Annual Report: Namibia 2010

Report
May 28, 2010

Annual Report: Namibia 2010

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Head of state and government Hifikepunye Pohamba
Death penalty abolitionist for all crimes
Population 2.2 million
Life expectancy 60.4 years
Under-5 mortality (m/f) 58/45 per 1,000
Adult literacy 88 per cent

Presidential and National Council elections were held in November amid reports of inter-party violence. A long-running treason trial continued with no sign of concluding.

Background

In the run-up to the presidential and National Council elections held on 27 and 28 November, members of the ruling South West Africa People's Organization (SWAPO) and opposition parties clashed. SWAPO members were accused of disrupting campaign meetings of other political parties.

  • On 27 October, about 300 SWAPO supporters blocked supporters of the Rally for Democracy and Progress (RDP) from campaigning in Outapi, Omusati region. SWAPO activists claimed that RDP members had used provocative language when seeking to recruit supporters.
  • On 8 November, RDP and SWAPO supporters threw stones at each other after SWAPO supporters confronted RDP activists who had arrived in Outapi to attend a rally. Three people were arrested during the clashes.

Caprivi treason trial

The treason trial of detainees arrested following the 1999 attacks by a secessionist group, the Caprivi Liberation Army, continued with no indication that it was near conclusion. Most of the 117 detainees spent their 10th year in custody. The trial started in 2004.

Discovery of mass graves

Mass graves were discovered in northern Namibia. Some of the bodies were suspected to be those of about 30 San-speaking men who allegedly disappeared from military custody in western Caprivi after they were detained on suspicion of being part of the 1999 secessionist attacks. The National Society for Human Rights published the names of some of the victims.