RUNDU – The ruling party Swapo yesterday swiftly swung the axe on three of its local authority councillors at Rundu who defied directives from its secretary general Sophia Shaningwa who, together with the politburo of its central committee, had given a directive for the status quo to remain.
The directive was that Swapo councillors at the Rundu Town Council retain the very positions they held prior to mid-term elections held late last year.
This meant the mayor, deputy mayor and chairperson of the management committee, who are all party members, should retain their positions, but defiant councillors refused to toe the party line by ringing a reshuffle in some positions.
The Swapo councillors elected a new mayor, deputy mayor and chairperson of the management committee, contrary to Shaningwa’s directive.
Interesting perhaps was the fact that one of the councillors defying the order was Toini Hausiku, wife of Swapo deputy secretary-general Marco Hausiku.
Swapo yesterday recalled new mayor Isaak Kandingu, Toini Hausiku and Anastatcia Shinduvi-Antonio, the chairperson of the management committee.
Kavango East Swapo Regional Coordinator Otilie Shinduvi confirmed the withdrawal of the three.
“Yes I have received the letter from the SG’s office and I have given it to the Rundu Urban District Coordinator for implementation,” Shinduvi said.
“…..You are hereby directed to notify the aforementioned local authority councillors in the Rundu Town Council on the Swapo Party ticket that they are withdrawn from being local authority councillors with immediate effect,” directed Shaningwa in a letter to Shinduvi.
“The Swapo party shall replace them with the next party cadres on the Swapo Party long list of the Rundu Urban District… they are Johanna Kakondo, Ngondo Johannes and Sarafina Kandere,” Shaningwa continued.
Shaningwa, in her letter, said Part II, Section 49 of the Swapo Party Rules and Procedures for Election of Party Office-Bearers and Party Representatives at legislative and Government Levels stipulates that: “In terms of the Electoral Act 1992, as amended, those candidates who stand on the party ticket are essentially sponsored by the party. It is the party that spends money and other resources to campaign for them. Once they are elected, they cannot turn around and say that the party should not have a say in the manner in which they conduct themselves in the positions in which they have been elected.”
They trio had elected a member of the opposition All People’s Party (APP) into the management committee after backing them during their election by nominating and seconding their interests during the swearing in ceremony last week.
“It is disappointing and painful that the above-mentioned councillors on the Swapo Party ticket are in cohorts with the opposition councillor into the management committee at the expense of Swapo Party, and thus bringing the name of the Swapo Party into disrepute,” stated the letter addressed to the Swapo regional coordinator.
“Chapter II, Article IV (C) (1) (a) of the Swapo Party Constitution provides that: ‘Every Party member has a right to demand the fulfilment of what is established in this Constitution, as well as the implementation of resolutions, decisions, directives and agreements of the Party,” she stated.
The party through Shaningwa’s office has on numerous occasions directed that its directives be implemented without question.