Swanu questions genocide legal bill

Questions have been posed in parliament as to why other channels, such as the United Nations, could not be used to evaluate the genocide documents.

19 October 2017 | Politics

Namibia's oldest political party Swanu has joined the chorus of critics questioning government's decision to seek the advice of United Kingdom-based lawyers on its genocide claim against Germany.

The Namibian government is currently negotiating with its German counterpart on how the latter must make amends to the 1904-08 Nama and OvaHerero genocide.

Namibia's special envoy Zed Ngavirue yesterday could not explain why the UK lawyers were enlisted.

“I was not the one to decide that. On the technical committee level we only indicated that we needed a peer review for the documents that we prepared,” Ngavirue said.

In September, Sacky Shanghala said as the attorney-general, he does not need to acquire any cabinet approval for this kind of decision.

“There is no requirement in the Namibian Constitution, whence I derive my powers and existence from, for a cabinet approval or consultation,” Shanghala recently told parliament.

He further confirmed a Namibian lawyer based in the UK, Anna Uukelo, had been paid N$16 million.

Three European advocates were paid N$14 million, N$385 401 and N$816 574.

In a statement in parliament, Swanu Member of Parliament (MP) Usutuaije Maamberua said “it seems that the public purse is under threat”.

Maamberua asked why Namibia ignored “valuable” international bodies such as the United Nations instead of spending millions when the country is paddling through an economic crisis.

Repeating President Hage Geingob's rhetoric that Namibia is an offspring of the UN, Maamberua said it only makes sense for it to appeal to this body to lodge its genocide claims.

“It is natural that an important matter such as the genocide that the UN would in all probabilities be ready to render advice. Similarly, the UN could not have completed its decolonisation process over Namibia without having an opinion on the genocide issue,” he said.

Maamberua also demanded the government explain the value of the legal advice sought while the negotiating team under Ngavirue's leadership already compiled and presented the Namibia position paper to its German counterpart in July 2016.

“Besides the works of legal research, purportedly to determine whether Namibia had a case to demand reparation from Germany cost N$36 million. What would it cost the taxpayers at this rate, if we were to go all the way to litigation?” he ridiculed the expenditure.

He also questioned Shanghala's attitude while finance minister Calle Schlettwein stated that “the services were not sourced in compliance with the public procurement procedures.”

Maamberua also asked why the government is giving conflicting versions of payments made to the UK lawyers citing the N$11 million paid towards legal fees by the international relations ministry and N$36 million paid by Shanghala's office.

“If the payment was under the annual tender of the AG's office why is it the only item under social grants, in 2017/18 budget and nothing before or after?” Maamberua asked.

He further pointed out that “lines of accountabilities” in this case must be identified.



JEMIMA BEUKES

Similar News

 

Swapo ‘nervous’ about LPM

1 day - 15 January 2019 | Politics

OGONE TLHAGE Political commentator Ndumba Kamwanyah says he is taken aback by Swapo parliamentarian and deputy public enterprises...

Namibia still a ‘flawed democracy’

1 day - 15 January 2019 | Politics

ELLANIE SMIT Namibia has been ranked as one of the top ten most democratic countries in sub-Saharan Africa, but was still labelled...

SPYL calls for Rundu intervention

1 day - 15 January 2019 | Politics

The Swapo Party Youth League (SPYL) in the Kavango East Region says it is dissatisfied with the infighting among ruling party councillors at Rundu over...

LPM cries foul

1 week ago - 09 January 2019 | Politics

The Landless People's Movement (LPM) claims it is under attack from Swapo and United Democratic Front (UDF), saying the two parties are intimidating LPM members...

Epangelo olya pumbwa okuninga omalunduluko

1 week ago - 09 January 2019 | Politics

Pahapu dhaDiescho, omukalo ngoka otagu etitha aantu ya fundje kombinga yuuwatya wawo, nkene ye li komapepe gondjokonona yoshili.Amushanga gwoSwapo, Sophia Shaningwa okwa popi kutya: “Oshi...

Swapo liberation victory falsified – Diescho

1 week ago - 08 January 2019 | Politics

JEMIMA BEUKES Professor Joseph Diescho believes that Swapo has lost its idealism and has been captured by a political elite who are...

Namibia in dead-end street

1 week ago - 07 January 2019 | Politics

The Swapo party is past its sell-by date and cannot take the nation into the future, a political analyst says. At the same time,...

PDM ya tokola okufala kompangu oshikumungu shaSardarov

2 weeks ago - 02 January 2019 | Politics

Momasiku 15 gaFebruali nuumvo, ongundu yoPopular Democratic Movement (PDM) otayi ka pula Ompangu yoPombanda opo yi kaleke oompangela dheyambulepo adhihe moofalama ne ndhoka tadhi hiilwa...

Rundu in disarray

2 weeks ago - 28 December 2018 | Politics

The Rundu town council remains in limbo and is yet to elect new office-bearers, as infighting among ruling party councillors continues to throw the municipality...

The call for new socialism

3 weeks ago - 20 December 2018 | Politics

The recently held Swapo extraordinary congress adopted a number of resolutions. One of the key resolutions accepted at the Ramatex gathering was a draft proposal...

Latest News

Higher food, fuel prices expected

9 hours ago | Economics

Consumers should brace themselves for even more expensive food and fuel this year. Although motorists received a slight reprieve in fuel prices in December,...

'Technical glitches' force plane to...

9 hours ago | Transport

An Air Namibia Embraer ERJ 135 en route to Ondangwa from Windhoek had to turn around on Sunday evening and land at Eros Airport, from...

When legends die paupers

9 hours ago | Columns

The death on Sunday of Bafana Bafana legend Phil Masinga and the outpouring of grief around his passing, especially in Namibia, has once again brought...

SA regulator weighs Eskom price...

9 hours ago | Economics

NAMPA/ANAAs the National Energy Regulator of South Africa (Nersa) on Monday began public hearings on Eskom's tariff increase application, pressure group SAFCEI suggested that the...

Cross-border buses to Zim suspend...

9 hours ago | Economics

Nampa/ANAThe International Cross-Border Traders Association (ICTA) on Monday said it had withdrawn all buses travelling to different parts of Zimbabwe from neighbouring countries as protests...

Nambundunga inspired us - Shalli

9 hours ago | People

Former Namibian Defence Force (NDF) chief Martin Shalli says his successor, the late Peter Nambundunga, played a significant role during the liberation struggle as a...

SADC urged to speak with...

9 hours ago | International

The Southern African Development Community (SADC) has been urged to speak with one voice on the current crisis in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).This...

China and Canada in 'hostage...

9 hours ago | Economics

NAMPA/AFP A Chinese court's decision to impose the death penalty on a...

Ghana's biggest oilfield yet discovered...

9 hours ago | Economics

NAMPA/ANANorwegian oil exploration company Aker Energy has announced the discovery of what appears to be the biggest oil find in the Ghana's history to date...

Load More