FOLLOW YOUR MIND NOT THE NOISE!
As the debate regarding the Namibian elections boycott in Caprivi Strip initiated by Caprivi Concerned Group with other organizations and individuals is intensifying, your mind as human beings should speak louder than any noise in your environment.
In the Newera newspaper of last Monday, 20 October 2014, (http://allafrica.com/stories/201410201973.html) the Minister of Labour and Social Welfare, Hon. Doreen Sioka reportedly condemned Caprivi Concerned Group for advocating election boycott in Caprivi Strip.She claimed that the group is bringing division in the region and it is made up of disgruntled youth who are only after money and power-hungry. “All they are after is money and positions… The parents of these youths are even ashamed of them. Young people going around telling old people not to vote… They have no respect,” she stated.
We say, this is noise because all is void of any truth. Indunas (village headmen) do not permit public meetings but the constitution of Namibia which she swore to uphold and protect is the one which guarantees it. Some of the Indunas are victims of the Caprivi political dispute and cannot be passive spectators of their children’s incarceration or be restricted from freedom of expression and association.
Yes, CCG is made up of “disgruntled(unhappy) youth” though not because of money or positions but because of our parents who are in unknown mass graves, prison, and exile. The one who campaign to be voted for are the ones who are “only after money” and “positions” and Madam Sioka is just one of them.
Telling people to reject us is undemocratic. It is an attempt to prevent the public from listening to, debating and appreciating diverse opinions. This is how intolerant societies are created by leaders. Her claim that CCG wants to divide Caprivians fits her perfectly. We would appreciate if she urged people to attend our meetings and ask us the most critical questions. We urge all political parties which will be competing in the elections to allow public questions and comments at their rallies.
Surprisingly, Comrade James Sankwasa reportedly “joined the growing chorus in condemnation of the Caprivi Concerned Group which is advocating the boycott of elections” in the same state funded and pro – government newspaper of 22 October 2014, (See full story on: http://allafrica.com/stories/201410221446.html).
Apparently he said he heard that CCG is “telling people not to vote because we’re Caprivians. That name does not even exist anymore. If these people claim to be Caprivians why can’t they leave their government jobs first? They are just hypocrites,”
According to him, “preventing someone from voting constitutes a crime but the police are aware of their subversive activities.They often talk about secession. The police are already aware. They even used a fake police letter to allow them to do their meetings. If they come to your area to hold a meeting, just call the police”.
If only honesty is anything in SWAPO politics, Comrade Sankwasa knows all the hardships or injustices endured by Caprivians in SWAPO party itself and the Namibian government very well. If he has forgotten, it is by choice or it is a psychological occurrence of which only the displacement theory of forgetting can explain. The theory suggests that once the short term memory is full, new information will push away (displace) old information. Caprivians’ economic, social and political struggles may have been displaced in his memory by promises or aspirations and hopes of being a parliamentarian.
I humbly advise him not to allow ignorant politicians or opportunists to hide behind him. He must look over his shoulders and be watchful, for there are individuals who are capable of destroying his good standing reputation as they did to Leonard Mwilima and others to climb political ladders.
Ba Sankwasa should know that CCG already held a meeting at Lizauli on the 4th of September 2014 where nearly 90 people attended. He should also know that on Monday, 20 October 2014, an SMS from a Lizauli resident written in Thimbukushuwas forwarded to me, which reads: “mwakuhatongwerehakahuke pa lizauli be 4 election haka CCG.” One who understands Thimbukushu explained that it means CCG should go back to Lizauli again to hold a meeting there before elections. Clearly, we do not impose ourselves on people, and the police always attend our meetings, so there is no need of calling police as he suggested.
Moreover, we never faked any police letter. Perhaps he wanted to say the police faked a letter to CCG. We have a case whereby we received a letter from Nampol two weeks ago which does not have a letterhead, stamp or names of the officer who signed it. There was also no evidence that it was faxed or emailed from Nampol head office. Now we suspect that the letter of conditions was typed or faked by SWAPO regional leadership. We will follow it up with the regional commander.
We should also inform (or remind) all SWAPO leaders in Caprivi that on the 3rd day of October 2013 we issued a statement which gave government of Namibia a 15 days ultimatum. We made it clear therein that if GRN won’t comply or respond to our demands, amongst others:
- We shall turn our back against Namibia and openly support the peaceful movement, particularly the UDP, to liberate Caprivi Strip from Namibia’s illegal occupation.
- We shall freely, publicly and frequently express our support for an independent sovereignty and territory of Caprivi Strip.
- We shall expose all human rights abuse committed upon Caprivians by SWAPO prior Namibia independence and subsequently by the Namibian government since 1990.
Nothing is new to all SWAPO leaders or government. The Namibian political leadership or SWAPO never reacted then, now they are running around discussing us than coming on table and discuss with us. Why now? Is it because no voting directly tempers with their bread? When the public bring issues to their offices they don’t listen but when it is time for the same public to serve or save them it becomes a forcing matter. This is wrong.
I appeal to the public to ask or tell these leaders, at public meetings, all the questions or concerns which bothers them; from your relatives who are suffering in prison and refugee camps, through the unknown mass grave of seven Caprivians, to why Namibia or SWAPO rejects political dialogue over the Caprivi political dispute. They are politicians and government representatives, and they should not divert from these serious issues which affects our society. If they do not give satisfactory answers then DON’T VOTE.
Be yourself, and don’t submit to intimidations. Follow your mind, not the noise. The struggle continues.
Edwin M Samati
Caprivi Concerned Group