Time for Namibians to experience the next level of promised prosperity

On 21 March, Namibia celebrated its 27th independence anniversary and President Hage Geingob inspected the national guard as a proud man. He could be seen boasting as he too marched like the uniformed men and women around him.

Looking back to the same day 27 years ago, it is clear that Namibia has come a long way and remains a shining example not only in Africa but to the rest of the world. Namibia has maintained peace and stability for its citizens and residents and good neighbourliness with its neighbours in the SADC region.

During one of his addresses as President-Elect Geingob notified the media that in some parts of the world, it was unheard of that the incoming President has a cordial relationship with his predecessors and even seeks their counsel on matters of state.

As President Geingob would say, “people do not eat peace and stability” and it is true, Namibia has other more tangible achievements enjoyed by its citizenry.

Reliable and modern roads, railway networks and functioning ports.

Namibians have access to universal public healthcare and other modern public infrastructure.

Namibians have access to a sophisticated financial sector and banking systems linked to the rest of the world.

In short, Namibians have a lot to celebrate. But unfortunately many are demanding more from the country’s leadership and asking when the country will move to the next level of prosperity promised by its leaders.

It is true that the country’s citizens enjoy a higher standard of living compared to many in the world.

It has become apparent that Namibians do not want to be compared to those they have already surpassed and want to be compared to those they aspire to be like.

As President Geingob said in his independence speech, land remains an outstanding issue that the country has to tackle so as to achieve economic prosperity.

He expressed concern at the willing-buyer, willing-seller concept and said this needs revisiting.

He said: “We have exhausted the concept because after 27 years, the process is slow in satisfying the wishes of the majority of Namibians.

This means we need to refer back to our constitution which allows for the expropriation of land with fair compensation and also at foreign ownership of land, especially absentee landlords.

A few weeks ago, we quoted South African President Jacob Zuma as saying almost the same about the land issue in his country.

As we have said before, we believe this issue has to be resolved for the benefit of not only Namibia and South Africa, but also the people of the region who look up to land redistribution for economic prosperity.

Namibians rich or poor know that their country can move them to the next level of prosperity, which they expect will also curb the growing inequality the country is facing.

The current political leadership is under pressure from the citizenry to deliver on this prosperity just like the previous leadership was under pressure to deliver on peace and stability.

The foundation has already been laid for Namibia to aspire to be amongst the best in the world.

President Geingob and his team only have to work towards the speedy implementation of national developmental goals. Only then will Namibia achieve the prosperity promised  by 2030.

March 2017
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