World, Africa

Namibians vote in general elections

1.3 million registered voters go to polls that will test ruling party's grip on power

Hassan Isilow   | 27.11.2019
Namibians vote in general elections file photo

JOHANNESSBURG

Voting began in Namibia on Wednesday morning in a tightly contested election that has attracted 11 contenders for the country's presidency.

1.3 million people have registered to elect the president and parliament that will govern the Southern African country for the next five years.

The top contender in the election is 78-year-old Hage Geingob leader of the ruling South West Africa People's Organisation (SWAPO) that liberated the country and has enjoyed support for three decades.

However, trends suggest that SWAPO might lose some support in this year's polls as critics accuse Geingob of over spending by creating many Cabinet positions in his government. SWAPO has also recently faced a major corruption scandal.

Other contenders in the polls include 42-year-old McHenry Venaani of the Popular Democratic Movement (PDM).

He enjoys support of the youth and was one of the youngest legislators to be elected in the resource rich country at the age of 25.

The elections have also attracted its first female candidate, 57-year-old Esther Muinjangue of the National Unity Democratic Organisation (NUDO).

Unemployment, inequality, corruption and a call for improved service delivery, were some the issues raised during the election campaigns.

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