THE King of the Ndonga, King Fillemon Shuumbwa Nangolo, launched a historic guide of the eight Northern Tribes and places in interest at the newly constructed state of the art Nehale Lodge at the edge of his kingdom just outside Etosha on the way to Omuthiya.
The first of its kind and high-quality travel book “Discover the Colourful World of Owambo” is the title of the 365-page book officially launched by King Fillemon Shuumbwa Nangolo of the Ondonga Traditional Authority earlier this week.
The book was published by Gondwana Collection Namibia as a comprehensive guide to the north, “indispensable to the informed traveller”, but likewise of interest to the general public.
The book is packed with over 400 photos and is written in an easy-to-read style. It provides detailed descriptions of the natural environment and the way of life of the eight Aawambo traditional communities, their leaders, festivals, historic sites, the colourful traditional dresses and the northerners’ unique diet.
The author of the book is a veteran journalist, internationally renowned media trainer and author of numerous books, Willie Olivier. In compiling and researching the book Olivier got the nickname ‘Othondoro’ by the local population.
In his speech, King Nangolo said that he went through the book quickly before the launching ceremony and is very much impressed.
He expressed the hope that the book would be read widely in the North as it contains valuable information about each of the eight traditional communities of Aawambo as well as a wealth of information about events that shaped the history of the geographic area formerly known as Owamboland.
Preceded by a guided tour of the Etosha National Park, the book launch event took place at the Gondwana Collection’s King Nehale Lodge, located about three kilometres to the north of the Nehale Gate.
The author, Olivier, said that his latest book was a product of his decades-long experience as a journalist and more than four years of data collection through interviews and attending important events as well as visiting historic sites in the Northern Regions.
Retired Employment Equity Commissioner Vilbard Usiku and Trustco Media’s Chris Jacobie were among the guests.
Jacobie said that ‘Discover the Colourful World of Owambo’ is a key that unlocks a treasure of people and their values from which Namibia can only get richer. Jacobie said that the Ondonga area can be described as the throat of Namibia through which, goodwill and development to all areas passed at astonishing speed and with efficiency serving the communities.
Gondwana’s Brand and Marketing Director Manni Goldbeck sketched the background and said his love for the North developed over years and various visits that shaped his understanding lead to the birth of the King Nehale Lodge. The construction and design of the Lodge include all aspects of the life of the Northern people and is a small step into the giant leap into tourism potential that is mostly untapped.
He said that he visited the North for the first time shortly after Namibia gained independence in 1990 and from there was fascinated by the rich culture, tolerance, hospitality and the friendliness of its people. He eventually decided to build a lodge in an area that was overlooked by the mainstream tourism in order “to put Owambo on the tourist map”.
With the devastation of COVID-19 on the industry and the spirit of Namibians I believe that Nehale will be a springboard that will serve Namibia well,” Goldbeck said.
The book will also be available electronically to enable every Namibian to have access.
The King Nehale Lodge will be officially opened next year.