The importance of totems

29 May 2019 | Cultural

Some people will always have faith or succeed in whatever they attempt in life, because their totems define what they can achieve or how they will live their lives.

This is according to senior Oshiwambo lecturer at the University of Namibia (Unam), Petrus Angula Mbenzi, who is also a consultant for the Oshakati Totem Expo, which is taking place from 24 May to 1 June at the Oshakati Independence Stadium.

The expo allows people to identify themselves within their family lineages, while businesses are accorded a chance to exhibit their products and services.

This year 14 totems are participating in the expo that has attracted many exhibitors and visitors.

Mbenzi said totems identify with animals, plants or objects that determine family ability. He said every nation in the world has totems which they identify themselves with.

“The totem is a clan to which a family belongs or identify itself with. The totem is not the same as a family, as a totem is what your family identifies itself with and that is where they hold their confidence and pride. Totems are symbolised with things such as animals, crops or any important objects in society,” said Mbenzi.

“It is always good to know the totem to which people in your community belong. If you conduct research into our leaders, you might be surprised that there must be certain totems represented by many, while there might be some totems not represented. There are executive tomes which produce prominent members of societies, while some don't.”

Mbenzi said executive clans are those that were perceived in the past to produce kings and other rulers of society.

He said he is interested in researching which totems Namibian businesspeople belong to, to determine which successful and failed businesspeople belong to.

He said people from different totems can be good in one thing and bad in another. Among the totems that are participating in this year's expo are aakwaanyoka (snakes), aakwanambwa (dogs), aakwanangobe (cattle), aakwaniilya (millets), aakuuta (rabbits), aatundu (zebras), aakwanangadu (crocodiles), aakwanekamba (hyena), aakwanyati (buffalos), aakwaneidi (grass), aakwambahu (locusts), aakwaanime (lions) and others.

This year education minister Katrina Hanse-Himarwa officiated at the opening of the expo. She said she can be defined by a cattle and lion.

ILENI NANDJATO

Similar News

 

Ongandjera queen eyes omagongo empowerment

1 month - 29 May 2019 | Cultural

The queen of Ongandjera, Adelheid Mupiya, wants to commercialise marula products such as the traditional beer known as omagongo.Mupiya says she intends to motivate women...

Traditional courts break for omagongo time

2 years ago - 22 February 2017 | Cultural

It is omagongo time and traditional authorities in northern Namibia are gearing up for the annual omagongo festival, where copious amounts of fermented marula juice...

Oshikoto Regional Council to host Oshipe festival

2 years ago - 28 September 2016 | Cultural

The Oshikoto Regional Council will host its first Oshipe Festival in October in an attempt to preserve cultural heritage.The festival is held in honour of...

Ohangwena fosters cultural identity

2 years ago - 31 August 2016 | Cultural

The Ohangwena Regional Council Directorate of Education held its annual cultural festival recently at the Haimbili Haufiku Senior Secondary School at Eenhana. The event was...

Ondonga to host this year's Marula Festival

3 years ago - 29 April 2016 | Cultural

Known as ‘Oshituthi shOmagongo’ in the Oshiwambo language, the annual Marula Festival in the North will be hosted at the Ondonga Royal Palace at Onamungundo...

Latest News

Face-to-face with poverty

3 weeks ago - 26 June 2019 | Local News

A family of four from Shiwandamo village in the Rundu Rural constituency is living in abject poverty, a situation that has been exacerbated by the...

Ex-Cuba students plan social gathering

3 weeks ago - 26 June 2019 | Local News

Namibians who studied in Cuba during the liberation struggle will hold a social gathering at Grootfontein on 13 July.The gathering is aimed at generating funds...

Carving a living

3 weeks ago - 26 June 2019 | Local News

A 44-year-old man, who has been a wood-carver for most of his life, says this is the only way he can take care of his...

A neglected region

3 weeks ago - 26 June 2019 | Local News

Kavango West is faced with many challenges, including planned capital projects not materialising and others being abandoned by contractors that are not held accountable.Kavango West...

Taya lumbu moluhepo olunene

3 weeks ago - 26 June 2019 | Local News

Ewi lyaNooli olya tsakanene naThadeus Sinonge (48) opamwe nomukulukadhi gwe Lucia Kampanza mboka yahokolola nkene taya mono iihuna kehe esiku omolwa oluhepo ndoka taya lumbu...

Library Day celebrated

3 weeks ago - 26 June 2019 | Local News

The Oshana regional library celebrated Library Day 2019 recently at Eluwa Special School in Ongwediva, with the aim of also celebrating the Day of the...

Shaping the future

3 weeks ago - 26 June 2019 | Local News

A kindergarten has finally been established in the Omundaungilo San community, which offers pre-primary education.According to kindergarten teacher Ester Nghitotelwa, the school started last year...

Dire need for facilities

3 weeks ago - 26 June 2019 | Sports

There is a lack of proper sporting facilities in Kavango West, a situation which negatively affects thousands of young people who have an interest in...

Traditional sport continues at Onamatanga

3 weeks ago - 26 June 2019 | Sports

Despite the drought, farmers made their horses available to participate in the annual Onamatanga traditional sporting event.The event grooms the younger generation in horse racing...

Load More