The president of Popular Democratic Movement (PDM) said that the official opposition party will for two days discuss and come up with resolutions that respond to social, economic and political dynamics of contemporary Namibia.

The party will also discuss and come up with a position when it comes to homosexuality and abortion.

Mr McHenry Venaani said this when he opened PDM’s first Policy Conference today in Otjiwarongo.

The conference, attended by close to 100 party leaders and experts, taking place from 18 to 20 October 2021, will discuss and come up with policy documents on topics such as the economy, the land, the education sector, health sector, homosexuality, abortion, climate change and international conflicts.

“Our economic transformation efforts should focus on achieving a rising per-capita income, full employment, and our targets must demonstrate real and visible progress in reducing wealth and income inequalities,” Venaani told the delegates.

“Economic transformation must also entail promoting regional development in Southern Africa, thereby fostering the progressive integration of the region. This Conference must also discuss the potential of the small business sector, and how a PDM government can make the bureaucracy managing SMEs more user friendly and achieve a vibrant SME sector, which can create better jobs with less reliance on the government.

“There is a view that the Namibian microfinance model is wrong, too bureaucratic and more market driven than developmental; our policies must seek to mitigate these challenges and offer a better alternative. With a modernised economy and the right policies to guide it, Namibia can have competitive manufacturing industries, a dynamic service sector and a growing knowledge economy.

“It is the PDM’s desire to see Namibia live within her means and bring the budget back under control.”

Venaani also stated that Namibia’s total debt as a percentage of GDP stood at 62% at the end of March 2021, representing yearly and quarterly increases of 6.3 percentage points and 2.0 percentage points, respectively.

“Our nation’s net debt makes our country extremely vulnerable to economic shock and does not afford us protection in the event of another financial crisis.

“Additionally, in respect of the Fiscal Policy of the PDM, our tax policy is based on the principles of justice, neutrality, understandability and ease of administration; these must be supported by fiscal and monetary [policies] aimed at creating a sound macroeconomic environment, one which is conducive to stability of the balance of payments and prices and which sustains economic growth with the end goal of achieving the highest possible rate of employment.

“Against that backdrop, sound economic policies not only means sustainable surplus over the medium term, but will ensure economic growth that future generations would be proud of.”

In the photo: The PDM policy conference underway in Otjiwarongo.