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Speech by His Excellency Dr. Hage Geingob, President of the Republic of Namibia

Published: 28.07.2017

Speech by His Excellency Dr. Hage Geingob, President of the Republic of Namibia
Director of Ceremonies;
Ladies and Gentlemen;

I am delighted to be here to celebrate with you a milestone in the life of a very dynamic corporation. I congratulate the chairman, members of the board of directors, CEO and the staff of MultiChoice Namibia on the occasion of its 25th Anniversary. You have done a wonderful job in providing access to entertainment and information throughout the country despite the fact that Namibia is relatively sparsely populated. Your choice of technologies and programming is commendable.

On March 21, 2017, we celebrated 27 years of Independence. We celebrated 27 years of numerous milestones and the achievement of a significant amount of progress, politically, economically and socially. Independence has enabled Namibians to enjoy freedom of movement as well as the freedom of access to information.

Today, we are living in the information age, as age in which knowledge is only a click of a button or a swipe of a finger away. Today Namibians can stay abreast of the latest news, the latest movies, and the latest sports events. These are some of the fruits of the tree of independence, which Namibians are finally able to savour.

In celebrating MultiChoice Namibia’s Silver Jubilee, we are acknowledging one of the companies that has helped introduce the age of multichannel broadcasting to numerous homes across the country and helped advance Namibia’s broadcast industry. In modern society, television has assumed an ever increasing role in our lives. It is not only a convenient source of entertainment, but it keeps people informed on current events, allowing them to follow the latest developments in science and politics.

It therefore acts as a primary disperser of information and a contributor to the development and advancement of a knowledge based society.

Decades ago, Marshall McLuhan had expounded the idea that “medium is the message,” implying that media embeds itself in the message. In other words, how message is received is partially based on the media used to deliver it. In this context, television is particularly significant.

Radio, on the other hand, is important for its reach. These are important considerations for us as we seek to build Namibia into a developed country, as per our Vision 2030.

Namibia is a wonderful country that needs to be promoted as a brand. Yes, we have wide open spaces, we have great landscapes, and we have game parks, but we are more than that. We need also to embrace and promote our cultural heritage, our music, and our artists. MultiChoice is particularly suited for taking up this project.
In a paper titled, Role of the Mass Media in Community Development, Joe Kingsley Eyiah, outlines 6 important functions that broadcast media carries out in societies. These are namely:

  • 1.Surveillance of the environment. This is the collection and distribution of information within and outside a particular environment.
  • 2.Correlation of parts of the society. This includes the interpretation of the information, the prescription of conduct and, the comment on social value;
  • 3.Transmission of social heritage. By communicating information through the mass media we are transmitting social and cultural values, which aim at sustaining the society;
  • 4.Educating the masses. Education on the policies of governments and on the rights and responsibilities could be carried out through the mass media.
  • 5.Entertainment function. The mass media also entertain the public by providing emotional relaxation, intrinsic and cultural enjoyment.
  • 6.Mobilization function. This function of the mass media is very important to developing communities everywhere. It seeks to bring the people together and helps to advance national development.

I would like to expound on the last point concerning the mobilization function of mass media. After 27 years of independence, we are committed to shoring up our peace, stability and national unity by promoting a new narrative, which espouses the principles of nation building.

Part of this process involves ensuring that Namibians learn more about all the cultural traditions which characterize the colourful diversity of our Namibian House.

We need to open up our hearts and eyes in order to warm to one another, in order to strengthen our resolve to shun distrust, intolerance and hatred, which are the antitheses of peace, unity and harmony. I encourage you to explore introducing and promoting new programming, which promotes the narrative of our Namibian House. Let us use the power of television to build, unite and foster a sense of unity and patriotism amongst our people, thereby ensuring that no Namibian feels left out of our nation building project.
Finally, I congratulate the MultiChoice family once again on its silver jubilee in Namibia. May the next twenty five years be full of pleasant surprises for MultiChoice, local talent, and the viewers!

Happy 25th Birthday, MultiChoice Namibia!