Swapo Party of Namibia Secretary General (SG), Sophia Shaningwa, says the completion of its headquarters is a surprise.
Shaningwa says the party decided to keep the construction of its headquarters under wraps from the public. “We have taken the decision that when we are constructing it, it should be covered. So that you people cannot know what we are doing inside and the day when it opens, you see your surprise,” She states. She is tight lipped about the completion date saying “I don’t see any reason, why the Windhoek Observer should be concerned with regards to the completion of the headquarters of Swapo, you are a newspaper, your work is to go there and see and not ask me.”
She further adds that Swapo is a party of action and not just of all talk and no bite. “For Swapo we don’t talk a lot, we do our things and when the time is right, you get your surprises. Therefore you do not get any information for now as you have already been told from the beginning that we are going to build a Swapo party headquarters.”
On whether the pandemic has had any negative effects on the construction of the building, in relation to the availability of funds to be completed, Shaningwa deflects the question striking back with more questions. “You want to give us funds? We will come to your company and you will give us some funds that we need. Money available or not, if I ever need money I will come to your office! What about your newspapers, why do [YOU] think other people cannot be affected?”
Meanwhile, Swapo’s Executive Director, Austin Samupwa, in an interview with Windhoek Observer reveals that the headquarter’s construction is on course. He however adds that there have been various delays due to lockdown regulations because of Covid-19 since the commencement of the pandemic last year. Samupwa refers all questions regarding the expected date of completion and finances to SG Shaningwa.
The N$730 million building was handed to a Chinese company, Unik Construction Engineering and construction work commenced in June 2019.
The headquarters is rumoured to be a fully functional modern eight stories office complex to accommodate the office of Former President, Sam Nujoma, office for current party president, Hage Geingob, amongst others with also a 170-vehicle parking lot,
The construction of the headquarters sparked controversy among the country’s citizens dismayed over the ruling party’s decision to build a modern complex opposite a crumbling state hospital, the Katutura State Hospital.