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Home / Iijambo installs Kaaronda as successor…Maamberua says congress should have been postponed 

Iijambo installs Kaaronda as successor…Maamberua says congress should have been postponed 

2022-05-05  Kuzeeko Tjitemisa

Iijambo installs Kaaronda as successor…Maamberua says congress should have been postponed 

Outgoing Swanu president Tangeni Iijambo has hailed his chosen successor Evilastus Kaaronda, the newly elected Swanu president, saying he is the perfect person to lead the country’s oldest political party to greater heights.

Kaaronda, the former NUNW secretary general (SG), was elected as the party president at the fiercely contested party elective congress in Okahandja, Otjozondjupa, over the weekend. 

He was lured into the party by Iijambo seemingly out of nowhere last year to serve as the party SG.

In 2019, the veteran unionist was at the helm of the People Organised Working for Economic Reality (POWER), an abandoned political project that was being bankrolled by self-proclaimed forex trader Michael Amushelelo. However, the man who brought Kaaronda to Swanu is optimistic amidst the chaos.

“Whether you joined Swanu at its inception in 1959 or five years ago, your rights are equal,” he told Nampa.

According to Iijambo, the former unionist’s work for Swanu has since been impeccable.

“We had our congress but we were disturbed by our usual distractors, who unfortunately didn’t succeed because we locked them out,” Iijambo told New Era on Tuesday while referring to the faction led by Charles Katjivirue and former party president Rihupisa Kandando, who have been decrying the state of affairs in the party.

“Kaaronda is a young, capable leader; we have been crying for young people to take over – and this is exactly what we did. There is a saying that old people want to lead forever; this is why we chose Kaaronda. He is young and capable,” said Iijambo.  

However, Usutuaije Maamberua, a former party president and MP, believes the congress should have been postponed to prepare structures for the congress to take place under new structures and supervision.

“In concrete terms, I had proposed a congress preparatory committee to harmonise the party to ensure all inclusive congress to happen in three months,” said Maamberua, who led the party from 2010 to 2017.

“Those who insisted on holding the congress in these muddied waters should bear the consequences jointly,” he added.

Also, a petition signed by Katjivirue, Kandando and 49 others, who were barred from attending the congress, called for the postponement of the congress, citing similar concerns as Maamberua’s.

The battle for the soul of Swanu started last year when a rival faction, led by Kandando, passed a vote of no confidence in the current leadership-headed Iijambo. 

Kandando, who steered the party from 1998 to 2007, later elected Charles Katjivirue as the new party leader. 

Last month, Katjivirue accused the Iijambo faction of veering from the ethos and values of the party.

“We wish to state loudly, boldly and clearly that these comrades, despite being Swanu members, are not politically fit at this stage to lead the party… We will not allow shaky characters to run Swanu,” he said.

Responding to those developments, Iijambo at the time described the events as an unsuccessful coup d’état, not thoroughly thought through and unconstitutional, hence illegal and uncalled for. 

In a statement, the Kandando faction at the time also claimed that Alpha Kangueehi is the new head of political affairs. 

Swanu currently has one seat in the national assembly represented by Iijambo.

As for Iijambo’s future in the National Assembly, the status quo will remain for him to see through his five years as a member of parliament.

2022-05-05  Kuzeeko Tjitemisa

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