WALVIS BAY - Namibia Public Workers Union (Napwu) Secretary General Petrus Nevonga has accused the regional and local political leadership of using cheap politics to sabotage May Day commemorations held yesterday at Walvis Bay.
The local leadership was a no show at the event that was organised by the National Workers Union of Namibia and affiliated unions at Walvis Bay.
The NUNW also organised the main event for Windhoek, which was expected to be addressed by President Hage Geingob. The other event was organised for workers in Walvis Bay. However, the Walvis Bay event was marred by controversy, with not a single regional or local councillor or political leadership representatives attending the important event. In fact, social media messages seen by New Era encouraged workers and representatives to attend the main event in Windhoek.
Mine Workers union, one of the largest workers representative in the Erongo Region also did not attend the event at Walvis Bay as they chose to attend the main one in Windhoek. An angry Nevonga singled out the mayor of Walvis Bay Immanuel Wilfred and the Walvis Bay Urban Constituency Councillor Hafeni Ndemula of cheap politics and boycotting the Walvis event despite accepting the invitation earlier. “The Erongo leadership ditched the event due to cheap politics, while the event was organised to celebrate workers all over the country and not to promote political squabbles,” Nevonga said.
He added that both Ndemula and Wilfred were expected to address coastal workers as indicated on the day’s programme.
“It is sad that they did not attend nor did they delegate anyone to represent them. Ndemula knows how important May Day is and should remember that he was a unionist before he moved into politic,” Nevonga continued. A disappointed Nevonga also said although NUNW is affiliated to Swapo, its labour operations are run independently for the development of workers.
“Hence May Day advocates for workers’ rights and we feel confusion was created intentionally to spoil the day with cheap politics and social media messages that has been circulated. I wish to state that it is not a political event but a day to celebrate the millions of workers in the world and should have been attended regardless of political affiliation. When contacted for comment, Ndemula via sms said that he was well aware of the event taking place at the Kuisebmond stadium.
“I did not attend because of cheap politics before I join the unions I was a youth activist and know where I am coming from,” Ndemula said. He added that he was not able to attend due to circumstances beyond his control and that he will be back late yesterday afternoon. “There is no way that I could have been represented by someone else and I communicated this accordingly,” he said Wilfred when contacted said he did not want to respond via messages and will respond in person.
Eveline de Klerk
2019-05-02 08:54:40 17 days ago