Young Namibian author Pakkala Ashipala, 21, who has in the past won numerous beauty pageant titles, is advising young people to develop their talents to ensure a better future for themselves and the country.
Ashipala believes talent is a God-given ability, a natural skill that one is born with and a passion that one has to keep up for the rest of one’s life. “We have different talents, such as modelling, drawing, writing, singing, designing, as well as running. Therefore, I would like to encourage my fellow Namibian youths to refrain from neglecting their talents.
“I’m actually passionate about modelling and writing. Through my modelling, I won many national accolades, including Miss Oshikuku and Miss Omusati Region last December, and through these titles, I have to give back to my community by advising fellow youths,” says Ashipala.
Ashipala has won Miss Epata 2011, Miss Science Walvis Bay 2012, Miss Ongwediva Trade Fair 2014, Miss Ondangwa 2014 and 2015, Miss Ongenga 2014, Miss Pub BOB 2014, Miss Pub 7 2015 and Miss Nahota 2015.
She is also asking fellow youths to learn from the examples of Johanna Benson and Michelle McLean, who have made Namibia proud with their international accolades.
“Through my passion for writing, I was privileged to meet and interview my greatest role model, Dr Sam Nujoma, on account of the book that I have written about him.” The book, entitled Dr Sam Nujoma, a Synonym of Peace, written by Ashipala will be published and launched this year.
“When education fails, talent becomes the key to a brighter future. Yes, you can pursue your talent, make money through it, invest in business activities and become a tycoon. Gazza did it, so did The Dogg. You just need to be focused, determined, persistent, perseverant, prayerful and action-oriented. I tell you, with such an attitude… there is nothing you cannot accomplish,” she advises.
She then quotes Nujoma, saying: “Life may not be easy, but you cannot sit back and wait for opportunities to fall into your lap. Each one of you has different talents and capabilities. There is support for you from all of us to build on these strengths, but the will and determination must come from you,”.
“In order for you not to lose track of your talent, you need to practice. Like a wise man once said: “Practice makes perfect”. Just like champion athletes have to practice, running on a daily basis, so should you do with whatever skill Almighty God has imparted you with.
“If you want to be a champion in modelling, educate yourself perennially, read newspapers every day, watch news and be well-informed about everything happening in Namibia and in Africa at large,” says Ashipala.
She is currently studying for Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) at the University of Namibia.