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//Gowaseb scoffs at Air Namibia manoeuvres

Mon, 10 August 2015 16:42
by Charmaine Ngatjiheue
News Flash

Former state house spin doctor Mathew //Gowaseb has scoffed  at  revelations  that he is destined to take over the Air Namibia top job after the sacking of Swiss import Rene Gsponer.
The same job has also seen the name of former Motor Vehicle Accident Fund Chief Executive Officer Jerry Muadinohamba being mentioned often.
The corporate rumour mill has strongly linked //Gowaseb with the joke with recent revelations being that the newly appointed board of directors of Air Namibia are keen on chasing the former statehouse spokesperson’s signature.
//Gowaseb told The Villager that contrary to rumour mills from the Air Namibia corridors he has not been formally approached for the job.
“It is not true at all. Whatever you say is not true. I cannot say I have been approached for the job because there is no truth in it. When I say it is not true, it means that there are no further questions,” //Gowaseb said.
In addition to //Gowoseb being the former Knowledge Management Expert in the Office of the President, he was also the former Namibian Broadcasting Corporation (NBC) Director-General.
With his stint at NBC as the DG, in a very short time, he made significant modifications on the look and impression of the NBC television.
//Gowaseb was poached from the United Nations by President Dr Hage Geingob when he was Prime Minister and served as special adviser to the Prime Minister. He was also appointed as a part of the Swapo party think tank.
The Ministry of Works and Transport Alpheus !Naruseb announced the new Air Namibia board members last month at a media briefing.
The announced board members were Gerson Tjihenuna (Chairperson), Floreter Nakusera (Deputy Chairperson), Conville Britz, Walencia /Uiras and Evelyn /Naris.
The Air Namibia top position has been left vacant as the Acting Managing Director Rene Gsponer’ was served with a notice last month by the new board that his term will be ending and his contract will not be renewed.
According to sources, //Gowaseb will be taking over as soon as Gsponer’ term has finally been concluded.
Gsponer has been the Acting Managing Director for the past two years after the airliner’s former board suspended Theo Namases.
His term is set in conclude in the next three months and was effective from August 1, according to a letter signed by the airliner’s newly appoint board chairperson Tjihenuna and his deputy Nakusera.
The letter stated that Gsponer’s contract will not be extended beyond November 4 and thus Gsponer who was also the Chief Operations Officer had to hand over the understudy reports for that position and also the briefing report to the acting MD who shall be appointed in due course.
Gsponer’s sacking letter gave him a deadline of 30 September to submit detailed reports on all aspects of operations he dealt with as the COO, the accountable manager as well as the acting MD.
When contacted for comment, Tjihenuna told The Villager that there is no truth in the airliner approaching and appointing //Gowoseb for the MD’s position.
“It is not true at all, I do not know where you are hearing that. However, we are having a press conference scheduled where everything will be explained,” Tjihenuna said.
Meanwhile, this is not the first time that //Gowaseb is earmarked for the top job at the airliner, in 2012 other media also reported that //Gowaseb was earmarked for the top job but then it was given to Namases who was also the acting MD at the time.
Namases was the acting top boss for the two as the board at the time failed to appoint an MD.
A year after Namases was appointed as the top boss, the then board chaired by Haroldt Schmidt suspended her for almost two years to launch an investigation against the cases that were raised against her.
Recently however, the then board had resolved to paying her N$3 million although the Minister of Works and Transport, !Naruseb ordered the board at the time to reinstate her.