Mbumba plays down tensions over elections

Swapo Secretary General Nangolo Mbumba has poured cold water on allegations of unfair treatment and breach of party procedures in the Windhoek Rural Constituency primary elections which were marred by controversy last week.

This follows complaints by John Elago who was also a candidate in the primaries who raised queries that the nullification of the vote was done in a manner unfair, unconstitutional and contravening the party electoral procedures.

Elago authored a petition to Swapo SG signed by 36 members Mbumba plays down tensions over elections of the constituency complaining about the irregularities in the way the voting in the primaries was handled. The petition was also brought to the attention of Swapo Elder assigned to the Khomas Rergion Margaret Mensah Williams. 

Speaking toThe Villager Mbumba said, “If there is some form of irregularities, the complainants know what to do and they know what procedure to follow. I will not answer you’re his grievances through your query.”

Elago stated that despite him winning 90% of the nominations against the other candidates, a certain Benina Iita ended up winning the elections although she was not part of the original list of candidates.

In a letter dated October 1, 2015 Elago said the standing candidates for the district conference were Mina de Vries, Erna Kharuxas, John Elago and Fredrick Arie.

“When the district conference for the Windhoek rural constituency took place last week, none of the opponents came, thus I won the elections however comrade Iita came with a hand delivered letter that was signed by the Swapo Party Secretary General Nangolo Mbumba that stated that Mbumba endorsed the decision for her to be made the representative for the constituency. I was the only candidate that was there but according to the letter, me winning the elections was nullified. Iita was not on the original list and when we contacted Mbumba’s office, we were told that comrade Mbumba’s office does not make decisions on a regional level and there should be recommendation coming from the regional office,” Elago said.

Elago shifted the blame on the Regional Coordinator Eliot Mbako saying Mbako was the one who influenced the results by recommending Iita and in so doing failed to follow procedure.

“Mbako recommended Iita to the office of the Secretary General and this was an illegal move and we should not be bound by regional office corruption. Iita is not even part of the Khomas rural constituency. She is even a part of the Electoral commission of Namibia (ECN) and it is two weeks before the elections and she is still working for ECN,” Elago stressed.

Elago added when he approached Mbako for comment, he refused to speak to him. Meanwhile, Mbako said that at the conference that took place, the delegates in attendance including Elago were democratically satisfied with the results, adding that everything done was done the party way.

“I was not able to conduct that specific election as I was at another district conference. What we say is that those who are going to stand for the elections, they must stand. Elago just lost the election and that is why he came up with this things. In any party cycle issues arise but still everything should be democratic,” he said.

Mbako maintained that no malpractices occurred during the elections saying people that do not want to accept that they have lost thus they come up with all sorts of allegations.

“Some people do not want to accept that some things must happen in a certain way, instead when they lose, they start to cause havoc in the situation. Elago is a district coordinator and it was not necessary for him to run to the papers, he had to follow the systematic procedure of dealing with such issues. Iita won the elections fairly and I believe she is able to take that district further than the others,” Mbako said.