Trade ministry accused of slow service delivery
19 August 2021 | Ministries
Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) accused trade and industrialisation ministry of being slow when it comes to issuing good standing certificates, adding that it puts them at risk to lose out on bids they intend to apply for.
Various SMEs wrote to Namibian Sun lamenting the service delivery from the ministry, adding that officials respond slowly when issuing the certificates.
“We are suffering. For the past two months, this office has been empty and the contact details and email provided do not provide any response,” several business owners who approached Namibian Sun said.
The ministry of industrialisation was further accused of jeopardising the recovery of businesses from the Covid-19 pandemic.
“How does the government and the ministry of industrialisation expect SMEs to recover from the Covid-19 pandemic if people responsible to issue SME certificates are working from home yet tenders are still requiring submissions of these documents?” the business owners fumed.
“The ministry should issue a directive that the SME certificate requirement should be suspended or automate the renewal of those certificates that expired during the pandemic,” they suggested.
Service delivery not impacted
Meanwhile, the ministry denied the claims, saying work had been done to ensure SMEs get their compliance certificates in time.
“We are not aware of such a situation. More than three colleagues are issuing certificates under question daily here at head office. Not long ago, I personally assisted by directing someone to Block A building where they received necessary assistance,” ministry spokesperson Elijah Mukubonda said.
According to him, while ministry officials are working in shifts, it does not have an impact on service delivery.
“We are cognisant that some of our staff are working shifts during the difficult time of the pandemic, but we assure you that services are not hampered by such arrangements, nor halted,” he said.
Mukubonda further provided clarity on where SME owners should go for the renewal of their compliance certificates.
“We apologise for any inconvenience caused to those claiming to have experienced a disservice from the ministry and we urge them to come to the second floor of Block A - situated in Goethe Street - for assistance.”