Tributes pour in for film icon, Ndjavera

By Hertta-Maria Amutenja

NAMIBIAN filmmakers have paid their respects to actor David Ndjavera who died of Covid-19 at the age of 53.
Ndjavera who was a veteran of the theatre and film industry died yesterday morning, and will be remembered as a theatre educator, award winning actor, director, scriptwriter and a leader in the local film industry
Speaking to Confidente, local filmmaker Krischka Stoffels who has made several critically acclaimed films including Gesie in die Glas and Tjiraa said the film industry has lost a pivotal figure that was always prepared to lend a hand whenever it was needed.
“I have known David for many years and with all the years I have known him I never had any negative encounter with him. David was always willing to help at any given time. From the College of the Arts to the stage, he was there to help always. The film industry has lost a very significant individual and it will never be the same again. David had a face anyone could recognise, whether this person was in the film industry or not. One can never forget a legend like him,” she said.
Florence Haifene, Namibia Film Commission (NFC) executive secretary said the news of Ndjavera’s death had left them speechless.
“We are stunned by the news of his passing. David Ndjavera has left deep footprints in the film industry through his craft. He was charismatic, confident, hardworking and so full of energy and I hope aspiring actors can learn a lot from the legacy he left behind. He featured in many NFC commissioned productions, he will be dearly missed,” said Haifene.
Ndjavera, who was also part of the selection committee and advisors on the Goethe Stage 2021, was in the acting industry for over 20 years doing mainly stage acting.
He had dabbled in the film industry as an actor and assistant director on a number of local and international productions in addition to his stage work. Ndjavera played a variety of roles throughout the years, including a sangoma in ‘Joos and Ijambo’, preacher in ‘A Ticket to Become a Mayor’ and a policeman in the well-known local movie ‘Katutura’.
He was also a lecturer at the College of the Arts (COTA) who had been involved in over 50 stage productions and had over five theatre and film accolades under his belt.
Ndjavera was nominated for the National Theatre and Film Awards in the categories of Best Director in a Theatre Production for the play ‘Of Mice and Men’ in 2013, Best Male Actor for the play ‘My Children and My Africa’ in 2010, and Art Ambassador of the Windhoek Lager in 2014. He was also nominated for Best Actor for his role in the film ‘100 Bucks’, which was produced and directed by the late Oshosheni Hiveluah.
Ndjavera’s first appearance on stage was in 1986 when he was cast as extra in Freddy Philander’s ‘King of the Dump’ play.