VP denounces tribalism, xenophobia

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Tuulikki Abraham
Lüderitz

The Vice-President Dr Nickey Iyambo says the government will continue supporting infrastructure development such as the Lüderitz Waterfront’s Maritime Museum to attract more tourists and investors to the town.

He says such support will boost the status of Lüderitz, the Lüderitz Waterfront’s Maritime Museum and other entities in the town in the eyes of tourists and investors, which will in turn have a positive knock-on effect.

Iyambo made the remarks on Saturday when he officially opened the annual Lüderitz Crayfish Festival that was attended by several hundred business people, government officials and members of the business community, among other attendees, who together numbered several thousand.

Iyambo also congratulated the trustees of the Lüderitz Crayfish Board and all stakeholders who have contributed to the successful business networking and entertainment event that now dominates the town’s annual calendar, adding that it has promoted the town tremendously.

Iyambo noted this fast growing popular festival will not only be a Namibian or SADC event but would change into an international tourist and business mega occasion.
The 10th Lüderitz Crayfish Festival 2017 was celebrated under the theme ‘Crowning 10

Years of Crayfish Fiesta’.
He explained that President Hage Geingob launched the Harambee Prosperity Plan (HPP) as a roadmap towards a prosperous and developed Namibia as per Vision 2030.
Most importantly, the government has declared war on poverty, supported by various initiatives such as the distribution of tractors to help farmers to plough their crop fields; food distribution; and increasing the old-age pension, among others.

Also, the government is finalizing the NEEEF policy to ensure economic empowerment will benefit all Namibians from city to village levels. Iyambo urged people to support this initiative in the best interest of all Namibians.

In this regard, he stated that the Lüderitz Crayfish Festival should be lauded as a praiseworthy effort by people to empower themselves and their fellow citizens to complement the government’s poverty eradication drive.
“It is through this type of event that the tourism and investment potential of Lüderitz will be unlocked, as more people appreciate, tour and invest in, this area regularly,” he said.

“However, importantly we must steadfastly hold onto peace and stability for development to take place. No right thinking person will invest in or tour our country if citizen hostility and negativity are constantly depicted through xenophobic and tribal utterances,” he said.

“From the taxi driver to waiter in the hotel, shop assistant, immigration officer, police officer, Namibian banks, the media, trade unions, government regulatory bodies and all of us involved in the development process, our welcoming and friendly attitudes, professional conduct, solid policies and strong institutions will continue to attract tourists and foreign direct investment for development.” .

He noted that when a few citizens become regionally or tribally militant against fellow countrymen, or become hostile towards foreigners and only talk a negative language of exclusion and war, there can’t be development but only destruction, as is glaringly clear in Libya, Yemen, Syria, Somalia, etc.

“We must discourage such backwardness which is equal in conviction, motivation, mindset and sentiments,” stressed the vice-president who has also previously spoken out strongly against the irrational, backward tendencies of xenophobia, tribalism and regionalism.

“Apartheid, disguised in whichever new form, must never again be allowed to rear its ugly head to divide and destroy our people. Any dormant presence of apartheid, nowadays manifesting in different forms in our society, is an unwelcome intruder,” stated Iyambo.

He said “as Namibians we can only overcome the challenges of homelessness, unemployment, crime and others, through peaceful dialogue and appropriate action”.
Iyambo urged the nation to continue to hold hands, and rededicate themselves to make a prosperous, peaceful, and industrialized Namibian House a reality, in which no Namibian, whether from the south, north, east or west is left out.

More than 6 000 people from all over Namibia and South Africa attended the successful business networking and entertainment event , and accommodation establishments such as hotels and bed-and-breakfasts were fully booked during the festival.

Among those who attended the 10th Annual Lüderitz Crayfish Festival were Minister of Fisheries and Marine Resources Bernhardt Esau, Attorney-General Sakeus Shanghala, Deputy Minister of Finance Natangwe Ithete, members of parliament, former Prime Minister Dr Libertina Amadhila, the Premier of the Northern Cape, Sylvia Lucas, accompanied by the Executive Council of Northern Cape from South Africa, and //Kharas Governor Lucia Basson as well as regional and local councillors from different regions and town.

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