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KEETMANSHOOP MUNICIPALITY…A TOWN THAT CAN’T PAY WHAT IT OWES ITSELF

The LPM leader Bernardus Swartbooi. PHOTO CONTRIBUTED

By: Dwight Links

Keetmanshoop Town Council has not been paying rates and taxes and owes itself N$332 357.

The municipality is one of the 7 000 debtors among them government ministries, departments and state-owned enterprises.

The Villager is in possession of a document that shows that not only Keetmanshoop has not been a good debtor to itself but that several

Some of the government ministries listed are finance, works, veterans’ affairs, and fisheries.

Finance owes N$451 228; works has N$272 138; veterans owes N$268 456; and fisheries has N$210 893.

There is also NamWater, RCC, TransNamib, the police, Keetmanshoop District Hospital and Unam.

These they owe – NamWater N$428 113; RCC N$405 193; TransNamib N$377 669; the police N$245 977; Keetmanshoop District Hospital N$106 503; and Unam N$557 066.

Private companies on the list are Engen with N$1 208 217; Canyon Hotel has N$1 452 049; Lafenis Game Lodge has the highest debt at N$3 271 922; KRC: Education comes second with N$3 203 115.

The LPM leader Bernardus Swartbooi says the issue of Keetmanshoop was not just a municipality issue but a government one as well.

Swartbooi said there is a debt challenge in the Keetmanshoop’s municipality collection of backdated debts.

“There are private sector businesses and companies on a global scale that owe money to Keetmanshoop. There are Government agencies and offices that are not paying their debts. Then followed by old people who cannot pay and are accumulating debt, and people who are paying down their debt,” Swartbooi said.

According to him, the Keetmanshoop municipality is categorising the accumulated debts of the private sector in the town, then another for government and then the residential debts.

Swartbooi Warns AR

Swartbooi said that if the Affirmative Repositioning wants a fight, it will get one.

This follows the accusations of the appointment of a driver at the town of Aranos, Mario Gaoseb, who was assured of the appointment and then rejected, as being corrupt since Gaoseb was coached to obtain a grade 10 certificate which he did not have.

“There was a Stampriet CEO who accumulated a debt of N$ 30 000 in one night in Mariental, a SWAPO person. And these AR boys are talking nonsense about LPM corruption and checked it ourselves,” he added.

“We certainly don’t need AR to tell us anything about anything. Job must tell his boys to order. We are a big political party; with boys we break legs.”

“The AR is falsely claiming that there is corruption in the town, where there is none. AR should not be celebrating and behave as if they do not have problems of their own,” Swartbooi said.

Swartbooi said that there are people who are trying to make LPM look bad.

“Idle hands are the devil’s playground, with the instance of Aranos and Mariental as people are trying to blackmail the LPM.”

The party leader also said that the instance of Aranos apparently also included the sale of old support poles that were on sale to the general public of the town.

“It is now being claimed as if the poles were only sold to LPM councillors, but on the ground, the public bought the items on sale,” Swartbooi said.

Swartbooi indicated that the town of Aranos was not afforded the same opportunity to develop as a town after they, along with Ruacana, were reclassified as towns.

“The town itself has had legacy issues from being run by Swapo. There were contractual issues of the town that existed when we got there. These were not sorted for the past 31 years,” he added.

Swartbooi said that a week and half ago they had engaged with City of Windhoek mayor Job Amupanda, a meeting which lasted four or five hours on important points regarding the city.

“We were surprised when the mayor of the city takes a statement of the LPM, and distributed it on the WhatsApp group of the local authority here, while we were discussing how we can assist each other on claims that are false from AR in Aranos,” he said.

Swartbooi said that these AR elements are operating from the town and that his party is condemning the actions of the movement’s southern-based representatives.

Julia Heita

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