By Asser Ntinda
These are interesting times. The election fever is very high. So too are the commotions.
RDP supporters and their leaders are behaving like former members
(Makakunyas) of Koevoet and the South West Africa Territory Force, SWATF,
during the 1989 elections. Their acts of provocation are frightening. No sane person
can condone their provocative behaviour. It is not that SWAPO Party members
are being intolerant, but they are being provoked to the limit.
Firstly, RDP’s “house to house” campaign is dangerous and must be stopped
with immediate effect. What happened at Outapi should never happen again. RDP
had an identified venue where they were to hold their meeting. But because there
were few people, mainly the ones they bussed in from other regions, they decided to
march in the town, stopping at the SWAPO Party Office in the town. That was
really uncalled for.
A desperate man is very unpredictable. The last kicks of a dying horse are very
vicious and lethal. RDP’s leaders, especially its President Hidipo Hamutenya and
Secretary General, Jesaya Nyamu, are doing all they can to render the outcome of
the November elections incredible. They are so desperate that they can say and do
anything that is timed to provoke SWAPO Party.
In fact, their desperate campaign strategy is designed to avoid the elections at all
cost. Having realized that their chances of winning this month’s elections is zero,
RDP is no longer interested in the elections. Its leaders and supporters are now
provoking people to find a good reason to pull out.
Recently, Hidipo claimed that SWAPO Party had been “rigging” elections for
the past 20 years. His unquestioning servant, Nyamu, amplified his boss’s claims
by adding that RDP has “representatives” in all key government institutions and
SWAPO “can no longer cheat” any opposition party in the coming elections.
SWAPO Party has never rigged elections. It has no reason to do so. Its popularity
is seen by everybody. Hidipo knows he is telling lies and the decision by SWAPO
Party to sue him should not be abandoned at all.
Wisdom begins when you weigh the consequences of what you plan to say and
do. That apparently does not feature anywhere in RDP’s lexicon. Hidipo’s wild
claims started with Namprint, regarding the printing of ballot papers by that company.
He complained bitterly that the Electoral Commission of Namibia, ECN,
should withdraw its tender from Namprint or they would pull out of the elections.
Hidipo cobbled together former puppets and their “baas” to make noise about
They eventually succeeded but at their own disadvantage. Few of the opposition
parties could send representatives to South Africa to observe and monitor the printing
process there. RDP’s representative, Libolly Haufike, spent less than two hours
at Ren-Form and left. So too did NUDO. Had they not complained, they could
have monitored the printing process at Namprint. That came and went.
Another blunder was the issue RDP and the Congress of Democrats, CoD, had
with the Namibian Broadcasting Corporation’s airtime allocation for political parties
taking part in the elections. RDP and CoD, took the NBC to court, demanding
equal airtime allocation. In their foolishness, they did not think about the consequences
of the steps they were taking. After all, the NBC is under no legal obligation
to provide airtime to political parties.
When the NBC cancelled the airtime allocation, the casualty was not SWAPO
Party at all, but opposition parties themselves. In fact, it was just foolish on their
part to demand equal airtime allocation because even in Parliament, the money
political parties receive is given proportionally, which makes sense. Their demand
for equal airtime was as absurd as demanding that all political parties should get
the same amount of money. Their demand, once again, boomeranged.
At least Nyamu did one thing this week by acknowledging and telling all and
sundry that RDP has got spies at State House, State Security and in the Police
Force. SWAPO Party Youth League, SPYL, must be commended for its foresight.
SPYL has long pointed out and named hibernators, but the militant wing was
unfortunately not taken seriously. Nyamu has now vindicated SPYL. After all, he
knows what he is talking about.
Lest we forget, Nyamu authored subversive notes that cost him his SWAPO
Party membership. His notes, penned on a five page report in 2004, called for the
resignation from SWAPO Party of people who were loyal to Hidipo “one by one.”
He also called for the “weakening” of the “new” Pohamba administration by hibernators,
the formation of a “rival party” and so on. All these things have happened.
We should not be surprised by his latest revelation at all. All what Nyamu is
saying is in his notes. There is absolutely no reason to doubt his revelation.
In any case, elections are only a few weeks away. RDP knows it will dismally lose
the elections. That is why it is bussing in people from other regions to boost its
crowd. But such frantic efforts will not save it. It is in for a rude shock. Nothing
between now and before the elections will save it. Having unsuccessfully failed to
claim authorship of the National Anthem, he is now desperately trying to find a
credible reason to avoid that electoral humiliating defeat. He has long thought and
convinced himself that he was smarter than anybody else. Now he has realized that
he is just a fool. His Jonas Savimbi’s style of ‘either I win or elections are not fair’
will not save him. Just look at the weapons that were confiscated from RDP supporters?
These are the last kicks of a dying horse. RDP’s strategy now is to spoil the
elections. SWAPO Party supporters should be careful not to play into RDP’s hands.