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Vol 44 No 21

Published 24th October 2003


Namibia

Presidential stakes

In the race to succeed Sam Nujoma, Foreign Affairs Minister Hidipo Hamutenya is far out in front

Contenders for the presidency are stepping up their campaigns following the announcement that the governing South West Africa People's Organisation will hold an extraordinary party congress in May. President Sam Nujoma is expected to stay as party leader until 2007 but will make way for a new presidential candidate to fight the elections due by the end of 2004. Barring a political earthquake, whoever gets the party's nomination will be Namibia's next president. The leading contender to be SWAPO's flagbearer is 64 year old Foreign Minister Hidipo Hamutenya (AC Vol 44 No 6). Hamutenya is an astute tactician from the Kwanyama, the largest sub-group of the country's largest ethnic group, the northern Oshivambo. His supporters dominate politics, holding key positions in the party's women's and youth organisations, and in parastatals and trades unions.

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