Vice-president Nangolo Mbumba has shot down China begging claims, saying that President Hage Geingob’s visit to that country was merely to consult old friends who have money and interest to partner with Namibia for its development.
Mbumba, who last week was inaugurated as the chancellor of the University of Namibia (Unam), dismissed the claims during his inaugural ceremony held in Windhoek.
He said the Namibian economy being part of the global economy has witnessed the onset of global economic headwinds for the past couple of years, and accordingly economic activities contracted, some companies’ operations slowed down and some people lost their incomes.
“Contrary to incorrect assertions by some, the government is not the cause of the current economic woes,” stressed the vice-president.
Rather, he said, as many informed economic students and teachers would know, this is an unfortunate confluence of global events typical of interconnected global markets, which culminate in adverse economic conditions for many countries across the globe.
He said to weather these difficult economic times, the government re-evaluated its spending patterns and drastically cut the “nice to haves” through ongoing financial austerity measures.
“Government is doing its best to contain the situation and as economy theory postulates, eventually money must be spent on the productive sector to move out of an economic downturn.”
“Since we don’t have such capital, we either attract foreign investment or borrow funds,” he added.
He said some may be asking what that has do with the chancellor’s inauguration ceremony, but as he also wears the hat of government, Unam also faces the same challenge of financial scarcity as the rest of the country.
“Many Unam programmes require funding, of which the government is the main sources. Hence, the situation requires that we at the university should wear our innovative thinking hats to present original solutions in our quest for quality education,” he said.
Mbumba said Unam is a national university, from which the public expects good outcomes, such as an excellent pass rate and good quality graduates who are expected to serve in any part of the country, including the rural areas and so forth.
He said the reason why the government is spending so many resources on education is to build a better Namibian society based on eternal truths such as love, sincerity, integrity, honesty, fairness, solidarity and fraternity.