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By M'kwanailya wa Mweuta
Wandering around town over the weekend, I came across my good friend Veii. He was not in a good mood and in his own words; he was pissed off with the continuation of the discrimination laws by the Windhoek Municipality.

His first greeting to me was M'Kwanailya "how much does it cost to amend a law?" Veii is a learned chap and I did not expect him not to know that to amend the laws is what the lawmakers are paid for. I could, however, see that something was disturbing him. He is naturally short tempered and I tried by all means not "to scratch where is does not itch".

Pretending not to have heard his law amendment question, I looked him into his eyes and just greeted him with an Anuwa? (Short for what are they saying?) "Why in the first place do they have to start with road blocks in Moses Garoeb Street?"

"We are about to enter into the third month of the year. For some of us who are not bornfrees, it is a time for all kinds of nostalgia, thinking back to the dawn of independence. "Our people then spent their productive days, serving the master at the exploitative farms of Jan Koekemoer of the then worlds".

I tried to interrupt him in order to grasp what triggered his tirade but he continued like the flow of a burst water pipe. "To escape this slave labour, we aspired to become teachers or nurses. Thanks I did not end up washing the floors of Ou-Baas as a domestic attendant or his gardener. Our career opportunities were limited to say the least, and how I ended up becoming a scribe later in adulthood is actually a miracle if the career choices and opportunities of that time are to be taken into account. Waving my hands into his face I shouted Veii hallo! What upset you today?

Raising his voice he continued: "They say the more things change the more they remain the same. Colonial Namibia is relegated to the dustbin of history".

"Yet , we are still stuck with the exploitative structures and practices of yesteryear. Why can't the people of Katutura be left in peace? Vakuetu! City Police has been visible over the weekend to apprehend residents with outstanding warrant of arrests and traffic fines."

I burst in laughter " Veei all this grovelling, is it because you were fined for traffic offences ?"

"I am not advocating for an amnesty of previously disadvantaged Namibians but why should they be targeted?

"Its the same racial practice of the traffic cop of SuidWes Afrika. They simply had their mind set on maintaining law and order by targeting the black men and women, even for nonsensical offenses. If a mirror was not functional, you were in for it and this resulted in many black people being discouraged from owning cars".

By now we have been standing for almost 30 minutes and Veii has been ignoring all my questions, yet I continued to listen to him blowing off steam.

"This elitist (apartheid of the past) view of law enforcement continues to this day, and the consequences are two sets of laws for the resident of Kleine Kuppe and Auasblick, and another for the Katutura/ Otjomuise/ Okuryangava resident. "We can not run a country with such impunity! Our cops must also set up road blocks in Klein Windhoek and Ludwigsdorf were rampart disregard for traffic rules takes place. " On a regular basis racing happens amongst well-off kids whose parents have so much money that they don't know what to do with it. They buy their kids cars for their 16th birthdays and pay their way out of going to jail" I realised that Veii was not going to stop and by that time some white saliva residue was visible at the corner of his lips.

We started talking simultaneously but he later kept quiet as I persisted to have a say! I said ,Veii, in Ausblick, there is also no freedom if you are black and like to listen to music. Your neighbour Piet will constantly report you for noise pollution. I have witnessed eight City Police officers who turned up at a birthday party after a neighbour screamed noise pollution! But when Piet is watching rugby on his 24 inch LCD flat screen and continuously celebrate and argue with the referee, players and spectators alike through excessive shouting and swearing, being a civilised person I ignore him knowing that 80 minutes of freedom of personal expression is necessary for the soul.

Veii... ? I realised I was speaking to myself Veii was gone. He later sent me an sms " I left I am angry! Let them amend the law to emphasise equal treatment of all Windhoek residents!"


SWAPO Headquarters Mandume Strt
Windhoek, Katutura