President not endorsing Shifeta

Tujoromajo Kasuto

The Presidency today has again come out strongly against a local publication for publishing what it described as false claims about President Hage Geingob having endorsed Pohamba Shifeta as his favourite for the Swapo Vice President Position.

The president had been accused by various publications of endorsing or favouring one candidate over the other for the three top Swapo position, namely Vice President, Secretary General and the Deputy Secretary General.

However, the president has time and again said that he will not endorse anyone and that he will allow democracy to take its course.

Despite, his denials the dust refuse to settle around this issue, with some party faithful accusing him of breaking with the tradition of his predecessors, Sam Nujoma and Hifikepunye Pohamba.

The Namibian Sun in his edition on Tuesday claimed that President Geingob had endorsed Pohamba Shifeta for the position of Vice President in Luanda, Angola when the President attended the inauguration of the President of Angola and also for the wreath laying of the late president of Angola, Eduardo dos Santos.

Shifeta is one of the three candidates vying for the VP position alongside Prime Minister, Saara Kuukongwelwa-Amadhila and her deputy and incumbent VP Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah.

‘’The report that had stated that Geingob introduced Shifeta to 16 Heads of State in Luanda is an utter fabrication and fiction by the Namibia Sun. Contrary to False Claims in the Namibian Sun, Presidency reiterates the fact that President Hage G. Geingob will not endorse candidates for the forthcoming Swapo Party congress,’’ a statement by the State House contends.

President Geingob over the past months has strongly made his position clear with regard to the ongoing campaigns for the positions of Vice President, Secretary General and Deputy

Secretary General that he will not endorse anyone.

The Presidency said it finds the article “SPYL divided over VP choice” in the Namibian Sun of 20 September 2022 ‘’malicious, without factual basis, and lacking in objectivity’’.

‘’The Namibian Sun and those engaged in endless speculation, rumour- mongering and gossip about who Geingob allegedly “supports quietly” should be rest assured that President Geingob has taken the decision not to endorse any candidate, for reasons of fair play elaborated extensively by the Presidency on 1 September 2022’’, states the release.

Geingob in the release further rebukes claims that he was supporting Shifeta, Kuugongelwa- Amadhila and then Frans Kapofi, who withdrew from the race last week.

Geingob questions, ‘’how many people can he support in one week,’’ thus the allegations are ‘‘evidence of misinformation and reporting without facts.’’

Furthermore, Geingob defends that consistent with their roles in Government and the issues on

the UN Agenda, it should be emphasised that Nandi-Ndaitwah, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, and Shifeta, Minister of Environment, Forestry and Tourism were part of the Namibian Delegation to the 77th Session of the United Nations General Assembly.

The delegation was allegedly compiled before Shifeta was a candidate, and it is for that reason that he withdrew from the delegation.

‘’The Namibian Sun could have verified if Hon. Shifeta was with the Namibian Delegation in New York. Hon. Shifeta is not endorsed by President Geingob and the report, which states otherwise in the Namibian Sun, demonstrates the absence of verification in certain newsrooms in pursuance of bias and orchestrated political agendas,’’ the statement reads.

By Observer