‘Nyamu’s Cause Hinges on Support’

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By Kuvee Kangueehi Windhoek independent political researcher Bill Lindeke says the expulsion of Jesaya Nyamu can only have significant effect on the Swapo Party once Nyamu’s allies within the Swapo Party top leadership decide to support his cause publicly. Speaking to New Era yesterday, the former political science lecturer at the University of Namibia said that it is time for Nyamu’s allies, especially Hidipo Hamu-tenya, to back him publicly otherwise his cause would be lost. Lindeke said that it appears that Nyamu did not get enough support from his allies in the Politburo or the Central Committee when the two party organs decided to expel him. The political analyst added that he was not surprised by Nyamu’s strong reaction, as he is one of the most outspoken politicians within Swapo. “It was a typical Nyamu reaction and I am certain that the Swapo leadership was not surprised.” Lindeke however noted that Nyamu’s allies would be too scared to act as they could face possible expulsion as well. “These politicians have spent most of their political careers in Swapo, some over 40 years, and are loyal cadres of the party and will find it difficult to operate outside the Swapo Party.” He added that if Nyamu’s allies in top leadership decide to quit, they would be taking a big risk, as the group appears less powerful outside Swapo. He noted that some of the top leadership would like to continue enjoying their comfort in Swapo and top government positions and are not likely to act until they themselves are pushed. However, he added that the move to expel Nyamu is “unlike President Hifike-punye Pohamba” who has been advocating unity and reconciliation within the party. “The expulsion clearly indicates that the Swapo president Sam Nujoma has more control in the party and he is pulling the strings.” Lindeke also indicated that the next cabinet reshuffle would clearly show which way the party was heading. “Will the next Cabinet reshuffle accommodate more of the Hamutenya supporters or will it push them out, sending a clear message that they are not welcome in Government or the party?” Another political analyst at the University of Namibia (Unam) Phanuel Kaapama noted that the battle-lines have been drawn between the factions within Swapo with the dismissal of Nyamu from the party. “Nyamu has indicated strongly that he is willing to fight and it all depends on how much support he can get.” Kaapama added that the different factions within the party will win different battles but noted that it is important that only one can win the war. The former youth leader said he was not sure how many people will support Nyamu, adding that that could be decisive in determining which group will win the war. “At this moment, it is not clear whether his allies are willing to stand up for him and fight his cause.” Kaapama added that it appears that there was little resistance from his allies both in the Politburo and Central Committee. He said the expulsion has the potential to either strengthen or weaken the Swapo Party and everything depends on what unfolds in the next few months. “If the party splits, that will definitely weaken the party but if an amicable solution can be reached and lessons are learned from these incidents, it will strengthen party unity and Swapo will benefit.” Meanwhile, the Swapo Secretary General Ngarikutuke Tjiriange said he could not comment on Nyamu’s reaction to his expulsion because he was not aware of it. “I have just spent 20 minutes in my office and was out of town and not aware of anything.” Tjiriange said he had not been briefed about Nyamu’s expulsion and had not even received the letter Nyamu has written to him. “My deputy (John Pandeni) is out of the country, so I have not been briefed and I do not know when I will be briefed.” The spokesperson of the Swapo Party Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah declined to react on Nyamu’s attack on the party and noted that the party’s two biggest organs took the decision and there is nothing to comment further. She also refused to say anything on the alleged “Omusati clique”, noting that she had no desire to get embroiled in mud-slinging.