By: Kelvin Chiringa
Long time Swapo Party critic turned praise-singer; Phil ya Nangoloh has denied a report that President Hage Geingob has plans to contest again for a third term.
Leaked WhatsApp chats from the Politburo and Central Committee group have revealed secretary-general Sophia Shaningwa admitting that Ya Nangolo was being welcomed back into the party to support Geingob’s third term ambitions.
But ya Nangolo has slammed Shaningwa for making “absurd” statements.
“For anyone to now claim or even suggest that President Geingob is seeking a third term of office as President of Namibia constitutes a whole theatre of the absurd. Secondly, even if, for argument’s sake, President Geingob wanted a third term, that would be dead on arrival because any constitutional amendment requires two-thirds majorities (sic) vote in both National Assembly and National Council,” he said.
He also said Shaningwa’s claims serve to stoke divisions within the party.
“Such claims are intended to stoke internal conflict and divisions. There is no scintilla of truth in them. As a matter of fact, they are a complete heap of rubble. The falsehood in such claims can be independently verified by reading Articles 29(3) and 134 of Namibian Constitution, read with Namibian Constitution First Amendment Act 1998,” he said.
Ironically, Shaningwa has said he backed the decision to have ya Nangoloh back in the party.
He is expected to officially join the Party this Monday at a press conference.
“I have high interest in writing this civic, educational commentary because my name, Phil ya Nangolo, (incorrectly written “Phil Ya Nangolo”) was mentioned in connection with the so-called third term of office for President Geingob. My fellow loyal SWAPO members and supporters are hereby humbly requested not to entertain such wanton and cheap propaganda! So, let us remain as informed and as solid as a rock!” he said.
At the same time, the Namibian Exiled Kids Association (NEKA) has completely rejected the decision to roll the red carpet for Ya Nangoloh to enter the Swapo house.
The organisation wants a public apology first.
“This is a decision which has angered many in Namibia. Is it true, or can it be true that the Politburo and Central Committee members have decided to take an unpatriotic decision like that blindly? This leaves many questions than answers.
“Equally, NEKA, SWAPO Party rank and file as well as our MPLA sister party wish to know and to ascertain whether Mr Phil Ya Nangolo has denounced his association and his post of being representative of UNITA in Namibia!
“It can be remembered that when UNITA leader Jonas Savimbi died, Phil Ya Nangolo was a prominent invitee. He was also invited to be a UNITA election observer during the national elections in Angola. Dear members of the Politburo and Central Committee of SWAPO, what are the reasons you are inviting Phil Ya Nangolo to SWAPO: to humiliate the Founding President, embarrass SWAPO, or insult the intelligence of all peace-loving Namibians? NEKA demands a public apology from Phil Ya Nangolo to the Namibian nation and the Founding President,” said NEKA.
The organisation accused Ya Nangolo of plotting the party’s downfall and attacking Sam Nujoma.
“There is a CV of evidence on how Ya Nangolo and cohorts systematically wanted to destroy SWAPO and especially vilify, insult and demonise the person of the Founding President. It is ironic to hear that this is the man that the leadership of SWAPO has approved to join SWAPO. It is rumoured that the decision was taken by the Politburo and Central Committee of SWAPO,” said NEKA.
Director at the Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR), Graham Hopwood, has said it shouldn’t be such a big issue that Ya Nangoloh is rejoining the party.
“Obviously, Swapo is looking for any little bit of good news it can get, so an old enemy is coming back. He was originally in exile to join Swapo back in the 70s, he has come back after a long period, but it’s something like a storm in a teacup. I don’t think it’s very significant,” he said.