Namibia is a maturing democracy with its roots anchored in virtually every level of society during regular elections, but still needs nurturing.
There is also almost no part of everyday Namibian life that is exempted from functioning well without some form of democracy.
Think about class prefects, school boards, housing- and community water points, community policing, small and moderate income generating initiatives, gardening projects, village- as well as regional -councils and ultimately parliamentarians and their presidents.
If there is a problem with democracy and its principles, it is not with everyday Namibian voters. It is with those that cling to power in the face of public contempt and those that cannot accept outcomes and abuse democracy to force outcomes in their own- and for factional -interest.
Some Namibians have already become victims of a tyranny of imposed “favouritism and political convenience” where might always tramples on right.
However, activists and opportunists in all Namibian political parties might be surprised, but within the small communities of Namibians they are known, and notoriously so.
They are neither democrats nor accountable, and do not even trust their own consciousness to decide between right or wrong. They do in fact only thrive on division.
The “right to choose” is the pillar on which every citizen’s participation rests and subsequently, the first responsibility that the elected must assume, is that of a servant.
Without accountable representatives and democratic candidates who understand that victory demands humility and that defeat demands bravery, Namibia will be shackled by a counterfeit or false democracy.
National elections are still far off, but candidate lists must be compiled and presented by all political parties and those that ignore the choice of their grassroots’ structures and those that will impose friends and favourites, might face the rebellion that many town councils have launched the past few weeks.
Namibians must pause for an election reality check. False expectations of elections are as dangerous as false expectations on economic or climatic solutions that Namibians have no control over, but must bear and overcome together.
At last, after 30-years of Independence, it is now proven beyond a reasonable doubt that political office is neither a food for work program nor the opportunity for the greedy to embed conspirators to get hold of the treasury.
Party structures are the first walls of defence against unaccountable leaders and against arrogance of power that will make a maggot vomit.
The siege of democracy by insensitive and divisive leaders on all levels of society are robbing the powerless from their last ray of hope and frustrate citizens of unity in national interest into self-imposed exile.
Political parties might win elections, but democracy might injure itself through lack of interest because the current choice of candidates is no choice.
Independent candidates – which is a constitutional right, and not a party issue – might find that they are also not an alternative as many voters might not abandon their parties, but the candidates.
It is an ironic but a sad state of affairs, that Namibian opposition parties for the past five years cannot gain ground against the ruling Swapo Party in what should have been the perfect condition for political challenge.
The challenge for Namibians is not democracy, but the lack of democrats and elected leaders on all levels who can differ, tolerate, compromise and are collectively accountable, because Namibians are collectively responsible.
In the end, the mark of the finger of the most humble citizens at the ballot box will shape Namibia’s destiny.
Social media will become background noise and the battle of ideas will be in constituencies under trees and public meetings, but the silent social conscience of ordinary and everyday Namibians, will keep the revolution of development and freedom burning.