Oshikoto terminates Aids committee jobs

25 March 2020 | Local News

ILENI NANDJATO

OSHAKATI



As from next month, 11 Constituency Aids Coordinating Committee (CACOC) members in the Oshikoto Region will join thousands of other unemployed Namibians on the streets after the regional council terminated their employment contracts.

On 27 February, the regional council took a resolution to terminate CACOC jobs.

The regional council has one CACOC member at each of the 11 constituency offices.

Their job is to coordinate the HIV/Aids activities of counselling, testing and ARV medication in the constituency and report to the Regional Aids Coordinating Committee (RACOC).

One of their key roles was the establishment of HIV/Aids support groups in communities, which are networks of HIV/Aids patients fighting the disease together.

Not within legal framework

In a letter to the CACOC members, chief regional officer Frans Enkali said these positions were not within the legal framework of the regional council.

“It is with much regret that I inform you that the service of CACOC members in the region are coming to an end on 31 March this year.

Therefore, you are kindly informed that your contract of service will be terminated with effect from 1 April this year,” Enkali wrote. “The decision to discontinue CACOC services was taken by the council to enable it comply with the legislative frameworks. Your immense contribution towards the achievement of the HIV and Aids reduction in the region in particular, and the nation in general, is highly valued and appreciated.”



Doing away

When contacted for comment, Enkali said the decision was based on advice from the Public Service Commission.

“These positions do not exist with the establishment of the regional council. They do not exist at other regional councils and that is why it was necessary for us to do away with them,” he said.

He said the regional council would create two positions for community liaison officers in the HIV/Aids section to take over the duties of the committee. He urged the committee members to apply if they meet the requirements.

The chairperson of the Oshikoto regional council, Samwel Shivute, said he did not know how the CACOC positions ended up within the structure of the regional council.

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