Affirmative Repositioning (AR) movement activist Job Amupanda has launched a lawsuit in the High Court in which he is suing government, with demands for the removal of the veterinary cordon fence, known as the red line.
He cites the existence of the red line as degrading, inhumane, discriminatory and unconstitutional.
Amupanda added the red line was used to divide, rule and restrict movement of black people and their livestock during the colonial era; thus, he argues, it serves no purpose to anymore in an independent Namibia – as such, it violates Article 8 and 10 of the constitution, which protects the dignity and equality of citizens.
The lawsuit comes a week after veterinary officials confiscated meat, valued at N$1 000, belonging to Amupanda, at the Oshivelo checkpoint in the Oshikoto region.
The lawsuit cites the minister of agriculture as first respondent, government as second, the attorney general third as well as Hango Nambinga, a veterinary official, who confiscated and burned the meat.
“The red line is a colonial structure; hence, it is unconstitutional on the basis that it is not sanctioned and made provisions for as a law in Namibia – and it is also not rationally connected to any purposes. The fence still classifies persons, including their animals, as inferior, hence subjecting them to be screened for diseases, confiscated, burned and searched without warrants by officials of first
and second respondents,” Amupanda, who is also the Windhoek mayor, argued in his particulars of claim.
As a result, the activist has demanded the court to grant an order, declaring the erection of the fence unconstitutional, as it is not sanctioned by any law.
Also, he requested the court to declare the extent to which the erection of the fence is sanctioned by any law, such law violates the dignity of the people; it is discriminatory and unconstitutional.
In addition, he asked the court to declare the confiscation of his meat on 17 May as unlawful, as well as declaring that it will be unlawful for the defendants and any officials from confiscating meat and products of anyone, meant for private or own consumption.