The legitimacy of the election at the recently held Swapo Karasburg East district conference has been questioned by some party members.
The conference, held at Karasburg last Saturday, saw members contesting positions for the district coordinator, information and mobilization officer and treasurer, which some say was not carried out in accordance with the directives of the party.
A letter by a concerned member addressed to Swapo Secretary General Nangolo Mbumba, of which this newspaper has a copy, indicates that the requirements as per directive of the party’s secretary of finance requires a member standing for any position to have a valid party membership card, fully paid-up annual membership fees and a paid-up 1% contribution.
According to the letter, of the three candidates vying for the district coordinator position only Marcelino Sarles met the requirements and thus was the legitimate candidate.
The letter further questions why a member contesting the treasurer position but who failed to meet the requirements was disqualified, but two others who also did not qualify were allowed to participate.
“It was clear that the regional coordinator supported the two candidates who did not qualify and forced the district conference to allow them to participate in the election,” reads the letter.
The letter further says that the regional district coordinator for //Kharas, Mathew Mumbala, has created friction, a personality cult and division among members to the extent that some had physical confrontations stemming from their arguments at the conference.
Telephonically contacted for comment regarding the letter addressed to him, Mbumba said he was unaware of such a letter as he was in the north of the country, adding that any election that doesn’t follow proper rules will not be entertained.
“If anybody conducts any election with irregularities it will be nullified and they should know that,” he briefly said.
Mumbala however refuted claims of irregularities saying that all members who participated met all the requirements and they were branch and section leaders and thus he had no influence on who should be voted for, as the list of contestants was drawn up by the district members themselves.
“The conference was fair, I have no power to use as I was just there to officiate over the conference,” he asserted.
He added that everyone that went to the conference met the requirements and if by any chance they didn’t the question would go back to the people of Karasburg as to why they delegated people who did not meet requirements.
Mumbala further questioned how a letter addressed to the SG landed in the hands of the media, adding that he doesn’t respond to unknown people and if people are unhappy they should come to him as coordinator instead of running to the media.
“If the letter is addressed to the SG how did you get it, how do you write a letter to the SG and send it to the media? That is also an irregularity,” he said.
At the conference Francis Swartbooi was elected district coordinator, Godfrey Mulisa as treasurer and Marcelino Sarles as mobilisation officer.