In memory of Tate Samson Ndeikwiila: the Fearless Icon

By Shivute Kaapanda [Think Tank Africa]

It was at the beginning of 2016 outside Nampost office in Windhoek’s Independence Avenue when I met the fearless icon after we exchanged few calls and I promised to him that I will buy his then newly published book titled “The Agony of Truth”.

After a short conversation with Tate Samson Ndeikwiila he issued me two other copies of documents; one was written in English while the other one was written in Oshimbaanhu dialect, and he told me to publicly discuss in writing the message contained in the letters.

It was from that day that we kept in contact; on WhatsApp we often discussed concepts of democracy and Namibian history while also touching on the Ombaanhu kingship system and on local events such as Olufuko.

On 17 October 2019 when I was a keynote speaker at DAPP school in Anamulenge Constituency organized by Onesmus Shoombe a friend of mine and an author, Tate Ndeikwiila congratulated me and also requested me to email him a copy of my speech which I gave to the Grade 9 learners at that school.

He has also on various occasions congratulated me on my works as an author which has been published in the local print media since the year 2015. He especially warmly congratulated me on my first book published in 2020 titled “The Conscious Republic”.

I called him my father, and he was a staunch Christian (while I’m atheist).

Tate Samson Ndeikwiila was a rare character of his time; he was fearless and spoke truth to power. This was also demonstrated in his autobiography book whereby his youthful days were marred by apartheid colonial atmosphere which him and others have survived to liberate Namibia.

But there is a rare character of fortitude which Tate Ndeikwiila possessed unlike ordinary Namibian liberation icons, the character and fortitude of telling us the Namibian history which the school curriculum has failed to teach most of us if not all.

The correct version of the history of Lubango Dungeons, the political events of “FNB Oshakati Bomb blast of 19 February 1988” among many others.

Of the two letters I have received from him with his book in 2016 is an open letter to Bishop Zephaniah Kameeta dated 22 February 2015 where he condemned the statement made by Bishop Kameeta on the 27th commemoration of FNB Oshakati bomb blast.

Tate Ndeikwiila believed, as backed by evidence, that the Oshakati FNB bomb blast was not a result of the brutal strategy of the colonial South African regime as believed by common people and which Bishop Kameeta as a church leader cemented but it was rather as a result of a certain freedom fighter Leonard Sheehama as revealed by apartheid Judge Bryan O’Linn in his book titled “NAMIBIA: The Sacred Trust of Civilization – Ideal and Reality, Volume 1”.

Tate Ndeikwiila further went on to state that in this volume Judge O’Linn narrated his involvement in defending in courts of law the cases of several Namibian freedom fighters
including the case of Gerson Hitjevi Veii of SWANU in December 1966 and culminating in the case of PLAN combatant Leonard Sheehama in November 1988.

O’Linn assisted by Adv Pierre Roux was instructed by Hosea Angula of Lorentz&Bone to defend Leonard Sheehama. The letter stated that as a defense lawyer, with in-depth information from his client, O’Linn believed that Sheehama was responsible for the three bomb explosions at Walvisbay and another at FNB Oshakati.

That Sheehama was never prosecuted for the massacre at FNB Oshakati is still puzzling Tate Ndeikwiila as he is turning in his grave and it’s the reason for all Namibians to wake up from the lies of the liberation mantra.

In his mortal being, Tate Ndeikwiila’s soul should illuminate us in this age to deal with such pathetic lies of the liberation struggle. The version of the narration of events by the late Tate Ndeikwiila gives us a clear picture of the relationship and union between SWAPO and the apartheid colonialists in carrying out evil deeds against other Namibians.

Many liberators of late Tate Ndeikwiila’s generation are unable to tell such stories as they
fear victimization; this is perhaps what made Tate Ndeikwiila distinct from an ordinary freedom fighter.

Many are slapped with cash and tractors in their faces to remain defending the liberation struggle lies.

Tate Samson Ndeikwiila was a classical truth teller and a thorn in the flesh of modern colonizers; in disputing Bishop Kameeta’s malicious political statements he was therefore instrumental in confronting the Namibian church leaders.

Churches in Namibia have dismally failed to pronounce truth with regard to the liberation struggle [who] continue to be in bed with politicians and capitalists.

A 1948 to 2021 journey of a fearless and extraordinary liberator has taught us a lot about the other side of the liberation struggle which was intentionally excluded from the school curriculum.

Tate Ndeikwiila has now ascended into the ancestry, only if he could come back and tell us more. May his soul rest in perfect revolutionary peace as we continue to be told about how our descendants were severely killed by the apartheid colonialists and by the people whose hands are full of their own brothers and sisters’ blood.

> Shivute Kaapanda is a pan-African writer, traditionalist, atheist, columnist and author from Eyanda village in Omusati region.