SPYL recalls Governor Sheya from NEC

29 November 2021 | Politics

STAFF REPORTER

WINDHOEK

The Swapo Party Youth League (SPYL) national executive committee passed a vote of no confidence in one of its influential members, its secretary for economic affairs Marius Sheya, during a central committee meeting held at Grootfontein over the weekend.

Namibian Sun understands on top of the agenda of the weekend's meeting was a plan to clip the wings of the 'State House water boys', a reference to perceived stooges of President Hage Geingob in the youth league.

Sheya, according to sources in the league, is a poster child of those who allegedly undermine the league by skipping structures and deal with the president directly on matters where the league should be the decision-maker.

Although the official version of Sheya's recall is that SPYL is perceived 'dead and inactive' in Kunene Region, Namibian Sun has it on good authority that the youthful governor paid the price for undermining the youth league.

‘Water boys’

“He was recalled because he is incompetent, not trustworthy and have been appointing his associates to the SPYL business companies' boards. Sheya and Abel Amutse have been pushing the Namibia National Students Organisation (Nanso) agenda within the SPYL,” an SPYL insider said.

The source added: “The State House water boys have been undermining the league because they believe they are in charge because of their direct access to the president.”

Sheya is accused of pushing the Nanso agenda within the SPYL by directly recommending the appointment of leaders from the student body to government positions, including parliament, without the league’s involvement as is tradition.

Nanso factor

Geingob angered the Youth League in recent years when he started appointing young people to parliament from Nanso structures without consulting SPYL.

In April this year, he appointed 22-year-old Nanso secretary general Patience Masua as member of parliament, following the resignation of then defence minister Peter Vilho.

Prior to that, Geingob plucked Emma Theofelus, who was 23 at the time, from relative obscurity and made her deputy minister of information.

Theofelus served as a vice-secretary in the Nanso structures prior to her appointment.

Geingob also appointed former Nanso president Esther Simon to the presidential High-Level Panel on the Namibian Economy.

SPYL leaders say Sheya, a blue-eyed boy of Geingob who was appointed as the youngest governor in 2017, is among those who have been accused of pushing for appointments of Nanso members by the head of state.

SPYL secretary Ephraim Nekongo briefly served in parliament in 2020 as part of the group that replaced Fishrot pair Sacky Shanghala and Bernardt Esau and presidential nominees Jerry Ekandjo and Sebastian Karupu, who resigned from the president's list to be in the house as directly voted members.

Usual channels

Traditionally, the appointment of young people to critical government positions was done in consultation with the Youth League.

Those appointed were often members of the league's national executive committee.

Sheya's recall is also linked to the elective congresses of both Swapo and SPYL next year, party insiders say.

It is not clear whether Geingob will seek re-election as party president for a second term, although he reiterated again last week that he will respect the country's constitution and leave State House when his term as state president ends in 2025.

Geingob does not believe in two centres of power and would likely want to retain the party presidency for as long as he is head of state.

The party's vice-president, whoever emerges as such from the 2022 congress, will be the party's presidential candidate in the 2024 general elections if the party does not amend its succession policy.

The SPYL is a critical influencer of the mother body's congresses and politicians would want to shape the outcome of the SPYL congress itself prior to Swapo’s own.

Sheya did not respond to queries to the issues raised in response regarding his withdrawal and the accusations made.

SPYL secretary Ephraim Nekongo did also not respond to Sheya’s withdrawal from the NEC and Sheya’s alleged misconduct.

Meanwhile, Gert Titus from the /Karas region has replaced Sheya on the NEC while Willem Titus will become the secretary for labour and justice, replacing Tuyeni Kandume.

Meanwhile, Gert Titus from the /Karas region has replaced Sheya on the NEC while Willem Titus will become the secretary for labour and justice, replacing Tuyeni Kandume.

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