…Business community reacts to Swapo leadership election results
By Hilary Mare
FOLLOWING the Swapo elective congress results, which saw President Hage Geingob and his slate romping to a landslide victory, the business community has expressed optimism for a better economic future, while urging government to now look at delivering the promise of economic prosperity.
During this past weekend’s Swapo elections, Geingob won 74.93 percent of the vote, while his running mates Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah won vice presidency with 72.06 percent of the vote, Sophia Shaningwa won the position of secretary-general (SG) with 68.28 percent of the ballots cast and Marco Hausiku secured the deputy SG post with 71.24 percent of the vote.
Namibia Chamber of Commerce and Industry (NCCI) Northern Branch Chairperson, Tomas Iindji told Confidente that the result brings about optimism, as one centre of power and continuity will deliver fruits for the nation.
“We congratulate the Swapo Party for having successful completed their sixth congress, whereby they have elected a new leadership for the next five years. We remain hopeful that the continuity within the government programs will deliver us out of the recession, and towards economic prosperity.
“We believe that the president of the country and newly elected party president, Hage Geingob and his team, will continue to provide excellent leadership and so this is now the time to act and develop our country for the good of every Namibian citizen,” Iindji said.
He added that it is very imperative to state that, as a government of the Swapo Party, we must create investors from the army of local business people and that Namibia’s interests should be taken into consideration first.
“Similarly, when our business people need assistance and protection, it is our expectation that the Swapo Party government shall not abandon its own.”
Iindji further stated that as a generation that is privileged to have seen the days of harmony and peace, Namibians must jealously guard their country’s sovereignty.
“The fundamental principle in this task is to appreciate, celebrate and cherish the diversity of our cultures, as they collectively form an identity for which we are known to be as Namibians. That is humility towards one another, respect for one another, loving one another and caring for each other. As a country, we have strong bonds that keep us together, and these bonds must be taught to our children.
“This will make our generation to know that we are in fact one family, only separated by the geography of our motherland,” he further explained.
Claudia Boamah, an economic analyst at Capricorn Asset Management, also expressed optimism, while affirming that the peaceful Swapo leadership transition was beneficial for the country, amidst concerns by ratings agency, Fitch.
“Months of campaigning finally came to an end this weekend, when the Swapo Congress delegates cast their votes to elect the party’s new leadership. President Hage Geingob emerged victorious, sweeping 574 out of 766 votes. Credit ratings agencies were concerned that the electoral conference would present a political event risk. Fortunately, the ruling party’s business has been concluded, without incident, and the country’s leadership can redirect their energies to building the Namibian House,” she said.
Fitch had earlier stated that the Swapo Congress was a source of policy uncertainty.
At the time it downgraded Namibia in August, Moody’s also mentioned ructions within the ruling party as contributing to the negative sentiment around Namibia.
However, Fitch stated that it expected “the fiscal and growth-enhancing reform drive” to gain momentum after the congress.
“A government reshuffle seems likely, and we expect a new Cabinet to initiate some major reforms, including the overhaul process of the State-owned enterprise sector,” the ratings agency said a few weeks ago.
Acknowledging the need for government to now deliver, Finance Minister Calle Schlettwein said that the Swapo Party had shown that government is able to do this.
“The Swapo Party congress showed that ‘we can’. A demanding majority supported President Hage Geingob and his team. Such a mandate is humbling and gratifying, but it comes with expectations to deliver. There is no option, therefore, we must deliver what we have promised,” he said.
After his landslide victory during the elective congress, Geingob said in his acceptance speech that in order to ensure that the Swapo Party is effectively geared to fight poverty and corruption, and pursue economic prosperity, there was a need to deploy new measures to strengthen operational effectiveness and efficiency. He proposed 18 submissions, which he stood ready to discuss, through consultation at party central committee and politburo level.
Confidente. Lifting the Lid. Copyright © 2015