Was the 2018 land conference a farce?

07 October 2020 | Opinion

This week marked exactly two years since the supposedly landmark second national land conference of October 2018.

Land matters were brought to the fore and subsequently thrust into the heart of the country’s discourse at the conference, and… that’s about it.

Two years down the line, there is nothing that has fundamentally changed insofar as land ownership and accessibility is concerned in the country.

To those with land, both for farming and residential purposes, two years ago sounds like yesterday. To the majority of Namibians, it’s a lifetime.

The lethargic pace and empty-tank energy with which we handle critical national issues leave much to be desired.

When those who boycotted that land conference called it a ‘gimmick’, many optimists gave government the benefit of doubt – that there was a genuine appetite to address and redress the thorny and emotive land issue.

But those citizens hardly have any ammunition to defend that conference today, which, in hindsight, looked like it was an opportunity to rake in travel allowances and munch on crunchy biscuits provided at the venue.

We have become a nation of long speeches and exhaustingly long white papers that never see the light of day.

As matters stand, and unless something radical occurs soon, the 2018 national land conference will go down in history as one of the most expensive wastes of time in recent memory.

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