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 congress kicks off

10 hours ago | Politics

The much-anticipated elective congress of the ruling party has started in Windhoek with over 760 delegates as well as invited guests attending this morning’s opening...

Team Swapo cries foul, cites threats

2 days ago - 22 November 2017 | Politics

Swapo presidential hopeful Nahas Angula says delegates are being threatened and bribed to vote for acting party president Hage Geingob and his slate at the...

All systems go for Swapo vote

2 days ago - 22 November 2017 | Politics

Swapo secretary-general Nangolo Mbumba said it is all systems go for the ruling party's congress this weekend. The congress will be attended by a number...

Oshikoto's cc candidates confirmed

2 days ago - 22 November 2017 | Politics

The Swapo extraordinary regional conference for Oshikoto finally took place on Monday after months of postponements. The conference elected deputy environment minister Tommy Nambahu, Quito...

Swapo faces test of unity

3 days ago - 21 November 2017 | Politics

The Swapo internal leadership race has exposed deep divisions as the ruling party prepares to elect new leaders this weekend. There is without a...

DTA accused of name theft

3 days ago - 21 November 2017 | Politics

Popular Democratic Movement (PDM) president McHenry Venaani has laughed off claims by Nudo spokesperson Joseph Kauandenge that the former DTA stole their party's new name...

Nahas: Swapo under attack

3 days ago - 21 November 2017 | Politics

Team Swapo candidate for the Swapo Party presidency Nahas Angula says he is ready to serve the party as it is under siege from those...

Shaningwa a sitha ohoni omuunganeki

3 days ago - 21 November 2017 | Politics

Omuunganeki gwongundu yoSwapo moshikandjo shaNgwediva moshitopolwa shaShana, David Akuunda, okwa tindi omapopyo kutya okwa tumine uutumwalaka uufupi wopangodhi ongundu yaakuthimbinga pamwe naye momutumba...

Shaningwa shames mobiliser

4 days ago - 20 November 2017 | Politics

Swapo's district mobiliser for Ongwediva in the Oshana Region, David Akuunda, has rejected claims that he sent an SMS to his fellow regional delegates to...

Swapo gala dinner makes money

1 week ago - 17 November 2017 | Politics

The Swapo Party fundraising gala dinner held in Windhoek on Wednesday evening raised over N$1.6 million. An amount of N$282 750 was collected through...

Latest News

Kasuto, MUN lose again in...

6 hours ago | Justice

An urgent court application seeking to stop the National Union of Namibian Workers (NUNW) delegates from taking part in the ongoing Swapo congress was struck...

Brave Warriors move up FIFA...

10 hours ago | Sports

The Namibian national senior football team moved up 10 places on the latest Federation of Football Associations (FIFA) world rankings.Namibia moved from 129 to 119th...

Swapo congress kicks off

10 hours ago | Politics

The much-anticipated elective congress of the ruling party has started in Windhoek with over 760 delegates as well as invited guests attending this morning’s opening...

Alweendo seeks US help to...

1 day - 23 November 2017 | Economics

Tom Alweendo, the minister of economic planning and director-general of the National Planning Commission (NPC), has asked the United States of America to help stem...

Debmarine plans world’s biggest offshore...

1 day - 23 November 2017 | Business

Anglo American's diamond unit De Beers has ordered a new US$142 million diamond mining ship as part of its strategy to grow its offshore operations,...

Population grows by 200 000...

1 day - 23 November 2017 | Economics

The estimated population of Namibia grew from 2 113 077 in 2011 to 2 324 388 in 2016, which represents a 10%, according to the...

Hope and scepticism among Zim...

1 day - 23 November 2017 | International

When the sun rose over Zimbabwe yesterday morning, a 37-year-old reality was changed forever with the resignation of Robert Mugabe on Tuesday evening. He resigned...

Boy 7, raped by girl,...

1 day - 23 November 2017 | Crime

A seven-year-old boy was raped at a house in Block E, Rehoboth, on 15 November. In their daily crime bulletin, the police say the boy...

ACC wants more teeth

1 day - 23 November 2017 | Justice

The Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) is appealing to the government to make adequate financial and human resources available to it to meet huge expectations from the...

Load More