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My candid view - I shall never relent nor be intimidated

2021-05-28  Otniel Hembapu

My candid view - I shall never relent nor be intimidated

It has been some weeks now without having penned my favourite column, which I personally christened My Candid View – a name that speaks to the nature and DNA of this very daring column. I must also share here with you that it has been a few challenging and eventful weeks for yours truly behind the scenes, especially from a work standpoint.

About two weeks ago, a local rookie boxing promoter accused the New Era Sport desk of not giving his stable enough coverage, and also went on to accuse us of apparently not adequately attending their events, especially when, compared to the coverage, we accord to the other boxing stables.

Obviously, as a responsibly individual – and of course, New Era equally being a responsible leading media outlet, I personally took it upon myself to enquire with the rookie promoter and have him pinpoint exactly which events were not covered and which press conferences were boycotted by our esteemed sport desk. 

As expected, he could not mention one event that was boycotted by our sport desk, nor could he substantiate his baseless accusations. I was, however, not surprised by the accusations or by the ramblings of the neophyte promoter because, traditionally, we, the journalists and media as a whole, have always been turned into scapegoats whenever individuals are failing or whenever they are finding the going difficult in their respective arenas.

So, I didn’t take things personal because I know why the promoter is so frustrated and now wants to blame our very dedicated sport desk for his own shortcomings. But I must today use this opportunity to hasten and remind the novice promoter not to use New Era to cover his sins and failures. 

If you cannot find a principle sponsor for your stable and events, how is New Era to blame for that? If you cannot host as many events as you would love to because of reasons only known to yourself, how is New Era to blame for that? If you still have ongoing personal fights and hatred with your former associates, how is New Era to blame for that? 

New Era is a credible institution that has been at the forefront of informing, educating and entertaining Namibians from all walks of life for the past almost 30 years now – and not at any point in time has this reputable institution ever compromised on its values and principles. Never have we!

So, for a desperate rookie boxing promoter to come out of nowhere and accuse a reputable media house such as New Era of so many baseless falsehoods will definitely not go unchallenged – and I will never allow the respectable name of New Era to be associated with shebeen fights. 

Let me also assure you that while I am manning the New Era Sport desk, we will remain fearless, relentless, unyielding and shall always speak truth to power as we have always done over the years, irrespective of who you are or what position you hold in society. 

New Era is a precious public asset that has to be preserved for generations to come, so we shall never make room for street fights and house-party talks to tamper with our credible brand.

It was, however, not only the greenhorn-boxing promoter. This week, an unschooled, unabashed and disgraceful local football club owner, who has a well-documented and long history of running into the law and physically assaulting his own players whenever they demand their salaries, came out accusing yours truly of “Always siding with his enemies” and of “Being in the back pockets of his enemies”. Again, these are all unwarranted accusations levelled against my persona, with no prove or evidence.

The injudicious club owner, which is by the way from a middle-table team with no serious history, has made it his business to harass anybody who disagrees with his uninformed views and opinions on football matters. At times, he will go to extremes of threatening to physically harm people because they have different opinions about the administration of local football. 

As far as his threats to physically harm people are concerned, I personally challenge him to go ahead and try that with me! You neither own Namibian football, nor is Namibian football your personal fiefdom! 

Again, I reiterate that the New Era Sport desk shall at all material times remain committed, undistracted, unwavering, fearless and bold in its pursuit for nothing but the truth. Until next time, sharp sharp!

2021-05-28  Otniel Hembapu

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