|Lessons of bravery|
|Thursday, 02 November 2006 15:47|
Being away from home for two months can be quite refreshing, especially if you are coming from the land of milk and honey such as Zimbabwe into an embracing country like Namibia. Sometimes you can be tempted to stay while on the other hand you will always have that usual feeling of nostalgia, forcing you to go back home. You become addicted to doing some things while you dislike others.
For the past two months that I have been in this country I had become accustomed to the freedoms that people in Namibia enjoy whether gay or not. But to be honest I disliked the behaviour of the taxi drivers who will not miss an opportunity to charge you any amount that flushes in their mind the moment they realise you are not a foreigner. But apart from that I thoroughly enjoyed the last two months that I have been in the country of the brave. In fact I have learnt to be brave. And I mean brave and I will be brave when I go back to the land of milk and honey. What stood out for me during my stay is the amount of beauty that one can get from human beings. In all fairness, I put off my hat for all Namibians for being warm hearted. You embrace the true meaning of ubuntu. In this respect, I can easily take you back to an occasion when I met Prime Minister, Nahas Angula who struck me as a real man of the people. Unlike in other places where you get people who are helped up the ladder of power by the people alienating themselves from the same people, in Namibia there is nothing like that nadder.
I remember during my first week when I had a jolly good time at a street braai in Hochland Park sharing roasted bread with a cabinet minister. That was really refreshing. It is the interaction between different tribes and the interconnection of traditional and contemporary culture which also makes Namibia some sort of a rare specie. Politically, I didn’t have to visit parliament to witness democracy in motion. People could demonstrate anytime, a case in point, the gays and lesbians who will never have an inch of a chance in some countries to air their views had all the freedoms to raise their concerns in the street.
Some will be quick to disagree with me after some of the hot topics in the history of this country where, for lack of a better word, smartly put under the carpet. But in every democracy such things are bound to happen. Even in the land of Tony Blair and George Bush, our supposed perfect democracies, such things do happen. But after all we are all human beings everyone is entitled his or her own right. In Namibia democracy thrives, in fact you can feel it ticking while you walk in the street.
In my culture, they say if you don’t tell a friend the truth then you are not a friend. Please allow me to express just one concern about the need to make an otherwise great Namibian society free of guns and violence which seems to be taking root. Otherwise long live Namibia, keep smiling, Kaleni Nawa.
Guest column written by Stanley Kwenda of the Financial Gazette newsaper in Zimbabwe who was visiting the country on a two months Southern Africa Media Training Trust (NSJ) exchange programme.
|Last Updated on Tuesday, 19 December 2006 09:39|