We will die here - Swartbooi

The LPM leader says future generations will be trapped in the same cycle of poverty, if the current injustices are not addressed.

16 April 2019 | Local News

Landless People's Movement (LPM) leader Bernadus Swartbooi this weekend told Windhoek residents that they could no longer vote for governments that disrespected them.

He said future generations would be trapped in the same cycle of poverty and landlessness if these injustices were not addressed with urgency.

He also warned the City of Windhoek that people would defend their property with their lives.

The City last week published a notice inviting bids for the removal of illegal shacks on municipal land.

Swartbooi addressed the residents of the Agtste Laan informal settlement on the outskirts of Windhoek, saying people could no longer accept living an undignified life without basic services and houses.

“It can no longer go on like this. If it must go like this then we will continue to fight for what is due to us. We, in particular black Namibians, have suffered for so long, so much brutality, so much poverty, so much deprivation. More than 200 years and still today we are the ones in Agtste, Sewende Laan, Kabila, Kilimanjaro,” he said.

He reminded people that they were living in abject poverty and landlessness despite voting the government into power.

“Those Namibians living in Hochland Park, Ludwigsdorf and Windhoek, they do not feel the pain that you feel. They are not as hungry as you are here, they are not homeless and landless as we are here. But we, the ones living under extreme poverty, we are the ones putting others in power. Even their own children have kapundas because we have put them there,” he said.

Swartbooi warned the City of Windhoek to “buy coffins” for the officials and contractors tasked to demolish the homes of people in informal settlements.

“We will defend out properties with our lives. We are not threatening anyone, but the little property that we have, we zula'd it on our own. And we zula every day, so who has the right to remove that which we have zula'd for us and our children,” he said.

He questioned why the City cannot use the N$10 million to improve the lives of those living in informal settlements instead if destroying and trampling on the poor.

JEMIMA BEUKES

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