Over 1 million Namibians are heading to the polls – to elect a new president and parliament. The elections come against a backdrop of discontent over a lagging economy and massive unemployment.

Ruling SWAPO party has been in power since independence from South Africa in 1990.

On Monday, a Namibian court dismissed a case aimed at preventing the use of electronic voting machines – which opponents of President Hage Geingob fear could be used to rig the result.

Political Studies lecturer at the University of Namibia, Phanuel Kaapama, says it is expected to be a closely contested election.

“In the past you saw SWAPO pulling very big crowds and the turnout was large. This year there is an independent candidate running for president who has pulled big rallies. His social media is very lively – there is a lot of interest among the youth. So from that we are projecting that it should be closely contested – which is something that we have not seen over the last 30 years.”