Swapo Member of Parliament (MP) Nono Katjingisiua has appealed to fellow parliamentarians to approach the genocide matter with the sensitivity it deserves and work collectively to improve the joint declaration, especially on the monetary aspect.
“I don’t think we should throw the baby out with the bathwater,” Katjingisiua told parliament while contributing to the genocide debate recently.
An agreement was reached earlier this year between the Namibian and German governments, which saw Germany committing N$18 billion to aid local projects over 30 years.
However, Katjingisiua says the word ‘grant’ to her is inappropriate and does not sound good as it may imply a voluntary gesture that does not arise out of acknowledged historical, moral and political obligations.
Furthermore, she said, the quantum of N$18 billion offered by the German government for the reconstruction and reconciliation programme does not signify the Germans’ sincerity that they are willing to “make good” for their historical acts that have affected the economic, social and cultural conditions of the Ovaherero and Nama people.
“The conditions of destitution created by the genocide more than 100 years ago is evident in the livelihoods of our people. While I admit that at no point would one say that this money is now enough, I am of the opinion that the German government can certainly do better,” she reasoned.
She said Germany, being the fourth-largest economy in the world with a GDP (Gross Domestic Product) of more than U$4 trillion, could certainly improve on it.
“A respectable amount will be somewhere between what the Namibian negotiating team had proposed and the laughable amount proposed in the declaration,” she added.