OPUWO: The Senior Traditional Councillor of the Vita Royal House says OvaHerero traditional leaders have lost the focus of fighting for a common purpose as they instead direct their energy towards fighting each other.
Mika Muhenje said this while speaking at the Otjikaoko Heroes’ Day commemoration held at Otjindjerese village about four kilometres south of Opuwo on Sunday.
“We as traditional leaders should strive to join forces and work together for the common purpose of improving the lives of our communities, something that we are short of these days,” he stated.
According to Muhenje, the OvaHerero leaders and community as a whole regard themselves as brave when they fight amongst themselves, but in the process they lose focus of developmental issues and the common purpose of livelihood which they have to join forces and fight for.
“We do not have land to live on. Our land is being taken by force by other communities, but we do not stand up and fight for that even when we know that there are laws and policy guidelines that can protect us,” said Muhenje.
He added that communities “are being oppressed” in their areas of jurisdiction by political leaders or policies, but traditional leaders do little about it.
Muhenje then called on the leaders of the OvaHerero communities to start focusing on the wellbeing of their communities and to refrain from fighting with each another as this makes them “look weak as a community”.
Speaking at the same event, Chief Jonas Tjikulya of the OvaZemba Traditional Authority said that culture should unify the traditional authorities, adding that they should avoid being misled by political ideologies and the political affiliations of various chiefs.
Tjikulya said “in the end, political parties and Government will always change, and culture and traditional authority will always be the same”. He reiterated the call for the leaders to strive towards the betterment of their communities’ living standards.
Kenatjironga Muharukua, special advisor to Kunene Regional Governor Josua //Hoebeb who had been representing the governor at the event said projects by any leader in the region should be done in the interest of the community as a whole and regardless of traditional leaders’ political affiliation.
Salomon Hartley, the Senior Traditional Councillor of the OvaMbanderu Traditional Authority in the Kunene Region who spoke on behalf of Chief Karikondua Nguvauva, stated that the traditional authority is open to working with any traditional authority or leader in Namibia.
He said the traditional authority is reaching out to other traditional authorities as it strives to attain the goal of uplifting the lives of community members.