Swapo CC Gears for Weekend Meeting

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By Emma Kakololo WINDHOEK A Swapo Party Central Committee meeting is scheduled to take place over the weekend, the party secretary General Dr Ngarikutuke Tjiriange confirmed yesterday. But when asked about the agenda of the meeting, as usual the former Justice Minister displayed his judicial dexterity, as he needed no reminder about his rights to opine whenever he deemed fit. Dr Tjiriange candidly refused to divulge the agenda of the meeting, but hinted that whatever issues to be discussed would come from the Politburo. “The Politburo sit and decide what to discuss,” he let the cat out of the bag. This means that the former Trade and Industry Minister Jesaya Nyamu issue regarding notes he made about the party last year December might feature during the Swapo Party Central Committee meeting planned for Friday and Saturday, December 9 and 10, 2005. The Politburo at its meeting last month resolved to discuss the Nyamu saga, a source close to the Swapo Politburo told New Era, in line with a decision where the party undertook to deal with anonymous letter writers who attack some of the party’s leadership. Nyamu openly acknowledged that he was the author of notes scribbled on pieces of paper with thoughts about the possibility of forming another political party. The notes, on four small pages, lay out two “options”, apparently for supporters of former Foreign Affairs Minister Hidipo Hamutenya. It is believed that Nyamu wrote the notes around the time former Namibian President Sam Nujoma dismissed Hamutenya as Foreign Affairs Minister. Nyamu is believed to be an ally of Hamutenya and close confidante. Three years ago, he nominated Hamutenya for the vice presidency of Swapo. Hamutenya later withdrew his nomination. It is unclear what action the Central Committee would push for. Swapo insiders say the Central Committee cannot expel an individual party member and that only the Politburo can. However, the Central Committee can discuss issues and recommend appropriate action to the Politburo. The Central Committee is the most representative body as it is elected by congress. The 21-member Swapo body (Politburo) at its meeting discussed, among other things, the suspended former youth league secretary Paulus Kapia following his involvement with an investment deal involving N$30 million belonging to the Social Security Commission (SSC). Sources say the findings of the Swapo Party Youth League (SPYL)’s probe into their suspended leader might be discussed at the weekend’s meeting. “There is also the issue of new structures that some party members are in disagreement with,” a source said yesterday. Some party members complained that additional structures were being put up without them being informed. They suggest that these structures are aimed at tipping the scale in the favour of one or the other camp in the party in preparation for the 2007 Swapo congress. Another issue that may feature and which Tjiriange refused to discuss is continued representation of former Swapo MPs in the regions. Before last year’s elections, all senior Swapo members assigned to the regions were sitting parliamentarians. But some are no longer MPs and certain members have been calling for their recall. However, Tjiriange said that the MP status was not a prerequisite for assigning leaders to the regions. He asserted that MPs were assigned to regions because they were Swapo leaders and not because they were MPs. The Secretary General further reiterated that it was his office’s responsibility to assign Swapo leaders to the regions, and not that of the Central Committee.