Trouble Brews in the Workers’ Party

The Workers Revolutionary Party (WRP) has expelled three senior members who are accused of financial mismanagement and running the party like their own business.

The decision to suspend the party spokesperson and leader Hewat Beukes, his wife Erica and Jacobus Jossob – both senior members in the party – was made on Saturday during the party’s first national congress held in Windhoek.

The congress also elected Benson Kaapala as the president and Dina Pienaar as his deputy, while Heidi Beukes is now the secretary general.

This development was confirmed by August Maletzky, who said he was speaking on instructions from Kaapala. Maletzky said the trio failed to account for party funds and to establish an organised structure during the past 25 years.

“The party did not have a bank account. It was Hewat and his wife’s account that was used. The telephone number and postal address as well,” he said, adding that the party was not able to hold a congress in the past 25 years.

He said the party has opted to renew its dignity and to serve the people better, especially now that it has two seats in parliament.

Maletzky said Hewat has been suspending people at will when they disagreed and that he allegedly did so with Willem and Kaapala, who was almost recalled from parliament last week after a fallout.

“We need to grow from strength to strength. It is not a loss to us that he is expelled. It cannot be a loss. It is a gain because now we can account for the money we get and improve the party,” said Maletzky.

He further accused Hewat of opening a joint account with his wife at Standard Bank, so that they could have the money from parliament transferred into that account.

Hewat, who spoke on behalf of Erica and Josob, denied the expulsion claims, saying that Maletzky is not a paid-up member and that he would not respond to anything from him.

He further said if there was any one with a problem, they can report to the Anti Corruption Commission to investigate.

“The congress was not legitimate and they cannot expel me according to the law. It was a farce. It is non-members who were there. You have to be a paid-up member of the party to make such decisions,” said Hewat, insisting that he is still the party spokesperson.

He said only the central committee has the power to expel him.

When asked about the bank accounts, Hewat said Erica, Josob and Jan !Naris were elected by the central committee to be signatories.

“How can I ask for the money from parliament to be sent to my account? I don’t even have a bank account. I use a smart card. It would be like asking the speaker to engage in a criminal activity,” said Hewat.

Source : The Namibian