The king of the Damaras, Justus
//Garoëb, told New Era recently that his tribe has been left out of reparation talks with Germany and vowed to speak up for his people.
“I will speak up for my people. I want the media to cover our side too,” //Garoëb said.
On why the Damara people are quiet on reparation talks, //Garoëb said that the Ovaherero community has sidelined them. “Germans used the Ovaherero and Nama to enslave us. They (Ovaherero) are acting like they hate us,” //Garoëb said.
The Damara chief who has been active in politics for more than 30 years said that Germans never differentiated between the Ovaherero and the Damaras’ skin colour and that Damaras were also residing in the central belt where most fighting took place during the war with the Germans.
//Garoëb said claims that most skulls belonged to the Ovaherero were “lies” and that he was waiting for the right moment to expose that.
According to //Garoëb, most skulls brought from Germany have front teeth “which means that they are not of the Ovaherero as they claim”.
“I grew up with the Hereros and know their folklore and traditions. Back then the teeth were taken out of any man who could fight but the skulls that were brought back have front teeth. If they belong to the Hereros then the front teeth were supposed to be missing,” //Garoëb said.
He vowed to argue with the Germans and Ovaherero on the issue of teeth. He said most skulls with front teeth belong to the Damaras.
//Garoëb is busy with plans to open an office at Khorixas which he wants to serve different tribal groups. There are about 30 sub-clans in the Damara tribe of which only a handful are recognized.