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New Angolan administration will not change relations

Fri, 1 September 2017 17:39
by Kelvin Chiringa
News Flash

Angola’s poll results will not change Nam-Angola relations which span decades while the chances are that outstanding debts will be paid up without any interruption, analysts have said. The Angolan economy has had a tremendous impact on Namibia which has stood to bene?t further from good relations with the now victorious MPLA ruling party.

Fears of potential post-poll violence in case of a disputed poll-result as was seen in Kenya remained a concern for analysts back home ahead of the polls as this could hinder progress in payments from Angola that had been on a smooth trend.  UNITA and another small opposition party Casa-Ce have already raised red ?ags over an alleged restricted media access while claiming that “voters in opposition strongholds were forced to cast their ballots at polling stations far from their homes”.

Speaking to The Villager on the issue, one of the leading Columnist and political commentator Ndumba Kamwanyah was optimistic MPLA would maintain its hold on power and continue dealing with Namibia as before.

“I think we should not be that concerned for some reasons. First, I do not believe that there was a chance for the MPLA to lose that election. It seemed obvious that what would happen there would just be a continuity of the same government, same ruling party. Considering the historical relationship between the ruling party here and the ruling party there nothing really will change that much. They will continue paying the debt that they owe,” he opined.

He added, “The peaceful relations between the two countries will still be there. But had UNITA taken over government I do not think that we should also have been concerned because I do not think that they would come up with different policies towards Namibia and all those things.”

 Announcements from the election commission of that country had it that provisional tallies showed the ruling MPLA having taken a substantial early lead in the parliamentary elections over the main opposition party.  However MPLA has come out triumphant. UNITA was reportedly disputing the initial results arguing that the tally showed a narrower race than of?cially announced.

Unam based economic analyst Professor Roman Grynberg also delivers that what should be more concerning in Angola is the performance of its oil-run economy than any political impact that may arise out of the polls. “From the looks of the results, it will be business as usual just with a different name. The heir apparent of MPLA has already been chosen (Joao Lourenco), what more can one say? That does not mean that things there will stay as they have always been. The economic determinant of Angola is the oil price, and that is what matters, and that will help Namibia because the Angolans will be coming back,” he comments. Economic analyst at Namibia Equity Brokers (NEB)

Alfred Kamupingene says Angolans will still be able to ?ock to Namibia at the provided there is a robust ?nancial backing. “It is not any easy question, but the Angolans have a huge bearing on our retail sector here.

So I am not sure if whoever wins the elections and become the next president will say they should not come and do their shopping here, I am not certain of that,” he said ahead of the polls last week. He added, ‘Post election violence could be the only risk, but I am not sure if the situation is so tense there and am not sure if one should be too concerned.”

Angola has been riddled by con?ict and a bloody 1975/2002 civil war while a drop in oil prices has driven the economy into doldrums giving rise to massive unemployment. This has posed a challenge on Namibia which has been impacted by seismic shocks as more and more Angolans dropped their expenditure into the local economy.