Windhoek — Ovaherero Paramount Chief, Advocate Vekuii Rukoro has described the Presidential Commission of Inquiry on Ancestral Land Claims as an election gimmick.
Rukoro claims the commission will disappear after this year's Presidential and National Assembly elections slated for November.
The commission of inquiry was established by President Hage Geingob earlier this year as part of the resolutions of the second national land, conference held last year to investigate claims of ancestral land and restitution, and make appropriate recommendations for implementation.
But Rukoro, who boycotted the land conference last year, said government's real intention with the commission is clear even to the politically blind, and that is the reason why he is boycotting its activities.
"To us the Nama and Ovaherero people, the issue of ancestral land can only be discussed within the context of the genocide committed by Germany against our parents," said Rukoro, while accompanied by Chief Johannes Isaack of the Nama Traditional Leaders Association (NTLA) at a joined-press briefing here yesterday.
"I repeat, ancestral land loss should not be for those who did not lose ancestral land to colonial rule at all. Otherwise this would be, for example, a person who lay charges to the police for his stolen car whilst he still has it," he said.
He said as long as government is selling land to the Chinese, Russia and Mexicans and both President Geingob and Prime Minister Saara-Kuugongelwa-Amadhila do not prohibit foreigners to acquire land in Namibia, including Erindi, and then it is clear to them that foreign interest with money can buy the whole of Namibia.
"Let's not be fooled at all, there is nothing of interest or benefit to Namibia if one foreigner who already owns our land (a South African) sells his land to yet another foreigner (Mexican)," he said, warning that if Mexican billionaire investor Alberto Baillères invest his money in Erindi, he will end-up losing his investment as Erindi is part of the ancestral land.
Rukoro says he is baffled as to what exactly President Geingob has in mind when one carefully analyses a number of the terms of references of the commission.
"A case in point is that ordinary words like 'secretary', 'chairman' and 'inquiry' are defined in the proclamation, whilst words like 'ancestral land', 'affected parties' and 'restitution', - which are at the heart of the inquiry are nowhere defined," he said.
"For example who are the 'affected parties' in the context of the commission ancestral land," he questioned, adding this was deliberate political connived omission consistent with the objective of dirtying the water for true claimant of lost ancestral lands by deliberately opening floodgates.
Rukoro says their position is that every inch of the soil of what used to be an Independent Sovereign State of Hereroland and Namaqualand before colonization, would be their claim for ancestral land, just like any other independent sovereign states would do or are entitled to do under international laws.