pays more attention to the commemoration of Cassinga Day and Heroes' day, while ignoring the genocide.

Consultations on the matter have been characterised by animosity, anger and accusations, it said. “The emotionally charged consultation in Windhoek was marred by verbal altercations and utterances by some members of the public. The whole consultation was simply characterised by mayhem, to say the least. This resulted in some supporting and some against the motion,” the report stated. It added that communities in Zambezi proposed that research be extended in order to eradicate the sentiment that only certain groups were affected by the genocide. “The policy framework on human remains must be looked into for clear guidance on how to deal with skeletons and other body parts that may be discovered. They proposed memorials, festivals and respectable monuments as forms of remembrance.”

[email protected]

Similar News

 

April 1 no fool’s day for Swapo

4 months ago - 01 April 2020 | History

STAFF REPORTERWINDHOEKThe former chief of staff of Swapo’s armed wing PLAN, Charles Namoloh, says it is time the nation recognised the historical importance of 1...

Heritage sites closed

4 months ago - 19 March 2020 | History

ELLANIE SMIT All heritage sites in Namibia are closed until further notice.This follows a directive by the education, arts and culture...

WBCG grows regional economies

8 months ago - 20 November 2019 | History

CATHERINE SASMANSince the establishment of the Walvis Bay Corridor Group (WBCG) 19 years ago, trade volumes from neighbouring countries have grown from zero to more...

SADC’s pride

8 months ago - 19 November 2019 | History

LEANDREA LOUW Namibia has now joined countries such as Australia, Brazil, Dubai and the Netherlands in the utilisation of reclaimed land for port expansion.The...

A pilgrimage to Hornkranz

1 year - 07 March 2019 | History

There is a bliss one cannot put a price on that envelops the rocky plains of Hornkranz, the former headquarters of the late Nama chief...

Northern railway on hold

1 year - 11 February 2019 | History

?With phase one and two of the Ondangwa-Oshakati railway line extension project complete, the project is currently on hold while the works ministry waits for...

Kutako's dwelling to become heritage site

1 year - 11 October 2018 | History

The dwelling place of the late Ovaherero Paramount Chief Hosea Kutako will be declared a national heritage site following an order by President Hage Geingob...

Push to honour genocide heroes

1 year - 20 September 2018 | History

Culture minister Katrina Hanse-Himarwa has called for a national debate on how to honour the fallen heroes of the German genocide, in particular those who...

Governments hope to build bridges

1 year - 30 August 2018 | History

A high-ranking German delegation will accompany the Namibian emissary that will return to Windhoek with the skulls of 27 Nama and Ovaherero people tomorrow.It is...

Book exposes Swapo's ghastly crimes

2 years ago - 07 August 2018 | History

A survivor of the Lubango dungeons has recounted the horrors he experienced while being incarcerated by Swapo in exile.In a tell-all book titled 'Swapo Captive...

Latest News

River-crossing fugitive in custody

11 hours ago | Crime

OGONE TLHAGEWINDHOEKImmanuel David, a Namibian-born South African passport holder who entered the country illegally by crossing the Orange River in a canoe in June, has...

Harambee goal down the toilet

11 hours ago | Government

Jo-Maré Duddy WINDHOEK Of the 50 000 toilets in informal settlements in rural areas President Hage Geingob promised in his Harambee Prosperity Plan (HPP)...

Contraceptive shortage: 27 900 unintended...

11 hours ago | Health

JEMIMA BEUKESWINDHOEKA study predicts that up to 27 900 unintended pregnancies may occur in Namibia because of a shortage of contraceptives brought about by the...

RFA spend massive amounts

11 hours ago | Economics

The Road Fund Administration (RFA) has over the past five-years allocated N$ 177.2 million to the City of Windhoek towards road maintenance and traffic law...

Rid Namibian police of rogue...

11 hours ago | Opinion

Videos of Namibian police officers assaulting alleged illegal immigrants from Zambia are a continuation of many violations that have become common place within the national...

'Covid-19 used for hidden agendas'

11 hours ago | Labour

ELLANIE SMIT WINDHOEK The Trade Union Congress of Namibia (Tucna) yesterday accused government of purposefully using the Covid-19 pandemic to clandestinely and deliberately destroy parastatals,...

Otavi man commits suicide by...

11 hours ago | Crime

NAMPAOTJIWARONGOA 30-year-old man from Otavi committed suicide by allegedly drinking acid on Monday.Otjozondjupa police spokesperson, Inspector Maureen Mbeha, said yesterday the deceased has been identified...

N$5.5m for wildlife protection

11 hours ago | Environment

ELLANIE SMIT WINDHOEK The Game Product Trust Fund (GPTF) has become increasingly important in protecting wildlife due to a lack of funding from government. The...

COMPANY NEWS IN BRIEF

11 hours ago | Business

Disney takes US$5 billion hit Walt Disney Co avoided the unmitigated disaster some investors feared as it eked out an adjusted profit amid the coronavirus...

Load More