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Cultural Festival

2023 NUST Cultural Festival lights up campus

The Namibia University of Science and Technology (NUST) finally hosted their annual Cultural Festival again since the COVID-19 pandemic. The Festival celebrates diversity among students, faculty, and staff and serve as a stage where individuals from diverse backgrounds can proudly present their unique traditions, customs, and heritage.

The annual Cultural Festival marked a triumphant return to normalcy following the social distancing protocols imposed during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. The event was a celebration of culture, heritage, and resilience that unfolded over three unforgettable days under the theme, Roots Revival: Celebrating Cultural Heritage.

The Cultural Festival kicked off with an Official Opening Ceremony on the NUST Lower Campus on Wednesday, 30 August 2023. The air buzzed with excitement as students and visitors gathered in anticipation of the festivities. The Keynote Address was delivered by NUST Vice-Chancellor, Dr Erold Naomab, who emphasised the importance of a cultural festival in serving as a catalyst for fostering science, technology, innovation, and sustainability. “The NUST Cultural Festival is a declaration of our commitment to nurturing a generation of thinkers, creators, and leaders who understand the intricate dance between culture and technology,” he said.

NUST’s Lower Campus came alive with vivid illustrations portraying Namibia’s rich and diverse cultural heritage by traditional dance troupes. Onlookers were treated to traditional dances in tune with rhythmic beats coloured by the resplendent attire of the dancers. The Flea Market allowed visitors to explore unique crafts, clothing, and artifacts that tell stories of our heritage.

Cultural Festival

NUST boasts a diverse community of over 700 international students representing 25 countries across the world. In an effort to safeguard and promote cultural heritage, NUST’s Faculty of Commerce, Human Sciences and Education participated in the European Union-funded “Protect, Preserve and Promote Indigenous Cultures and Languages” (P3ICL) project from 2017-2019. The three-year endeavour afforded researchers the opportunity to gather data from various indigenous groups across Namibia, including the San and the Ovambabja. “The researchers collected cultural expressions and created data for a repository. They will further co-design contemporary cultural products, raise cultural awareness, and advocate for the integration of the indigenous cultures under study in national policy documents and development plans,” NUST Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Finance and Operations, Miriam Dikuua, explained.

The second day of the Cultural Festival featured a music concert, with a lineup of artists that included Chester House Prince, Adora, Yeesir, and One Blood. The crowd of students swayed to the beat of traditional Afro-pop beats under a clear, starry night sky. As the evening wore on, the tantalising aroma of braaivleis filled the air. Fluffy rooster brood, juicy meat, and delectable mahangu cake were on the menu, ensuring no taste bud was left unsatisfied.

The Cultural Festival reached its grand finale with the Mr & Ms NUST Beauty Pageant, which took place on the evening of Friday, 01 September 2023. As contestants strutted their stuff the audience marveled at their poise, talent, and charisma.

Leena Mugena and Erasmus Endyala were crowned as Miss NUST and Mr NUST respectively. Mugena and Endyala were also voted as winners in the Public Choice category. The Mr Personality and Miss Personality titles went to Azor Hiz and Kabalo Kakena, respectively, while Thierry Katjindi and Kandje Katjatenja were chosen as Mr Photogenic and Miss Photogenic.

As the curtain fell on the 2023 NUST Cultural Festival, the air was filled with a sense of fulfillment and unity. It was more than just an event; it was a testament to the resilience of culture, the power of unity, and the beauty of diversity.