1959 Sam Shafiishuna Nujoma joins the OPO after entering active politics as a leading member of the Mandume Movement (around 1954) and after regular contacts with Andimba Toivo Ya Toivo, although he only meets Toivo much later (1984). He establishes support for OPO in centres such as Walvis Bay and Otjiwarongo. With Jacob Kuhangua he leads the first Windhoek branch of OPO in the "Old Location" and becomes OPO President later this year. The OPO Vice-President is Louis Nelengani and Jacob Kuhangua Secretary-General of the Party.
Simon "Mzee" Kaukungua becomes OPO organiser in Ohalushu. Later he becomes one of the first SWA petitioners to the UN. The petitions, translated into English by Theophilus Hamutumbangela, are sent to the UN via Michael Scott or Toivo Ya Toivo.
The Herero Chiefs’ Council sends Hans Beukes and Jariretundu Kozonguizi to the UN as representatives of a future independent Namibia.
Immanuel Gottlieb Nathaniel "Maxuilili" joins the OPO.
Gertrud "Rikumbi" Rikumbirua Kandanga joins the OPO and becomes Women’s League Secretary of the OPO Walvis Bay branch.
John Ya Otto enters the political arena on being asked by Sam Nujoma to act as an interpreter for meetings with Baster leaders in Rehoboth.
The SWA Coloured Organisation (SWACO) is formed in Windhoek, and takes a pro-SA stance. Another "coloured" organisation is established in the form of the Volksorganisasie van Suidwes-Afrika (People’s Organisation of Southwest-Africa), which is anti-SA, but soon becomes defunct. A third "coloured" (or Baster) organisation, the Burgerorganisasie van Rehoboth, is founded during the ‘60s in Rehoboth, but it plays a limited role in national politics.
By now, it has been established that a new "coloured" township will be built west of the town centre of Windhoek (Khomasdal), although opposed by SWACTA and SWACPB.
Members of SWAPA (and other political organisations) create The South West News, a newspaper in English, Afrikaans, Otjiherero and Oshivambo (one article even appears in German) which promotes "black" nationalism in Namibia (first edition appears on 05.03.1960). The publisher is the "black" African Publishing Company. The first editors are Emil Appolus and Zedekia Ngavirue who later plays a prominent role in the South West African National Union (SWANU). The paper is supported by liberal "whites" like Karl Friedrich Lempp from the Allgemeine Zeitung (AZ), Daan Minnaar from the The Windhoek Advertiser and Dan Tregoning from Otjiwarongo. Only nine editions (last edition: 03.09.1960) are printed. The only "black" publishing house in Namibia, the African Publishing Company (founded on 28.10.1959) has to be closed in 1961 because it cannot be sustained financially and most of its editors are in the mean time in exile.
King Iipumbu ya Tshilongo dies at Oshikuku hospital in Ovamboland.
The |Hai-|khauan headman Edward Isaak Jr. dies at Berseba. He is succeeded by Diederik Isaak. Subsequently, the rift between the Goliath and Isaak again clans breaks up into the open. This leads to the additional appointment of David Christian Goliath as second headman. Now the whole issue becomes intertwined both with the struggles around the implementation of the Odendaal Plan and, with emerging party politics between the pro-South African Bantustan development and pro-independence forces. The Isaak clan supports the South African Namaland dispensation with the later (1977) Democratic Turnhallen Alliance (DTA) while the Goliath clan joins the South West Africa People’s Organisation (SWAPO) in the 1970s.
Reverend Markus Kooper rejects South African plans to evict the Kai
5khaun (also called Red Nation) from Hoachanas and to resettle them at Aminuis and Tses. This forces him to move to Itsawisis in the Tses Reserve.
The private airline, Suidwes Lugdiens, undertakes its first charter flight between southern Angola and Windhoek.
SA Railways buys 115 General Electric Class 32-000 diesel locomotives from the USA (at a cost of £9 million) for the SWA system. Steam traction is systematically phased out in SWA.
An intensive exploration programme at Klein Aub Mine delineates new copper ore deposits.
March The Rehoboth Taxpayer’s Association is formed by Hans Diergaardt. Mr Olivier plays a leading role in the association.
Kurt Dahlmann, later editor of the Allgemeine Zeitung newspaper in Windhoek, suggests a loose federation of SA and SWA.
April The OPO campaigns against the contract labour system. The organisation suggests that the territory be placed under UN trusteeship.
May The formation of the South West African National Union (SWANU) is envisaged: Herero Chiefs’ Council, SWAPA and the SWASB, as well as Sam Nujoma and Jacob Kuhangua, are instrumental in its formation. Clemence Kapuuo proposes the name "SWANU". Chiefs such as Hosea Kutako later do not succeed in gaining control of this mass-based organisation. The emergence of the OPO and SWANU introduces an element of rivalry which later results in a clash between Kerina and Kozonguizi. Their personal rivalry is further aggravated by the illusion of imminent independence for SWA under the auspices of the UN. Kerina later joins the South West Africa People’s Organisation (SWAPO).
