WINDHOEK - Jubilance resounded through the corridors of the small stock industry after the Small Stock Committee of the Windhoek Show Society (WSS) last week announced the first ever small stock show will take place during this year’s edition of the annual Windhoek Agricultural and Industrial Show in September.
With that, regulations for goat farmers have been relaxed for the Windhoek Show, with the only requirement being that an exhibitor must be a member of a goat society and does not have to be a member of a Namibian show society or a specific association, thus opening the door for communal and emerging farmers.
Chairperson of the Windhoek Show Society’s small stock sector, Dederick Jankowitz, has confirmed the change and also pointed out that goats do not have to be registered to be able to be at the show.
It also follows after the Boer Goat Breeders Association (BGBA) made history recently by losing a High Court case, which opened the doors to all goat breeders to participate in this year’s show.
This breakthrough means that communal, commercial and stud breeders may now bring their animals to the show. Great joy was expressed by these farmers when they heard the news that all ‘discriminating rules’ have now been done away with.
Foremost small stock breeder, with world champion animals in his studs, Piet Coetzee, president of the newly established Windhoek Boer Goat Breeders Association and auctioneer, told Farmers Forum how he witnessed many cases of discrimination and dishonesty when the BGBA ruled the roost.
“These despicable actions sank the ship of goat breeders. The Windhoek Show is open for all small stock breeders and not just a few selected breeders. The High Court case finally put an end to this discrimination, and I hope the few members that are left of the BGBA will find another place far from Windhoek where they can manipulate breeders. They do not belong among us and their actions have caused enough damage. Now we can move forward and stage the first small stock show and see the Boer goats that were previously banned from the show,” he commented.
Some cattle breeders reacted to this new development saying maybe it is also time for the Windhoek Show Society’s Cattle Committee to adopt new rules and regulations as cattle entries have declined over the years. It was pointed out that associations regulate registered breeders and their animals in accordance with their own constitutions while show facilities belong to organisations with their own management, rules, and regulations.
The general feeling is that show participation should be conducted without influences from the show societies and associations.
As an example, it is pointed out that currently slaughter oxen participating in the Windhoek Show are not registered animals and in some cases, these animals also do not belong to associations but are allowed to compete.
The question arises why commercial producers cannot be accommodated under the same rules and regulations. A chorus also wants the accommodation of communal and subsistence farmers as well as resettlement farmers who are by law prohibited from fencing off their pieces of land. Some of them are currently farming with stud quality livestock but in many cases, they cannot proof parenthood, as their animals have to share grazing with many other animals from different breeders. These communal breeders need a reward for their efforts and top genetics and they deserve to also be accommodated at these shows countrywide.