Uauadja Koos Mazenge, who was suspended by the Swapo Party a week ago, says he went independent to fulfill the wishes of supporters of the ruling party.
“I’m standing as an independent candidate, because the people want me to stand,” Mazenge said with regard to the regional and local authority elections slated for the end of this month.
Mazenge’s suspension came after he registered as an independent candidate, while as a Swapo member, he was expected to support the elected candidate.
Mazenge said this week that the suspension would not affect his plans.
He said the regional leadership of Swapo followed the rules of the party, but he questioned the validity of his suspension as there was no hearing to allow him to give his side of the story.
Julius Kautjova, the Swapo district secretary for information and mobilisation in Kunene, confirmed that Mazenge was suspended in absentia after he rejected talks with the special advisor to Kunene Regional Governor Angelika Muharukua.
Mazenge, however, wanted to know who told the Kunene regional leadership of Swapo that he is a party member. “Maybe I’m just a supporter. They must do their homework,” Mazenge said.
On Kautjova’s claim that the independent candidate campaigned in Swapo’s name and colours, Mazenge dismissed this as a ‘blatant lie’ intended to tarnish his name, as he has not yet started campaigning.
Mazenge said his suspension from Swapo would not affect his independent candidacy. He will still stand as a candidate in the regional election.
Mazenge, who printed 1 000 posters, which are already posted around Outjo, said as funding is a major problem, but he is trying his best as he will start with a door-to-door political campaign from next week to convey his message.
On November 27 Mazenge will challenge the candidates of Swapo, the Rally for Democracy and Progress, as well as the DTA and UDF at Outjo at the polling booth.
The former community activist, who led a protest against the bucket toilet system at Outjo in the early 1990s also wants to implement all projects initiated by the central government to tackle joblessness.
“We on the ground fail our people, as we don’t implement projects from the central government.
“Once I become a counstituency councilor I will make sure everything is implemented,” Mazenge said.
He also wants to set up a youth office at Outjo, as currently the town’s youth are attended to either at Khorixas or Opuwo.
Mazenge said he will not make any promises but says that his slogan: ‘The change we need, the voice we deserve,’ means a lot.