In an unorthodox turn of events, the DTA executive yesterday said it stands ready to rejoin forces with the re-elected secretary general of the youth league, Bensen Katjirijova, just months after passing a vote of no confidence in his leadership.
Katjirijova, who defeated Hidipo Hamata to retain his post, was re-elected last weekend at the youth wing’s congress to serve as secretary general until 2019.
The party’s acting secretary general, Elma Dienda, said yesterday at a press conference the party’s executive had passed a vote of no confidence in the youth league, as well as the women’s league because of “poor performance”.
“We want the youth to have their house in order and they must be at the forefront of the party’s activities. The vote of no confidence was not targeted at Bensen, but the entire youth league leadership at the time, as we felt the youth and women’s league did not perform to our satisfaction,” she said.
The term of the former leadership was due to end next year, something which Dienda acknowledged, but said the party’s constitution provides for the leadership to convene an elective convention should the need for a new leadership arise.
Amongst other expectations, the party’s executive expects the youth to run their own income-generating projects to fund their activities, and furthermore unity should prevail, she said.
Despite a failed attempt to get rid of him, Katjirijova said at the same press conference he is ready to work with the party’s leaders. “The reason why the opposition is going down is because of infighting, but I can assure you that even if I had lost, I would still support the party,” he said.
“The road that we’ve travelled over the course of my last term and in the build-up to the recently-held congress has not been an easy one. We have had to – and will have to – overcome various challenges in order to affirm our unity of purpose, which is to be an open and welcome home to Namibian youth from all walks of life from all over the country and to represent the many faces of Namibian society.”
Katjirijova urged the DTA youth to compete on local and regional government level. “Local and regional governance structures represent an opportunity to directly impact the bread and butter issues that affect the Namibian youth. Therefore, fellow members of the DTA Youth League, open yourselves up to serving in these structures. It is here that we can claim our true mantle as the leaders of today, not tomorrow,” he said.
At the congress Yvette Araes was elected to serve as deputy secretary general, while Immanuel Shikongo was elected as chairperson. He will be deputised by Felicia Motinga, while Vakamuina Kamutuezu has been elected as secretary of finance.