Omaruru, Namibia

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Omaruru
City
Official seal of Omaruru
Seal
Motto: Believe and Courage
Omaruru is located in Namibia
Omaruru
Omaruru
Location in Namibia
Coordinates: 21°26′S 15°56′E / 21.433°S 15.933°E / -21.433; 15.933
Country  Namibia
Region Erongo Region
Constituency Omaruru constituency
Population (2011)[1]
 • Total 6,300
Time zone South African Standard Time (UTC+1)

Omaruru is a city[2] and constituency in the Erongo Region of Namibia. The town has 14,000 inhabitants[3] and owns 352 square kilometres (136 sq mi) of land.[4] The town is situated near the Erongo Mountains, on the usually dry Omaruru River. It is located on the main paved road from Swakopmund to Otjiwarongo. The name in the local Otjiherero language means 'bitter milk', as the cattle used to browse on a local bush that turned their milk bitter.

The town is known for its annual festival where the Hereros commemorate their past local chiefs, its winery and for the dinosaur footprints at nearby Otjihenamaparero.

History[edit]

In 1871, Anders Ohlsson and Axel Eriksson established a brewery at Omaruru. Eriksson had also established a trading post, which flourished and by 1878 he employed about forty whites.[5] Eriksson's business was based upon long-distance trading between southern Angola and Cape Colony, which necessitated the establishment of regional trade routes[6]

The town grew around a mission built in 1872 by Gottlieb Viehe, now a museum, and was attacked in 1904 during the Herero and Namaqua Genocide. Franke Tower was later erected to commemorate the relief by Hauptmann Victor Franke's troops of the local garrison that was beleaguered by Herero tribesmen who had risen against the German colonial presence.

Legacy of von Trotha[edit]

The descendants of Lothar von Trotha and the von Trotha family travelled to Omaruru in October 2007 by invitation of the royal Herero chiefs and publicly apologised for his role in the Herero Genocide. Member of the family Wolf-Thilo von Trotha: "We, the von Trotha family, are deeply ashamed of the terrible events that took place 100 years ago. Human rights were grossly abused that time".[7]

Politics[edit]

In the 2010 regional elections, SWAPO's Uparura U. U Michael Tjirare won the constituency with 1,102 votes. The defeated challengers were Josef Landuleni Nangolo of the Rally for Democracy and Progress (570 votes), Lisken Noabes of the United Democratic Front (398 votes) and John Tjiuongua of the Congress of Democrats (96 votes).[8]

Transport and infrastructure[edit]

Omaruru is the only Namibian town not connected to the NamWater pipeline network. It receives its water from boreholes along the Omaruru River which are managed by the municipality.[9]

The town lies on the Trans-Namib Railway.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Table 4.2.2 Urban population by Census years (2001 and 2011)". Namibia 2011 - Population and Housing Census Main Report. Namibia Statistics Agency. p. 39. Retrieved 10 September 2013. 
  2. ^ "Local Authorities". Association of Local Authorities in Namibia (ALAN). Retrieved 1 October 2012. 
  3. ^ Kazondovi, Lorraine (12 December 2011). "Racial integration failing at Omaruru". New Era. 
  4. ^ "ELECTIONS 2010: Erongo regional profile". New Era. 16 November 2010. 
  5. ^ Christison, G. "BEYOND THE PALE: DAMARALAND & OVAMBOLAND". Retrieved 19 Nov 2009. 
  6. ^ Sellström, Tor (1999). "Sweden and National Liberation in Southern Africa: Volume 1". Nordiska Afrikainstitutet, Uppsala. Retrieved 19 Nov 2009. 
  7. ^ BBC News
  8. ^ Election results from Electoral Commission of Namibia
  9. ^ Hartmann, Adam (2 April 2013). "Omaruru running dry". The Namibian. 

Coordinates: 21°26′S 15°56′E / 21.433°S 15.933°E / -21.433; 15.933