Hambukushu court case set for February

12 October 2021 | Cultural

KENYA KAMBOWE

RUNDU

A court case in which certain members of the Hambukushu tribe want to compel the government to rescind its recognition of Chief Erwin Munika Mbambo as head of the Hambukushu Traditional Authority will be heard by the Windhoek High Court from 14 to 18 February 2022.

Cassius Mukennah and Angelika Thirudhi, the plaintiffs in the case, on 12 May 2020 filed the application in the High Court through their lawyer Appolos Shimakeleni.

They want the court to compel the minister of urban and rural development, Erastus Uutoni, to notify President Hage Geingob of Mbambo’s removal as chief of the Hambukushu Traditional Authority.

They are also asking that Geingob recognise by way of proclamation in the Government Gazette the removal of Mbambo as chief of the Hambukushu Traditional Authority.

The government, the Hambukushu Traditional Authority and Mbambo are the respondents in the case.

Mbambo not wanted

Mukennah, who is a member of the Hambukushu royal family and the chairperson of the committee that aims to remove Mbambo, argues that the chief is not fit to lead the Hambukushu tribe.

The plaintiffs also argue that Mbambo mismanages the community’s resources, is dictatorial and has failed to promote peace and welfare in the community.

Defence

In their answering affidavit, the defendants state that the plaintiffs did not explain how the provisions of the Traditional Authorities Act were complied with.

“It is not clear how the Fact Finding and Dismissal Committee’s composition and decisions conform with the traditions and customs of the Hambukushu community as defined under Section 1 of the Act,” the defendants argue.

“The plaintiffs did not demonstrate how the committee as constituted complied with the definition of a member under Section 1 of the Act.

“The committee did not demonstrate how the matrilineal lineage of the customary law of the Hambukushu community in respect of the removal and succession of the third defendant was followed.”

Namibian Sun had previously reported that on 7 November 2018 the committee conducted a referendum about Mbambo's chieftaincy.

It claimed that out of the 2 931 people who participated, 2 705 votes were cast against Mbambo.

The committee has accused the chief of blocking much-needed development.

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