Parliamentary Chamber: National Assembly


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  National Assembly

Dates of elections / renewal (from/to):

  30 November 1999
1 December 1999

Purpose of elections:

  Elections were held for all the seats in the National Assembly on the normal expiry of the members' term of office.

Background and outcome of elections:

  In 1999, polling for the National Assembly was combined with that for President of the Republic.

In the latter race, incumbent Samuel Nujoma - Head of State since independence in 1990 - was seeking a third term (since the Constitution was amended so as to provide that the first President of Namibia may hold office as President for three terms, due to the fact that for his first term, he was nominated by the members of the Constituent Assembly and not elected by direct, universal and equal suffrage). His ruling South West Africa People's Organization (SWAPO) for its part sought to retain its two-thirds majority in the 72-member Assembly.

This time around, SWAPO was not only challenged by the Democratic Turnhalle Alliance (DTA) of Mr. Katuutire Kaura but also by the newly founded Congress of Democracy (COD), a breakaway SWAPO group led by Mr. Ben Ulenga. Five other parties, including the United Democratic Front (UDF) of Mr. Justus Garoeb, were also in the running. During the often stormy campaign, the opposition criticized the government's costly military involvement in the neighbouring Democratic Republic of Congo in support of President Kabila and alleged rising corruption in official circles, as well as the high unemployment rate, persistent poverty and lack of basic services for many citizens. SWAPO defended its record while in power but its rivals accused it of repeated intimidation.

The two polling days were monitored by independent observers, who deemed the overall process free and fair. Final results gave SWAPO the majority it sought picking up two additional seats to arrive at 55. Coming in second, COD seized more DTA than SWAPO votes and thus became the official opposition. For his part, Mr. Nujoma - who has led SWAPO since the 1960s - predictably won the presidency with 77% of the vote, with Mr. Ulenga edging out Mr. Kaura for second place. Mr. Nujoma promptly announced that his government would address the country's economic problems, education and AIDS.

Round no 1 (30 November 1999): Elections results  
Number of registered electors 861 848
Voters 541 114 (63 %)
Blank or invalid ballot papers 5 078
Valid votes 536 036

Round no 1: Distribution of votes  
Political Group Votes %
South -West African People's Organization (SWAPO) 408 174 76.30
Democratic Turnhalle Alliance (DTA) 50 824 9.48
Congress of Democrats (COD) 53 289 9.94
United Democratic Front of Namibia (UDF) 15 685 2.93
Monitor Action Group (MAG) 3 618 0.67

Round no 1: Distribution of seats  
Political Group Total
South -West African People's Organization (SWAPO) 55
Democratic Turnhalle Alliance (DTA) 7
Congress of Democrats (COD) 7
United Democratic Front of Namibia (UDF) 2
Monitor Action Group (MAG) 1

Distribution of seats according to sex:  
Men: 54
Women: 18
Percent of women: 25.00

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Copyright 1999 Inter-Parliamentary Union