Sports taken to another level …mixed reaction to Indigenous Fencing, “Ombuindje”
Carlos Kambaekwa WINDHOEK – Social media has gone abuzz with mixed reactions amidst video visuals showing two young men from the indigenous Himba tribe, descendants of the Ovaherero tribe, grilling each other with sticks in the name of sports and culture. The video, which went viral on social media since it was aired last week, demonstrates two young men exchanging heave bodily blows, using long softened sticks (otuhongue) as the preferred instrument savaging each other for supremacy under the guise of sport and while Fencing is a group of three related combat sports; the foil, épée and sabre with winning points made through the contact with an opponent – Indigenous Fencing requires the opponents facing each other in seating positions at the start but the fighters are allowed to get on their feet as the fight intensifies. There are three forms of modern fencing, each uses a different kind of weapon and has different rules, this way the sport itself is divided into three competitive scenes: foil, épée, and sabre. Most competitive fencers choose to specialise in one weapon only. With no specific timeframe as to how long a fight would last or any well-defined rules where the vicious blows should be landing – New Era Sports sought clarification from the implementers of this breathtaking but highly dangerous pastime. “It is extremely barbaric because people are hurting each other with very dangerous consequences,” says a critique requesting for his identity to be with held for fear of reprisals.“This particular pastime has been practiced in this neck of the woods for many years. It normally takes place during rainy seasons when folks are in high spirits demonstrating appreciation and happiness,” says Opuwo Sports Officer John Kakondo. Kakondo adds “Ombuindje” is a popular cultural pastime, used by locals as a sign of manhood while at the same time learning the finer tricks of using a stick effectively whenever the need arose. The Himba tribe is well known for using sticks as weapons for hunting wild animals and defending themselves wherever their life is threatened. However, using the absurd consequences move is that there is no touchstone for absurdity since one person’s absurdity is another person’s common sense. There are those who believe boxing should be banned because it often results in catastrophic injuries, death included. Nonetheless, defenders of boxing might point out that boxing is not a special case in this respect since parachute, motor racing, rugby, cricket, karate and water sports are also prone to fatal injuries and are thus companions in guilt with boxing.
2018-05-29 10:15:25 3 months ago