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Lets Fight Tribalism to ensure Economic and Social developments in Caprivi!!
August 20, 2011
Lets Fight Tribalism to ensure Economic and Social developments in Caprivi!!

Everywhere in the world people are fighting for freedom, for equal rights and justice. We (Caprivians) are fighting for the same humanitarian rights, but we are forgetting to fight down tribalism that in growing among us. We have turned our motherland into a tribal war zone. We don’t know where the tribal disputes originated from, but we can see where it’s taking us. We hope for economic growths and developments in Caprivi but we do nothing to attain the dream.

We are fighting each other because of our parents’ strong tribal beliefs, which is unwise. As a Caprivian youth, I ask the youth to filter out the wrongs from what has been said by their parents. The youth are the reflection of the future. If we grow tribalism in our minds and hearts Caprivi will be worse in future. We as Caprivians are responsible for diminishing our motherland. Let’s stand united, divide we fall!! I’m not saying this because I’m a coward but I’m thinking and looking at economic and social developments that we can attain when we are one, when we are Caprivians. Forget those who says it’s an insult calling them Caprivians because there is a hard feeding them, they are too weak and do not care about the lower income earners and those who earn nothing at all. If they choose to be Caprivians no more let them be who they want, they are the ones who are down grading us every time we take a step forward. Who do they think they are? What have they done for Caprivi for us to beg them to be Caprivians? Nothing, begging them will never be an option. We are better-off on our own. We should never divide ourselves by the language we speak because someone out there wants us to be divided. The fact remains, we are all Caprivians!

There are three economic and social questions that we should be asking ourselves as Caprivians. What has been happening to the poverty in Caprivi? What has been happening to unemployment in the Caprivi? What has been happening to income inequality? If all three of these have become less severe, then beyond doubt this has been a period of development for Caprivi. If one or two of these central problems have been growing worse, especially if all have, it would be strange to call the result “development”.

Moreover, we should look at three core values of development. The first one is Sustenance: The ability to meet basic needs. All people have certain basic needs without which life would be impossible. These life-sustaining basic human needs include food, water, health, and protection. When any of these is absent or in critically short supply, a condition of “absolute underdevelopment” exists. A basic function of all economic activity, therefore, is to provide as many as possible with the means of overcoming the helplessness and misery arising from a lack of food, shelter, health, and protection. What is the situation in Caprivi? “Caprivi sizuma sa lico (Caprivi a food basket)”. I grew up knowing that Caprivi was truly a food basket, yes it was but not anymore. Now many Caprivian relay on drought relief program, but the soil in Caprivi is fertile and Caprivians are hard working people. Why do we go hungry? It is because we don’t have sufficient capital and the Government is not doing enough to meet us half way. About shelter, we are hard working and innovative; we build our own standard modernized traditional houses in informal resettlements. National Housing Enterprise built houses in Katima Mulilo; do these houses cater for lower income earners? The answer is no, go to New NHE today, there are many open houses. It’s not because we don’t want to stay there, it’s because the houses are too expensive for us. Our deceased family members’ rote in the state mortuary every now and then, women die in child labour. AIDS rate ever on an increase; this is a result of a high unemployment among youth. Since they have no source of income, many end up in prostitution put bread on the table. How long does it take the police to respond to a crime? An hour, a day, or a week, sometimes they never show up.

A second universal component of the good life is self esteem: a sense of worth and self respect, of not being used as a tool by others for their own benefits. Before voting they come to us with food, our stomachs are felled just for that day. Do you know what happens after political rallies? Many Caprivians cerebrates, there are cars convoys driving in gravel roads in Katima Mulilo (in town). After that they go home after a long day hoping to take a long bath. But that will not go their way in many cases, the reason been that; the will be no electricity when they reach home. In Katima Mulilo electricity cut and running water are highly correlated. Meaning when there is no electricity the possibility of not having running water is very high. What a sad ending day after mass political cerebrations! It’s like using a garden tool and do not wash it after.

Freedom from Servitude: To Be Able to Choose. A third and final universal value that should constitute the meaning of development is the concept of human freedom. The concept of human freedom should also encompass various component of political freedom including, but not limited to, personal security, the rule of law, freedom of expression, political participation, and equity of opportunity. I’m for political party “X”, with a good educational qualification or not political involved at all but very educated, I can’t be Director General. But if I was for political party “Y”, a war veteran child or a veteran, or a person with a powerful political influence (even if it’s underground) beyond no doubt I will be Director General. Are we free from servitude if we are indirectly forced to join party Y to ensure our future? I say NO, we are not free from servitude.

The wheels of justice turn so slow. Our fathers, mothers, brothers and sisters are imprisoned for fighting for freedom, many are in exile as if we (Caprivian at home) don’t want them among us, they are in exile because people hundreds of kilometers are away who are not even Caprivian don’t want them to be with us. Brave Caprivian who feel the pain and suffering of the people of caprivi, poverty, unemployment, poor schools and lack of school material, poor roads, and the list goes on. Their dream is to see caprivi upgrading. Is desire for social and economic development by the Caprivians for caprivi a crime in Namibia? Caprivians let us unity then make the wheels of justice turn faster for the common goal of development.

One vote is one vote for every one (in other words, people are equal when it comes to voting. Rich or poor, Caprivian or not Caprivian), a vote is the voter’s input in democracy. But the funny and disturbing part of the Namibian democracy is that; individuals’ inputs are equal but the distribution of outputs (economic and social developments) are determined in an inhumanity and undemocratic manner by those who are in power on the ticket of voters. Namibia is one of the countries with a high gini coefficient of over 0.7 (70%); this means that income inequality is a major problem in Namibia. In Caprivi we are classified as low income earners. We are poor and at the same time we keep on fighting one another, let us fight tribalism then fight poverty and unemployment. Not one another.

Finally there are three objectives of development. Development in all societies must have at least the following three objectives; the first and most important one is ensuring an increase in the availability and widening the distribution of basic life-sustaining goods such as food, shelter, health, and protection. Secondly, raise levels of living, in addition to higher incomes, the provision of more jobs, better education and greater attention to cultural and human values, all of which serve not only to enhance material well-being but also to generate greater individual and national self-esteem. The last one is to expand the range of economic and social choices available to individuals and nations by freeing them from servitude and dependence not only in relation to other people and nation-states but also to the forces of ignorance and human misery. It’s for us to look around and analyze Caprivi based on the above economic and social questions, core values of developments and the objectives of developments. The methodologies that individuals will use does not matter, the outcomes are the most important. These outcomes are the tools that each of you will use to conclude.

Is tribalism beneficial for the people of Caprivi? I believe the yields of tribalism in Caprivi are mostly benefiting other people not the people of Caprivi. Individuals who are busy dividing us and installing a dictatorship in Caprivi are on the other hand uniting and installing democracy in their areas. Injecting their people in to the main streams of the economy (this is what they call Black empowerment. I call it discrimination, corruption…). Let us stop fighting one another on tribal grounds! Tribalism can’t solve our social and economic problem, but togetherness, respect and love will surely heal our beloved motherland (Caprivi)!

By Nalisa .N. Muyahi

Source: Caprivi Strip

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