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By: Kelvin Chiringa 

The Swapo Party has accused unionist and member Reinhold Shipwikineni of using threats in his bid to push for constitutional amendments. 

Shipwikineni has advised the party that if it does not affect several constitutional changes ahead of congress within seven days of receiving his letter of demand, he would instruct his lawyer to “promptly institute an action against you in the High Court of Namibia for which legal cost you shall be liable”. 

Lawyer, Kadhila Amoomo, is representing Shipwikineni. 

The party, via its lawyers Conradie and Damaseb, has shot down Shipwikineni’s request to incorporate the veterans’ association as a wing of the party, a demand he has pushed through for the party to yield to. 

“Any new wing will have to be recognised and included through recognised procedures, and it is not for the secretary-general to do so,” said the lawyers. 

The party has also said that filling the deputy secretary general’s vacancy can only be done at congress through recognised constitutional procedures.

Shipwikineni has demanded that the party must recognise members who stood for the position of deputy secretary-general at the 2017 Congress to fill the position that became vacant after the death of Marco Hausiku.

Swapo has also suggested that it cannot yield to the demand that it holds an “enlarged extra-ordinary congress because this does not exist in their constitution”.

“This invention by your client is a fiction of your client’s imagination,” Conradie and Damaseb informed Amoomo. 

Shipwikineni has also demanded that any member of the party involved or convicted for any criminal or corruption charges must voluntarily resign from any responsibilities or

 should be removed from the office.

But the party has informed him that its position on corruption is a matter of public record, yet could not do anything now until congress.

“As much as our client would want to take action to have members alleged to be involved in such practices removed, this is a matter squarely within the powers of congress and through recognised constitutional procedures,” said the lawyers. 

Shipwikineni also demanded that Swapo members should be allowed to stand for president, vice president, secretary-general and deputy secretary-general positions at all levels if nominated from the bottom at the coming congress slated for this year.

But the party said this could only be dealt with at congress and that he is at liberty to make such nominations only then. 

It is presently not clear whether the back and forth between the two parties will culminate into a high court showdown. 


Kelvin Chiringa

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