It’s not a Shembeen!

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By Neville Basson I want to thank each and every loyal Namibian who took the time out on Saturday night to send ridiculous smss to my cell phone, making fun of me for supporting Brazil in the World Cup. Well, uhm, thanks for being so insensitive. I hope you also took out the time to SMS every sauerkraut-eating German on Tuesday night making fun of them! Oggg, I was so happy they lost anyway. I would not be able to stand another Wika procession through Kaiser-strasse if they should have won this bloody World cup! You see, I have been following this shebeen saga now for quite some time. As much as I have an opinion about it I still feel that I need to keep my opinion to myself. Ja nee, mieniesta or no mieniesta, the powerful hand of Pohamba came down with a force that we have not seen since he was voted into power. Some of his ministers must probably be wondering what made comrade Pohamba decide to take the “Shembeens” to task now. Yes, I know there are a lot of you comrades out there who benefited for years on these “illegal” outlets. Maar nou ja, it would take some time to let a brother understand that he actually needs a license to operate his cuca shop. In the same breath I have to say that it is quite sad because a lot of these shebeen owners are making a daily living out of this. For that to be just taken away from you like that can’t be very pleasant – I mean right or wrong, how do you think I would feel if my employer tells me to go home for six weeks with no pay … he needs to decide whether he still needs me or not? Nee man! I would be so angryyy! But you see my fellow comrades, there are more ways than one to kill a cat. All these people who own shebeens must have links in one way or another with the liberation struggle. So by now they must have thought out some innovative ideas on how to beat the system. I mean, if you have been a guerrilla fighter for over 30 years then you must be able to apply the same guerrilla tactics in the field of business. My experience in the field of marketing gave me the idea that you can actually continue with your practice without Pohamba knowing anything about your business – sowaar – trust me it will work! First of all, just deny right out that it is in fact your shebeen. I mean, uhm, if comrade Iyambo can say it’s not his shebeen why can’t you? Just don’t put it in your wife’s name – you’ll never know. Put a big Shoprite billboard in front of your shebeen. Explain to people that this is a new branch for the big retailer! Those special field force comrades will leave you alone. Stock bread, sugar, tea and coffee at your shebeen. People will start thinking that this is in fact a shop. Ask Bank Windhoek to come and install an ATM in front of your shebeen. Hallo? Do you really think Pohamba will know that this is a shebeen? Get someone who knows a lot of white people to come and have a few drinks at your place. The police might just think that “The Wine bar” has moved to Kata-touks! Just make sure that you don’t serve any Zorba to them – that would give your game away! Invite all ministers to your place for a discussion on the shebeen issue. Just explain to them that this is in fact the first ever conference centre of its kind. I mean, if they can’t go to Havana Entertainment, where should they go? Please, all shebeen owners, take a look at the above tips, it will work! Once you succeed, please contact me for my 50 percent share! Mbye mbye.