Businessman Lazarus Jacobs shared the ordeal of having once been homeless by sleeping at a police station for about a month when he moved from Grootfontein to the capital in search of greener pastures.
“My brother instructed me to go to the police station and informed them that he will pick me up after a month since I didn’t have a place to live,”
He was speaking at the MTC sponsorship event this week, where more corporate companies joined on the KnockOut Project, christened ‘Together We Can Beat Homelessness’. Jacobs will be performing two of King Tee Dee’s songs.
Endorsed by Profile Investment, Jacobs was sharing his thoughts on the impact of homelessness, saying his experience cannot be compared with Namibians who go through this every day and it gives him the pleasure of playing a part in such a project.
“The officer on duty, Mr Beukes, is still alive and a good friend of mine and although he said I could stay, I insisted to only stay the night. I would go for interviews and write tests during the day and return at night. I had to wait for people to change their shifts because it was illegal for me to live at the police station,” he reminisced.
Jacobs said: “It is difficult not to know where you are going to sleep or eat from day-to-day and that is the story of many Namibians; I did that for a whole month, sneaking in and out of the police station and had to get out before the new shifts start – to a point where I had to take showers with trial awaiting prisoners, mostly those who had committed petty crimes”.
He noted the magnificent project by MTC and other corporates giants joining in, further saying he couldn’t imagine living in such a way indefinitely. “There are Namibians who have no idea where they are going to live tomorrow, so this is a noble course by MTC,” he reiterated.
Bank of Namibia, Momentum, Nedbank, Namport, MTN Namibia and Profile Investment armoured the project with N$50 000 each to endorse personalities, whereas Salute Trading, Shangadi Cleaning Services donated N$20 000, and Renate Art and Beauty gave in-kind patronage.
MTC’s Chief Human Capital and Corporate Affairs Tim Ekandjo expressed gratitude to all corporates who showed their support to the project.
Ekandjo said through corporate endorsements, the project has to date managed to raise N$1 million.
The MTC Knockout Project, which will be held tomorrow, started last year with a show themed around fighting against gender-based violence as a social intervention programme by the telecommunications company, aiming to address societal issues within communities.