WINDHOEK – Job Amupanda the leader of the Affirmative Repositioning movement says if local authorities do not respond favourably to the mass land applications come 31 July, the masses will occupy land “wherever it is”.
Close to 35 000 applications were handed in at different municipalities across the country in Walvis Bay, Swakopmund, Okahandja, Keetmanshoop, Ondangwa, Ongwediva, Oshakati, Tsumeb and Rundu.
This figure excludes the 14 000 submitted to the Windhoek Municipality late last year, Amupanda and his colleague Dimbulukeni Nauyoma announced at a press briefing on Sunday.
Amupanda said the Swakopmund Municipality indicated it would issue acknowledgement letters to Friday’s mass applications, by March 31.
Amupanda said “from now until July 31 there will be discussions on how to address the land issue in the best interest of everyone.”
“If there is a poverty of ideas we are going to provide them with ideas on how best to solve this land problem in the interest of everyone,” said Amupanda. If all formal ways to handle the land issue fail, Amupanda said, the landless youth and masses will be forced to occupy land.
“So what we are basically saying is that on 31 July 2015 we will accept that we have engaged local authorities and government and that we have tried the formal route and it has not worked,” said Amupanda.
He added: “And we are not zigzagging about it. We are simply going to occupy the land wherever it is.”
In addition Amupanda said the word “land grab” does not exist in Namibian law and that it is a term that the media and politicians coined.
“There is no such thing as a land grab and by the way we must inform the media that you are the ones who carried this word together with politicians. We don’t know it, even Namibian law doesn’t know it because there is no such phrase in Namibian law,” argued Amupanda.
Amupanda reiterated that the land problem is not an Amupanda, a Nauyoma or a George Kambala issue but that all Namibians are affected.
“When our people wake up with problems politicians must also wake up with problems,” added Amupanda.
He also warned that politicians should not underestimate the youth.
“We are really at a point of no return. This has nothing to do with politics, this has nothing to do with politicians. If politicians can just stay in their lane, we have done nothing illegal. We have done nothing against anyone. We know that some of the politicians who are insulting us and calling us names have properties in Windhoek, Ondangwa, Henties Bay, and they have farms as well,” he said.
“Even their children have houses. So please let’s not joke around with one another. We see who is eating and we see where they are eating, so we just want to eat and if we are not going to eat, we are going to put sand in their food,” Amupanda warned.