Nudo: Beginning or disgrace of a legacy?

Nudo's elective congress, which took place or would have taken place last weekend, invited headlines that for many years to come would reverberate.

Some sections of the media characterised the event that took place as political hooliganism. In fact one may agree with the 'hooliganism' description if reports of what transpired is anything to go by. But yours truly has reservation with political hooliganism. Unlike those casting aspersions on politics as a dirty game, and all the many negative labels attached to politics, I believe it is indeed a noble engagement.

Otherwise how could one explain the noble reference to our parliamentarians as honourables? It's only that, more often than not, politics attract some unscrupulous chance-taking elements to its fold. To a certain degree the Nudo congress of last weekend seemed to testify to this. Some people see in politics a window of opportunity for blind ambitions, while others bring their habitual hooliganism to the trade.

One cannot but distinguish in this regard hooliganism from Machiavellianism, which is the employment of cunning and duplicity in statecraft or in general conduct. This can be the noble and honourable side of politics.

These days Machiavellianism can negatively be denoting personalities, characterised by a duplicitous interpersonal style, a cynical disregard for morality, and a focus on self-interest and personal gain.

This is what could be discerned lately within Nudo and perhaps explains the botched congress. It is reminiscent of the very circumstances of the formation of the party back in the mid-1960s. To many what transpired may be a surprise. But the signs have all along been there. Sooner or later there was going to be an explosion from within the party.

The telling signs have been there since the death of Kuaima Riruako, its former president. Only the indifferent and honestly unsuspecting and most naA�ve could not have seen the telltales of the times � with the leadership busying itself only with basic necessities, among them ensuring the centre does not fold, thus holding the fort. But until when?

Thus, after the announcement of the retirement of Asser Mbai, who succeeded the late Riruako as party president, Nudo effectively started to accelerate towards an ultimate demise. The jostling for positions came into focus, factored by the want of transition and succession management. Party discipline, if it ever existed, went straight out of the window. Pigeonholing into slate this and that became the party discipline, and a carte blanche for all sorts of shenanigans and chicaneries, as if all have not been all along belonging to the same party.

One could not believe the downpour of disrespect, scorn, humiliation and disdain, which all of a sudden rained on the current leadership, some of whom are members of the Namibian parliament.

Without impunity, some of the aspirants, for lack of a better word, went about their business, not even sparing the leadership. All of a sudden the leadership shall became inconsequential, perhaps even in the Nudo campaigns for the 2019 elections. Simply they seem to have been discarded and fed to the dogs. It is there and then that the Nudo leadership, if worth its weight in gold, must have acted and provided the much needed leadership and party discipline leading up to the congress.

This was in fact not to be. Now the party seems to be costly paying blind ambitions, indecisiveness, indecision and inaction. Simply, the party has been put on an irreversible, unredeemable destructive path.

What a distasteful, shameful and unsightly spectre on the weekend of Africa Liberation Day. It seems Nudo not only took the cleaning up campaign to the extremes but also wind back the clock to the dark days of African palace revolutions and coup d'etats. Those involved make us believe this is to continue as a legacy. If Nudo ever had any legacy, one cannot but reflect on erstwhile Ovaherero Paramount Chief Hosea Komombumbi Kutako, and his groundbreaking and exemplary Chief Council. One cannot but also recall the Nudo of his times, that among others, was instrumental in many petitions, firstly to the League of Nations, and subsequently to the United Nations Organisation (UNO). Most recently, Nudo has come to be the embodiment of the late Riruako.

The ramifications of the disaffiliation of Nudo from the DTA are well known, politically and tribally, with especially a deep void and schism within the Ovaherero community with clear political overtones and undertones.

While the late Riruako's legacy is yet to be completely deciphered, understood and written in its full meaning and context, one is made to believe what transpired last weekend at the Nudo congress is his legacy. But from what transpired last weekend surely the foundations of his legacy must have been shaken extremely, if not uprooted altogether.

Source: New Era Newspaper Namibia