Category Archives: Namibia

Namibia – Local and regional elections

In Namibia, local and regional elections were held at the weekend. The latter are particularly important because regional councils elect representatives to the National Council, the upper chamber of the Namibian parliament.

The Namibian is reporting that turnout was very low at 38.6 per cent. This was the lowest figure for an election since independence in 1989. The opposition Rally for Democracy and Progress (RDP), which won eight seats in the legislative election this time last year, was competing in these elections for the first time. Indeed, the RDP did win the constituency of Windhoek East ahead of SWAPO. However, as expected, the ruling SWAPO party did very well, seemingly winning almost all the seats.

The Electoral Commission of Namibia is providing a full list of results, including the final result of the contested 2009 presidential and legislative elections.

Namibia – Presidential and legislative elections

In Namibia concurrent presidential and legislative elections were held on 27-28 November. There was a longer delay than usual in announcing the results. Anyway, the Namibian Electoral Commission announced the results at the weekend. They are available here.

Hifikepunye Pohamba (SWAPO) 75.25%
Hidipo Hamutenya (Rally for Democracy and Progress) 10.91%
Katuutire Kaura  (Democratic Turnhalle Alliance) 2.98%
Kuaima Riruako (National Unity Democratic Organisation) 2.92%
Justus Garoëb (United Democratic Front) 2.37%
Ignatius Shixwameni (All People’s Party) 1.23%
Henry Mudge (Republican Party) 1.16%
There were five other candidates, none of whom won more than 1,000 votes or 1% of the poll. So, President Pohamba was easily re-elected.

In the legislative election for the National Assembly, there was the following result (seats figures in comparison with 2004):

SWAPO 74.29%, 54 seats (-1)
Rally for Democracy and Progress 11.16%, 8 seats (+8)
Democratic Turnhalle Alliance 3.13%, 2 seats (-2)
National Unity Democratic Organisation 3.01%, 2 seats (-1)
United Democratic Front 2.40%, 2 seats (-1)
All People’s Party 1.33%, 1 seat (+1)

There were eight other parties in competition, none of which won more than 1%. However, three of these parties won 1 seat each, the South West Africa National Union gaining a seat, but the Congress of Democrats lost four of its 5 seats. The Republican Party kept its single seat.

So, SWAPO, the former liberation party that has ruled since independence in 1990, maintained its full control of power, even if its vote slipped very slightly. The ‘big’ change was the emergence of the Rally for Democracy and Progress (RDP) as the second largest party. The RDP was created in 2007 when a number of high-profile SWAPO members defected and formed their own party. By contrast, the ‘historic’ opposition parties, the Democratic Turnhalle Alliance (DTA) and the Congress of Democrats (CoD), performed very poorly. In 1999, they won around 20% of the vote between them, though in 2004 they were down to about 13%. This time the CoD failed even to break through the 1% barrier. The opposition is now very divided. The National Unity Democratic Organisation is an off-shoot of the DTA and was formed in 2004 before the last election. The All People’s Party is also an off-shoot of the CoD and was formed in 2008.

Presumably there are at least two presidential candidates in Romania who are looking at SWAPO’s vote share with some degree of envy.