Kapuuo to Be Remembered

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By Kuvee Kangueehi WINDHOEK In an effort to consolidate unity among the Herero community following ‘The All Ovaherero Conference” which took place in Okakarara last weekend, the Paramount Chief of the Hereros Kuaima Riruako has decided to hold the commemoration of late Chief Clemens Kapuuo under the flag of the Oruuano Church. Riruako told New Era that he has given the task of the commemoration preparations to the Archbishop of the Oruuano Church Asaria Kamburona. Riruako said the commemoration of his predecessor Kapuuo over the years has been marred by political in-fighting and Kapuuo has never received the respect he deserves. “Different political parties always used the opportunity to score political points and claim ownership to his legacy.” On Easter Monday 1978, Kapuuo, the Paramount Chief of the Ovaherero and President of the Nudo Party and Democratic Turnhalle Alliance of Namibia then, was shot and killed by unidentified gunmen in Windhoek. Riruako acknowledged that the situation became worse after the Nudo Party pulled out of the DTA a year before the 2004 Presidential and National Assembly elections. ” I think both parties (Nudo and DTA) are the biggest culprits in this matter and I hope this year we can commemorate our late Chief in respect and dignity.” He noted that the commemoration, which will be held on March 27, should be more spiritual and prayers should dominate the church service. He however did not rule out that political parties could be given opportunities to deliver messages during the church service. “As I said, the programme will be decided by the church but I do not foresee problems with political parties accorded time to convey messages.” Riruako added he would request his party members not to wear any party colours to the memorial service as it will cause tension and defeat the noble idea of commemoration. “Of course I cannot stop other party members to wear their party colours but trust that the organising committee will keep this in mind.” He added that the Red Flag attire and church attire would be appropriate for the occasion, as it will unify the Herero community. Meanwhile, the DTA president Katuutire Kaura has slammed Riruako’s actions as undemocratic. Kaura said Riruako has no right to decide for the DTA Party how they should commemorate their president. ” Kapuuo was killed because he was the DTA president and Riruako has no right to tell us how we should commemorate our late president.” He noted that his party members will attend the commemorations in their party colours and no one will tell them what to wear. ” Riruako is not the god of the Hereros and he should keep his decisions to the Nudo Party.” The DTA Party president added that his party will commemorate their slain president and unless there is proper consultation his party members will wear full party colours. Kaura and the DTA Party have been at loggerheads with the Nudo Party since its pullout and Kaura does see eye to eye with Riruako since. Kaura and most of the DTA members also boycotted the All Ovaherero Conference because they claim that they were not properly invited and consulted. It appears now that the build-up to the Kapuuo commemoration will be characterised by mud-slugging and those staking claim to his legacy.