Friday 14 May 2021
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A Born free making a difference… Ndatulumuka Haikali

Certainly your background will not determine what you future holds. And indeed the young people of today are in much privileged position than the youth of yesteryear. So many opportunities are afforded to the youth to make a valuable contribution in our country. It remains up to them to seize these opportunities and become pioneers in their own right. The story of Ndatulumuka Haikali aged 21 is living proof that age is nothing but a number when you are determined to leave this earth with a lasting legacy. He is currently a third year student at the University of Science and Technology (NUST) pursuing his bachelor’s degree in Economics. He is the proud author of three books and founder of The Namibia Economic Development Alignment NEDA.

Humble beginnings
Haikali was born on 10 September 1996. He grew up in the small village of Ehafo in the Ohangwena region. And he is the youngest of two children raised by a single mother. From an early age Haikali had to take on the role of the man in the house after his father had passed on in 2003. He spent most of his childhood alone with his mother as his sister went off to varsity. Haikali praised his mother for helping him become the man he is today. “Who I am today is because of her and I would do anything to show her how special she is.” He attended Ehafo Combined School from 2003-2009 where he completed his primary school. He went on to complete his Secondary School at Etalaleko senior secondary school in 2014. He then moved far away from home to the capital city of Namibia ( Windhoek ) to further his education.

His love for writing
As early as the fifth grade, Haikali started writing stories of his own in a normal writing book. He had always dreamt of one day publishing his own book but his immediate reality would make this a distant desire. At the time his mother couldn’t even afford to buy a computer on which he could perfect his craft and she couldn’t financially invest in his dream that perhaps would not succeed. In 2013 as a grade 11 pupil he got an opportunity to relive his dream as his high school teacher gave him access to a computer on which he would begin to type his first book on.

Writing his own books
In 2014 he completed writing his first book entitled ‘Omona wamtukweni eyoka.’ This book was about the mistreatment of step mothers towards their step children. And just as he reached his first mile stone he was faced with the challenge of accumulating financial assistance to publish and launch his book. “Publishers asked as much as N$20 000 to publish my book,” he said. As a result Haikali decided to become his own publisher. Haikali hopes to publish the books of other aspiring authors under his publication as he awaits financial assistance from various donors to start the process.

On 18 September 2015, he launched his first book at his former high school Etalale Secondary school. He decided to launch the book at his previous school, because the year he completed high school he was the only grade 12 learner that made it to varsity.” I wanted to inspire the students to remain committed to their studies and that they too can acquire the things I have through hard work.”

The young author went on to publish and launch his second book on 18 November 2016 entitled ‘SMEs Development Policies.’ The book is a guide aided with strategies as to how SMEs can be promoted and the improvements that can be made on their regulatory framework and training services. “The small businesses in our villages are making a change in our communities and we need to promote them,” he said.

He recently published his third book launched on 18 March 2017. The book is entitled ‘Understanding Economic Problems of Namibia.’ What motivated him to write the book was the blame shifting of the economic crisis Namibia Faces. With the aid of research by the World Bank, various economic associations and SACU reports. His findings showed that the financial crisis in Namibia started in 2007 as a result of the economic crunch that hit the world’s largest economy the United States. This book also received tremendous coverage from national television and radio.

Other Endeavors
Upon his entry to Varsity and pursuing a career in economics, Haikali had a profound desire to make a change in his country’s economy. This desire gave birth to the Namibia Development Economic alignment (NEDA).

The primary aim of the foundation is to promote economic growth. NEDA does economic research, assists aspiring authors, assists SMEs in all capacity and gives parental skills. Haikali aims to leave a lasting legacy and has recently established the ‘Young Economist of The Year Award’. Students studying economics enter the competition by identifying an economic challenge facing the country and come up with an amicable solution. Through this initiative he aims to give back to the community and encourage high school pupils to study economics.

Final Remarks
Haikali advised fellow Namibians to rise and take hold of the opportunities bestowed to them. “Don’t just sit there waiting for things to happen. Ask not what the government can do for you rather ask what you can do for the government,” he said. The young author says that he realizes that the economics field may be mushroomed and that many that studied towards a career in this field are unemployed. He says that the difference will come when economics great employment opportunities for themselves. “Economists should consider starting their own businesses and instead of being employed they should employ others.”

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