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Hambukushu demands NaTIS to offer Thimbukushu

2021-08-25  John Muyamba

Hambukushu demands NaTIS to offer Thimbukushu
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John Muyamba

RUNDU - The Hambukushu community has demanded that Roads Authority (RA) use Thimbukushu and not Rukwangali at the Divundu NaTIS office for learner licences. The community, through a lawyer, said it does not make sense to have a language that is not spoken or understood by locals in the Mukwe constituency, where the centre is located.

RA recently announced that learner license tests will now be written in Namibian vernaculars. Divundu is in Mukwe constituency, where the vernacular is Thimbukushu  - and not anywhere near Rukwangali, which is a vernacular spoken in the Kavango West region.

As of Monday, several local languages are being offered at all NaTIS centres countrywide as an option for written learner license tests to applicants who are not conversant in English. However, English remains the primary medium for the tests; clients can opt between Khoekhoegowab, Otjiherero, Afrikaans, Rukwangali, Silozi and Oshikwanyama.

“We act on behalf of the inhabitants of Divundu village, who are our clients on whose behalf we address this letter to your esteemed office,” read Bernard Tjatjara’s letter, addressed to the RA CEO, Conrad Lutombi.

“The RA catalogued different local languages for various towns and villages across Namibia. However, the RA hastily introduced Rukwangali as a local language for written learner license tests at Divundu NaTIS centre instead of Thimbukushu,” Tjatjara noted in his letter.

“The introduction of Rukwangali at Divundu is troubling, as it defies logic – and it is inequitable. Rukwangali is not a local language or vernacular for Divundu and surrounding areas but Thimbukushu is,” Tjatjara noted.

The lawyer also serves as the legal advisor to the Hambukushu Traditional Authority. Efforts to obtain comments from RA proved futile. RA had in a statement noted that additional vernaculars would be added in the future. 

- jmuyamba@nepc.com.na


2021-08-25  John Muyamba

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