Geingob exhorts Namibians to respect chiefs

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Photo: Hilma Nakanduungile Question of culture… President Hage Geingob accompanied by Chief Kisco III, attired in a black leopard headdress and a royal fly-whisker. On the far right senior Induna Gilbert Liswaniso holds a royal shield, with a retinue of indunas and royal bodyguards in tow.

Hilma Nakanduungile

Bukalo-President Hage Geingob has called on Namibians to treat traditional authorities with respect. The president was speaking at the Masubia annual cultural on Saturday at the Masubia Traditional headquarters at Bukalo east of Katima Mulilo.

“Let us learn to co-exist and thereby shore up the boundaries of our Namibian house against any and all retrogressive forces. The Namibian house should be defined by cultural harmony and regional goodwill, instead of discord, tribalism and regionalism”, he said.

He added that cultural celebrations enable people to impart cultural values and behavioural norms to future generations, who are tasked with continuing the legacy of the Namibian identity.
He also called on traditional leaders to be exemplary leaders.

“Our traditional authorities should practice fair and inclusive leadership, in which no member of the community should feel left out,” the president stressed.

Geingob then touched on the vexed land question, saying: “We decided that issues that are at the heart of all Namibians, such the emotive issue of land, should be addressed through the platform of a national dialogue at which our people will be allowed to give their views and suggest solutions to this pressing issue. It is, therefore, crucial that we should welcome this idea and respect the views of all Namibians, without resorting to the ugly scourge of tribalism.”

At the festival, Masubia Chief Kisco Liswani III called on the government to provide adequate ploughing services in communal crop producing areas, including tractors, seed, fertiliser and weeding services to achieve food security and to fight hunger and poverty.

Chief Liswani also commended the president for having significantly increased the pension grant for senior citizens, for the support rendered to orphans and vulnerable children, for setting up the Ministry of Poverty Eradication, and for initiating the food bank programme for the poorest.

Accompanied by a 120-strong delegation of senior indunas and members of the Simalaha Community Trust, Senior Chief Inyambo Yeta of the Lozi people who is based at Mwandi in Zambia and who is the tribal head of the Lozi and the Masubia who are resident in Sesheke district in southwest Zambia, also graced the event at Bukalo.

Several Cabinet ministers and First Lady Monica Geingos were also in attendance.

* Hilma Nakanduungile is an information officer in the Ministry of Information and Communication Technology.

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