Five candidates have been fielded to contest what is arguably the most affluent constituency in the whole of Namibia.
The Windhoek East constituency in the Khomas region, which is home to a number of private schools and medical facilities, consists of upper-class suburbs such as Auasblick, Avis, Klein Windhoek, Ludwigsdorf, Luxury Hill, Olympia, Eros and Suiderhof.
The constituency is currently governed by Swapo, which has now fielded a new candidate for this month’s regional council and local authority elections.
Swapo has picked Felix Tjozongoro, while the Popular Democratic Movement (PDM) has put its faith in businessman Pieter Senekal. New entrants the Independent Patriots for Change (IPC) are represented by another businessman Brian Black, while Landless People’s Movement (LPM) has put forward the candidature of Bruce Jacques.
The only female candidate is outgoing Windhoek local authority councillor Brunhilde Cornelius, who, this time around, is standing on the Republican Party (RP) ticket after resigning from the Rally for Democracy and Progress (RDP) last month.
Interestingly, the RDP, which won the constituency in 2010, elected not to field any candidate. Tjozongoro, a resident of Auasblick, said he will prioritise the provision of security for the local inhabitants.
He said, at many a times, residents of the constituency fall prey to housebreakings and robbery. “All well looked after but with a different and unique need. A need for sense of security. Security as if they don’t have the best alarm systems or the best beams to protect and guard their valuable assets,” he said.
“Despite all these, they fall prey to house break-ins. The get mugged while walking their dogs. Their dustbins are searched for valuables and left untidy by the needy and they are expected to clean up the next morning and still have a smile on their face.”
He said residents have the best public places with the best views over the city to enjoy a lovely sundowner, but those places have increasingly become hotspots for crime. “They deal with street kids at the traffic lights wanting some cash to buy the next meal. Some have neighbours in the form of people sleeping under bridges in the posh neighbourhood. These are the issues I will address if voted into power,” he said. “Who else understands this plight than Felix Tjozongoro, a true son of the soil and born child of Windhoek East? That is the candidate that Swapo decided to fill this time. Young and energetic, and a strategic thinker.”
On her part, Cornelius vowed to lead the fight against corruption, while advocating for an inclusive and action-oriented regional government. “I will be advocating for a responsive and community-needs sensitive regional government,” she said. LPM, PDM and IPC candidates were not immediately available for comment. In 2010, the constituency was won by RDP’s Nic Kruger. However, Swapo’s Joyce Namuhuja prevailed over Jens Schneider of the RDP in 2015 after obtaining 1 795 votes.
Schneider came second with 1 169 votes, followed by Raymond Reginald Diergaardt of then DTA with 743 votes.