Rukoro makes U-turn on paramount chieftainship
The long battle between the government and the Ovaherero leader Advocate Vekuii Rukoro over chieftainship has come to an end.
This was confirmed by Ovaherero Traditional Authority (OTA) spokesperson Bob Kandetu who said Rukoro will tomorrow be designated as the Traditional Authority Chief at Toasis in Aminuis Constituency in Omaheke Region.
Urban and Rural Development Permanent Secretary Nghidinua Daniel confirmed this, saying that as an accounting officer he is actually happy that both parties have come to an amicable solution.
However, Kandetu could not give a full explanation to New Era on the sudden change of heart by the traditional authority.
All he said was that a meeting was convened between senior traditional leaders of the traditional authority and a decision was taken that it is within the best interest of the traditional authority for Rukoro to be recognised as chief.
He said other issues that prolonged the recognition were the understanding of the law and their traditional leaders not being gazetted, as they are entitled to by law.
“There were attempts to read things into the law that are not part of it, such as defining the area of jurisdiction. These led to delays,” he said.
Rukoro was elected as the Ovaherero Chief in 2014 during a meeting by the Ovaherero Chief’s Council that took place at Ehungiro in Otjinene Constituency, Omaheke Region.
He succeeds late Chief Kuaima Riruako, who died aged 79 in Windhoek on June 2, 2014 after a short illness.
Since his appointment as the Ovaherero Chief in 2014, Rukoro has been battling with government for broader recognition.
Rukoro has been unhappy that his chieftainship is confined to Aminuis Constituency as he had wanted his constituency to be expanded to other parts of the country.
Over the course of two years, Rukoro expressed his dismay with the government’s decision to confine his leadership to Aminuis, at some stage accusing government of using ‘Bantu style’ tactics by confining the OTA to the constituency.
“We shall not accept this, not today, tomorrow or ever,” New Era quoted Rukoro as saying during a gathering at Okahandja earlier this year.
Urban and Rural Development Minister Sophia Shaningwa was yesterday unavailable for comment as her phone went to voice-mail.