Yours truly has been following with keen interest the unfolding events and applied patterns leading up to the much anticipated Namibia Football Association (NFA) presidential race.
Without beating about the bush, it’s a great pity and a bit awkward that the two front runners for the NFA hot seat, Robert Shimooshili and Patrick Kauta, are both influential members of two prominent sports entities that have over the years fostered a close brotherly bond in many aspects of the game, so to speak.
It is a well-documented secret that coastal giants Blue Waters Sports Club and Katutura glamour football club African Stars have been enjoying an amazing work relationship to the extent that the two clubs regularly exchange players at any given time without transfer hiccups.
The likes of Charles Kauraisa, Oscar Norich-Tjahuha, Mburumba Kerina, Mathew Amathila, Gerson Kaputji Kuhanga, Moses Cheese Kavikairiua, Sylvanus Riva Jakonia, Haitjama Jomo Nakanene, Edwarth Ndjadila, Jeremiah Britho Shipanga, Immanuel Kamuserandu, Dawid Chicken Kasaona, Munjanda Koos Muaine, Joseph Meinert Tjauha, Freedom Puriza, Getzen Ndjiharine, Lucky Shipanga, Pule Tjombe, Cephas Costa Lucas, Athiel ‘Coolcat’ Mbaha, and Zedecias Haukambe have all played for the Birds and Starlile at different intervals. Lest we forget, club legends Oscar Mengo and Ranga Lucas have been inseparable great buddies ever since their Impala Cup triumph in 1974.
Admittedly, we are living in a democratic society, and people have a constitutional right to choose their paths and freedom of association. Truly speaking, the main bone of contention is when citizens abuse their constitutional right to advance regionalism and ethnic agendas at the expense of nationalism.
My humble plea to those with voting powers: let us please first regard ourselves as Namibians before ethnicity. Well, it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to pick up the puke-inducing pattern of ethnic or provincial misplaced allegiance when it comes to preference for the most suitable or rather competent candidate for the vacant NFA presidency.
Put in simple terms, thirty-three (33) years of democracy, and we still have blokes in our midst saddled with ethnic tendencies and sentiments. Let us call a spade by its authentic definition and stop trying to sugar-coat it with juicy phrases such as ‘BIG SPOON’ and all that kind of jazz.
As it stands, many Namibians are dismally failing to embrace the spirit of unity and inclusivity as they are still clinging to meaningless old-fashioned traditions. Politics, social class, and religion have long served as dividing lines in our society, but the beautiful game of football has always served as a bridge.
Without an iota of doubt, football comfortably serves as our unofficial national identity and our adopted recreational culture. It should not be tampered with. Period!
Make no mistake, the race for the NFA presidency has been regrettably reduced to a statement of ethnic supremacy and revenge on both ends of the stick.
In my honest opinion, both candidates are great men of remarkable pedigree and certainly have what it takes to steer our sinking ship out of troubled waters based on how their respective clubs are administered.
Yours truly managed to run an eye over Shimooshili’s blueprint, and I must admit it looks very impressive and appetising, though one still has doubts about whether some of the outlined ideas are attainable. Under his visionary leadership, the Birds have reclaimed their rightful place in the folklore of domestic football.
In the case of Kauta, I’ve not been able to peruse his manifesto, but the bookish fellah has certainly proven himself beyond doubt. A master tactician, one needs to look no further than the fashion in which he has transformed Stars into a much sought-after product on and off the field. Let the best candidate win and allow football to be the ultimate winner. I rest my case.