By Staff Reporter
MEMBER of the Caprivi African National Union (CANU), Mr. Alex (Poison) Kamwi, expressed concerns on the suppression and violations of the fundamental rights of speech, expression and media of the Caprivian people.
He alluded that peaceful expression should not be suppressed as this violates the supreme law of the constitution of the country.
Mr.Kamwi a former plan combatant during the liberation struggle of Namibia told Caprivi Vision that the attitude of silencing people from the Caprivi now Zambezi region started a long way during liberation struggle, as he reveals that a person from Zambezi when speaks is looked differently.
“I don’t know why they are scared of us… they don’t listen to what you are saying, they are not kicking the ball they kick the person, and they are not playing the ball they play the person”
According to him, the problem of this suppression has been caused by founders of politics in the then Caprivi in the beginning and those who went into association with others because they went there wrongly and the agreement of fighting for one common enemy was supposed to be set right as it is not factual, and he advocated that the only way to make correction is through peaceful means instead of suppression.
“In South Africa there’s a communist party aligned to ANC and they have their own constitution and when they speak they are listened”
He said there are no political courage, will and zeal to resolve issues “if we sit and talk they are scared and people among ourselves they are betraying us”
He however gave example of the likes of Castro and Shipanga who each betrayed the struggle. “But that does not mean because these two people are from Oshikoto, all people from Oshikoto are rebels”
The former combatant stressed that the best reference of suppression was the Shipanga rebellion which led to many people in exile detained and killed at Shatotwa.
“Shipanga rebellion in 1976 was suppressed or solved by the people from Caprivi”
He added saying that the right thing is to call for peaceful resolution as it was already decided in 1908 and 1966 by ICJ after the dispute when Liberia and Ethiopia took the former coloniser to the International Court of Justice (ICJ) on the issue of the Caprivi Strip.
“The conclusion was that when the people of Caprivi will want self-determination nothing should stand on their way” said Mr. Kamwi.
“That burning issue there…people must just express themselves and that thing of suppressing people when express themselves within the bounds of constitution, no violence must just stopped”
Concerned Mr. Kamwi further expressed his opinions on his face-book page as follows:
Article 21 (1) (a) of the constitution of Namibia provides that all persons shall have the right to freedom of speech and expression, which shall include freedom of the press and other media. Why it is that often the people from Zambezi are limited in the exercise of this freedom? What are those intimidating us afraid of? Our thoughts, conscience and beliefs are suppressed unlawfully? In Zambezi to hold a press conference your speech has to first be censored by the police whereas it is not the case with other regions. As far as I am aware, these fundamental rights and freedoms are limited in instances where they stare violence and not where people express themselves peacefully. This tendency of silencing people from Zambezi whenever we express ourselves peacefully either by peaceful assembling or peaceful expressing ourselves through writing books or through media on matters affecting us should come to an end.
It should never be perpetrated against the people of Zambezi any more. In as much as the constitution of Namibia protects the people of Namibia from harassments and intimidations in the exercise of the said fundamental rights and freedoms, people from Zambezi are not an exception. Whether we express ourselves on the question of self- determination or any other question no intimidation and harassment if we are expressing ourselves peacefully. The best medicine is to resolve issues rather than harassing and intimidating people.
The Secretary-General of the United Nations has encouraged governments in the world to resolve conflicts rather than resorting to harassment and intimidation.
Therefore, once more, let the people of Zambezi express themselves freely on matters affecting them.