President Hage Geingob has dismissed a news report in the state-owned New Era publication that said he had denounced demands for the dismissals of former ministers Sacky Shanghala and Bernhard Esau.
The ministers, who are being investigated by the ACC for involvement in the N$150m fishing bribe from an Iceland company, resigned 13 November 2019.
In a statement released by Geingob’s press secretary Alfredo Hengari, the presidency said the New Era report “is wholly inaccurate and malicious”.
According to the statement, the article headlines Geingob denounces demands for Shanghala and Esau’s dismissal published on Monday this week, creates the false impression that President Geingob condemned calls for the dismissal of two former ministers implicated in the fishing bribery scandal as reported in several media.
The statement also said that the New Era article purports to have quoted the President when he spoke at a SWAPO Party Star Rally at Omuthiyagwiipundi on Friday, 15 November 2019.
In actual fact, the statement said, the president said he could not fire the two ministers on the grounds that they
had not yet been found guilty of the alleged offence.
“The article quoting the President selectively is creating the malicious impression that President denounced calls for the dismissal of the former Ministers. The President will continue to emphasize the rule of law and the Constitution as the foundation for Governance in Namibia,” the statement further said.
President Geingob, the statement said, summoned the two ministers to State House to demand explanations, following which he was going to act decisively but the two chose to resign in light of the gravity of the allegations.
“Moreover, the President had letters of their dismissal ready, had they not chosen to resign,” the statement said, adding that the Presidency condemns the article for creating the false impression that the President denounced demands for the dismissal of the two former ministers.