Movassat sympathises with Riruako family

WINDHOEK: German Member of Parliament (MP) Niema Movassat says the late OvaHerero Paramount Chief Kuaima Riruako’s demands for recognition for the victims of the 1904-1908 genocide, will not be forgotten.

He made the remarks when he expressed his condolences to Riruako’s family, the OvaHerero community and the Namibian nation at large in a letter of condolences issued on Wednesday.

Riruako died on 02 June this year.

Movassat, who is a representative of Germany’s Left Party, came to Namibia in 2012 when he took part in the inter-parliamentary dialogue for political and civil society meetings, and met with committees of the descendants of victims of the 1904-1908 genocide.

During his visit, the German MP spoke about the way forward for the descendants of the victims of the genocide, and also delivered a speech during the commemoration of Red Flag Day, a gathering of the OvaHerero people to commemorate their deceased chieftains. The day is commemorated in Okahandja on 26 August every year.

“We all lost an upright fighter for humanity and reconciliation,” Movassat wrote in the letter.

He went on to say although often controversial, in the end Riruako pushed the right agendas forward and was always ready to “reach beyond” in the quest for reconciliation.

He added that the late chief, who was also the president of the National Unity Democratic Organisation (NUDO), will not be forgotten as he passed a motion on the genocide in Parliament.

“I will continue his fight for reparation on behalf of the Namibian nation as I strongly believe that we can one day conclude this in a dignified way,” the German MP promised.

Up to 100 000 OvaHerero and 10 000 Nama people died during the genocide of 1904 to 1908, considered to have been the first genocide of the 20th century.