Andrew Kathindi

Swapo party said there is no reason why President Hage Geingob should apologize or withdraw statements he made over the weekend about white voters, which has sparked heated political debate ahead of next month elections.

This comes as the Popular Democratic Movement (PDM) have filed a complaint with the Office of the Ombudsman against President Geingob, calling for the President to withdraw his statements.

However, Swapo Spokesperson, Hilma Nicanor, maintains there is no need for Geingob to withdraw his words, arguing that he had a democratic right to speak his mind.

“We know those who were not there for the independence of our country. Now these are some of the people that are still hard at work out there and want to see Swapo as a ruling party ended. It’s not even fair to say the President must withdraw, withdraw what? Truth must be spoken,” Nicanor told Windhoek Observer.

“Although some don’t want to say it, there are those who want the Swapo government to be unset in the country. Those who don’t want to see Swapo continue to be the ruling party. And this includes those that wanted to see Namibians continue being colonized.”

She added, “The President called and said, let us not disturb peace, the peace which was brought by the very same Swapo, as a liberation movement. And we know that there were those, even when the country got independence, they feared that when Swapo takes over, some of the people will not enjoy like any other Namibian. They packed up and went to South Africa, but when they didn’t see the bad that they imagined in Swapo, they came back.”

PDM Secretary-general, Manuel Ngaringombe said that Geingob’s statement infringes on white voters right to participate in political activity without coercion, force or intimidation.

“The President’s comments are also in contravention of the Racial Discrimination Prohibition Act 26 of 1991. The President’s comments were without a doubt intimidating white people and inciting racial division in Namibia against white people. His comments are so dangerous, and could lead to catastrophic consequences for the peace and stability of the country if not condemned and dealt with accordingly.”

Ombudsman, John Walters said that the set date for completion of a file on the outcome of any complaint for his office is 90 days, however PDM Vice-President Jennifer Van Den Heever argued that the matter deserved a sense of urgency as the elections are just over a month away.

“It is very worrisome because our elections will take place on the 25th of November. And I think the utterances of the President, really instill some fear in the electorate out there, that they don’t know whether they should go and vote or not, and this puts us really in in in a very awkward situation currently.”

This comes as, speaking at the launch of Swapo’s regional council and local authority elections campaign, Geingob said that he noticed white people in big numbers registering to vote with a view of “anything else but Swapo.”

“I have noted that, and I won’t forget that. People declaring war against Swapo. Swapo who made them to enjoy peace and unity, enjoy their comforts, still the comforts they have enjoyed all this time, to declare war against Swapo. I heard you.”