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Fenced in by barbed wire, the Independence Memorial Museum remains unopened to the public.

I don’t think any photographs of the new Independence Memorial Museum in Windhoek have been posted on TE before. For those of you who have been to Windhoek, this now stands where the Reiterdenkmal (see http://www.trekearth.com/gallery/Africa/Namibia/photo1418387.htm) used to stand, just across the road from the Christuskirche (see http://www.trekearth.com/gallery/Africa/Namibia/photo1418581.htm ) and in an area where most of the significant colonial buildings stand.

Known as the Coffee Percolator or the Molar Tooth, the building has caused upset among many Namibians. Costing in excess of N$100 million , construction began in 2009 and 5 years later the museum is still not open to the public although the official opening took place in March 2012. The museum is one of three national sites, (State House and Heroes Acre) built by a North Korean construction company, Mansudae Overseas Projects. The government has paid an estimated N$3 billion, including hidden costs, to the North Koreans in the last ten years. The Koreans use their own artisans, employing unskilled local handymen and only pass on a little of that money to local sub-contractors. In a country with high unemployment and a lack of affordable housing is it any wonder that the impoverished get fed-up?
The public and some opposition parliamentarians have also questioned the ethics of awarding the job to the North Korean company when no tenders or public consultation or parliamentary discussion took place.
Anyone interested in reading more on this should check out the following link http://mg.co.za/article/2013-04-26-00-north-koreas-deals-in-nambia-a-mystery

Another bone of contention is the design of the museum. Acclaimed Windhoek architect Jaco Wasserfall commented that the Asian designs being constructed in Windhoek “make(s) architectural references that are completely foreign to Namibia, its people, culture and history,” More can be read here http://www.namibian.com.na/index.php?id=28&tx_ttnews%5Btt_news%5D=71814&no_cache=1

This photograph is copyright of Rosemary Walden - © Rosemary Walden 2013. All rights reserved. Any redistribution or reproduction of the image in any form is prohibited. You may not, except with my express written permission, copy, reproduce, download, distribute or exploit the content. Nor may you transmit it or store it in any other website or other form of electronic retrieval system

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Additional Photos by Rosemary Walden (SnapRJW) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2769 W: 81 N: 6778] (30687)
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