Late Damara queens to be honoured

08 Nov 2015 16:50pm
OKOMBAHE 08 NOV (NAMPA) – Former queens of the Damara tribe will from next year receive more recognition for their leadership in the tribe and Namibia at large.
These are the late wives former Damara kings such as Magdalena Goreses, the wife of king Kornelius Goreseb; Salinde Goreses, the wife of king Hosea Goreseb; and Lydia Goreses, the wife of Judas Goreseb.
Speaking to Nampa at the four-day annual Damara Cultural Festival at Okombahe settlement on Saturday, the Secretary-General of the Damara King’s Council Abner Axel Xoagub and Member of Parliament Apius Auchab noted that next year, the event will focus more on honouring the late queens.
Okombahe is situated more than 70 kilometres north-east of Omaruru in the Erongo Region.
“For long we have concentrated more on recognising and honouring the late Damara kings, so next year things will be different, we will erect tombstones at the queens’ graves and thereafter continue to give them the respect they deserve,” said Xoagub.
He noted that another focus for next year is inviting kings from other tribes in Namibia to come and learn about the Damara culture and establish leadership relationships aimed at solving tribal disagreements.
“We would love to have different kings discussing the issue of children’s surnames. In the Damara culture if a baby is born out of wedlock he or she must have the mother’s surname. This is however currently not being fully respected by other tribes, they prefer their surnames. So we want the kings to tackle and solve it,” he told Nampa.
Xoagub stressed that apart from honouring former leaders, the festival promotes Damara culture and customs, especially amongst young people.
“We have activities such as laying of wreaths, a rain dance, rituals, traditional healing as well as demonstrations on how to use traditional medicines,” he explained.
He further noted that it is also important for the Damara clans to converge every year to seek blessings from their ancestors.
The well-attended event which ended on Sunday was addressed by Damara King Justus //Garoëb and other traditional and national leaders.
Other activities included traditional dances and musical performances by local musicians.