Windhoek-The Swapo Party Youth League (SPYL) acting secretary Veikko Nekundi has blasted the Windhoek City Council, in which Swapo Party holds the majority, for what he termed the ill-treatment of the electorate by demolishing their shacks and clamping down on car washes.
Nekundi, who addressed a press briefing yesterday, particularly referred to the City Police dismantling 13 shacks and leaving 40 families homeless in Otjomuise’s 7de Laan informal settlement on Tuesday. The demolitions sparked public outrage in certain quarters.
Those left homeless claimed no prior notice was given to them regarding the demolition of their homes by the police.
“The SPYL is concerned that some local government institutions such as City of Windhoek, where Swapo Party councillors are in the majority, are oppressing the voting masses of Swapo. Their actions are leading to our people to hate the party, thereby weakening our party – the party we trust,” Nekundi remarked.
He made the charges in the presence of two local authority Swapo councillors who serve on the city’s management committee, namely Paulus Immanuel and Ian Subasubani. Both councillors declined to comment on the issue.
“Of recent is the ill-advised, inhumane demolishing of shacks in 7de Laan informal settlement and the black majority-inhabited areas of the city, the deliberate closure of car washes in Katutura, the breaking down of Ishitile welding business, as well as the forceful removal of enterprising youth from their livelihoods and places where they trade their skills instead of stealing or being on the streets,” the SPYL leader said.
A quick drive showed that several car washes around the city have remained closed for close to two months now.
Affirmative Repositioning (AR) activist Job Amupanda has described the police’s action as illegal.
Nekundi urged the Swapo leadership on national, regional and local authorities to direct political decisions and timely interventions on matters affecting people.
“We must be mindful that actions of certain institutions will have direct effects on the people’s voting choice at election time…. We thus call for an end to the inhumane treatment of our people.”
It remains unclear whether the affected families whose shacks were demolished would be compensated for the damage suffered.
Nekundi said Swapo is yet to declare the succession debate open, while recently some members of the SPYL publicly declared their interest in senior positions in the youth league. The SPYL elective congress is slated for later this year.
Nekundi urged SPYL members, if they so wish, to contest any position but to do so in accordance with the party’s values and constitution.
However, Nekundi called on members to wait for the campaign to officially be declared open, saying there are still at least five months to go.
He further denied that SPYL members are united against the politburo. “Any structure or any individual has the freedom and right within the parameters of an organisation to engage on any decision, as long as that engagement differs, or is in concurrence, within the conformity of the principles and constitution of an organisation,” he noted.