Students get ‘Nujoma finger’

Students get ‘Nujoma finger’

A NUMBER of students from the University and Polytechnic yesterday walked out on a meeting with former President Sam Nujoma, when they found themselves on the wrong side of the Swapo leader’s accusing finger.

Nujoma accused them of being “from heaven”, of drunkenness and of turning a blind eye to criminals. Students from Unam and the Polytechnic, who had turned out in their hundreds at the Unam campus for a “dialogue” with President Nujoma, were left disheartened after the occasion turned into a student-bashing affair.Nujoma, a geology student at Unam, accused them of drunkenness and drug abuse and claimed that some harboured criminals and thus contributed to the high crime rate in Namibia.His address was meant to encourage the students to work hard as they begin the last semester of the year.Instead, the country’s first President gave them a five-page history lesson before he used three paragraphs from his prepared speech to urge them to work hard and prepare for the final exams.The real dialogue started once students were given a 15-minute opportunity to ask Nujoma questions.Their questions ranged from the need for more accommodation and transport to a plea to Nujoma to instruct Unam management to stop forced breakfast for students.Unfortunately for the students, none of their questions were answered in the way they had expected.Shortly after Immanuel Phillemon, better known as ‘Wise’, pleaded with Nujoma to help them get more transport and lights in the Unam vicinity to prevent crime, the former President accused them of not doing enough to improve their conditions.”Students have a special responsibility towards ourselves and the nation.If the [Middle East] war continues, everything will continue to skyrocket.It is not only Namibia that is affected by the war and the high prices of oil and the Namibian Government is not to blame for that.Why not ask [US President George W) Bush?” Nujoma responded.He claimed students wanted to be spoon-fed instead of taking responsibility themselves.For instance, he suggested, students could build accommodation at the two campuses instead of spending the money they received from their parents on buying cars, cellphones, drugs and alcohol.”There are many misguided students who are wayward and with ill-disciplined behaviour,” Nujoma said.He said the students were the pioneers of Namibia and must be prepared to construct buildings.”Yes.You must tighten your belts and use your brains.Where do we get the buildings from? These buildings were built by the Swapo Government.There was no university here,” he said.Nujoma accused the students for behaving as if they were foreigners when the country needed their input and claimed that they knew criminals or participated in criminal activities.”Some of the culprits are you students.Be intelligent enough to notice those criminals.Don’t talk as if you fall from heaven and you are not from Namibia,” he said.His remarks angered some of the students who started leaving towards the end despite a plea by Unam’s Dean of Students, Dr Ida Kandjii-Murangi, that the programme was not over.”Us from heaven, we are leaving,” remarked one of the students as she left.They expressed unhappiness about Nujoma’s criticism whenever they asked questions and said the meeting was not worth the time they spent there.Students from Unam and the Polytechnic, who had turned out in their hundreds at the Unam campus for a “dialogue” with President Nujoma, were left disheartened after the occasion turned into a student-bashing affair.Nujoma, a geology student at Unam, accused them of drunkenness and drug abuse and claimed that some harboured criminals and thus contributed to the high crime rate in Namibia.His address was meant to encourage the students to work hard as they begin the last semester of the year.Instead, the country’s first President gave them a five-page history lesson before he used three paragraphs from his prepared speech to urge them to work hard and prepare for the final exams. The real dialogue started once students were given a 15-minute opportunity to ask Nujoma questions.Their questions ranged from the need for more accommodation and transport to a plea to Nujoma to instruct Unam management to stop forced breakfast for students.Unfortunately for the students, none of their questions were answered in the way they had expected.Shortly after Immanuel Phillemon, better known as ‘Wise’, pleaded with Nujoma to help them get more transport and lights in the Unam vicinity to prevent crime, the former President accused them of not doing enough to improve their conditions.”Students have a special responsibility towards ourselves and the nation.If the [Middle East] war continues, everything will continue to skyrocket.It is not only Namibia that is affected by the war and the high prices of oil and the Namibian Government is not to blame for that.Why not ask [US President George W) Bush?” Nujoma responded.He claimed students wanted to be spoon-fed instead of taking responsibility themselves.For instance, he suggested, students could build accommodation at the two campuses instead of spending the money they received from their parents on buying cars, cellphones, drugs and alcohol.”There are many misguided students who are wayward and with ill-disciplined behaviour,” Nujoma said.He said the students were the pioneers of Namibia and must be prepared to construct buildings.”Yes.You must tighten your belts and use your brains.Where do we get the buildings from? These buildings were built by the Swapo Government.There was no university here,” he said.Nujoma accused the students for behaving as if they were foreigners when the country needed their input and claimed that they knew criminals or participated in criminal activities.”Some of the culprits are you students.Be intelligent enough to notice those criminals.Don’t talk as if you fall from heaven and you are not from Namibia,” he said.His remarks angered some of the students who started leaving towards the end despite a plea by Unam’s Dean of Students, Dr Ida Kandjii-Murangi, that the programme was not over.”Us from heaven, we are leaving,” remarked one of the students as she left.They expressed unhappiness about Nujoma’s criticism whenever they asked questions and said the meeting was not worth the time they spent there.

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