Okakarara

Okakarara is a town in Otjozondjupa Region, Namibia, located 50 kilometres (31 mi) southeast of Waterberg National Park.[2] It has an estimated population of 7,000 and is currently growing by 1,500 inhabitants annually.[3]

Okakarara
Town
Nickname(s): 
Erari
Motto(s): 
Risa ukute
Okakarara is located in Namibia
Okakarara
Okakarara
Location in Namibia
Coordinates: 20°35′9″S 17°27′28″E / 20.58583°S 17.45778°E / -20.58583; 17.45778Coordinates: 20°35′9″S 17°27′28″E / 20.58583°S 17.45778°E / -20.58583; 17.45778
Country Namibia
RegionOtjozondjupa Region
Constituencies of NamibiaOkakarara Constituency
Government
 • MayorErenfriede Veundja Kamutuezu
Population
 (2011)[1]
 • Town4,709
 • Urban
7,000
Time zoneUTC+2 (SAST)
ClimateBSh

Okakarara consists of the residential areas of Pamue, the former whites-only area, and Okakarara Proper, the former black residential area. It is the district capital of the Okakarara electoral constituency that includes surrounding settlements.

HistoryEdit

The first house was built by Salathiel Kambamba Kambazembi and Reinard Tjerije who arrived in the area in 1923. The settlement grew over time and was proclaimed a town in 1992.[3] Okakarara became the centre of the Herero Tribal Authority in the early 1970s.[citation needed]

PoliticsEdit

Okakarara is governed by a town council that has seven seats.[4] Formerly part of the Apartheid-era bantustan Hereroland, the area is still mainly populated by the Herero people. Because of this, Okakarara is one of the few towns in Namibia where the otherwise dominant SWAPO party faces considerable opposition.

In the 2004 elections, SWAPO came only second, and the Herero-dominated National Unity Democratic Organisation (NUDO) won. Due to a very unusual coalition between SWAPO and Democratic Turnhalle Alliance (DTA), the then elected town mayor Ehrnst Katjiku has SWAPO affiliation. The 2015 local authority election was again won by NUDO which gained three seats and 842 votes. SWAPO came second with 538 votes and gained two seats, and the DTA also gained two seats with 483 votes.[5]

From the year 2010 to 2012 the Mayor of Okakarara was Hon. MZ Tjiho from DTA and than taken over as from 2013 to 2015 by Hon. John Viakondo, from 2016 to 2018 the Okakarara was governed by PDM Mayor Hon. Olga Tjiurutue, currently the town is back to the ruling party mayor Hon. Veundjua Kamutuezu till 2020 when the next election take place.[citation needed]

EconomyEdit

Since 2007, Okakarara has hosted an annual trade fair. This initiative also led to the erection of a trade centre and an SME park.[3] The town further features a secondary school, a government hospital, a vocational training centre, and an abattoir.

Okakarara Trade FairEdit

The Okakarara trade fair is an annual four-day trade fair event which was first started in 2007 as a way to bring the breeders of the communal area around the town together to showcase the animals as well as share ideas on how they can help improve farming methods. Marquees are erected at the Okakarara Community Cultural Centre which was built with funding from Germany, to accommodate the increased number of exhibitors, as the existing hall is too small to cater to all the exhibitors. Exhibitors include automobile dealers who showcase their latest models. Farmers showcasing their livestock, food stalls, beverages and many other stalls are available. Other exhibitors engaged in the selling of agricultural equipment and vehicles are placed around the fairground on open stands. Because Okakarara is in a rural area, agriculture is important and so the trade fair is a great opportunity to attract investment to the town and it also allows communal farmers to showcase their breeds.

Twin townsEdit

Okakarara has twinning agreements with the following Namibian towns:[3]

Notable residentsEdit

In popular cultureEdit

Okakarara is named as the venue for the "ECACL conference" that Ann Taylor has the honour of attending in the 1989 film The Gods Must Be Crazy II.[6]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Table 4.2.2 Urban population by Census years (2001 and 2011)" (PDF). Namibia 2011 - Population and Housing Census Main Report. Namibia Statistics Agency. p. 39. Retrieved 24 August 2016.
  2. ^ Okakarara namibia-travel profile
  3. ^ a b c d Goreseb, Lesley G (September 2009). "Okakarara Town Council". Supplement to several Namibian newspapers.
  4. ^ "Know Your Local Authority". Election Watch (3). Institute for Public Policy Research. 2015. p. 4.
  5. ^ "Local elections results". Electoral Commission of Namibia. 28 November 2015. p. 7. Archived from the original on 10 December 2015.
  6. ^ Script from film The Gods Must Be Crazy II