Cape Town – Namibia’s ruling Swapo party cruised to victory in the 2014 presidential election with Prime Minister Hage Geingob taking 86.73% of all declared votes, the southern African country’s electoral commission said on Monday.
Friday’s election was Africa’s first electronic ballot and had been expected to see Swapo extend its 24-year rule with people in the mineral-rich state regarding stability as the priority in the face of a global commodities downturn.
Second placed presidential candidate McHenry Venaani of the Democratic Turnhalle Alliance limped in with 4.97%. Swapo also consolidated its power in parliament, retaining a two-third majority with 80% of the national assembly ballot.
The former liberation movement turned governing party has won widespread support at the helm of one of Africa’s healthiest economies through its investment in railways and other infrastructure, and provision of free primary education.
Geingob, from the minority Damara ethnic group and known as “Omake” (Unifier), will have to defuse growing discontent over land and housing in the diverse country of 2.3 million people with at least 11 ethnic groups.
Two weeks ago more than 100 protesters chanted slogans calling for land distribution in the capital Windhoek, although in his election campaign Geingob said government would spend N$45 billion over the next 18 years to build 185 000 new homes.