Windhoek - Former liberation movements of Southern Africa have urged SADC citizens to continue voting for these parties, saying that they have all that it takes to deliver economic prosperity.
This was the view expressed by some of the former liberation movements of Southern Africa during a courtesy visit to Namibia’s President Dr Hage Geingob, on the eve of Namibia’s national and presidential elections this week.
SADC has been struggling with economic growth as the last time the region’s gross domestic product grew by more than 5% was in 2008, whereby it grew by 5.7.
Prior to 2008, the region’s GDP recorded positive growths in the year 2005, 2006 and 2007 recording 6.6%, 7.3% and 8.0%, respectively. However, since then, the region’s economic growth has never grown by more than 5%: 2009 (0.6%), 2010 (4%), 2011 (4.0%), 2012 (4.4%), 2013 (4.3%), 2014 (3.4), 2015 (2.2%), 2016 (1.4%), 2017 (3.0%) and last year 2018 (3.1%).
Despite these concerning stats, the former liberation movements of Southern Africa believe that they will deliver economic prosperity.
Sydney Sekeramayi of Zimbabwe African National Union Patriotic Front (ZANU-PF) said the sister parties have been together for a long time through a difficult period.
“Your (Namibian) elections are our elections, the only difference is that we have not been registered to vote otherwise we would have line-up in the morning to vote.
“Your (Dr Geingob) leadership is a continuation of the leadership we had through the liberation struggle. As we talk, our forefathers, who are in graves in Angola, Tanzania, and Mozambique expect us to fulfil the promises we made during the hard liberation struggle. This is whether it is in the field of agriculture, health or education, we need to fulfill this. People have a lot of hope in us and they expect us to deliver employment creation. In Namibia, the hopes of the nation rests on your shoulders, Mr President,” he said.
Nozabelo Bhengu of the African National Congress (ANC) said Namibia and South Africa share a painful experience of being colonised by the South African apartheid government.
“Your independence came before ours and it gave us hope. So when Swapo wins the elections it is an important milestone and very significant to South Africa. We are in the new era for economic development. It’s very important to share information the same way we shared the trenches together. We ought to learn from Namibia and we hope that you will learn a lot from South Africa,” she said.
Dr Abdallah Sadalia of Chama Cha Mapinduzi (CCM) said Tanzania believed that the only way to remember the legacy of blood, sweat and tears was to make sure that the sister parties win.
“That’s why the president of CCM, John Magufuli, ordered us not to leave until Swapo is victorious. We join our hands and believe that our dreams will continue to become true for the benefit of Africa through economically upholding human rights, and uplifting the standards of living. To the sister parties who are here and those who are not here, we must always remember to join forces towards economic development,” he said.
Swapo party president Dr Geingob said: “It is a great honour. We feel the solidarity that we maintained during the liberation struggle. We are now in the second phase, which is economic struggle. Let’s deliver it to our people.”
SADC has a theme on economic development which has an aim of achieving sustained economic growth and sustainable development so that people in the region have better living standards and employment opportunities.