By: Kelvin Chiringa
Okahenge Swapo branch co-ordinator Reinhold Shipwikineni has said the leadership had suspended him because he is a political threat to some elements’ ambitions in the coming watershed congress.
Shipwikineni has challenged his suspension, asking proof of whether President Hage Geingob had given the directive or not.
Claudius Ikera and Albertina Nkoshi penned the suspension letter.
Speaking to The Villager, the labour activist said he was being targeted for calling out on corruption within the party.
He said he has also been suspended because he dared pen a letter to party senior and labour minister Utoni Nujoma, proposing a national minimum wage.
“When we look into the so-called suspension letter, the reason they suspended me is that, they said, I called some of the Swapo members as corrupted members in the party (sic).
“The other thing indicated in the so-called suspension letter is because I wrote a letter to the ministry of labour proposing the national minimum wage. I proposed that the Labour Act should be amended and create the provision for a national minimum wage,” he said.
He said the party constitution does not have any provision that empowers the district executive committee to suspend its members.
He added that the district executive only has the power to recommend the suspension of one of its members to the regional executive committee in terms of Article 44 (3) of the Swapo party constitution as amended.
The Swapo party code of conduct and disciplinary procedures, he said, code 17 states that no party member shall be suspended before they have been given a chance to be heard.
“There is no serious matter here. What I see is the fear of internal political competition as the Swapo party congress is knocking on the door. They feel that only yes men and yes women should be allowed to attend the district conference next year, the regional conference, and the congress.
“Now they are playing political tactics to come up with the so-called suspension against me (sic). I have been a victim since 2017 up to date. Even last year, in 2020, during the Local Authority Councils, District Conference, in the selection of candidates.
“I was even supposed to contest for the Local Authority Council at the party District Conference. Most Swapo members suffered at the section level and branch level when I was nominated, but my name was removed. I know they are scared of me to compete with me. I am their biggest threat to them because I am not corrupted,” he said.