WINDHOEK - Dubbed the ‘mother of all political parties’, Swanu of Namibia last weekend celebrated its 60th anniversary in Katutura.
Its leaders called on Namibians to rally behind the party to rescue the country from “political paralysis and economic collapse”.
Various leaders from top structures teamed up with supporters and sympathisers and gathered at the UN Plaza, Katutura, painting it blue, red, gold and green, the party’s symbolic colours.
Swanu was formed on 27 September 1959 in the Old Location.
Speaking at the UN Plaza, the party’s president Tangeni Iijambo while highlighting the party’s history said, “Swanu is indeed a historical party. This is a party that has survived the ‘Wind of Change’ speech by the UK Prime Minister Harold Macmillan to the Parliament of South Africa, on 3rd February 1960 in Cape Town”.
“Swanu survived the ‘Rubicon’ speech by P.W.Botha on 15 August in 1985 in Durban, when he dangled the poorest of change before the world, only to fail spectacularly and Swanu was there when the ideological battle lines were drawn, announcing the start of the Cold War and its end with Glasnost and Perestroika in the Soviet Union on 26 December 1991, and Swanu continues to be historically relevant to this day,” he added.
Iijambo told the gathering that was attented by quest speaker Hewat Beukes of the Workers Revolutionary Party (WRP) that Swanu is ready to transform into a mass movement by embracing a broad, progressive, enlightened and inclusive coalition of ideas and interests, as key tenet of the electoral campaign strategy.
“We are appealing broadly to each and every citizen to reflect honestly and soberly on where we are today as a nation, compared to the bright promise of independence and prosperity 30 years ago,” he said.
“It is a rude awakening that our country is teetering on the brink of insolvency, brought about by a level of corruption, in both the public and private sectors that can only be compared to daylight robbery and plunder,” he added.
According to Iijambo, the time has come for Swanu to reach out and to expand beyond its narrow ethnic, intellectual and petit bourgeois confines and to become a formidable mass movement with credible intentions to create the first welfare state in Africa.
Iijambo says as the progenitor of nationalist politics in Namibia, Swanu can rightfully claim to be the sole and authentic bearer of the torch of Namibia freedom and independence.
“It is our firm belief that the equation of democracy with capitalism cannot survive scrutiny in a world where the wealth and power of the few is coupled with insecurity, deprivation and downward mobility for the vast majority of our people,” he said, adding that this is why Swanu remains the votive force and vanguard of the struggling masses of Namibians.
He said the status quo in Namibia is deeply flawed and the crisis and failure of capitalism is evident everywhere in the country and citizens’ lives.
“The country is faced with proliferation of shark loans and bogus credit schemes, mass unemployment, crime, intolerance and hate speech, tribalism, greed and corruption,” he said.
“That is why we need to go back to the drawing board, because the negotiated independence of Namibia has failed to lift our people out of poverty,” he added.
2019-09-30 07:17:28 | 17 days ago