Namibia: Zambezi, Kavango East Hail Election Results

Residents of the far north-eastern regions have described this year's presidential and National Assembly elections as a much needed wake-up call for the ruling party.

Swapo president Hage Geingob was elected as the president of Namibia after garnering 464 703 of the total 826 198 votes in the presidential election.

Independent presidential candidate Panduleni Itula received 29,4% of the votes in the presidential election, ending in second place after Geingob.

A total of 820 227 votes were cast in this year's National Assembly election, according to results announced by the Electoral Commission of Namibia.

The ruling Swapo Party lost its overwhelming parliamentary dominance after gaining 63 seats in the National Assembly. The ruling party had enjoyed a two-thirds majority in the National Assembly since 1994 and reached a high point of winning 77 out of 96 voting seats in the 2014 election.

Coming in second place was the Popular Democratic Movement (PDM), the biggest winner with 16 seats, followed by new entrants the Landless People's Movement (LPM) who won four seats.

Eleven out of the 15 political parties that contested the National Assembly election won seats in parliament.

People whom The Namibian spoke to on Monday from the Kavango West and Zambezi regions all said they are very happy with the outcome of the election, noting that although Swapo remains the ruling party, opposition parties are slowly increasing their presence in parliament.

"What happened is a reflection of a country bringing the struggle message to an end, and bringing unique history to democracy in Namibia. The ruling party and their candidate came to understand that after 29 years, people are still economically unequal and poor," Simasiku Mulijani, a resident of Zambezi region said.

Mulijani further observed that new parties like the Landless People Movement (LPM) got votes because people need land and regard it as a relevant movement, while Popular Democratic Movement (PDM) got votes for a new name that seems to divorce it from its colonial ties and that its president McHenry Venaani is active in national matters.

Vilho Kangumbe, a Kavango East resident said he was glad that PDM managed to get more seats in parliament, as it indicates that people are ready for change.

"We are going to work harder during the next five years to win the hearts of the Namibian nation and possibly take over government," he said.

Linken Chibozu said he is happy because Hage Geingob had been given a second chance, although it was a tough election for the Swapo Party.

"It is now all up to the government to work for the interest of the people who elected them. As such, they should focus on rooting out corruption completely," he said.

Mario Mujohn from the Zambezi region expressed similar sentiments that the second term will give Geingob a chance to finish what he started.

"I expected Swapo to win, though it was not an easy win. It's good that Geingob was given a second term so that he won't have an excuse that the previous administrations messed up. He can continue what he started,'he said.

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