Photographer's Note

Namibia celebrated 24 years of independence last Friday (21 March)

The Founding President and Father of the Namibian Nation, Dr Sam Nujoma, together with Cabinet ministers, senior government officials and members of the diplomatic corps last Thursday witnessed three nation-building and historical events when President Hifikepunye Pohamba inaugurated the Independence Memorial Museum and unveiled the Genocide Memorial and giant Sam Nujoma Statue in Windhoek.

The museum is a structure that has caused much consternation and controversy See here. But after many years of standing behind barbed wire, it is now open to the public.

The two new statues (I won’t call them sculptures as they are totally lacking in any artistic merit in my opinion) are now the subject of further controversy.

The arguments are fairly simple. A well-known memorial to fallen German soldiers (the Reiterdenkmal Here ) was removed to make way for the new “Genocide’ Memorial. The memorial was removed on Christmas Day under tight police guard and various interested parties are now threatening to sue the Government for removing a monument protected by the National Heritage Act of 2004. They say removing the Reiterdenkmal is a punishable crime as the Constitution states that anyone who contravenes it "is liable to a fine not exceeding N$100 000 or to imprisonment for a period not exceeding five years, or to both such fine and such imprisonment."

Here is a larger version

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Additional Photos by Rosemary Walden (SnapRJW) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2806 W: 84 N: 6959] (31631)
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