Church introduced social services before Govt: Nambala

11 Sep 2014 19:16pm
ONIIPA, 11 SEP (NAMPA) - The church has been providing education, health and social welfare services before Government system were established in Namibia, says the presiding Bishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Namibia (ELCIN).
Dr Shekutaamba Nambala said this during the official handing over of N.dollars 2 million-worth Braille production and printing equipment to the ELCIN Rehabilitation Centre by the Millennium Challenge Account Namibia (MCA-N) at Oniipa in the Oshikoto Region on Wednesday.
He said there is a misunderstanding or misconception among some people that education, health and social welfare are government-initiated services.
Nambala said there was no government or politicians when the church came to Namibia in 1806, only traditional leaders such as kings were in charge of the affairs of the country.
“Education started with the church, forget about the Ministry of Education. Health started with the church, forget about the Ministry of Health,” the ELCIN Bishop argued.
According to him, it is the church that introduced the modern clothes that people wear today, and was the first to put up modern shelter/buildings.
He believes the church has done a lot in terms of the provision of social welfare services even before the Germans, who introduced the first government in Namibia, arrived in the country.
Nambala pointed out that Oniipa, which is an old centre established by the Lutheran Church missionaries from Finland, is where the first hospital, service station, printing and newspaper were established in Namibia.
He noted that Ongwediva town was established on church land which was used to produce food for the communities more than 200 years ago.
The church and Government, Nambala said, are all public institutions with similar responsibilities of ensuring the welfare of the nation.