18 February 2013

Namibia: Struggle Kids Could Boycott Elections

Photo: IRIN
File photo of street children in Zambia.

Rundu — Children of the veterans of the liberation struggle in the Kavango Region have threatened to boycott polls next year should government fail to provide them with jobs.

Announcing their intentions during a peaceful demonstration in Rundu last Thursday, they said they have been promised jobs since 2008 - yet nothing has been forthcoming and they remain jobless. "Cabinet told us to be patient. Here in Kavango we stayed patient, but it seems we are not recognized anymore," said the group's spokesperson, Messag Nghilundilwa.

Their resolve to boycott next year's elections is borne out of government's alleged failure to live up to its promise to employ all 'children of the liberation struggle'. "The councillors even promised us that we will be employed, but now they ignore us," he charged. Receiving a petition on behalf of the government, the Governor of the Kavango Region, Maurus Nekaro, reminded the group that for them jobs are limited, because they do not possess the required skills.

"This 'no job no vote' is irrelevant, because you do not create jobs by not voting. Give government time to see what to do without any threats," said Nekaro. The governor assured the group that government is working hard to find them job placements, and added that their deadline of February 28 cannot be met.

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