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Sunday, 23 November 2014

Beyond the smoke screen - Namibia - part 1

Namibia is a small nation in sub-Saharan Africa

with a population


  less than three million

 according to a census that was carried out
over ten years ago.

It is characterized by vast open spaces between

 towns and villages and has summer for most of

the year. The tourism industry in Namibia is

thriving because of national attractions such

Sosusvlei which boasts the highest sand dunes

in the world, the Fish River Canyon, the

Skeleton Coast, the Etosha and other world

famous game parks and the first class train

rides through the desert.

Namibia’s official language is English because it is the language

in which all indigenous Namibians learn in school. The

Namibian population is made up of the Oshiwambo,
Ovaherero, Nama-damara, San, Rukavango, Afrikaans and

German people. The Afrikaans speaking groups are divided in

two, namely the Afrikaners (white South Africans) and the

Coloreds (descendants of whites and Native Namibians who

chose to associate themselves with Afrikaners instead of their

black parents. They are not white but they have Afrikaans and

German names and surnames and they speak kitchen


Namibian Children
The Germans are the descendants of Namibia’s first colonizers who controlled Namibia in the 1800’s and the early 1900’s. The Afrikaners are the descendants of the South Africans who colonized Namibia until it gained its independence in 1990 with the help of the United Nations Organization.
Ujandja Veii and Uendjii Kamatoto

The Afrikaners and Germans still own most of

 the land today which they inherited from their

 ancestors who took it from the indigenous Namibians about a

century ago.  

Namibian leaders have also sold large portions of land to foreign

nationals. It has been reported that Namibians own only 20% of the land. The land issue has very recently come to the fore when a young political activist called Job Amupanda quit from his position in the ruling political party and illegally grabbed a piece of land in the upscale suburb of Kleine Kuppe in Winhoek, coining the phrase, “Affirmative Repossession Erf.

Namibia desert

His action was to point out young Namibians’ frustration with the current situation of escalating housing prices and the Municipalities’ unwillingness to service land for construction country wide. Most working class citizens cannot afford to buy a house as the housing and land prices have more than tripled since independence due to the states’ lack of control on the market. Many young people nation-wide are standing behind

him because they want land.

On 21 November 2014, Mr. Amupanda called on Namibians to flood the Windhoek City Municipality with applications for land. Young people from Windhoek and towns outside of Windhoek showed up in numbers and overwhelmed the municipal office to the point where they had to put tables outside where they could receive the applications.

A total of 14 059 applications were submitted that day

Job Amupanda
Job Amupanda

Many speculate that this could be the beginning of a revolution in peaceful Namibia as the citizens are growing increasingly unsatisfied. Namibia has an unemployment rate of over 50% with less than 20% of people having medical insurance and access to decent health care as the state health system is overwhelmed and unable to meet the health care demands of the nation. Recent reports in 2014 even pointed to some clinics and hospitals running out of ARVs after the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Health cut ties with existing medical suppliers and entered into contracts with companies he co-owns and others owned by his friends.



Recent reports on how members of parliament and government elites are squandering state funds on mansions, retirement homes, private planes and expensive cars have sparked outrage on social media networks and newspaper columns.

Namibian corruption
Namibian companies at risk of fraud and corruption

Windhoek, Namibia

by Ujandja Veii

Ujandja Veii
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