Want some insight in Namibian politics? I am no expert but have 16 years (1995-2011) of writing on Namibian politics in The Namibian newspaper and can probably offer you a bit more than you know about the who's who in the Namibian political zoo. You will also find a few articles commenting on other issues of concern in the country. Hope you find it interesting. - Christof

Saturday, April 28, 2012

To Progress In Swapo Keep Out Of Others’ Fights

TWO years ago former Hardap Swapo Party Youth League regional secretary Titus /Huisemab was seen by some in the youth wing as a rising star, but the sun has set on him even before he has achieved anything tangible. /Huisemab became too big for his boots and started taking on fights that were not his. He forgot that he was what he was because of the youth wing structures and not because of his personality, education or connections in the senior hierarchy of the party. To start off with, the young man from the South came to real prominence when, somewhat out of the blue, he was nominated to chair a committee which was basically engineered to oust Jutta Shikomba, SPYL’s deputy secretary, in February 2009. At that stage her suspension was linked to meetings she held at Rundu without the knowledge of SPYL secretary Elijah Ngurare as well as her refusal to explain her behaviour to the national executive committee. Other allegations were associated with factionalism and tribalism. Following a meeting in the garden town of Okahandja a committee was appointed and /Huisemab was the chairperson. Other members were Swapo’s regional co-ordinator for Oshikoto, Armas Amukwiyu, Swapo MP Eveline !Nawases-Kayele and former Nanso leader Neville Andre Itope. Shikomba refused to appear before that committee and that is the main reason why she has found herself in the political wilderness as far as her position in the youth wing is concerned. As can be seen from the above, /Huisemab led a powerful youth committee and even had the protection of the likes of Ngurare to the extent that though he had failed to carry out his duties as Hardap secretary, he remained untouchable. For instance, the youth league suspended former Mariental Urban Constituency Swapo district secretary Jan Johannes Herero and Mariental Rural Constituency Swapo district secretary Simon Dukuleni from their structures. Their sin was that the two, along with Gibeon constituency Swapo district secretary Ivan Pieters and Rehoboth rural constituency executive member Adrian Pieters, not only launched a scathing attack on /Huisemab but also called Ngurare and now Karas governor Clinton Swartbooi his “godfathers”. They also alleged that /Huisemab had stolen party funds and had failed to run the SPYL properly. /Huisemab’s argument then was that the group was instigated by some senior party leaders in Hardap Region and they were blocked from standing for election in the structures. /Huisemab thus survived the onslaught not because of his own character or for what he had done in the structures but due to the backing he had from those in Windhoek. But, as I mentioned some time back, there comes a time in Swapo when ‘dog eats dog’. Those who close ranks to oust others turn against one another as the pie gets smaller. There is nothing wrong with /Huisemab having ambitions to become the youth league secretary but his sin was to forget the masses on his way to the top. Instead of keeping contact and being active at grassroots level, he was more active at national level in other people’s fights for leadership. Now he has paid the price and will wander in the political wilderness unless he goes back to the structures and ‘begs’ for forgiveness. That in itself is a major task as he has made too many enemies, including Hardap governor Katrina Hanse-Himarwa, whom he previously accused of using fellow youth to oust him. Thus as things stand now, he is not likely to make it to the Swapo congress later this year and it will take him another few years before he can rejoin the youth structures, but by then he may not qualify due to age. His demise should serve as a good political lesson for other aspiring Swapo youth!