CADRES of the Swapo Party will reorganize and gear the ruling party in such a way that it will be able to respond effectively to changing political dynamics and environments.
The President of the Swapo Party, Dr. Hage Geingob during the closing ceremony of the introspection and post-mortem meeting on the 2019 Presidential and National Assembly Elections hinted that one way to adapt to changing circumstances is to possibly amend the way the party compile its candidate lists.
“I will call a meeting of the Central Committee and the Politburo in the weeks to come in order to give full effect and operationalization of the issues and recommendations from this Introspection Meeting. The Extraordinary Congress of the Party will at a later stage discuss the amendments of the rules and modalities for intra-party electoral processes,” Dr. Geingob said.
He said the meeting challenged senior cadres of Swapo to look critically into the urgent question of the full implementation of its Election Manifesto, which as the Party in Government is the contract that the ruling party has with the Namibian people.
“We have to deal without delay with the challenges of housing, health, education and equitable economic development. Definitely, we must give full effect to my decision on solving the crisis in informal settlements,” he said. Dr. Geingob said that what is currently happening in Walvis Bay in the Twaloloka informal settlement shows that the ruling party cannot allow people to live in such conditions.
The full address of Dr. Geingob reads as follows:
I should caution you that the Introspection Meeting we are concluding is not an end in itself. It is just the beginning of the hard work we must commence in order to strengthen the SWAPO Party and regain some of the trust we lost from our voters.
Over the past three days, we once again demonstrated that the SWAPO Party is a dynamic political organization and a party of “firsts”. By coming together to introspect and to carry out a post-mortem of the 2019 Presidential and National Assembly Elections, we did not only show to ourselves that we are able to adapt to changing circumstances, but we also demonstrated to Namibians that we care deeply about the issues they raised.
Indeed, we have heard Namibians and as the Party of choice for the majority, we have shown that we are prepared to introspect and assess where we went wrong in order to effect the necessary changes.
Therefore, in the SWAPO spirit of unity, solidarity, freedom and social justice, we came together as comrades, discussed difficult issues for long hours, engaged in robust and frank conversations cutting across different themes and practices that have been harmful to our cohesion and performance as a Party.
You participated in this gathering and made tangible contributions, which enriched the quality of our reflections about what had transpired last year during the 2019 Presidential and National Assembly Elections. Our rich discussions in the plenary and the breakaway sessions are ample testimony to the fact that the DNA of SWAPO has remained unchanged.
This momentous gathering and with you as senior cadres of the Party participating in this process, are part of history. History will record this gathering as a turning point in our process of rejuvenation in order to continue the journey of the SWAP0 Party as a mass and broad-based political movement, in which the majority of Namibians find a home.
I thank you most sincerely for your dedication during these fruitful deliberations.
In my opening address, I reminded this consequential gathering about two objectives;
First, I said that we have to identify and review the principal factors underlining the outcomes of the 2019 election results, and analyze their effects on the SWAPO Party’s continued political relevance as the Party of choice for the majority of Namibians. Second, and most importantly, I challenged this postmortem on the 2019 Presidential and National Assembly Elections to agree on how to reorganize and gear the Party to respond effectively to the changing political dynamics and environments.
During the plenary and in the breakaway sessions, you discussed and aired your views freely, and in the best of democratic traditions of the Party.
As I always say, “You chest out what has been in your hearts and minds”, which was necessary to make this Introspection Meeting a true success. You deliberated until the early hours of the morning.
In doing so, you spared no effort in carrying out the necessary groundwork in the four thematic breakaway sessions and groups. The quality of the Report from the groups really shows that all the views were expressed and heard, without fear or favour. There are many issues that were raised and discussed, and they demonstrate the fact that we met our two main objectives.
I shall not dwell into all of them in this closing session. The meeting challenged us to look critically into the urgent question of the full implementation of the SWAPO Party Election Manifesto, which as the Party in Government is the contract we have with the Namibian people. We have to deal without delay with the challenges of housing, health, education and equitable economic development. Definitely, we must give full effect to my decision on solving the crisis in informal settlements. What is currently happening in Walvis Bay in Twaloloka informal settlement shows that we cannot allow our people to live in such conditions. We regret the loss of life.
This meeting challenged us to deal with the recurrent ghost of tribalism and factionalism, which undermines our cohesion as a Party, and our ability to focus entirely on service delivery. Some comrades are abandoning solidarity and sacrifice because they look at the SWAPO Party in terms what they should gain and not what they should give to the Party.
Membership of the SWAPO Party has always been about adhering to values and principles, and not personal advancement. Corruption undermines the values and principles of solidarity, freedom and social justice, for which many sacrificed their lives. This meeting also challenged us to deal with the pressing question of youth unemployment and inclusion at different levels.
Our demographics are changing and we have to expand opportunities for young people by ensuring better quality services to scholarship holders and facilities in the education sector.
Indeed, the quality of the submissions shows that we have met the two objectives we have set out for ourselves.
I will call a meeting of the Central Committee and the Politburo in the weeks to come in order to give full effect and operationalization of the issues and recommendations from this Introspection Meeting. The Extraordinary Congress of the Party will at a later stage discuss the amendments of the rules and modalities for intra-party electoral processes.
I would like to sincerely thank all of you for your robust participation in this very important meeting. Over the past three days, we have been of use to the SWAPO Party, the only Party we know and the only Party we love.
Our work was made easier by the quality of the organization of this meeting through the Office of the Secretary General, Comrade Sophia Shaningwa, the Executive Director, Comrade Austin Samupwa, all the committed foot soldiers and rapporteurs who worked tirelessly to provide different types of administrative assistance. I thank you comrades. You deserve a big round of applause.
As cadres who participated in this landmark Introspection Meeting, let us return to our respective regions, towns and cities with the strong conviction that the best days of the SWAPO Party lie ahead.
In conclusion, let me emphasize one thing; WE LEAVE THIS GATHERING AS ONE. If you have issues, channel them through the Party structures and the Secretary General. Those who feel left out, you are welcome. The doors of the Party are open to all.
Team Harambee and Team SWAPO must seize. Team Harambee was dissolved in 2017 and it is dead.
We should now start a new journey of building a home for all the SWAPO Party cadres.