Mukendwa is new youth commissioner

16 September 2019 | Youth

A fight between the politicians and senior government officials over the appointment of a new National Youth Service (NYS) head is finally over.

Last week President Hage Geingob announced the appointment of Joseph Mukendwa as the new commissioner of the NYS, succeeding former youth commissioner Onesmus Upindi, whose term ended in March.

Mukendwa, the regional director of the Allan Gray Orbis Foundation, was one of three people shortlisted for the vacancy. The others were environment and tourism ministry employee Fillemon Wise Immanuel and the CEO of the Oniipa town council, Junias Jacob.

Sources privy to NYS affairs informed Namibian Sun that the position had initially been offered to Oshana deputy education director Gerhard Ndafenongo, and was re-advertised when they could not find a suitable candidate from the five shortlisted candidates.

“There was an extensive fight between the politicians and senior government officials on who to succeed Uupindi. That is why the recruitment process was finalised and all of the sudden it was re-advertised again,” the source said.

Sources also informed Namibian Sun that the second advertisement attracted 13 applicants, of whom three were shortlisted after a psychometric test.

NYS board chairperson Mandela Kapere could not be reached for comment.

On Thursday, a statement issued by presidential press secretary Alfredo Hengari said Mukendwa's five-year term would start on 1 October.

“President Geingob expresses confidence and trust in the ability, commitment and fairness with which the commissioner will discharge his duties and responsibilities. He brings a wealth of experience to the position, having served previously in several managerial capacities,” read the statement.

Geingob lauded Mukendwa's educational and professional background and showed trust in his capability to assume the role.

Previously, Mukendwa served as a manager at the Namibia Training Authority for over 10 years.

ILENI NANDJATO

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