The San community at Tsintsabis no longer wants to be associated with their recognised status as marginalised. The community has made a plea for jobs and training opportunities to be considered on par with citizens elsewhere in the country.

Young people from the settlement took to the streets in protest against a lack of opportunities for them, with Mario Ipinge, who led the group, saying the Hai||om and other San tribesmen continue to be left out, even from initiatives implemented at constituency level.

"We, the marginalised communities, are encouraged to apply for any post regardless of the requirements, as we have the advantages of being marginalised, but yet we are not being considered for any government posts. We demand 75% of candidates be recruited from marginalised communities, specifically Guinas Constituency."

The youth also called for the appointment of a Hai||om-speaking police station commander and for the upgrading of police services in their area.

Also included in their demands were land allocation, better healthcare services, and the appointment of a social worker from the community.

Receiving their petition, Guinas Constituency Councillor Elias Marthinu acknowledged that job opportunities often bypass the community due to low levels of education.

"If we talk about empowering marginalised communities, then we should try to lift them up and not suppress them, is what I think. So the requirements, as long as we want to involve these people, must get lower."

Residents threatened to snub any political campaigns, including national elections, should they not receive satisfactory feedback.

Tsintsabis settlement, northeast of Tsumeb, is home to over 2,000 residents.



Faith Sankwasa