Henning Melber


Two decades after Namibian independence, scholar, activist and longstanding Swapo (South West Africa People’s Organisation) member Henning Melber pulls no punches in his judgement of the party’s moral failures, power struggles and willingness to trade on its liberation legacy, in an interview with Khadija Sharife.


As the world marks Human Rights Day on 10 December, Henning Melber argues that it is time for people across the globe to take back the meaning of human rights.

http://www.pambazuka.org/images/articles/500/10_500.gifTo celebrate the newsletter’s 500th issue, Henning Melber remembers two of his favourite contributors to Pambazuka News, Tajudeen Abdul-Raheem and Dennis Brutus.


In permitting the rise and enrichment of a self-serving political elite, Namibia’s party of liberation, SWAPO (South West Africa People’s Organisation), has betrayed its once noble goals of creating a more egalitarian society, writes Henning Melber. In the absence of a ‘human-’ rather than ‘elite-centred’ postcolonial trajectory, the country now sustains two sides of an ugly face of privilege and poverty, Melber concludes.


A basic income grant (BIG) ‘might not be the best answer’ to solve Namibia’s challenges of ‘structurally rooted inequality and destitution’. But ‘at least it tries to come up with some kind of initiative’ to build a society in which ‘all members obtain the minimum standard of living they deserve’, writes Henning Melber.


‘This House believes that Namibia is a shining example of post-colonial peace, democracy, and development.’ This was the topic of a debate held in the Houses of Parliament in London on 18 March, where Henning Melber was invited to speak against the motion. The opinions in Melber's speech closely reflected those expressed in his article ‘read more


As Namibia marks two decades of independence on 21 March, Henning Melber takes stock of what liberation has meant for the country’s socio-economic and political landscape. Namibia is still one of the most unequal societies in the world, writes Melber, and there’s little evidence of strong political will to improve the living standards of formerly marginalised people. With solidarity ‘only visible among the haves, aiming to protect their old and new privileges’, says Melber, not everyone will ...read more

Agência Brasil

Following the recent Namibian elections, Henning Melber discusses the results of the National Assembly and presidential votes. With President Hifikepunye Pohamba achieving re-election, long-time dominant political force Swapo (South West Africa People's Organisation) has retained the reins of power, a power that it will need to exercise in the interests of peace and stability, Melber cautions.


With Namibia's parliamentary and presidential elections fast approaching on 27–28 November, Henning Melber discusses the paranoia currently gripping many within the ruling SWAPO (South West Africa People's Organisation) party. Many in the party seem to regard any form of political dissent as unpatriotic at best and as the act of an agent of outside imperialism at worst Melber notes, an all-consuming sentiment that is severely jeopardising the very liberation the party ostensibly once sought.


As Namibia approaches its parliamentary and presidential elections at the end of November, Henning Melber assesses the country's political landscape. Through comparison with the evolution of support for South Africa's African National Congress (ANC) in the post-apartheid period, Melber considers the ability of the opposition Rally for Democracy and Progress (RDP) to chip away at some of the longstanding support for liberation-era party Swapo (South West Africa People's Organization).