“Through PACON, I think we should be able to create a way to work together.”

Chairman Omali met with Nahas Angula, Prime Minister of Namibia during his May, 2006 speaking tour of that country. Chairman Omali spoke with Angula about the work to build the African Socialist International and requested support for the efforts to build the International Tribunal on Reparations for African People to be held in Berlin, Germany in June 2007.  

Chairman Omali: Right now we are bringing more and more Africans from throughout the world into the process of building the International Tribunal on Reparations for African People which will be held in Berlin next year. We want you to be informed of this and would like to see if you, your office or SWAPO as an organization might be able to intervene, should you so desire. My objective is to win your sympathy for the project and give you an opportunity, should you desire, to say how you might intervene in this process. 

Nahas Angula: Thank you very much. I think we are coming back to where we started when we were confronting colonialism in first place. You are talking about Berlin. You are talking about Paris. You are talking about London. That reminds me of the old Pan African Congresses that were held in some of these places. That was when Africa was in the thick of colonial occupation.

These congresses were started by a few people, but the awareness they created fired by the imagination of young African nationalists. Through struggle Ghana became independent, then everybody said, “Oh, it’s possible.” I’m quite sure the same thing you are doing by raising the awareness, the consciousness of the world will catch the imagination of many Africans.

Here in Namibia we are one of the countries that suffered from colonial genocide. We do have people here who are making a case against the German government. I am quite sure your young colleague will be able to introduce you to some of these people and to listen to their case. As a government we have not yet made up our mind on that one, but as individuals, we put on different hats. One of the organizations that we established here because of this whole issue of being conscious about African history and the African condition, is the Pan African Center of Namibia, PACON.

I happen to be one of the people behind that center. You can work around PACON to bring this idea the attention for our people. And we can use PACON as the contact point for this kind of activity. I think you will be meeting with the people from PACON. Through PACON, I think we should be able to create a way to work together.

“So we have to struggle by reminding ourselves of the debt the world owes us, especially those who came here to take slaves and gold. ”

The idea is good. It’s not only to talk about reparations. It also can talk about the condition of Africa in the present geopolitical set up. Even in terms of trade, the situation is so out of symmetry, even now with our nominal flags and our constitutions and presidents and prime ministers, we are on the receiving end. We are still not there as yet. So we have to struggle by reminding ourselves of the debt the world owes us, especially those who came here to take slaves and gold. For something like six centuries they were living on this, before they found that it was no more tenable.

The post colonialist period then took another century before we able to get rid of it. So we have to remind ourselves of that and now it comes in a different form, through things like globalization. We are still on the receiving end, so we should not give up the struggle. We should continue. We have to raise the consciousness and the awareness of the young people that Africa and the diaspora needs to take a place around the global family as equals. 

Chairman Omali: It seems to me that the truth of Garvey and Nkrumah is bearing itself out in this world. It is very difficult for Africa to move forward as these separate entities.  

Prime Minister Angula: Yes. Unity is key. As soon as we realize that, the better for us. I hope that we can push the African Union really to make meaningful positions, not just political statements, but common positions. 

Chairman Omali: We will see whether the African Union is capable of doing that.  

Prime Minister Angula: Everything needs leadership, leadership skills. We need to find leaders who can push the thing politically. The organization is there. We need leaders to raise issues, serious ones. 

Chairman Omali: I appreciate your being willing to give us this opportunity to share this with you.  

Prime Minister Angula: Thank you so much, Brother. Feel at home. 

Chairman Omali: I am at home! Thank you for the hospitality, not only your own but of the people here in Namibia. 


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