Monday, 19 April 2010

No to leaderless consumer protest actions in Namibia

The NCPG is a non-profit Namibian organisation that campaigns for customer rights and focuses on illegal and unethical behaviour by Namibian companies.

As a lobby group, we believe that we need to be involved with Government, State-Owned Enterprises, Community-Based Organisations and the Media in our efforts to protect the rights of the consumer.  In this regard, we believe strongly in interaction to find solutions facing us all in Namibia.

During the past two weeks we have been calling for action against the Nampower proposal for a 35% price increase in the provision in Electricity. Our website and email newsletter started a petition that clearly states our objections and is aimed at the Electricity Control Board who is the body responsible for deciding upon the increase, or not. This was taken one step further by the “We don't accept the 35% electricity price increase from Nampower” group on Facebook started by UK-based community activist Jade McClune.

It is with regret that we wish to inform the public through this statement, that we no longer can support the unilateral decisions being proposed by Mr McClune for us here in Namibia to undertake street actions. Such protest should be organised locally and have clear indications of who the leaders are, and these leaders must be present to show they are in the forefront of such action.

As much as we desire attention to this cause, we cannot condone actions that are not clearly aimed at addressing the problem, rather than becoming a platform for unrest. Thus, while as individuals we will attend the planned protest march, as a lobby group we must insist that such actions have clearly defined leadership that is present at such actions.

We assure all the consumers in Namibia that we will continue to work in your best interest by working together with Government and business in ensuring your rights are respected.

We will continue the fight for consumers. It is “Our Money, Our Rights”.

Milton Louw