23 Aug 2015 13:10pm
OTJIWARONGO, 23 AUG (NAMPA) Swapo member Laina Nekundi became the first person in the history of the Otjozondjupa Region to win a regional election in a walkover earlier this month.
She was elected unopposed as the Regional Councillor for the Otavi Constituency because no other political party showed interest to the Electoral Commission of Namibia (ECN) to contest the position by the due date of 03 August this year.
Without hesitation, ECN Presiding Officer for the Otavi Constituency by-election, Fedela Damases declared Nekundi as duly elected in that position on 03 August 2015.
Nekundi is the Swapo Womens Council Coordinator for the Otavi District.
A businesswoman in Otavi, Nekundi replaced the late constituency councillor, Ndapewoshali Nangula Nambili, who died on 13 June 2015 in the capital due to illness.
Nambili, a former mayor of Otavi, was elected as Otavi Constituency Councillor in the National Council in 2010.
Nekundi first won Swapos internal elections at the Otavi District executive conference on 02 August 2015.
She garnered 65 votes from the 77 delegates who attended the conference. Otavi Mayor Markus Damaseb secured 12 votes.
On 21 August 2015, Otjiwarongo Magistrate Conchita Olivier swore in Nekundi in her new position at the Otjiwarongo Municipality Chambers.
I will work for unity. I will strive to improve the working conditions of our farm workers in and around my constituency, and most importantly, I will join hands to fight against alcohol, drugs, and women and child abuse, she said in her acceptance speech.
During the swearing-in event that was attended by mostly women from Otavi, she consequently thanked the Otavi women for accompanying her all the way to Otjiwarongo, and also for choosing and electing her to the new leadership position.
Born in 1964 at the Omakango village in the Endola Constituency in the Ohangwena Region, Nekundi grew up in the Swapo Party circles, as her parents had tirelessly supported the liberation struggle for Namibias independence.
She still remembers shaking hands with the late national hero, Eliaser Tuhadeleni (Kahumba Kandola), who was her fathers closest friend during those dark days.
Now, as a constituency councillor, she promised to contribute to the national war against poverty and hunger amongst her people in the Otavi Constituency.
Her envisaged developments include the construction of a public market where residents of Otavi could gather and do business of any sort that will improve their livelihoods.
Nekundi also aims to establish a playground for the children and a multi-purpose youth centre.
The mother of two children also promised to rebuke any unbecoming behaviour of public servants towards the general public who might seek assistance from her constituency office.
Nekundi therefore welcomes all inhabitants in the constituency, regardless of their economic status, gender, religion or political affiliation to her office.
She said the time has arrived for all women to unite and to take up senior positions in Government and political structures.
If women stand side-by-side and support one another, then all our envisioned development activities will be achieved with much ease, she noted.
Otjozondjupa Regional Council Chairperson, Steve Biko Boois congratulated Nekundi and urged her to keep up the hard work and deliver quality socio-economic services to her people in the Otavi Constituency.
He appealed that she consults with experienced constituency councillors where she does not understand, and also to seek advice from people on capital projects needed most in the constituency.
The electorate will now start to come to you with problems. Always ask them on how they would want to be helped, as often they have problems and answers at the same time. You should work with them to find solutions to their problems, Boois said.
Meanwhile, Namibians aged 18 years and above will go to the polls in November this year to cast their votes in Regional and Local Authority elections countrywide.