Sedans ‘unsuitable’ for National Council members

MPs want four-by-fours

26 May 2021 | Government

NAMPA

WINDHOEK

The allocation of sedan cars for both official and private use, and the sharing arrangements of off-road vehicles on request, is not a suitable option for the National Council (NC) due to regional councillors’ nature of work.

This was stated by NC chairperson Lukas Muha during a visit to President Hage Geingob on Friday.

Muha said road conditions in the towns and regions in which councillors operate are unsuitable for the kind of cars allocated to them.

“We commend government on the directive and proclamation issued regarding transport benefits and usage by public office bearers.

“Notwithstanding the proclamation, we request that NC presiding officers each be allocated with one 4x4 off-road vehicle which is fit to be used for both official and private functions, while sedan vehicles could be allocated for ceremonial purposes, taking into consideration our dual functions,” Muha said.

Dual roles

He added that NC officials’ simultaneous roles as presiding officers and regional councillors both require equal attention.

Additionally, Muha called on a review of the ‘no kilometre claim’ policy, stating that regional councillors in rural and some vast urban constituencies are negatively affected by the policy when working within their constituencies.

“Being regional councillors in total urban settings and rural settings are two completely different dimensions. A councillor in a rural constituency in some circumstances is required to travel more kilometres in sandy, bushy, rocky, muddy terrain to deliver services and attend to constituency needs at own cost. They travel within the constituency regardless of the distance and the road conditions but cannot claim travel expenses for that matter,” he said.

Not convinced

Geingob said the matter of vehicles is an administrative one and that a similar matter was brought up previously in which a decision was taken to allow members of parliament to make use of Land Cruisers.

“We have seen goats and cattle being loaded in government cars and I hope that is not the purpose for which people are asking for pick-up vehicles. These are government cars and while we ask for these facilities, we must know how to use them,” he added.