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BhuQaid's passport to happiness

BhuQaid Shevanna offers you a passport to happiness with his new album, 'Passengers and Passports'

• Pinehas Nakaziko

THE Ongwediva-based musician BhuQaid Shevanna continues to make his mark in the industry, and has now added the album 'Passengers and Passports' to his name.


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      Germany labelled a war criminal

      by Charmaine Ngatjiheue

      Vekuii Rukoro

      THE Ovaherero Traditional Authority has labelled Germany a war criminal, unless it is prepared to enter genocide negotiations with “legitimate” descendants of the victims of the 1904-1908 atrocities.

      This comes after the Ovaherero Traditional Authority (OTA)'s bid to have the case heard in the United States came to an end with the US Supreme Court on Monday refusing to hear a petition to revive a lawsuit to have Germany held liable for the genocide.

      The genocide saw tens of thousands of Ovaherero and Nama people massacred, starved, tortured and placed in concentration camps by German colonial authorities.

      In a statement on Tuesday night, OTA chief Vekuii Rukoro said because Germany declined to hear their petition without providing any reasons, the next step for them is to take the diplomatic route to ensure the United Nations, the African Union, key world powers and African governments are informed with a view to declare what happened a genocide as understood by the world community.

      “We also want it to be understood that Germany is a war criminal unless it is prepared to enter meaningful negotiations with the true leaders of the victim communities and not selectively hand-picked royal house chiefs,” Rukoro said.

      He further said the two affected communities are actively considering alternative legal options including approaching other jurisdictions.

      “Both local and international – including Germany, to ensure justice is achieved. Without justice there can be no moral or legal peace, nor restorative justice,” Rukoro added.

      Rukoro said although the decision by the US Supreme Court is final, it is not the end of the struggle to achieve restorative justice for the affected communities.

      Meanwhile, the genocide negotiations between Namibia and Germany has ended, with Namibia seemingly accepting the deal.

      This means Germany will acknowledge that what happened in 1904-1908 is genocide in today's perspective, apologise in the Namibian parliament and pay Namibia N$18,6 billion (1,1 million euros) as developmental aid. Although the Namibian government says the money is a form of reparations, Germany maintain it is not.

      Prime minister Saara Kuugongelwa-Amadhila tabled the joint declaration in parliament, saying the government had accepted Germany's offer as it will put Namibia's foot in the door for more funds through its bilateral relations.

      However, various traditional authority groups and opposition parties rejected the deal.

      “Instead, we call for trilateral negotiations where the descendants of the genocide victims are represented by their own freely chosen leaders,” Rukoro added.

      Chairperson of the Nama Genocide Technical Committee Ida Hoffman said the two governments failed to sieze the opportunity to find a lasting, reconciliatory and restorative solution to the “painful German colonial rule in Namibia”.

      “The joint declaration and its intent is rejected as it is a result of [a] unilateral governmental process that excluded affected descendant community representatives. As the popular genocide slogan declares, 'nothing about us without us', surely this deal is neither for us nor about us,” Hoffman said yesterday.

      She urged the two governments to adopt victim-centred principles of restorative justice that will be inclusive of the diversity of the victims' descendants.

      OTA secretary general Mutjinde Katjiua said they will never accept a sell-out agreement, and will appeal to the UN for intervention.

      He added that “the government is bankrupt and has played right into the hands of the Germans who want to get the deal done and dusted, and clean their hands,” he said.


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