Shimbulu reinstatement declared illegal

The ruling party's illegal actions at Oshakati have been laid bare in a legal opinion.

28 February 2020 | Politics

Oshakati town council legal consultant Jan Greyling has penned a damning opinion on the nomination and swearing-in of Katrina Shimbulu as a councillor, and her subsequent nomination and election as a management committee office-bearer, which he said is illegal and should never have taken place.

Greyling said in his legal opinion, seen by Namibian Sun, that this was not in accordance with the Local Authorities Act, and as such, is invalid.

On 16 December 2019, ruling party Oshakati councillors Onesmus Shilunga and Gabriel Kamwanka boycotted the council's election of political office-bearers in protest against a decision by Swapo's Oshakati East and West district executive committees to bring Shimbulu back.

This was after she had resigned last October to comply with Article 47 of the constitution, following her acceptance of a nomination on the Swapo list of MP candidates for November's National Assembly election.

According to Article 47, political party members must resign from the National Council, regional and local authority councils and public service upon accepting nomination for parliament.

Swapo's dismal poll performance, in which it lost 14 seats in the National Assembly compared to 2014, saw Shimbulu failing to make the cut for the new parliament that will be sworn in next month.

Following the furore regarding Shimbulu's subsequent re-emergence at the Oshakati town council, acting CEO Kornelius Kapolo turned to Greyling for advice.

Kapolo said Greyling is a legal officer contracted by the council and whenever there are issues he is not sure of, he turns to him for legal advice.

“These are just legal opinions and at the end of the day, it is up to the council to make the final decision. As the acting executive, I just have to implement what is within the law and you must also remember that our swearing-in process is underway,” Kapolo said. Shimbulu tendered her resignation as a councillor and member of the management committee in writing on 17 October 2019, Greyling said in his legal opinion.

He said the letter was not presented to Kapolo until late November, when it was requested by the Electoral Commission of Namibia (ECN).

Greyling said Kapolo informed Swapo regional coordinator Samuel Nelongo about her resignation, but for some reason urban and rural development minister Peya Mushelenga was not informed and therefore the vacancy was not gazetted.

A notice of the meeting of 16 December was handed to councillors after 13:00 on 13 December.

This invitation was also extended to Shimbulu, and according to Greyling, she should not have been notified nor allowed to be present, as she was not yet sworn-in when the meeting commenced.

“The council was supposed to have a meeting on 3 December, however, Swapo councillors did not attend this meeting due to other commitments. The agenda that was attached to the notice apparently contained the same information as the notice of the meeting that was supposed to take place on 3 December. It contained no mention of the swearing-in of Shimbulu,” Greyling said.

“Kapolo never received a nomination for Shimbulu as a councillor at any stage, notwithstanding verbal assurance by the district coordinator. However, he assumed that Shimbulu was nominated because her name appeared in the letter from Swapo pertaining to office-bearers.”

Greyling said the agenda was then amended at the time of the meeting on the advice of Magistrate Antonious Shapumba, who presided over the election.

“This amendment of the agenda at the meeting seems to be the cause of the discourse and it resulted in two councillors leaving the venue. They were apparently of the opinion that it would be unlawful or would lead to a nullity of the nomination and election,” Greyling said.

He added the magistrate had no authority to allow the amendment of the agenda, and a proper construction of a 72-hour notification period could have applied in this regard.

“Accordingly, the swearing-in of Shimbulu could and should not have taken place at the meeting and constitutes a nullity. Shimbulu actively participated in the meeting, as she nominated and seconded office-bearers for the certain positions and was elected herself as a member of the management committee,” he said.


Similar News


Swapo sidesteps democracy

1 day - 02 August 2021 | Politics

JEMIMA BEUKES WINDHOEKThe questionable re-appointment of Paulus Noa as chief of the Anti-Corruption Commission...

Swartbooi unrepentant about conduct in National Assembly

1 week ago - 26 July 2021 | Politics

WINDHOEKLandless People’s Movement (LPM) leader Bernadus Swartbooi remains unrepentant about his party’s conduct in parliament, saying it is a vibrant institution where “some tolerance for...

