SPYL candidates confident ahead of electoral college

03 Sep 2019 16:30pm
WINDHOEK, 03 SEP (NAMPA) – Two of the six Swapo Party Youth League (SPYL) candidates for this weekend’s electoral college are certain of their chances of being elected to the party’s list of 96 members for the National Assembly.
The electoral college will take place on Friday and Saturday, when over 200 delegates will convene in Windhoek to decide who will be on the party’s list for the next National Assembly and in which order they will be placed on the list.
Amongst the candidates is Shipola Shihepo, one of three female candidates elected at the extra-ordinary central committee meeting of the SPYL.
Shihepo told Nampa in an interview Monday she is excited to be competing in the ‘pot’ as she feels she stands a good chance of scoring a sufficient number of votes to place her in a position to assume a parliamentary seat.
She premised her confidence on her track record within the party, adding that being elected to compete at the national party electoral college is a natural progression given her political career.
“I have served the Swapo Party in many capacities at section, branch and district level. It is not as if I just came from nowhere to be elected, I was elected on the basis of my contribution to the party over the years,” she said.
Shihepo is currently a local authority councillor serving on the management committee of the Lüderitz Town Council.
Another of SPYL’s candidates for the pot is 35-year-old Hophni Ipinge, a teacher by profession.
He is one of three male candidates elected to compete at the electoral college in line with the amended 2013 Swapo Constitution that prescribes a ‘zebra style’ list of delegates to ensure gender balance.
Ipinge, when contacted by this agency, was adamant that his candidature is a collective exercise to ensure youth representation at parliamentary level and not an individualistic campaign for self-promotion and personal gain.
“I am not lobbying as an individual, I am competing to ensure we gain at least 40 per cent Swapo youth representation in Parliament,” he said.
Other candidates who will be competing on the SPYL ticket are Aksel Mwafanyengo, the mayor of Usakos in the Erongo Region; Uveniko Negonga from the Omaheke Region; Iswarin Rooi from Hardap and Julius Gaeseb from Oshikoto.
They could not be reached for comment.