No nominations in Windhoek council elections

MISSING … Four councillors did not attend the Windhoek council’s second attempt to set up a full management committee. Photo: Shelleygan

Windhoek district magistrate Ndapewa Selma Amadhila yesterday was met with silence after requesting nominations to fill the two remaining seats of the municipal council’s management committee.

This was the Windhoek council’s second attempt to constitute a five-member management committee after five councillors walked out during the council’s office-bearers’ elections in the capital.

The councillors are from the Affirmative Repositioning (Job Amupanda and Illse Keister-Elago), the Landless People’s Movement (Sade Gawanas and Ivan Skrywer) and the Popular Democratic Movement (Clemencia Hanases).

This time around, Hanases decided to attend the elections alongside secretary general Manuel Ngaringombe.

However, Windhoek councillor Fransina Kahungu, during the session yesterday, said her colleagues had noted their unavailability to attend the second elections.

“Our fellow councillors have indicated that they will not be here today. Also now, if we think of coming up with the date, we [would] rather leave it with the Office of the Mayor,” she said.

Amadhila had to ask whether the councillors could hear her speak.

“Am I speaking to myself?” she said after requesting nominations for management committee members.

Four Independent Patriots for Change (IPC) councillors continue to abstain from the elections.

Windhoek mayor Queen Kamati said her party wins nowhere if the opposition councillors show up and participate in the elections.

“No one is in charge, you are not doing Swapo a favour by being part of the election. It is for the residents and oath,” Kamati told The Namibian yesterday.

Ngaringombe called for the parties to come to the table and figure out a way forward.

“Let’s sit around the table and say where do we want to go,” he said yesterday.

City of Windhoek chief executive Moses Matyayi reiterated his call to local authority councillors on the oath they took and highlighted their legal obligation to abide by it.

“And I should be able to ask our leaders to be able for the sake of the residents of Windhoek, for the sake of the community and for the sake of the machineries of the local authority council of Windhoek to move.

“We need your unity.”

Amupanda, Keister-Elago, Gawanas and Skrywer stayed away.

Questions sent to Gawanas and Skrywer were unanswered at the time of going to print, while the former mayor posted a picture on his social media platform to indicate that he is at Omaalala for a funeral.

Gawanas last year told The Namibian that they remained principled throughout.

“We fought for the council not to be dissolved and against all uncomfortable decisions made, agreed as G5, to support councillor Skrywer and Amupanda to join. However, we have learned that Swapo, with its three positions as we had foreseen, will be greedy and run that management committee and collapse the council.

“We must learn that it’s not about position and power but of capacity and the character to make uncomfortable decisions in the face of even standing alone,” she said.

Amadhila adjourned the next meeting at 14h30 until 8 February.

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