August Sam Nujoma opens an OPO Branch Office at Tsumeb.
20.08. SWANU is unofficially founded. The first elections for the executive office of the party lead to a power struggle for positions. Clemence Kapuuo and Levy Nganjone represent the "traditionalist" wing.
Katuutire Kaura joins SWANU.
23.08. In Windhoek and in presence of Sam Nujoma the Ondonga Chief Johannes Kambonde tries to persuade Ovambo contract labourers to leave OPO. He is, however, not successful.
28.08. The new salt gravel road from Swakopmund to Walvis Bay, the "Jan Loopuyt coastal road", is opened for traffic.
September The OPO joins SWANU (but continues to operate as an independent party). An alliance of the OPO, SWANU and the traditional headmen and chieftains of the Ovaherero, Nama and Dama organise a mass campaign against a re settlement programme that envisages destroying the "Old Location" (30 000 inhabitants) west of Windhoek’s town centre, and building the townships of Katutura (Otjiherero: "the place where people do not live") and Khomasdal. Protest models are the "Defiance Campaign" of the African National Congress (ANC) in SA, and Ghandi’s non-violent "satyagraha". Some external leaders such as Kozonguizi and Kerina write letters to local political leaders such as Andimba Toivo Ya Toivo, Sam Nujoma, John Muundjua, Barney Mbuha and Clemence Kapuuo, in which they provide political advice and express hope for self-determination under the auspices of the UN.
The new broad-
gauge railway line reaches Otjiwarongo.
13.09. During a meeting convened by the Advisory Board and attended by the Superintendent of the "Old Location", Nel de Wet, the residents reject their removal to Katutura. Another meeting dated 29.10. has the same result.
27.09. SWANU is officially launched at a public meeting in Windhoek with the backing of the Herero Chiefs’ Council under Hosea Kutako. The Council and Sam Nujoma support Jariretundu Kozonguizi as president of SWANU (Kozonguizi remains president until 1966). Vice President is Uatja Kaukuetu. Further members of the executive office are: Sam Nujoma, Louis Nelengani and Emil Appolus (OPO), Uaseta Mbuha and John Muundjua (SWAPA), Isascar Kambatuku and Aaron Kapere (Herero Chiefs’ Council) and Augus Gariseb (Dama representative). Considerable confusion surrounds the relationships between different political organisations and especially between "traditionalist" and "intellectual" forces.
November The US Ambassador in South Africa, K Crowe, meets Hosea Kutako in Windhoek.
03.12. 200 "black" women demonstrate in front of the SWA Administrator’s residence.
08.12. OPO President Sam Nujoma and SWANU Vice President Uatja Kaukuetu are pivotal in the organisation of the boycotts.
10.12. Eleven people die when police move into the "Old Location" in Windhoek in order to break up a crowd of demonstrating people. Amongst the dead is the "coloured" leader, Willem Cloete, representative on the Native Advisory Board. The only woman killed is Anna Mungunda. Some of the wounded are brought into the "Non-White" Hospital in Windhoek. However, the South African Administrator, DT Viljoen, allegedly orders, according to various sources, that those Africans who were injured during the uprising should not be given medical assistance. Consequently, Ruth Kiwi, President of South West African Red Cross, refuses to allow blood donations to the wounded residents of the "Old Location". Sister Meekulu Putuse Appolus assists the wounded.
The Rhenish Missionary Society (Preses Diehl) keeps silent, although "black" pastors demand a formal protest against the authorities’ decision to kill some of the demonstrators.
Prominent community leaders such as Sam Nujoma, Moses Makue ||GaroŽb, Uatja Kaukuetu, Nathan Mbaeva, Clemence Kapuuo, David Meroro, John Ya Otto and Emil Appolus witness the events. Nujoma is imprisoned and later forced into exile. Nathan Mbaeva is deported to Epukiro and goes later into exile. Uatja Kaukuetu and Charles Kauraise flee to Sweden. Tunguru Huaraka escapes to Ghana. Vita Kaukuetu flees to East Africa and Ambrose Kandjii to North Africa. Other SWANU members who are forced into exile are: Zedekia Ngavirue, Daniel Munamava, Moses Katjiuongua and Clement Veii. Others are sent by Hosea Kutako to Botswana, this being organised jointly by SWANU and the Herero Chiefs’ Council. Kutako sends them to be trained as freedom fighters. Reportedly SWAPO later blocks any assistance from the Organisation for African Unity (OAU) for these people. Some exiles end up receiving training in the Ethiopian Army during the rule of Emperor Haile Selasse. This period sees the third wave of Ovaherero fleeing to present-day Botswana (the first and second waves having fled after the Ovambanderu War of 1896 and the Ovaherero-German War of 1904/06).

Old-Location_Windhoek.jpg (28679 bytes)

Old Location Windhoek, 1950s
Namibia State Archive

Namibia_Khomas_Windhoek_OldLocation_1.JPG (101994 bytes)Namibia_Khomas_Windhoek_OldLocation_2.JPG (139330 bytes)Namibia_Khomas_Windhoek_OldLocation_3.JPG (116441 bytes)

Windhoek: Hochland Park: Old Location: Cemetery: March 2003
Copyright of Photos: Dr. Klaus Dierks

WB00823_.GIF (134 bytes)

[Return to Table of Contents]

forward.GIF (132 bytes)