Covid only for the poor - APP

1 week ago - 26 July 2021 | Politics

KENYA KAMBOWERUNDUAll People’s Party (APP) secretary-general Vincent Kanyetu has questioned whether Covid-19 regulations are only applicable to the poor.He argues that the party has observed...

Seibeb, Swartbooi suspension ‘plagued by irregularities’

2 weeks ago - 15 July 2021 | Politics

OGONE TLHAGEWINDHOEKA legal analyst says the indefinite suspensions of Landless People’s Movement (LPM) members of parliament Bernadus Swartbooi and Henny Seibeb has been plagued by...

Namibia has gone to the dogs – Nambinga

3 weeks ago - 08 July 2021 | Politics

Kenya Kambowe Rundu Former Rally for Democracy and Progress (RDP) president Jeremiah Nambinga...

APP to pay recalled councillor N$200k

3 weeks ago - 07 July 2021 | Politics

KENYA KAMBOWE RUNDU The Windhoek High Court has ordered the All People’s Party (APP) to pay its former Grootfontein local councillor,...

PDM's Muharukua promises open door

3 weeks ago - 07 July 2021 | Politics

TUYEIMO HAIDULAOSHAKATIThe Popular Democratic Movement (PDM) candidate for the Opuwo Rural constituency by-election, Uakaisiua Melchizedek Muharukua, says he will have an open-door policy in order...

PDM’s Muharukua celebrates sweeping victory

4 weeks ago - 06 July 2021 | Politics

NAMPAOPUWOThe Popular Democratic Movement (PDM) candidate for the Opuwo Rural Constituency by-election, Western Muharukua, took to the streets of Opuwo to celebrate his victory on...

Covid-19: Swapo calls off election rallies in Opuwo Rural

1 month - 29 June 2021 | Politics

NAMPAOPUWOThe Swapo Party has called off all its planned rallies for the Opuwo Rural Constituency by-election amidst skyrocketing Covid-19 cases and tightened health regulations announced...

ECN ordered to avail spoilt Ndonga Linena ballots

1 month - 24 June 2021 | Politics

Kenya Kambowe RUNDUThe Electoral Commission of Namibia (ECN) has been ordered by the electoral court to allow the All People’s Party (APP) access to the...

Latest News

Govt spin doctors in PR...

16 hours ago | Government

MATHIAS HAUFIKU WINDHOEKGovernment spokespersons are silently opposing Cabinet’s decision to reverse a 2020 resolution that compelled all ministries to adopt an identical...

Living on the sweet side

16 hours ago | Youth

Mariselle StofbergWith just a few ingredients, heaps of imagination and a touch of elegance, 15-year-old Ndapanda Shiyagaya is able to bake and create sweet masterpieces...

Ethiopian Airlines denies shipping arms

16 hours ago | Business

Ethiopian Airlines, the largest carrier in Africa, on Sunday denied it was transporting weapons and soldiers to the war-torn Tigray region.Calls to boycott the state-owned...

EDITORIAL: The true meaning of...

16 hours ago | Opinion

Before every election in southern Africa - and often intermittently during public holidays - we are reminded of the blood that waters our freedom, and...

Over 70 000 Namibians await...

16 hours ago | Health

JEMIMA BEUKES WINDHOEKGovernment is scratching its head in the face of a vaccine...

The education sector mourns

16 hours ago | Education

Enzo Amuele Foibe Louise Namene was a trained lawyer and a PhD candidate at the University of Namibia. She served the Namibian electricity utility, NamPower,...

This year’s Olympic Games in...

16 hours ago | Sports

Nadine WillemseThe Olympics have certainly been interesting with a lot of new sports added, like surfboarding, skating and karate, and together with all the other...

Schools are safe, US embassy...

16 hours ago | Health

JEMIMA BEUKES WINDHOEKAn investigation has found that Covid-19 outbreaks were more common in Namibian schools with a hostel than those without.In...

Photo of the week

16 hours ago | Youth

Michelle McLean Bailey poses with Miss Teen Namibia 2021, Alexis Swart. Through the Michelle McLean Children Trust, Swart received a donation of N$15 000 on...

Load More