By Anna Ingwafa
Oshikoto Governor Penda ya Ndakolo has called on the residents of Omuthiya not to give away the town to the opposition because they were not there when the Swapo Government built the town.
Ya Ndakolo was speaking at a Swapo Party rally to launch the party’s campaign for the local authority election for the Omuthiya Town Council.
He said “liars” who claim that Swapo Party and the Oshikoto Regional Council are corrupt are leading the newly formed Rally for Democracy and Progress (RDP).
“If we are corrupt, why can’t they report us to the police or to the Anti-Corruption Commission?” asked ya Ndakolo.
Ya Ndakolo was reacting to accusations by Moses Amukoto, the RDP candidate for Omuthiya and a party coordinator in the region, who apparently claims that the regional council has misused one million Namibian dollars that was meant to clean Omuthiya town, which accusations ya Ndakolo said were absurd.
He called on the people not to be intimidated.
The governor also pointed a finger at Phil Ya Nangoloh and blasted him for comparing the political situation in Namibia with that of Kenya.
“Ya Nangoloh should leave Swapo alone; we know he is not a human rights activist but a politician. He should just go to his party. I was not appointed by him nor by RDP, so they do not have authority to tell me not to use the government vehicle, even Nyamu and Hidipo when they were in government were not using taxis, ” he said.
Minister of Health and Social Services and Swapo politician Richard Kamwi spoke on behalf of the Founding Father Sam Nujoma.
Kamwi urged Omuthiya people to elect leaders who will promote the ideals of peace and democracy, people who will provide service to Omuthiya first, and service to themselves second; people with sound judgment and ethical conduct, and people who are all-inclusive in their approach and individuals who have demonstrated capacity and ability.
“We as Swapo Party are advancing candidates with these necessary qualities, who will maintain unity, who are disciplined, who show and demand respect and who will promote a culture of tolerance and collective development for Omuthiya,” said Kamwi.
He outlined the achievements attained by Government since independence for the Oshikoto Region. He said the region had been underdeveloped and that it had mainly sandy roads. It was once inaccessible but today there are decent gravel roads.
Another achievement after independence is the railway line that runs across the region from Tsumeb to Ondangwa.
On health infrastructure, Kamwi said at independence there were only Onandjokwe and Tsumeb hospitals. “People used to travel long distances to these two hospitals. At present the Swapo Party led Government has built numerous clinics within reach of many citizens in this region.
“We are also going to build a hospital here, at Omuthiya, and plans are at an advanced stage. This has been made possible by our Chinese friends who have been supporting the Swapo led Government.”
He pointed out that previously there were only a few schools and learners walked long distances to attend school. Today, there are schools within walking distance in the Oshikoto Region and most learners have conventional classrooms.
Regarding the few that do not have classrooms, the Government will continue to address the deficit within its National Development Programme 1 and II (NDP 1 & 2) which according to Kamwi has made an impact in the educational sector.
After independence, Government built two additional senior secondary schools in the region. They are Onguti and Ekulo. Another school, Omuntele Senior Secondary School is to be constructed soon.
The region was the top performer in both grade s 10 and 12 for three years.
In last year’s examination results, it took second position for grade 10s.
Kamwi informed a large crowd of Swapo supporters that in 1998/99 the Oshikoto Regional Council decided to relocate from its present headquarters in Tsumeb and to make Omuthiya a town.
“The decision of Oshikoto was endorsed by Cabinet and preparations were set in motion in 2004 to provide and build bulk services such as roads, water reticulation, sewerage reticulations and electricity.”
According to Kamwi, it cost Oshikoto Regional Council N$3 million to compensate landowners and property owners that were affected by the development of Omuthiya. The process, he said, is still continuing.
The regional council has facilitated the construction of its head offices, the town council office and a multi-purpose youth centre.
He encouraged people to prepare for election and warned them to be mindful of the ideals on which Namibia was built. “It is the blood, sweat and tears of our fellow Namibians which have given us our valuable stability, our peace and democracy. These ideals must be actively safeguarded.”
He pointed at the situation in Kenya that arose as a result of an election dispute and called on people to take heed. “We must do our utmost best to uphold transparency, legitimacy and maintain peaceful order in all our electoral processes. As hard as we fought for independence, with the same resolve, let us hold fast to our peace, development and progress.”
Kamwi introduced the Swapo candidates for the newly proclaimed Omuthiya town, who are Samuel Shivute, Selma Nakaziko, Hiskiel Nanyeni Jambo, Toivo Ngilalulwa, Mwetuhanga Hishekwa, Katrina Uusiku and Toini Andreas.
He called on the candidates to take up the campaign aggressively.
The Omuthiya local authority election will take place on Friday February 29. At least four main parties – Swapo Party, RDP, CoD and the DTA – will contest the election. Voter registration is expected to start today.