By: Justicia Shipena
Landless People’s Movement (LPM) leader Bernadus Swartbooi has given Keetmashoop deputy mayor and LPM councillor Charlyta Cooper until Thursday to explain why she should remain in the party.
Swartbooi wrote a letter to Cooper, stating that she (Cooper) betrayed the party.
“Whatever the veracity of these allegations, please inform my office by 14 July 2022 in writing why you should remain a councillor in the Keetmanshoop local authority,” Swartbooi said.
In the letter, he noted that the information he received is that Cooper shares critical information about the party. This, he says, comprises the work of the party.
“We are told that you share critical information with others which comprises the party’s work,” he said.
“Whatever the veracity of these allegations, I wish to inform you that I want you to explain why you should remain a councillor in the Keetmanshoop local authority and why you should further remain a member of LPM.”
Swartbooi said Cooper’s alleged actions do not meet the standards of the deputy mayor.
“Your actions, allegations set aside, have not met the standard of what a deputy mayor should maintain, and you appear to find it feasible to approach the political mandate with a particular sense of carelessness and intellectual fatigue,” wrote the LPM leader.
He also expressed his concern about her ability to lead.
“Your journey has been watched, and I express my sincere concern about your inability to lead,” he stated.
When The Villager reached out to Cooper, she expressed that she is still a loyal party member but refused to comment further.
“For now, I will not comment from my side because I am still a loyal party member. I won’t do any answering on this one,” she said.
Moreover, LPM spokesperson Eneas Emvula says it is Cooper’s right to claim that she remains loyal to the party.
Emvula added that the party looks forward to a response from her.
“The aspects of loyalty within LPM are paramount because we are in a country in shambles because of the lack of discipline,” he added.
He questioned what Copper means by saying she is a ‘loyal member of PM’.
In January this year, LPM withdrew two of its members from their positions as members of the Keetmanshoop Town Council. At that time, no reasons were given for their removal.
The party also dismissed former Keetmanshoop mayor Maree Smith in December last year on terms that she colluded with the chief executive officer of the Keetmanshoop municipality, Desmond Basson, in connection with the cutting of water provision to some residents of the town.
Smith was serving her second term as mayor at the time.
Cooper then acted as mayor of Keetmanshoop.
Previously the party also removed other party members from their positions on local authority councils in the Hardap region.
This included a member of Gochas Village Council, Magrietha Gomases.
Gomases was removed for allegedly defying party instructions and colluding with opposition party members.
The party has also removed Mariental town councillors Daniel Gariseb and Rogetha Haack, whom it accused of being power hungry and other alleged transgressions.
In March this year, Ziggy Sixtus Isaack resigned from the LPM, citing a lack of respect for “the humanity and dignity of others and the rule of law” by the party’s leadership.
This had also resulted in the party laying criminal charges against the former election director and founding commissar for the //Kharas region.