Windhoek mayor Job Amupanda yesterday attempted to put to rest rumours that he is advocating to be re-elected as Windhoek’s first resident, saying he abides by the coalition agreement for the rotation of positions.
The Affirmative Repositioning (AR) Movement leader became the City of Windhoek’s youngest mayor late last year following the formation of a coalition between his movement, the Independent Patriots for Change (IPC), the Popular Democratic Movement (PDM) and the National Unity Democratic Organisation (Nudo). AR has two seats, IPC four, while PDM and Nudo each have one seat.
“When we signed that coalition agreement, we knew that the assignment is for one year. The agreement speaks to positions being rotated”, he stated.
He quashed talk of him wanting to cling onto the mayoral position during a press conference in Windhoek. Although being scathing about
the leadership of IPC president Panduleni Itula, the political science lecturer said he has confidence in the coalition, and that the AR would continue supporting it. He thanked PDM president McHenry Venaani and Nudo secretary general Josef Kauandenge for their leadership. “Itula cannot treat me as his child, and I can no longer tolerate that. We can’t be slaves to anybody.
If I have to be a slave in order to be mayor, then somebody else must take over”, he charged.
Amupanda described his term as city mayor as unstable due to the “fact” that he had to deal with unstable people.
“You speak to a person at 10 o’clock, and you agree on something. Five minutes later, the person has changed his mind, and later the person has reverted to the original idea. But despite all this, we managed to sign the coalition agreement in August,” he added.
He said with the mayorship now out of the picture, he would be able to focus on the movement’s activities, which he said he neglected due to that responsibility.
The City of Windhoek’s council is expected to elect a new mayor, deputy mayor and the new management committee by the end of this month. The 15-member council consists of five Swapo councillors, four IPC, two AR, two LPM and one councillor each from PDM and Nudo.
The city’s first coalition swept to power late last year after Swapo could not muster an outright majority in the November 2020 local government elections. However, the formation could only manage to sign a coalition agreement in August 2021.
Amupanda said the coalition-led council had brought confidence to the residents of the city, adding that the people of Namibia now take Windhoek seriously and recognise the leadership.
“We are no longer a leadership that is located in the arena of lokasie gossips and seen as responsible for solving kapana squabbles, but a leadership that can provide strategic direction, inspiring hope and providing answers to questions perplexing society”, he observed.