Kae Matundu-Tjiparuro

Indeed very strange bedfellows. This is how Yours Truly Ideologically can sum up the recent horse trading among the various political parties and associations, especially in the City of Windhoek, following the results of the Regional and Local Authority elections.

As alluded to in a foregoing installment, these results were not conclusive in terms of returning an overall winner who could make decisive radical transformational decisions. Decisions to deliver in the short term the residents of the City from abject poverty and squalor. And ultimately from the capitalist yoke.

The ink on the results of the elections had hardly dried and the cracks between and among the various political parties and associations were already showing. Not that this is by any measure strange. Because among the various political parties you have the strangest of bedfellows ideologically. In fact not only this but in them, within them and between and among them one has at best political opportunists, dialectically diametrically opposed to any radical transformation. In terms of ideological disposition, few if any, of the various political parties and associations, can be said to subscribe, believe and follow any left-leaning ideology, however one may wish to describe such an ideology, whether right of centre, centre, left of centre and/or socialist. Not to mention that most may in fact be non-pretentious and unashamed adherents of the capitalist ideology. Which makes radical socio-economic transformation in and during their five-year political sojourn untenable.

True to its ideological superficiality and bankruptcy, the horse trading from the word go seems not about substantive issues pertaining to the bread and butter matters of the residents of the City, but jockeying for positions. With some putting much premium on the position of a Mayor, which in true power configurations, practically and realistically, is no more than just ceremonial with little power and influence, real or imagined. With the actual power and influence in real terms being in the chair of the management committee. Yet, illusion has been and is so much in the air, about the wonders of being a Mayor, even among those who should have been in the better know.

As they say one swallow does not make a summer. Likewise one ideologue among the newly elected councilors of the City of Windhoek can equally not a make a summer as far as a meaningful start to addressing the plight of the residents of Windhoek, especially the informal residents as those living in the ghettos are indifferently and derogatory referred to by officialdom. A completely new ideological paradigm is necessary if the plight of the residents in the downtrodden areas of our towns and cities are to be addressed with real intent and purpose. One cannot inculcate such a paradigm shift in only five years that these councilors would be at the habitual honeymoons. This is why given the ideological disposition of most of the newly elected councilors, one cannot entertain the slightest illusion that it is now business unusual. Other than praying that one or two who are ideologically well disposed, shall preach the gospel, if only the gospel of change. A change that the downtrodden must have for long been cr
aving for and that they now pin their hopes at the little light at the end of the tunnel that now seems to be flickering.

There’s no denying that the Second Phase of the Namibian Revolution, has for a good 30 years of the country’s independence, literally been shelved. Sacrificed on the altar of unity. Part of the reason is the unholy albeit necessary alliances during the patriotic and national push for political emancipation. Which saw a conglomeration of various social forces, when the ultimate destiny of Namibia’s political independence was at best hardly defined ideologically, and worst ideologically pretended with some of the leaders only pretending ideological disposition to socialism without ever believing in it.

Old habits die hard. This is the same phenomenon manifesting itself with the so-called new wave of political consciousness but without any ideological clarity, let alone any ideological content. One is hearing murmurs and notions of progressives and progression. All of a sudden, for some undefined agenda, everyone has been thrown in the same basket of progressives, even those least deserving of any accolade of progressiveness ideologically. Or even should the word progressive be diluted to the core the progressive cap shall never fit them. This time around, the ideologically inclined cannot any more afford their ideological agenda to be subservient to a generalized notion of radical transformation illusively termed progressive. An ideology to bring about a radical socio-economic transformation must be buzzword for the new wave. Anything short of this is nothing but a recipe for another 30 years of ideological constipation, and resultant developmental cul de sac. This is certainly a toll order, the lonesome

ideologues cannot realistically be expected to shoulder this mammoth struggle alone and single-handedly. But all the forces committed to a radical socio-economic transformation must rally behind them. All socialist oriented political and social analysts, academicians, workers, intellectuals, indeed all strata of society leaning towards socialism must fulfill their historical dialectical responsibility. And the time is now!