ARTICLE 11 of SWAPO party Constitution defines SWAPO as a mass-based political party born and steeled in the crucible of a popular and heroic struggle for national independence. It is founded on the principles of democracy, solidarity, freedom, social justice and progress.
Under Preamble article 111 sub article (8), “Whereas the exploitation of one person by another, individually or as a class, including gender inequality, is unacceptable in an independent and democratic Namibia”; the Party’s aims and objectives among others are to:
Instill in the Namibian people a spirit of patriotism and to develop in them the consciousness that they are the masters of their own destiny;
Fight underdevelopment, poverty, illiteracy and disease;
Promote accelerated economic development and to create a balance and interlinkages between the primary and the secondary sectors of our economy in order to promote self-reliance and the upliftment of the standard of the living of vast majority of the Namibian people, just to narrate a few.
It is vital to mention that article 1V is about the two types of SWAPO party membership; namely (a) individual and (b) affiliated memberships. It is a constitutional obligation that an individual Namibian citizen who is aspiring to become an individual member of SWAPO should be 18 years and above, and that he or she should not be a member of any other political party.
Meanwhile, affiliate membership according to the party Constitution, is open to any bona fide socio-cultural organisation (e.g. trade union, student union or a professional organisation which accepts the aims and objectives of SWAPO as set out in Article 111 of the party Constitution. The questions are; what is the probation period to confirm that such an institution and its members have accepted the aims and objectives of the party? Who is to be held accountable in case an individual affiliate member acted against party principles? How does the SWAPO party know that he or she does not belong to other political party?
Let’s take a glance at some of the rights and obligations of a member. ‘To demand the fulfillment of what is established in the party Constitution’, the question is, at what point in time should he or she demand? What about the internal and external limitations? The ethical issues? What are the standard presentations of one’s demands? What are the remedies to address the re-occurrences?
SWAPO is 60 years plus, a signal of political, diplomacy and sectoral security growth. The party founder members worked sleepless nights to get where we are today. Many lives were lost, both in prisons and in the forests in Namibia and neighboring Front Line States. Many comrades fell victim of the bitterness of the struggle. Other comrades scarified their lives at the battlefield. The rivers of ‘their blood and sweat waters our freedom’.
Well, it has been a fact and it remains a fact, that the security weapon which our national leadership used during the bitter struggle to overcome the most challenging human behaviour was the enforcement of discipline among 99 percent of both internal and external of SWAPO leadership.
I am convinced that there is no absolute or perfect situation hence, I must admit that “history is the best judge whose verdict cannot be ignored”. And that such legacy should serve as a learning cave in our lifetime. Not long ago two unpatriotic unforgettable incidents happened within the SWAPO party.
I am referring to the formation of RDP and the recent SWAPO party congress. Although it may be argued that it is one’s constitutional freedom, to associate, to form and join associations, or unions, including trade unions and political parties, we should not forget, that this constitutional provision is a testing ground of our ability and capability to make well informed decisions on the situation on the ground. The fact remains that there is no absolute freedom. Your freedom ends where my freedom comes in.
SWAPO has never and will never be a tribal or ethnic-based political party. Why? Because its political, diplomacy and armed liberation struggle legacy, speaks for itself. We have learned from the 1974 -75 Zambia tsunami wave, and the recent Congress situation, a state of affairs, which nearly divided the SWAPO party youth league. Comrades, why are we putting our interests first to the detriment of the party we have vowed to protect?
As a former Plan fighter, an active member and defender of the SWAPO party historical legacy, I am concerned by what I read in a local daily edition of 27/10/16. If this is true, then we are facing a predicament situation come 2017. The issues in SWAPO party, is not who is the current President of the Party because we are, all aware as to who is the President. To the majority of the people of this country, Dr. Hage Geingob according to Chapter 5 of the Constitution of Namibia, is the Head of State and Government, and the Commander-in-Chief of the Defence Force”. In terms of the SWAPO Party Constitution Article 1X, Dr Hage Geingob, is the President of SWAPO whose duties and functions is among others, the leader and Chief Executive Officer of the party, and indeed the Chairperson of the Central Committee, the Politburo and the Congress.
The role of SWAPO party wings namely SWAPO Youth League (SPYL), SWAPO Women’s Council, (SPWC) and indeed SWAPO Elders’ Council (SPEC), have a party constitutional unifying role to play. Why unifying role? Because the three institutions are the SWAPO Party institutionary memories. It is expected from members of public, that any member being elected into the high office of these institutions, he or she, must have gone through intense verification of his/her political, diplomatic and indeed human, cultural and social economic security dimensions.
In conclusion dear comrades, allow me to quote two among others our obligations as active individual members of the SWAPO party. (a) “To act with dedication and commitment in the interests of the party and national interest of Namibia and (b) “To be of exemplary conduct and to act in a spirit of comradeship towards other members of the party”. Discipline and constructive criticism is the guiding principle of SWAPO, yesterday, today and tomorrow. Please do not blame SWAPO party, blame individual members and individual leaders.
MAY GOD BLESS Namibia, the land of the brave!
Rt. Commissioner for Refugees & NNLVA National Coordinator
Confidente. Lifting the Lid. Copyright © 2015