This makes it do poorly in practice and implementation remains a “distant dream” as in many African states. We all remember initiatives like Tipeeg (Targeted Intervention Programme for Employment and Economic Growth) and the NDPIII [National Development Plan Three]. These are decent initiatives on paper but lack significance in practice.
Let me zoom into the theme under discussion ‘My Namibia, My Country, My Pride’ by the Ministry of Information and Communication Technology. Its primary objective is apparently to instill a sense of pride and patriotism among the people.
Well, I personally think it is a very noble idea but the time is not right at all. I feel it is a mockery of the reality on the ground. It is like asking a hungry man on the street to smile or asking a man who sleeps under a bridge in winter how happy and proud he is being a Namibian citizen. Remember, a hungry man is an angry man as they say.
Believe it or not, the state has failed to provide basic needs (for example water, shelter and food) which a human being needs to live in harmony. Some weeks ago, I watched in dismay when a certain Deputy Minister was arrogantly defending the state particularly on the much-criticised Tipeeg. The nation cannot continue to be lied to anymore.
I doubt if the said Deputy Minister has visited all the 103 constituencies to see how the natives are suffering, the high unemployment is well documented and known by everyone, poor living conditions in informal settlements and rural areas, poor educational and health facilities, corruption.
And now you are asking people to be proud and patriotic for being Namibian? No ways! People in Havana, Okahandja Park informal settlement, Okongo and Koës should have their basic needs met first then you can talk about ‘My Namibia, My Country, and My Pride’ thereafter. These are country men and women who do not have potable drinking water, walk 20 km to the nearest clinic, pupils are taught under a tree and sleep on empty stomachs, etc.
They often suffer because of systems idolised by their leaders to govern them. Under Karl Marx’s system, their well-being and dignity would have been well served and taken care of as opposed to capitalism.
Of paramount sadness is that wherever you find a capitalist state, those in power will always look after their greedy stomach and pockets first before they consider the people who elected them to power. So, those that are enjoying the cake of independence through fraud, corruption and whatsoever can go ahead and appreciate the ‘My Namibia, My Country, My Pride’ campaign.
In short, study what the masses need most and learn to prioritise national issues before you roll out irrelevant campaigns.