All systems go for three-horse Hardap polls

26 February 2021 | Politics

OGONE TLHAGE

WINDHOEK

Swapo, the Landless People’s Movement (LPM) and Popular Democratic Movement (PDM) are all bullish ahead of regional and local authority election reruns slated for today in Aroab, Koes, Stampriet and Mariental Rural.

Three judges of the Electoral Court last year ordered a rerun of elections should take place in December 2020 after an Electoral Commission of Namibia bungle with ballot papers.

Confidence on show

The Swapo coordinator for the //Karas Region, Matheus Mumbala, was enthusiastic and optimistic his party would do well.

“This is normal for me, I am 100% sure we will do well in Aroab and Koës. Swapo is ready to take Koës and gain one more seat … in Aroab, we are confident we will win,” he said.

When asked about the party’s performance in the local and regional authority elections held in November 2020, Mumbala said voters chose the Landless Peoples Movement because it was a new party and there was excitement that surrounded it.

“It is always like that with the newcomers. For sure this time people will realise that they were lied to,” Mumbala said.

Popular Democratic Movement secretary-general Manuel Ngaringombe was equally upbeat about today’s elections.

“We have mobilised and laid down our manifesto. We discussed with the voters what we will do with them. We also informed the voters that they must have faith in the Electoral Commission of Namibia and what happened last year. I have faith the PDM will do well,” Ngaringombe said.

LPM spokesperson Joyce Muzengua said her party’s candidates had worked hard and were expecting an unprecedented victory.

“We have worked very hard; we expect really good results and our candidates are very determined. We are approaching this with a positive outcome,” she said.

Rationale

The Electoral Commission of Namibia (ECN) brought an application in the Windhoek High Court to have the ballots cast on 25 November declared null and void after they picked up that some polling stations had closed early, and the wrong ballot papers had been issued at others.

Windhoek High Court Judges Shafimana Ueitele, Herman Oosthuizen and Orben Sibeya found that the irregularities were significant enough to have an impact on the outcome of the elections.

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