NUDO intervenes in OTA chieftainship dispute

Martin Endjala

The National Unity Democratic Organization (Nudo) is concerned about the unresolved dispute over the chieftainship of the Ovaherero Traditional Authority, saying it is eroding the party’s support base.

The dispute is over who should facilitate the transitional process for the succession of the late paramount chief Vekuii Rukoro.

Under normal circumstances the current senior headman Vipuira Kapuuo, who was the chairperson of the chiefs council at the time of the death of Rukoro, would have been tasked to facilitate the transitional process. However, Mutjinde Katjiua felt Kapuuo was not fit to facilitate the transitional process. This dispute is bedevilling its support base, according to Nudo’s president Utjiua Muinjangue.

“The fact and reality is that one cannot divorce NUDO from the chief’s council OTA. The party leadership, therefore, feels the need to engage the two warring contingents to see whether they can reach an amicable solution,” Muinjangue said.

NUDO is a political formation that was borne out of the Ovaherero Chief Council during early 1964 and has been sharing members with OTA since then and OTA has been the backbone of the party.

The politics in the succession battle in the OTA is drawing Nudo’s membership in the dispute, although it is not part of the factions. She further stated that there is a blurred line between the two institutions and that the divisions have extended to the party’s structures and governance.

The revealed that the disputes have resulted in the emergence of two factions within Ovaherero Traditional Authority, which has also spilled over into the party, therefore the concern of NUDO leadership in the issue, the president said.

“Cognizant of the matter the Party Leadership resolved to rescue its membership base by engaging all OTA Traditional Chiefs who are members of NUDO in an effort to conscientise them on the dispute’s potential negative repercussion in the governance and stability within the party,” Muinjangue said responding to questions as to how NUDO will intervene in the matter.

Talking about other party issues, Munjangue stated that the opportunity of having a President who doubles as Deputy Minister of Health and Social Services has created a platform for NUDO to partially implement its Manifesto, mostly in light of Health and Social Welfare matters.

The Party will continue to have public consultation on issues that are of concern to the Namibian people through its MPs in parliament.

“So far the Party has moved a number of motions such as, Motion on Conditions of Local Authorities, Motion on the Borderline between

Namibia and Botswana, Motion on Women Placement and Representation in Politics, Motion on State Agency for Victims of Genocide and the Creation of a Heritage side, as well as Motion on the Realistic Demarcation of Gobabis and the Kalahari Constituencies respectively,” she stated.

Ndumba Kamwenyah a political analyst welcomed Nudo’s intervention into the OTA squabble to bring the two parties to speak to each other. He said that if Nudo achieves a swift solution regarding the dispute, it will increase the party’s standing. Kamwenyah did however caution political parties not to get entangled in traditional authority disputes, and only render support when necessary or upon request.

NUDO’s search for harmony and doing it out of support towards the community of the region, will indeed create more welcoming platforms and strengthen the party’s support base come election time, Kamwenyah concludes.

By Observer