• April 7th, 2020

The brilliant idea to establish the school of veterinary medicine is sabotaged

Herman Nelson

When I initially learnt that Unam was going to open up a veterinary school I was so excited, however Namibian veterinary controlling bodies felt at some point that the country/Unam was not ready to offer a veterinary course. Hence there was a lot of resistance, the facts for the resistance according to my observations are however that, firstly of the fear that the monopolisation of the industry (veterinary profession) in Namibia is going to be the thing of the past, second reason which is a hidden fact is that people who were running the school from the start are blacks, however with good intentions in my opinions and lastly because there was going to be a loss of control of the veterinary profession from the grassroots.

The resistance from the veterinary controlling body for the school of veterinary medicine to be established was a well-planned movement, as it needed to protect the monopoly of veterinary profession and they needed representatives within the school to pursue their agendas of controlling the profession. The plan succeeded hence the good aim of Namibian government to establish the veterinary school is being sabotaged.      

There is varsity evidence that the current leadership of the school of veterinary medicine is unable to establish a strong academic group of students and Lecturers or staff members. I will hence allude to few of the finds. 

The differences of opinion are not respected within the school’s leadership. If you do not agree with them you became an enemy and a target, this applies to both the students and lecturers.
The pioneers of the school are not wanted in the school.

 HoDs are voiceless those who give in their opinions get to be targeted if it differs with the leaders of the school. The problem here is that there is too much fear that working contracts for them will not be renewed if they address hard matters, they mostly work on a leash. 

 Between 2016-2017, 90% of veterinary enrolled students in the school were whites and mostly South African, I guess that was not at the expenses of the Namibians, the question is who are they going to save?

During our time of study information was also racially and skewedly shared, how can it be possible that white students in most cases have information that the equal black students do not have or get to know the very deserved information later?

 During a series of council audits, individual students were told to speak bad about specific lecturers, which makes the information gained very biased and defeating the purpose. The most nonsense is that people in management of the school have spy students who report colleagues to them, the problem however is that same issue can be done by two different people, black colored and white colored and only black colored lecturers are reported, this created an unhealthy environment and make lecturers not to excel with fears of making errors and get reported, therefore their full potentials is not used.

The clinical rotation is also programmed to contain mostly companion animals (dogs, cats and horses) this is however a market for minority while most of the production animals (cattle and shoats), which the country need most, is given less time.  

The top Unam leadership is not at fault for the following reason: Information is hidden and they really do not understand what is happening within the school. There are also staff members in the school without information of matters of the school. Students are not so helping in bringing the information in fear of being victimised and academically disadvantaged and have submitted to this conditions with the statement “I want to just graduate” thank God we will all graduate come April. 

Lastly, there is an urgent need for leadership which is inclusive and able to create unity for the betterment of the newly established school of veterinary to gain roots and be able to save it national purpose. Foreign lecturers should also not be discriminated as they needed to educate Namibians so that one day the country should be able to rely on its own indigenous experts. 

*The opinions expressed are to the best of my memory and inferences, and are my own
Herman Nelson    

Staff Reporter
2020-02-18 08:21:41 | 1 months ago

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