amvet labels Theron a liar

ONGWEDIVA: The Namibia War Veterans’ Trust (Namvet) has labelled Jacob Theron a liar for claiming that he is a former chief of operations in military forces of the ousted colonial government in Namibia.

Speaking to Nampa on Wednesday, Namvet leaders in northern Namibia – Linus Tobias, Fillip Shimwafeni and Lazarus Petrus – dismissed media reports that Theron held that position in the South West Africa Territorial Force (SWATF).

The trio accused Theron of being a puppet of the Namibian Government by opposing Namvet’s demand for the government to grant its members war veterans’ status like their counterparts from the then People’s Liberation Army of Namibia (PLAN).

Unlike ex-members of PLAN – the then Swapo military wing – the Namibian Government refuses to grant war veterans’ status to Namvet members, who are former fighters of the SWATF and Koevoet military units of the colonial government.

Namvet argued that all ex-combatants are world over recognised as war veterans, and are ensured of economic security by their governments, irrespective of which side of the war conflict they belonged.

“We are not demanding to be recognised as freedom fighters and heroes to be buried at the Heroes’ Acre, but we want the government of this country of our birth to accept us as war veterans,” Tobias and his colleagues charged.

They went on to say it is irrelevant for Theron to tell the nation that SWATF and Koevoet ex-fighters fought on the wrong side and deserve no war veterans’ incentives like their counterparts from PLAN.

“Ex-combatants from PLAN became war veterans for fighting against us as opposing combatants on the other side of the war, and they are not recognised as war veterans for fighting civilians such as teachers and nurses,” the three Namvet leaders explained.

They referred to Theron as an irresponsible ex-combatant who is opposing Namvet’s demand for its members also to be recognised just for him to gain favour from the government.

“We are side-lined by our government, unlike him who is granted war veterans’ status through government employment he got in the Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Forestry at Otjiwarongo in the Otjozondjupa Region,” the Namvet trio charged.

They alleged that Theron was just a military-trained clerk at the head office of the colonial government forces in Windhoek and he is one of the white Namibians who joined the Swapo-Party at Gobabis in the Omaheke Region some few years ago.

“The SWATF has no record of Theron being one of its former commanders. He was never one of our commanders during the war and has no mandate to command us after the war and to dismiss our demands for war veterans’ benefits,” Tobias and his colleagues lamented.

They demanded Theron to be honest and tell the Namibian nation “whose agenda he is advocating with falsehood and misleading statements”.

Approached for comment on Wednesday, Theron denied that he has told any media institution that he was a commander in SWATF.

“I was not a commander. My statement was taken out of proportion. Bye!” Theron said before hanging up his phone.