Popular Democratic Movement Secretary General, Manual Ngaringombe, says the lack of service delivery at most local authorities is because councils are dominated by Swapo, which disregard the ideas suggested by councillors of opposition parties.
Speaking at a capacity-building workshop for the party’s local authority councillors at Keetmanshoop on Friday, Ngaringombe said the ruling Swapo Party dominated many local authorities, as a result, views of councillors from other parties are not considered all the time due to their political affiliation. He, therefore, urged councillors from opposition parties to perform exceptionally well if they are to make meaningful contributions and leave a mark.
He said Swapo domination in councils has brought about a situation where service delivery at many local authorities is very poor, as bright ideas from non-Swapo councillors are shelved and this, he said, has compromised development in the country.
“Most of you live in Swapo-dominated councils, where the sense of making contributions are viewed and linked to your political homes, this has been the main reason why service delivery at our respective local authorities has been slow and thus depriving many residents of basic services, and this has compromised development in our country,” he said.
He called on the councillors present to redouble their efforts, saying with an understanding that decision making in local authorities depends heavily on the majority rule, the only chance of making meaningful inputs is if they worked extra hard, and show what they are capable of.
“I urge you all to go an extra mile and outperform the majority domination to prove that we can deliver better when we have a full mandate,” he said.
He further called on local authority councillors irrespective of their party affiliation to serve all people that put them in their offices and leave politics out of service delivery, saying they should divorce politics within their offices.
He also encouraged the councillors to always put the interests of the people first, before their own, noting that the inhabitants are crying for basic and affordable services such as housing, sanitation and infrastructural development, and thus all local authorities should put service delivery, especially housing as their first priority.
He also reminded councillors that their term in office is not permanent and thus should work hard during their tenure and leave a good legacy once they are gone.
The workshop saw PDM local authority councillors from Khomas, Hardap, //Kharas and Omaheke regions gather at Keetmanshoop for the capacity-building workshop aimed at understanding the roles and duties of the councillors and other important issues of governance.