Ondonga King urges OvaHerero to remain united

WIDHOEK: The chairperson of the Council of Traditional Leaders, Ondonga King Immanuel Elifas Kauluma on Friday appealed to the OvaHerero community to remain united during the “dark moment” of bidding farewell to their late Chief Kuaima Riruako.

In a speech read on his behalf by deputy chairperson of the Council of Traditional Leaders Immanuel /Gaseb, Kauluma called on the OvaHerero community to abide by their customary norms when handling issues of chieftainship succession.

Riruako passed away on 02 June this year in a Windhoek hospital after a long illness.

“I know this is not the right platform, but I feel it is vital to give awareness on this matter, since the issue of chieftainship succession has and is still creating factional divisions among Namibian communities,” said Kauluma during the State memorial service of OvaHerero Paramount Chief which took place at Parliament Garden.

He said the late chief will be remembered especially for his ideology of striving to unite all OvaHerero in Namibia to resort under one traditional authority.

Riruako has taken many steps with the Council of Traditional Leaders to pursue his ideology, said Kauluma. However, the laws of governing traditional authorities are different.

“Despite the differences between the late chief and the Council of Traditional Leaders, some of the opinions from the late chief were regarded as useful for the reform of traditional authorities’ consultations countrywide,” he added.

The late chief, being well vested in the OvaHerero culture and tradition, was always urging young people not to forget their culture and tradition, especially to know where they come from, said Kauluma.

The chief’s body laid in State for people to view throughout Friday evening.

On Saturday morning, the deceased’s family, accompanied by the Namibian Defence Force, took the chief’s remains to Okahandja, where he will be laid to rest on Sunday.