On Christianity Gangsterism and Side-Chicking: a Response to Rev Enkono on Olufuko

By Shivute Kaapanda [Think Tank Africa]

In his utterances in The Namibian newspaper dated 25 March 2022, the general secretary of ELCIN and a cloth gangster Rev. Alpo Enkono labelled Olufuko festival as a ‘pagan and shameful act which according to his Finnish experience and knowledge of Christianity Christians do not want to be associated with’.

It would seem that Enkono is speaking for himself as well as for the ELCIN church to which he belongs as an indigenous African. As an African Christian he is speaking within the context of a church but against his ancestral heritage. Enkono’s words are equal to an allegation that to those African Christians who practice Olufuko or at least who subscribe to the practice are wrong and are involving themselves in a shameful act and paganism.

Enkono is clearly politicising Christianity using Olufuko causing tensions and division even among Christians themselves who would have otherwise liked to believe in the authenticity of their culture via Olufuko while still remaining staunch believers of their Eurocentric religion.

It would seem that Enkono can never stand and die for the African kings and queens who created and presided over the systems of African traditional marriages across Owambo kingdoms such as Olufuko, Efundula, Oohango dhiitsali, etc., but can stand and die for the sins committed by Finnish missionaries who came to destroy the religious and cultural fabric of Africans such as was done by a certain Mr. Martti ‘Nakambale’ Rautanen.

This is rather embarrassing than interesting that African culture is really undermined and reduced to a level of a side chick in modern love relationships.

African people were always spiritual before the church came; it therefore goes that religion is the cultural understanding of the spiritual.

The arrival of missionaries such as Martti Rautanen has undermined African spirituality, the teaching of the gospel has tortured Africans to hate themselves and their spiritual and cultural practices, the gospel has taught people like Alpo Enkono to disrespectfully undermine their own ancestral heritage such as Olufuko because the gospel through this Nakambale taught him that Jesus has died for his sins not knowing that by undermining his culture his sins will be much older.

The missionaries had committed more sins in miseducating African people by robbing them of  their culture and spiritual values more than their counterparts whom they have laid foundation to murder Africans.

By listening to what Enkono is saying King Nehale lyaKambonde, King Mandume yaNdemufayo and other African kings are turning in their graves. In the African spiritual context a person like Enkono is not eligible to be welcomed in the African ancestry but his spirit will rather be sent off spinning in the wilderness like a ghost of the night. The vulgarization of Olufuko festival by Enkono who behave like a grandchild of Martti ‘Nakambale’ Rautanen lacks indigenous knowledge of African culture and spirituality.

Indeed he suffers from Christianity gangsterism, cultural backwardness and side-chick Christianity. Like a young crocodile that abandons waters of the river and go swim in the ocean, it would become a waste flashed at the shore or becoming food for the whales to consume.

African traditional education and religion is homemade and cannot be taught at church like the Jesus of Nazareth.

The promotion of ELCIN and its commercial wings as well as its politics in the religious space should not be advanced by using Olufuko by its members; the next time  Mr. Enkono would take a public platform and denounce his own African culture by being unreasonable should be to prepare his spirit to become a side chick of European evangelism.

ELCIN must first get its organizational leadership in order (who are busy fighting for Holy Communion) before lecturing us on Olufuko’s authenticity.

Olufuko will remain alive and well and will not change to any name. In the spirit of oneness as Africans and for the co-existence of a heterogeneous society Outapi Town Council will host Olufuko festival this year and allocate a free stand to ELCIN to sell more bibles so that it can at least settle all its bills.

– Shivute Kaapanda is a fearless Activist writer from Eyanda village in Omusati region; he is also the author of the book titled ‘The Conscious Republic’ published in 2020. He can be reached at iskaapanda@gmail.com