Thursday 15 April 2021
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Namibia’s para athlete ‘Spiderman’ stranded

Namibia’s only Paralympic swimmer is stuck between a rock and a hard place with no money to compete at the World Championships in Mexico. The championships were scheduled to take off on 30 September to 07 October but got postponed to a date yet to be communicated due to the natural disaster that happened in the country.
Twenty-three years old Mateus ‘Spiderman’ Angula is the only Paralympic swimmer the country currently has after the popularly celebrated Gideon Nasilowski called it a day last year. The 32 years old swam in Namibian colours at international events for five years.
Angula, who was a Paralympic javelin athlete changed gear in 2015, deciding to take the waters and follow in the footsteps of Nasilowski.
Early this year, the young prospect competed in South Africa at the South Africa Sport Association for the Physically Disabled where he cemented a good time that qualified him for the Mexico competition. From the competition, Angula is currently ranked Africa’s number one and cannot wait to show the world the he is the next big thing in Mexico, should the funds suffice.
“I discovered a new talent and everyday I’m realizing that I can actually do very good. I’m confident that I will stun the world one day but I will take it one step at a time. I really want to participate in this upcoming competition to introduce myself to my country and the world at large,” said Angula.
Well known as ‘Spiderman,’ the young prospect says he has so much to prove to his country.
Angula was born without his lower limbs in the northern village of Iilambo, Ongandjera. Growing up with his uncle, Angula participated in wheelchair racing and wheelchair like any normal learner.
The athlete who knows no boundaries is currently enrolled at the Windhoek Vocational Training Centre as a Level 1 Electrical student.
“People ask me how I will be able to climb on top of buildings to fix electricity because I have no legs. I was born to be equally productive and I can do things just like people with legs can. Ask me to get on top of a roof and I will do it,” said an enthusiastic Angula.
“I want to set a statement that athletes living with disabilities can do it too.”
Namibia Paralympic Committee secretary general Michael Hamukwaya said they are hard at work mobilizing for funds for Spiderman and his coach to participate at the event.
Hamukwaya said that they are looking at an amount to the value of N$120 000 to compete.
“The boy has talent and we cannot let this one just go by. It is very expensive to develop these athletes but we have to because there is a lot of potential in him. We also want to change the status quo of having a young black African in the competition from Namibia,” said Hamukwaya.
The secretary general also highlighted the importance of investing in athletes saying the country needs to have Angula in 2020 for the world stage, hence the need to prepare him now.

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