Namibia: Warring Councillors Told to Join NDF

Swakopmund — Deputy minister of urban and rural development Natalia /Goagoses has implored local and regional authority councillors to refrain from internal politics, stop meddling in administrative issues and avoid unnecessary suspensions of CEOs and chief regional officers.

/Goagoses was addressing regional and local authority councillors, CEOs and CROs at an information sharing session on the appointment of executives that was held in Swakopmund yesterday.

/Goagoses has told councillors to refrain from infighting and squabbles and focus on service delivery “or join the NDF if you want to fight”.

Currently, the //Kharas, Hardap and Omaheke regions are operating without substantive CROs.

/Goagoses told the leadership that the meeting was necessary after an increasing number of concerns relating to such suspensions and internal squabbles have been reported to the ministry from all the regions.

She said such actions not only hamper service delivery but can also be costly for the institutions.

“It is thus our civic duty to protect our institutions, and we acknowledge that the appointments, suspensions and renewal of contracts of CROs and CEOs require urgent dialogue,” she said.

“We are aware that some regional councils and local authorities have been operating for a long time without the administrative heads and some are currently under threat for various reasons. That situation is of great concern for the ministry.”

/Goagoses then told the leaders that they all need to reflect on how these issues of appointments, suspensions, and renewal of employment contracts of the accounting officers of subnational governments in accordance with the relevant legislation such as the Regional Council Authority Act of 1992 should be handled.

“Let us be cognizant of the root causes of this unfavourable situation and how we can improve it. In our past sessions, the concept of interference versus intervention was elaborated on, meaning that councillors may not interfere in the day-to-day operations of the council but may intervene,” she appealed.

“As leaders, you have the duty and responsibility to ensure that the services provided to your respective communities are delivered successfully and competently. The citizenry expect you to deliver the services with the public resources they have entrusted in your care.”

Henties Bay councillor Siegfried Garoeb, at the same meeting, raised concern over the fact that councillors use external law firms to formulate charges against CEOs, despite having capable human resource experts in councils or municipalities.

“Sometimes this is done so that we hear what we want to hear, despite not having real evidence or charges to suspend CEOs and CROs. Honourable minister, this is really a big concern for all of us,” he said.

Councillor Donatus Tegako, however, also said that administrators should also understand that they are there to execute the resolutions made by council.

“Put differences aside and work as a team. Administrators and councillors should work together irrespective of political affiliation,” he said.

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