September 29, 2022

Letter – The LPM must become a nationalist political party

Hosea Chichiveni Neumbo

On February 8, 2019, a promising political party (Landless People’s Movement) was born.

According to the LPM, the party was created to seize power and form an alternative government that cares about everyone, putting people first and restoring their dignity.

The party is primarily formed to tackle land issues in Namibia.

The urban land crisis, land reform and agrarian reform preoccupy the daily struggles of the LPM.

Namibia has been dominated by chronic viruses of tribalism, nepotism and patronage, which have benefited or still benefit one or two tribes out of all the tribes we have in Namibia.

The level of inequality in Namibia has created hostile situations in our political arena, which has seen various political leaders abandon their political parties to join different parties or form their own.

How to solve this problem without offending the majority of Namibians who do not like corruption, regardless of their tribe and region?

How to grasp the ugly face of tribalized, politicized and regionalized corruption?

Without political parties, modern representative democracy is inconceivable.

Only parties provide citizens with the permanent ability to act politically.

They articulate and integrate different interests, visions and opinions.

They are also the main source of recruitment for political elites.

To participate successfully in elections, political parties must be the voice of broad sectors of society.

Associations, social organizations or citizens’ initiatives normally focus more on individuals and on a limited field of issues.

This is why movements such as Shut-it-all-down, LGBTQ, and Affirmative Repositioning (AR) are ineffective today because they are designed for specific issues that prevent them from serving the best interests of all of society.

Not everyone wants to be gay or smoke marijuana in Namibia.

How do you want everyone to support marijuana and LGBTQ legalization?

The nation is hungry and people are unemployed. They need food, jobs and land for homes.

What will they benefit from LGBTQ?

Collective movements that will tackle corruption, underdevelopment, inequality, high school fees, unemployment, land and housing issues, poverty, freedom of the press, legalization of marijuana, abortion and LGBTQ, and other current issues will emerge victorious rather than an isolated movement.

Political parties, on the other hand, are expected to take positions on all issues and matters relating to public order and the organization of society.

We won’t be surprised if AR forms a coalition with NEFF as they are unable to address some of the issues as an isolated movement primarily formed for the land.

The LPM has the chance to survive a political coup that killed other political parties like COD and CANU – only if they consider all 14 regions.

Namibian political parties compete with each other to find the best ways to solve political problems.

They compete for influence and power.

Without the power to impose a political vision, it is not possible to organize a society.

Internal discussions and conflicts within the parties as well as between them accompany this race for ideas and power.

The LPM participated in the 2019 elections – and their results weren’t that bad for a newbie.

Imagine if they weren’t ethnically or regionally focused.

They could have won massively.

The only effective way for the LPM to successfully contest the place of the official opposition is to decentralize its attention to the 14 regions.

Sticking to Namibia’s southern regions and central cities like Windhoek, Walvis Bay and Swakopmund will not help the party win the upcoming parliamentary elections.

The majority of voters are in northern Namibia.

If the LPM still maintains the idea of ​​serving the landless, it might not register the votes of the northern part of Namibia.

Land has never been and never will be an issue in all of the Ovambo, Kavango and Zambezi regions.

In fact, land is cheap and affordable in the Ovambo regions unlike owning land in the capital.

It is sad and hard to believe that a political party that was formed for the people of Namibia and to bring about change in the country did not have candidates in all the constituencies that are in the northern regions for local elections and regional of 2020.

This is a pure indication of regionalism and tribalism, which can also be evidenced by the incident in May 2021 where the Chairman of Maltahohe Village Council (LPM) was seen throwing stones in the trenches of a council development project, explaining why the contractor is employing Oshiwambo people and Swapo members who are not even his supporters in the Hardap area.

The heart of voters is in the north – and the 2024 presidential and legislative elections are fast approaching.

The LPM must change from an ethnic party to a nationalist political party.

Tribalism and regionalism will haunt the LPM in the future. Thus, the party is advised to become a nationalist party.

2022-04-22 Staff reporter