Omuthiya CEO saga deepens

01 October 2019 | Government

An Ondangwa Labour Court arbitrator and urban and rural development minister Peya Mushelenga have both advised the Omuthiya town council to follow the right procedures, if it does not want to renew the employment contract of town CEO Samuel Mbango.

The town council has failed to provide proof to Mushelenga that it informed Mbango on time that it will not renew his contract.

It has also not charged him with irregularities and misconduct, as stated in a motivation letter to Mushelenga.

The council has been without a CEO or acting CEO since last month.

Mbango dragged the council to the Labour Court for unfair treatment.

Namibian Sun was reliably informed that the arbitrator urged the council to follow the right procedures.

When contacted for comment, Omuthiya mayor Katrina Uusiku refused to speak.

Mbango could not be reached for comment as his cellphone went unanswered, while he also did not reply to text messages.

Mushelenga's letter to the council dated 12 September advised them to follow the right procedures and avoid labour disputes.

According to Mushelenga's letter the council had written to him about certain irregularities and misconduct allegedly committed by Mbango, and this was the reason why they did not to renew his contract.

In a letter dated 2 August, Mushelenga had urged the councillors to provide him with a detailed report on their decision before 19 August.

“Receipt of your letter dated 15 August regarding the notice for non-renewal of the CEO's employment contract is hereby acknowledged. Having perused the submission and grounds or justifications given as to why the council resolved not to renew the CEO's contract I would like draw council's (attention) to the following.

“In terms of section 27(3)(b)(i) of the Local Authorities Act, 1992 as amended (Act No23 of 1992), council is obliged to have given the CEO a written notice of its intention to retain (his services) or not, before the end of the contact. I have not been given evidence that this legal requirement has been complied with,” Mushelenga wrote.

He said if the allegations of irregularities and misconduct are correct, then the council was supposed to have charged the CEO, as required by administrative justice.

“In the light of the above and in order to avoid unnecessary labour disputes and challenges, the council is hereby advised to ensure compliance with the procedures.”

It was reported that Mbango's letter to Mushelenga on 10 June listed alleged irregularities committed by the top four councillors - Uusiku, her deputy Heskiel Nanyeni, management committee chairperson Beata Nashongo and management committee member Enos Shipahu.

He accused them of leasing plots to themselves without ministerial approval.

This happened after a council meeting on 3 June in which the councillors resolved not to renew Mbango's contract.

Uusiku, Nanyeni, Nashongo and Shipahu all voted against Mbango's contract being renewed.

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