We are not rude - Swartbooi

10 June 2020 | Politics



Landless People's Movement leader Bernardus Swartbooi has shot down critics who say that his party members are ill-mannered.

According to him, his party's political philosophy is not that of being rude or ill-mannered.

“LPM policies, LPM politics is not about disrespecting anyone. When somebody disrespects us, we will pay that person back firmly with disrespect. We are not going to turn the other cheek if the other person slaps us,” he said during an interview with Namibian Sun.

He made the remarks following another verbal scuffle with labour minister Utoni Nujoma during the debate of the appropriation bill in the National Assembly on Monday.

Swartbooi was motivating the need to financially support the foundations established by elder statesmen Sam Nujoma and Hifikepunye Pohamba.

“It is important that partly because of their age and so on, we don't just abandon these foundations to melt away in the abyss.

“With a little bit of state support and to crowd in a private-sector funding. I know the Sam Nujoma foundation was still distributing a few things away from time to time but as Sam Nujoma became older it frizzled away,” Swartbooi said.

“There must be a semblance of what that foundation is doing despite our differences with Daniel Utoni Nujoma,” he added, prompting an interjection from Nujoma.

“You two, please stop that, no! This nonsense must stop, you two are suffering from inferiority complex,” Nujoma said, referring to Swartbooi and Henny Seibeb.

Swartbooi shot back and instructed Nujoma to sit down.

“Hey, who are you shouting at, sit down, you idiot, shut up and sit down.

“Now that you have a better suit you want people to see? You were even demoted like a dog, shut up, sit!” Swartbooi shouted.

“We don't respond to caricatures, run to your lawyer,” he added.

'There are agendas'

Swartbooi charged that Swapo had an agenda to paint the LPM as rowdy and unruly.

“We have seen [that] at the state of the nation address; we raised our views but we also said we are praying for the president.

“They are pushing a narrative that LPM is a bunch of unruly people, that we have no manners,” Swartbooi said.

“People choose conveniently when to forget when we give the best ideas, when we give the best smiles, when we give the best inputs; they choose because of the narrative driven by Swapo so that they can say we have anger management issues,” he added.

It is not the first time there has been a scuffle involving Swartbooi and Nujoma.

“The hostility between the two dates back to 2017 when Swartbooi called Nujoma an idiot. Nujoma was the minister of lands and resettlement while Swartbooi was his deputy.

This incident led to Swartbooi's resignation from Swapo and parliament and paved the way for the formation of the LPM.

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