Swapo regional coordinator denies Walvis councillor reshuffle

17 Dec 2015 18:10pm
WALVIS BAY, 17 DEC (NAMPA) - The Swapo Party Regional Coordinator in Erongo, Philipus Heita has denied accusations that he proposed that the new councillors for the Walvis Bay Municipality be reshuffled.
Contacted for comment on Thursday, Reinhold Shipwikineni, the Swapo branch coordinator for Okahenge at Walvis Bay told Nampa that Heita allegedly suggested that management chairperson, Tobias Nambala, be replaced with ordinary member Penelope Martin because “she is the only coloured on the council where the majority are Aawambo” and should be allowed to be chairperson.
“Heita said it in a meeting on 14 December at Walvis Bay. I condemn such a proposal because leaders are not appointed based on tribes,” Shipwikineni told Nampa.
Heita on Thursday said he did not say any such thing and asked Shipwikineni to provide evidence.
“If he said I mentioned it in the meeting on 14 December then he is revealing party secrets to the media. That meeting was a closed door meeting,” he said.
Heita and Shipwikineni could not say what type of meeting it was and what was discussed during the meeting.
A deployment directive from Swapo Secretary-General, Nangolo Mbumba indicates that Martin was supposed to chair the management while Nambala is an alternate member.
The Swapo Walvis Urban district executive committee decided that Nambala be chairperson.
In Swakopmund, the deployment directive also seen by Nampa stated that former mayor, Nehemiah Salomon was supposed to return to that position with current mayor, Paulina Nashilundo as deputy.
Deputy Swakopmund mayor, Maria Elago was supposed to be a member of the management committee.
Approached for comment on Thursday, Mbumba said there will be no reshuffling as the district’s executive committees consulted the national executive committee on their decisions.
“Party rules and procedures give the districts the power to make changes but in consultation with the national executive committee. So we respect their decision to change what was suggested from the national leadership,” Mbumba said.
Nambala responded that the decision was made by the district and he respects it.
“I cannot decline the position simply because some people think it should be given to a different tribe. That is not how Swapo works, we do not look at tribes at all and whoever thinks like that is misleading,” said Nambala.
Martin said she also respects the decision to place her where she is now.
“I am happy with what was decided, I have no problem with anyone,” she said briefly.
(NAMPA)
PKS/LI/AS