Swapo members of parliament on Wednesday blocked a motion to discuss the situation in Zimbabwe, where government critics have been targeted for arrest and detention.
Popular Democratic Movement leader McHenry Venaani in a motion wanted the National Assembly to discuss the unfolding humanitarian crisis in Zimbambwe, focusing on a government crackdown on opposition activists, members of civil society and journalists.
Venaani wanted parliamentarians to discuss how Namibia could assist Zimbabwean citizens now classified as enemies of the state by the Zimbabwean authorities.
He also wanted parliament to adopt a position as one and condemn state-sponsored violence in Zimbabwe.
“We cannot sit back and watch this travesty of justice unfold against the people of Zimbabwe,” Venaani said. “Let me remind this august house that if Zimbabwe explodes, the economic and humanitarian crisis will be felt throughout the whole SADC region. Hence, we have a collective responsibility to address and find a long-lasting solution to the situation in Zimbabwe.”
Swapo parliamentarians, including international relations minister Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah, environment minister Pohamba Shifeta and prime minister Saara Kuugongelwa-Amadhila, however objected to the discussion of the motion, saying SADC was already dealing with the issues of Zimbabwe.
As a result, the motion was removed from the agenda of the National Assembly.