Land was the basis for the struggle for freedom and national independence. That cannot and should be compromised. Our ancestors bequeathed us the land, and it makes no sense that today, in an independent Namibia, people should be begging for land.
During the bitter days of the liberation struggle, one of our famous mottos was “Namibia will remain the land of the free only so long as it is the home of the brave”. I am tempted to be believe that the bravery of the Namibian people was not washed away by the tiny sweet drops of independence.
To my landless brothers and sisters in Namibia, I can only say: “True patriotism hates injustice in its own land more than anywhere else”.
Humanity has lived and depended on land since ancient times. Wise men and women from different places and cultures have offered words of wisdom on how precious land and soil are to our fundamental being. They had different ways of saying so.
Our ancestors said: “Upon this handful of soil our survival depends. Husband it and it will grow our food, our fuel, and our shelter and surround us with beauty. Abuse it and the soil will collapse and die, taking humanity with it”
Far afield, the Koreans said: “Body and land are not two but one.”
A Russian proverb inspires one to the importance of land. It says: “To the one, who gives to the land, the land gives back three times more.”
The Swahilis say: “Nifae na mvua nikufae na jua”, which translates to, “Do me a favour in the rainy season and I’ll payback in the dry season.”
The Germans, who disposed the land of our ancestors in Namibia, also recognise the importance of land, when they say: “Der segen der erde zum brot uns werde” which means “it is the soil which gives us bread”.
When you have land, you have the world. Can our government listen, at least for once, to the inalienable plight of the landless.