There is nothing more unifying than coming together under the banner of culture. And “we are what we are because of the values and norms of our cultures,” said the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of International Relations and Cooperation Mrs Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah.

Nandi-Ndaitwah was speaking as the keynote speaker at the Oshakati Totem Expo gala dinner where hundreds of invited guests had gathered last night to raise funds for the exposition which is slated for the 4th to 10 December this year.

Despite the “unifying” nature of cultures, Namibia and the rest of Africa, has seen divisions and conflicts emanating from and fueled by cultural differences between tribes.

“Our cultures and traditions should not be used to divide us and destroy our country,” Nandi-Ndaitwah stressed. “Our cultures must be a stream of water leading to the fertile land we call Namibia.”

Nandi-Ndaitwah said that the totem cultural expo of Oshakati is important as it also has potential to attract visitors, boost the local economy and create jobs.

Nandi-Ndaitwah, who is of the Ovakwanangobe totem clan on the paternal side and of the Ovakwaluvala on the maternal side, stated that the Oshakati totem expo is an event “to showcase our cultures, an opportunity to show how we live together despite our various cultures.

“This is not just a fundraising, but a collective investment in the future of Oshakati. From your contribution Oshakati will be able to cater for its growing population. Together we can turn dreams into a reality.

“Nothing is too much, and nothing is too little to give. Let’s support this wonderful initiative.”

Oshakati Mayor Leonard Hango said that the Oshakati Totem Expo was started in 2012, and only had a break of three years during the period of Covid-19.

“I am very confident that this new comeback of our totem expo will be bigger and greater,” Hango said.

He stated that some of the money from the fundraising will be used to construct the Totem Expo centre infrastructures which are permanent.

In the photo: Deputy Prime Minister Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah at the Oshakati Totem Expo fundraising gala dinner.