The Landless People’s Movement (LPM) has again swept to victory in the Mariental-Rural Constituency, Hoachanas, Stampriet, Koës and Aroab Local Authorities at the just-ended elections’ rerun on Friday (26 February).
In Koës and Stampriet, the LPM took three out of five seats in each local authority, while in Aroab, LPM and Swapo each won 2 seats with PDM taking one seat.
In Mariental-Rural Constituency, LPM’s candidate, Deensia Swartbooi, won by 1099 votes against Swapo’s 854, PDM’s 96 and the Independent Candidate’s 46 votes.
LPM’s Leader and Chief-Change Campaigner, Hon. Bernadus Swartbooi said that the steadfastness of the voters to re-elect the LPM in the rerun is to be commented.
“It means that the message has obtained mainstream value because it is the message which ultimately determine where they will go,” he said.
Swartbooi said that Swapo’s strategy to form coalitions with independent candidates in the hope of winning majority seats did also not work as they had hoped.
He noted that overall, Swapo and PDM uprooted their campaign strategies to get as many votes as possible by distributing food, making promises and sending their MPs to the areas where election reruns took place, but LPM prevailed.
“We were consistent with our messages. We could expound our votes to the young people and white communities,” added the LPM leader, saying that if anyone believed that the party only won by chance, now was the proof.
Swartbooi said he was however convinced that there was vote-rigging in Aroab as there was no way Swapo would have win two seats in Aroab given the massive crowd that LPM comparatively pulled during election campaigns.
“The LPM has always maintained that the rerun was unnecessary and that the irregularities could have been picked up,” he pointed out.
He added that there was nothing any political party or ECN could have done to turn the results around.
For this reason they could not do much for Swapo and decided to cancel those results for a rerun.
Swartbooi said that the LPM has become far more superior in the numerical advantage it enjoys.
The LPM leader’s premonition was right that the rerun was crafted with the view to try and gain votes for Swapo so that they can form coalitions with other political parties.
“But the LPM enjoys full unwavering support of the people of Mariental, Aroab, Stampriet and Koës,” he declared, saying that the LPM is far stronger than any other political force in those areas.
The Deputy-Leader and Chief Strategist, Hon. Henny Seibeb was also right when he predicted that “it would end in tears” for other political parties who were also contesting the election’s rerun.
LPM’s Deputy Spokesperson, Joyce Muzengua said that while LPM’s victory was to be expected, the positive results were yielded by hard-work.
“We could have done better by obtaining all seats, but as first timers, I am pleased with the results,” she said.
Deensia Swartbooi, the Mariental Rural Regional Councillor who won the election rerun said that she was excited about the results.
“I know it was not easy, but thank you for your trust and confidence,” said Swartbooi.
She hopes for better cooperation with the community to make a difference for the future of the constituency.