First-ever Olufuko Festival launched in Omusati Region


Close to N.dollars 500 000 was collected during a fundraising gala dinner and the launch of the first-ever Olufuko Festival, which is scheduled to take place at Outapi in the Omusati Region next month.
The money was collected through pledges and cash contributions mostly by local business personalities, traditional authorities, public institutions and non-governmental organisations (NGOs).
The Olufuko Festival, an initiative of the Outapi Town Council, is scheduled to take place between 21 and 27 August and will be hosted at that town’s show ground, which is still under construction.
The organising committee of the Olufuko Festival estimated that some N.dollars 800 000 is needed in order for the festival to be successfully hosted.
Former President Dr Sam Nujoma, who is the patron of the Olufuko Festival, is said to have opened the festival’s account with an amount of N.dollars 5 000 some time back.
Nujoma was expected to launch the festival officially during the fundraising gala dinner on Saturday night, but could not make it due to other commitments.
Omusati regional governor Sophia Shaningwa delivered Nujoma’s speech to a packed regional assembly hall at the offices of the Omusati Regional Council, which is where the fundraising dinner and the launch took place.
The former President indicated in his statement that the Olufuko Festival will consist of four sections – traditional and cultural performances, agriculture, arts and commerce.
“A nation without culture is like a tree without the roots,” Nujoma noted in his statement, while at the same time suggesting that all Namibian traditional norms and values be revived.
‘Olufuko’, a tradition which serves to prepare young women who have reached adulthood for marriage, pregnancy or labour and the care of their families, will form part of festival’s tradition and culture section.
The Ombalantu traditional district was the centre where families from other traditional districts such as Ongandjera, Uukwambi, Ukolonkadhi and Uukwaluudhi brought girls for the Olufuko ceremony during the olden days.
The Deputy Minister of Veterans’ Affairs and Swapo-Party member of the National Council (NC), Hilma Nicanor, also attended the event.


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