The Enemy Within Our Borders

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THE traditional Christmas break has started with the majority of hardworking Namibians already on holiday mainly to re-energize – both body and soul – after yet another year of toil be it at white-collar or blue-collar jobs as 2006 finally comes to a closure. They are supposed to reap and enjoy the fruit of their sweat and do some stocktaking while at the same time reflect on what they could have done best for better output. True to the adage- you reap what you sow- as opposed to something miraculously falling from the heavens, some people accomplished what they resolved to fulfill at the beginning of the year while others for sheer laziness have to contend with yet another mediocre year. Some people improved their fortunes for better while the opposite is true for others – others rejoiced while it was another hell-run for those befallen by a string of ill-fortune. But no matter what 2006 has or had in stock for us, there is the perpetual internal enemy that manifests itself in many criminal elements, be it the lonely burglar who strikes at mid-night when we are at our most vulnerable or the odd pickpocket who despite the odds would by hook or crook try to separate us from our hard-earned cash – crime is the enemy within. Apart from targeting our property, these heartless good-for-nothings murder, rape, sodomise, maim and they in most cases would go to extremes to hide their crime. The police have always insisted they can simply not go it alone in the fight against these elements. They have always appealed to the general populace to always collaborate and give them information on this or the other crime lest criminals continue to operate unhindered. We should also take into consideration that if Namibia is made crime-free to a certain extent, everyone would be in a win-win situation because such an environment has its benefits. Even if our goods are insured, those who rob us at night or empty the contents of our homes in broad-daylight impact negatively on us on top of the inconvenience we endure. The police recently issued a circular in which they advised all people never to walk alone after dark; never to carry a lot of money or jewellery; to always lock their doors even when at home; to be on the lookout for strange cars or people and to avoid suspicious transactions. Namibia being a dry country, record amounts of Tafel and Windhoek Lager would of course be guzzled and what other time of the year could provide a convenient cover for some people to do what they are excellent in if not during the festive season. Drinking in excess has its consequences and some of these are even fatal resulting in avoidable road accidents, and as a consequence the unnecessary loss of innocent lives because one motorist consumes an amount of liquor on a scale as if there were no tomorrow. If consumed in excess it becomes a nagging societal evil that shakes the very foundations of marital bliss causing so much suffering among children and spouses. Some couples’ marriages could have survived the test of time into old age but simply fold the same way an unfurled cheap umbrella would fold under a severe African rainstorm. We are not advocating for the prohibition of alcohol, as we are cognizant of the fact that this has become a necessary evil but all we are saying is imbibing should be done in moderation. Those marathon drinking sessions lasting from sunset until sunrise the following morning should be discouraged at all costs, and we also commend our legislators for enacting a law that regulates the opening and closing times of pubs and other watering holes. Let us enjoy this festive season in peace and make it crime free. The fight against crime does not stop with the festive season. It’s actually the starting point because it is the time of the year when criminals get on the loose. We must join hands in our neighbourhoods and jealously guard our homes from those who would like to pounce on treasures.

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