WINDHOEK – The outgoing official opposition party Rally for Democracy and Progress (RDP) has moved to prevent Hidipo Hamutenya – a claimant to its presidency – from holding a meeting in Ohangwena this coming Saturday.
New Era understands that Hamutenya ordered party regional secretary for Ohangwena, Timoteus Shikongo, to organise a meeting that he (Hamutenya) intends to address this weekend.
With RDP announcing last weekend that Steve Bezuidenhoudt will act as party president after Hamutenya announced recently that he would step down as president, a confused Shikongo sought clarity from the party headquarters in Windhoek.
Shikongo was informed that Hamutenya no longer has the power as president to instruct party structures, because the party accepted his announcement to resign and will not accept him back in that position.
Party secretary general Mike Kavekotora yesterday confirmed that Hamutenya would not be allowed to make use of any party structures “because he is no longer president”.
“I am aware that he wanted to instruct the regional secretary to convene a meeting in the region which he [HH] would address, but we informed all our structures not to permit him to do so,” said Kavekotora.
Kavekotora said Hamutenya would not be allowed to “abuse party structures for his own interest”.
“This is unheard of, especially considering the fact that he is no longer president of the party. Our stance remains that he will not be allowed to instruct party structures to organise gatherings for him,” said the secretary general.
Hamutenya last month tendered his resignation but after two weeks had a change of heart. However, the RDP is refusing him re-entry into its structures as president.
Meanwhile, Hamutenya’s apparent forced departure from the party prompted its regional secretary for Omusati Region, Immanuel Shikongo, to tender his resignation yesterday.
Shikongo announced his resignation in a letter sent to Kavekotora.
“I am writing this letter to inform you of the decision I have taken. I want to tell you that I am no longer interested in being the RDP secretary for Omusati Region and I also surrender my RDP membership, as soon as this week,” said Shikongo.
Kavekotora however said he did not know anything about Shikongo’s resignation.
“I am not in town and I am not aware that Imms [Immanuel] has resigned. But maybe he forwarded it to the office in Windhoek,” said Kavekotora.
Shikongo said he decided to resign because “the leadership does not care about its cadres down in the grassroots, especially in Omusati Region where it is difficult to stay as an opposition politician.”
He added: “The leadership are too ignorant when it comes to internal problems and they are not ready to take over from Swapo.
“As HH is leaving now or has left, I do not see potential candidates to take over since the two candidates who are likely to take over are the same people who caused friction in the party after they initiated the suspension of the trio in 2010/2011.”
He also warned that the party risks losing more members if it does not act on certain matters.
“I love the party so much and my blood is full of RDP colours but it is enough for now. I wish them well in their activities,” he said.
He said he would in future concentrate on his family and business.