Sorry Ngo! – I Was Also in Exile

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John Ekongo

I KNOW you guys will not believe this, but if the truth be told, I was also formerly a returnee because I was in exile during the days long gone by.

During exile, I contributed in my own little way to the success of the liberation struggle, I threw stones at Casspirs, and I even defied directives from the then regime.

I sang liberations songs, my favourite song being “Sema Ou li peni”, I still remember the chorus – Otse aakwiita Ya Sema Nujoma kondjeni inamu sholola sigo twa sindana.”

So vivid and vigilant was my activism in exile, I could distinguish between the sound of a Casspir and a Buffel.

I wore oversized, big T-shirts, with the blue, red and green colour. I was particularly fond of one with the old man’s picture clenching a fist. During my exile years, this T-shirt brought me into a lot of trouble with authorities.

There was a particular incident I wore the T-shirt underneath my primary school shirt and my PE teacher got wind of it and as punishment forced me to write the words “Nujoma” a 100 times on the chalkboard, after which he sent me marching to the headmaster’s office for an extra whipping for being a young political activist.

The next day, the class bully had a T-shirt on only this time his colours were different from mine, but he was not made to write the words of honourable Mudge. “Selective morality ja-nee”, as Freddy would say.

I was made the local information runner for the party underground meeting.

My duties were to run from house to house informing my church choir of pending meetings at which they would only sing two hymns and the rest were political songs.

It was also during that time that I was very instrumental in the countrywide student boycotts of school, I was there when fellow learners were being arrested.

That is why I am saying I have come under a lot of trouble for supporting Tatekulu.

All this happened when I was 10, but hey – who cares you really cannot deny a man his heritage now, can you?

Now I bet that you are eager to know exactly which exile I am referring too.
Well, it was not Angola, I think I would not have survived, nor Zambia that was way before my time. I am referring to Walvis Bay.

Yes, you heard me right the very same fishmeal smelling town – where the eldest son and daughters still live with their parents.

My reasons – for four years when every one else was celebrating the birth of Namibia, at the coast we were still hoping for that. By extension, we actually suffered for four more years to gain our independence. Now if you don’t call that exile then, my conclusion is that jealousy bug has bitten you.

I hope you realise that what psychological torment and pain comes with the longing of being free, whatever you have under the sun.

It is not my duty to convince you more but, yeah that is my claim to exile status.

Anyway, a good old varsity friend and multi-dimensional project runner of any kind, Benitha, hijacked me street-side and introduced her latest project – an association for colleagues born in exile. Commendable I must say.

I call her a multi-dimensional project runner, because she is not the one to lie idle and her projects are always top-shelf material, apart from the debating teams in Oshiwambo, the rest top-notch.

The criterion for being a member naturally is to be from exile. Now I can think of a number of famous cadres that will surely qualify. “You have the Dogg, Shikololo, Rizzy, Tunacky, Tecguila and countless others.

Alas, in Benitha’s view and criterion I do not qualify as an exile despite my attempt to sweeten her with my bomb-shackled story about Walvis Bay. So point blank she has refused me entry into the exile club.

The benefits of being part of that club are enormous – I glanced at Benitha’s notes and a reference was made to empowering young exiles by “means of quota, BEE concessions and land allocations”. Now that I want to be part of.

But obviously that being so, I would not be allowed in that group. Using my Political Association for the Advancement of Ombwitii’s (PAAO), I will be launching an association of Mbwiiti’s to challenge my friend Benitha for quotas, and BEE projects as well. Non-Ombwiiti’s are welcome to join too. I have already appointed Charles Tjatindi to spearhead the process.

After this, I can sit down and daydream the arrival of my 2.7 Raider and Navara for my comrade in arms Charles. Yeah dream on John …
Sorry Ngo.

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