News and Information

November 3, 2011

It is absurd to learn that the two countries Namibia and Botswana plus the United Nation High Commission for Refugees in Botswana conspired to have all refugees in Dukwi returned back home, to their death. This comes after the trio went in the Caprivi Strip to particularly interview and recruit a few members of those who went back home in the Caprivi by voluntary repatriation. It is a well known fact that Botswana as a sovereign State, through UNHCR has the prerogative and right to either keep or return refugees to their home country. This should come if it believes without doubt that such people will not be persecuted when returned back home. Today in the Caprivi many people or persons have missed without trace. Speculators attributes this act to juju (muti) as the motive for those killings and disappearances, while truth is this that many, if not all, could be politically motivated killings.

Each day has become a nightmare for those returnees at home in the Caprivi as security forces are monitoring and stalking them wherever and whatever activities they engage in. They are followed to nearly everywhere they go such that they have no privacy as citizens, a human right, and not a privilege. According to the UN, a refugee is someone who has been forced to flee his or her country because of persecution, war, or violence. The people in Dukwi fall under this category but the question remains, are those threats no longer existing? Namibia arrested, detained, and tortured many Caprivians, some perished without trace, and others were maimed as a result of torture. How come that the United Nations Human Rights for Refugees together with the Botswana government could entertain such a move to have the Dukwi Caprivian refugees sent to their death while Namibia has shown no indication to resolve the case of those in their prison?

Amnesty, good or bad, is granted to people who have asked for it; people who have done something wrong, have repented, and want to be pardoned for their ills. Caprivians have done nothing wrong to be pardoned for. It is because of the treatment they received at the hands of the Namibian SWAPO regime that they pursued the issue of independence from Namibia. The Botswana government and UNHCR visited the Caprivi Strip recently and we are sure that their findings in terms of how people live and development was shocking in relation to other places in Namibia. This state of affair is deliberately done so as to deprive Caprivians development. Instead, the Namibian government is grabbing land from its rightful owners; a case in point is that of Western Caprivi.

Botswana’s record as a peace loving country has always protected refugees and should do so now as Caprivian lives depend on their decisions regarding this matter. They should refrain from falling into the Namibian persuasion to have Caprivians returned home because once they are returned, the wall will brake loose and all of them will be butchered. UNHCR as a United Nations organization is there to protect people whose lives are in danger of being persecuted but instead is now playing the role of a Judge, forcing people to return back to their death. It is only God, the all mighty who giveth and takes life at will and no other living being have that or such powers. We are aware that UNHCR as a UN organ first has to serve the interest of its masters, but that should not come at the expense of the people or masses. What they should bear in mind is this that no government is there by itself, but all are there to serve their populace. All governments come by because of people, to serve them as their representatives, and if the people decide otherwise no government will exist. The UN, AU, and SADC are there to serve the people’s aspiration through their representatives, in this case the government (s). But if governments are out of the norms, then the voice of the people should take precedence over that of the government.

Put differently, governments have a total sovereignty over their countries and people, unrestricted by laws originating outside the area or free from direct external control. But if a government does not protect its citizenry, it forfeits its mandate and right to protect or power to govern and the international community takes over that right to protect the people. The government of Namibia has been and is against the people of the Caprivi, a problem that started in exile in the sixties and has now become huge that it affected the entire Caprivian population. So, to ignore this fact is not only sheer ignorance but contravening the international protocols.

To the tripartite conspirators organizing amnesty for Caprivians in Dukwi, we say do yourself a favor by searching to find a balanced solution where both the Namibian government and Caprivians benefit by getting not only a logical but lasting solution to their case. In conflict such as this of Caprivians, peaceful solutions are enshrined in the United Nations protocols and government constitution(s). Namibia is no exception but must be forced to follow the constitutional means by allowing a United Nation organized referendum to take place in the Caprivi. Any side that will loose should not only accept but should respect the outcome there off.

We appeal to SADC, AU, and the United Nations to act now and not wait for many people in the Caprivi to be butchered by the indiscriminate murders of the SWAPO and government of Namibia. The system of waiting for war to break loose in a country and for many lives to be lost was and should be of the past perceptions; now in the information age, organizations and people should be proactive and resolve conflicts before they metastasizes and escalates to an insurmountable problem(s). Blame not but yourselves for whatever could or might happen if this case is not solved in the near future.

UDP, Bulela sicaba sa utwa!!!!

Chrispin Mutoiwa

UDP Secretary for Information

Source: United Democratic Party (UDP)

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