Mushelenga scolds ambassadors over IPC meeting

International relations minister Peya Mushelenga on Wednesday afternoon summoned envoys from the European Union, Germany, France, Spain and Portugal after learning of their meeting with the opposition party Independent Patriots for Change (IPC) on Tuesday to discuss various matters, including the upcoming elections.

Mushelenga said while the government doesn’t object to diplomatic missions engaging with various political parties, discussions on matters solely within the purview of the sending and host governments, especially with individuals not representing the Namibian government, are viewed as inconsistent with diplomatic norms and tantamount to interference in domestic affairs.

“The minister cautioned that although Namibia is a small state, it does not mean it does not have the equality of sovereignty as larger states do,” the government’s statement read.

In a statement on Wednesday morning, IPC announced that their leader, Panduleni Itula, and senior party members were invited to a lunch at the residence of the German ambassador to Namibia, Thorsten Hutter, along with ambassadors from Portugal, Spain, France and the European Union.

The statement, issued by IPC spokesperson, Immanuel Nashinge, outlined discussions held during the meeting regarding the upcoming elections and IPC’s strategies for addressing grievances among liberation struggle fighters.

Nashinge said that Swapo’s dominance suffered a significant setback.

“In our opinion, one can only conclude that Swapo’s hegemony received a massive blow. Change is the cry of all Namibians and it is more likely than not that the diplomatic corps is merely ensuring they obtain a broad view by assessing the political arena carefully,” Nashinge said.

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