SPYL rebuts Itula’s statements on presidential candidacy

Hertta-Maria Amutenja

The Swapo Party Youth League (SPYL), has addressed what it calls “unfounded hallucinations”, of Panduleni Itula, the leader of the Independent Patriots for Change (IPC), regarding Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah, the Swapo Party’s presidential candidate for the 2024 elections.

In a statement, SPYL’s Secretary General, Ephraim Nekongo, reiterated the party’s usual stance of not responding to what they term the “hallucinations of fly-by-night political establishments” but felt compelled to set the record straight on Itula’s comments.

This comes after Itula in a recent interview repeated a claim of being the only presidential candidate in Namibia. Itula also repeated claims about alleged irregularities in the 2019 elections.

“So far I am the only presidential candidate in Namibia as all the other political parties have not yet sorted out their presidential candidates. I am not going to tackle Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah unless she is the legitimate candidate of the Swapo Party,” said Itula.

SPYL reiterated the legitimacy of Nandi-Ndaitwah as the sole presidential candidate for the 2024 elections, re-elected as Vice-President by the 7th Ordinary Congress of the Swapo Party.

Nekongo cited Rule 37 and Rule 34.6, from the Swapo party constitution to support their claim that Nandi-Ndaitwah’s candidacy aligns with the party’s established procedures.

However, Itula argued that the Swapo Party constitution does not explicitly make provision for a presidential candidate for the Republic of Namibia, contrary to the SPYL’s assertions.

“Take into consideration that in 2016 I amended the Swapo constitution I know it inside out. I also know the rules governing the election delegates and the appointment of Swapo Party activists into government. What is principally important is that the Swapo Party constitution does not in any way make provision for a presidential candidate to contest the presidential elections of the Republic of Namibia.

The Swapo Party constitution makes provision for the congress of the party to elect their internal leaders to govern their party.

Rule 53 of the Swapo Party rules state that the president of the party shall automatically be the candidate for the national presidential elections.

Rule 12 of the Swapo Party rules for electing party leaders. It states that no position shall be held by automaticity promotion. All positions shall be elective,” said Itula.

According to Nekongo, Itula, in an attempt to revive the IPC, has wrongly presented himself as a Swapo member, by discussing the internal processes of the party.

“He is parading himself as the spokesperson of the Swapo Party because there is nothing to talk about in the collapsing IPC, and he knows that. Where the Swapo party is mentioned, our people listen in numbers. Be that as it may, if I was Dr Iitula, I too would be fascinated by the rich democratic culture practised by the Swapo Party since its establishment,” Nekongo said.

SPYL portrayed Itula’s statements as misleading and deceptive, suggesting that he is attempting to cast doubt on the legitimacy of the candidate from the largest political party in Namibia.

They further questioned Itula’s credibility, highlighting his prolonged residence in Britain and alleging that he only remembered Namibia five years ago.

“A man who invested all his youth in building the British society than his own country, a country he flew to 1982 through the then apartheid-controlled J. G. Strijdom Airport now (Hosea Kutako International Airport.

That in itself is questionable from a man who is continuously misleading the Namibian nation about being a war veteran. He is the only so-called war veteran who went in exile on a flight through the apartheid-controlled airport, and landed in imperialist Britain and lived there, happily ever after, for 33 solid years,” he added.

Moreover, SPYL urged the Namibian people to remain vigilant against what they called “pseudo politicians” and invited Itula to return to Swapo if that was his desire.

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