South West Africa People's Organization

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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

South West Africa People’s Organization


(SWAPO), a revolutionary-democratic political party of Namibia, formerly South West Africa.

Founded in 1958, SWAPO brings together workers, peasants, and progressive members of the intelligentsia. By 1960, a network of local organizations with more than 50,000 members, according to the party’s own figures, had been created, and SWAPO led the struggle against the racists. Banned by the South African authorities, the party nonetheless remains active. Its program includes demands for the independence of Namibia and the preservation of its territorial integrity, for the abolition of racial discrimination, for the establishment of a democratic government and the introduction of democratic changes, for the development of industry and agriculture, and for curbs on the activity of foreign monopolies.

Inasmuch as the Republic of South Africa has ignored the decisions of the United Nations General Assembly and the World Court regarding termination of its occupation of Namibian territory, the country’s patriots have been trying to win independence using both political and military means. The party’s partisan detachments are currently operating in a number of regions. SWAPO favors friendly ties with public organizations in the USSR and in other socialist countries and has been recognized by the Organization of African Unity. The party chairman is Sam Nujoma. The press organs of SWAPO are the newspaper Namibia News and the journal Namibia Today.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
Other parties in the special category include Tanzania's Chama Cha Mapinduzi (CCM), Movement for the Liberation of Angola (MPLA) in Angola, Namibia's South-West Africa People's Organisation (Swapo) and Frelimo (Mozambique).
Described as a revolutionary pan-Africanist, Nujoma was also the former leader of the South-West Africa People's Organisation (SWAPO) political party, in which he led the SWAPO in one of the world's longest war for independence, from 1966 to 1990.
Nujoma is President of the South-west Africa People's Organisation (SWAPO), which waged a 23-year bush war against Pretoria's rule of the territory and won a United Nations-supervised election last November.