Rundu council distances itself from anti-Redforce fundraisers

21 June 2021 | Local News

Kenya Kambowe



RUNDU

The Rundu town council has distanced itself from a group of locals who are allegedly collecting money from residents in a bid to raise funds and take the town’s debt collector to court.

Mayor Gabriel Kanyanga last week told Namibian Sun that the council has learnt about a group of people who are doing a door-to-door campaign raising funds to take Redforce Debt Management to court.

The council last year entered into a three-year contract with Redforce to recover close to N$500 million owed to it by residents.

However, roping in the services of the debt collector has not been welcomed by some of the defaulters who have opted to take the matter to court, saying they want the contract between Redforce and the council terminated.

Meanwhile, the town council - as per instruction from urban and rural development minister Erastus Uutoni – attempted to terminate the Redforce contract last year; however, this proved unsuccessful, with the government attorney advising that there was nothing illegal to the deal.

The two parties were left to enter a settlement agreement, with the local authority forced to pay over N$100 000 for legal costs and damages to Redforce.

Not from us

It appears the fundraising now wants to take a different application to the High Court, also aimed at having the contract between the town council and Redforce terminated.

Kanyanga said the council is not interfering in the exercise; however, he said the individuals who are collecting funds are not directed by the local authority.

“There are individuals who are going house to house collecting funds so that they can fight Redforce on their own. We just want to inform the public that it’s not coming from our offices,” the mayor said.

“Those are just individuals who failed already in their leadership and are now trying to jeopardise our current spirit of leading our people.

“The community must just know that if they are participating in that, we are cautioning them that they can continue on their own but we are not part of it. If it will go well with them, it’s fine, and if it goes bad with them, we are not part of it.”

We were not approached

When asked whether council knows the motive behind the group’s decision to take Redforce to court, Kanyanga said: “They are taking Redforce to court because they believe Redforce is apparently eating their money”.

He added that council is, however, puzzled by the fact that the concerned group has not approached the local authority to engage on the matter.

“We know the public is not happy with Redforce; at the same time, it’s the same public owing council a lot of money. Council, in order for it to survive, needs money. Obviously we cannot punish our voters, we have to give them attention, but we have to do it properly,” he said.

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