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Herero Living Museum open in Otjokavare

Preserving and safeguarding cultural identity is vital in today’s world, as it provides a sense of belonging, structure, and stability.

After four years of extensive consultation with various stakeholders, the first ever Herero Living Museum in the country opened to the public in June.

The museum is located in the Otjokavare area in the Kunene Region.

In a rapidly changing world where people adhere to different religions, it is crucial to preserve one’s culture.

By preserving cultural traditions, individuals maintain connections with their heritage, enhancing understanding of personal history and identity, which in turn shapes future generations.

Among its objectives, the Herero Living Museum aims to maintain the museum in a traditional manner, hoping to attract young people who have grown up in urban areas.

Tjauira Vetowojao, the supervisor of the Herero Living Museum, shared more:

“We intend to keep it as traditional as it was supposed to be in the olden days. If you look around, you will not see any modern equipment; we only use nature. Our children who grow up in towns lack knowledge of culture and tradition, so we will teach them how to behave and follow traditional norms of the Herero people.”

The village elder of the living museum emphasised that it is unfortunate that many people have abandoned their traditions to follow other religions.

Joseph Muzuma, the Village elder of the Herero Living Museum, shared his sentiments:

“Things have changed, and now the children are born-again Christians. Neither the husband nor the wife goes to the holy fire. It is part of the current world. I am seated at the holy fire while my child is a born-again Christian. Life should go on because we are all human beings.”

The museum faces several challenges, including water supply.

Members of the museum currently use a private car to collect water from a location eight kilometres away.

“There is no water; we have to collect it. We appeal to good Samaritans to help us with water pipes that will supply us with water so that everyone can stay here.”

Despite these challenges, they are optimistic that the museum will attract tourists as it is located in an area with a high influx of visitors who come to see the Etosha National Park.

Article by NBC

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