Banned UDP stopped from holding peaceful demonstration

Barely a month has passed after the repatriation of the Dukwi refugees belonging to the barned United Democratic Party (UDP) that they have tried to hold a peaceful demonstration which was denied by the police here in Katima Mulilo on Monday.

UDP planned to march from the Central Business District (CBD) open Market to the Governors' office to hand over their petition.

Speaking at the event, the Chairperson of UDP, Bothman Ntesa said that the demonstration resulted from the denial of them exercising their rights and not getting feedback from the Namibian government on the notice of holding a peaceful demonstration they had given to the Zambezi regional office.

We want the world to hear our cry because since we went to Botswana in 1998, we have been communicating to the Namibian government to resolve the Caprivi Political dispute peacefully through a dialogue and referendum, but the Namibian government haven't allowed us to do that up to date, stressed Ntesa.

Commissioner Karel Theron advised them to follow the right procedure, because the way they want to do their things cannot be condoned in the country because Zambezi region is part and parcel of Namibia as stated in Article 1 of the Namibian Constitution.

I will not answer them because these people were already given an answer by the President of Namibia during a town-hall meeting on the same issue earlier this year, expressed Theron

The petition states that the demonstration for Monday is a reaffirm of the position of the UDP members because they still believe that Caprivi Strip is legally not part of Namibia and that majority of Caprivians want Caprivi to be free and independent as they have the right to self-determination.

It is further demanded in the petition that UDP and the government of Namibia should have a political dialogue which must be supervised by the United Nations (UN), and an unconditional release of all Caprivian political prisoners.

The demonstration was dismantled by the Namibian Police Force who demanded for their disperse from the open market.

Source: Namibia Press Agency