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Home / IPC lauded  for dumping ‘drug dealer’ 

IPC lauded  for dumping ‘drug dealer’ 

2022-09-08  Kuzeeko Tjitemisa

IPC lauded  for dumping ‘drug dealer’ 

Political analysts have urged the country’s political parties to follow Independent Patriots for Change’s model in how they handle party officials accused of engaging in questionable business or committing crimes.

The call follows IPC’s decision to recall its 26-year-old Mariental local authority councillor, Shekutamba Michael Jonas, who was arrested on Tuesday in connection with drugs valued at N$231 000 seized by the police last week. 

Mariental municipality CEO Paulus Nghiwilepo yesterday acknowledged receipt of a letter regarding the withdrawal of Jonas as a member of the council with effect from 7 September 2022. 

The accused is expected to appear in court today on charges of dealing in prohibited drugs.

Jonas became the second IPC councillor to be arrested in less than a year, following the detention of fellow patriot and Kalkrand village councillor Simeon Martin, who was nabbed for stock-theft in November last year. 

Martin was immediately removed from representing the party. 

Similarly, the IPC earlier this year expelled its senior party member and former chairperson of the Erongo regional council, Ciske Smith-Howard,




after it was found that she was allegedly not living in the constituency she was representing.

Political analyst Rui Tyitende said any party that sees itself as leading the country one day should take a moral stance on their leaders who are implicated in dodgy deals or criminal matters. 

“There should be no room for individuals with a moral turpitude. This position by the IPC should apply to its entire rank and file, including its chief patriot,” Tyitende added.

If not, he said, a schizophrenic application of this policy will lead to an ‘Animal Farm’ situation. 

“Convicts and corruption-tainted individuals should not
serve in any structures of a political party if they are serious about malfeasance, maladministration, virtues and the rule of law,” he reasoned.

Political commentator and director of the Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR) Graham Hopwood said all political parties should require their elected officials to maintain the highest levels of ethical conduct. 

“If anyone falls short, they should face disciplinary action and suspension if the misconduct was of a serious nature,” he noted.

Hopwood said Jonas’ allegation does seem to be serious enough to warrant immediate action, “so I think the IPC acted appropriately in this case”. 

“All parties need to have codes and regulations which insist on ethical conduct from office-bearers and elected politicians,” he continued.

Jonas was arrested in connection with 54 parcels of pure and loose cannabis, weighing 14kg, and three black plastic bags containing skunk cannabis, weighing 1.7kg, seized last week by the police with a total value of N$230 950. 

Ben Muharukua (51), the
other suspect, was detained and appeared in court on Monday without being granted bail.

“I think it is a good political culture of rooting out and nipping corrupted behaviour and bad apples in the bud as early as possible before it becomes systemic in a party, especially in the leadership structure. It is important for a party to take seriously its own rules and values. When violated, the party must act without fear or favour. That is what we are seeing with the IPC, and as a result, its approach is a notch up from some parties,” said another commentator, Ndumba Kamwanyah.

2022-09-08  Kuzeeko Tjitemisa

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