Wednesday, 24 February, 2021

Namibia: Venaani Warns Against Ethnic Politics


The Popular Democratic Movement (PDM) president has warned against letting politics of ethnicity, name calling and regionalism take root in the country as this can have dangerous repercussions.

He made the remarks when addressing the party’s campaign meeting over the weekend at Aroab, canvassing votes for the rescheduled local authority election slated for Friday.

The Electoral Commission of Namibia (ECN) successfully approached the election tribunal for the re-run of local authority elections at Aroab, Stampriet and Ko√ęs as well as Mariental Rural constituency due to procedural errors during the November 2020 polls.

Venaani said his party had lost ground in the November 2020 regional and local authority elections because people decided to go ethnic.

“To say why should you follow Venaani, because he is a Herero…that politics on minorities would be very dangerous,” he remarked, saying politics should be run on the principles of socio-economic delivery.

If Namibians do not guard against the politics of regionalism and ethnicity, Namibia would be divided into colours and races depending on where we come from.

Venaani said his party will fight with all its might to retain control of the Aroab Village Council it has controlled over the years because the party had put a lot of energy to prove and model a town that can succeed in providing housing and sanitation.

He said that Aroab as the only village under the PDM control in the south, has achieved a housing delivery rate of more than 80% and has less than 50% of shacks.

He highlighted underemployment and non-employment of the youth as key challenges because of the country’s procurement system, saying PDM intends to compartmentalise the tender system to reserve 30% of jobs to locals.

Venaani said drug and alcohol abuse among the youth were rife because of the proximity to South Africa, and promised PDM would create a centre to rehabilitate the youth if voted into power.

He said his party won’t promise things it cannot fulfil to the electorate, saying he will soon donate a clinic in the south of the country.

“We are changing our politics, because voters want to see politicians serving them…it’s no longer enough to speak, it is also very important to show tangible results,” he added.

Venaani, as a survivor of Covid-19 infection, expressed concern over the failure by many in the south to wear masks.

“Masking up is very important, we should do more,” he stressed.

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