In 2015, George Mayumbelo vented his frustrations over being left out every time he tried his luck to become the City of Windhoek CEO.
On Monday this week, Mayumbelo also vented on what he said were efforts to take him out as the acting CEO.
Mayumbelo, the Human Capital and Corporate Services Executive, was appointed the acting CEO in November 2020.
Mayumbelo’s life at the City of Windhoek, where he has been for more than 23 years, has not been that welcoming if one looks at how he tried and failed to become the boss.
In 2004, Mayumbelo tried his luck for the first time but was unsuccessful when the former mayor, the late Matheus Shikongo and the management committee chairperson Bjorn von Finckenstein brought in Niilo Taapopi.
Before serving as the City of Windhoek CEO, Taapopi, a former combatant, was the permanent secretary at the home affairs ministry.
Even though Mayumbelo did not get the job, he performed better than Taapopi during the interviews.
Ten years later, Mayumbelo was back again to try his luck but was not considered for the position.
Although Mayumbelo was said to have performed better, the council chose the former Okahandja chief executive officer Frans Enkali to lead the City of Windhoek.
In the interviews, Mayumbelo came ahead of two others – Jerome Mouton and Moses Ndjarakana.
Enkali could not take the position because of an underway probe at the garden city. Enkali had come second to Mayumbelo.
Instead of Mayumbelo getting the job, it was passed on from several heads of departments until Robert Kahimise came in 2017.
First to act was the then Strategic Executive Manager for Electricity, Edward Kawesha, and then Fillemon Hambuda.
It should have come as a long-awaited dream when Mayumbelo was then appointed last year to act.
THE CURRENT SITUATION
This, however, has not been easy sailing because, on Monday, Mayumbelo vented his anguish at the goings-on at the municipality in a letter he wrote to the management committee chairperson Ndeshihafela Larandja.
According to Mayumbelo, there was a secret meeting last week where they discussed his fate at the municipality.
One such meeting, Mayumbelo said, was held on 5 October 2021.
Mayumbelo said he told the first management committee in December last year that he reluctantly accepted acting as the CEO.
He also said that if anyone wanted him out, that should not be very difficult to do.
“I am more than willing to relinquish the temporary acting role,” he said.
He added that such a move should be professional and transparent.
“You have seemingly resorted unprofessional efforts to remove me through exertions motivated by misinformation and driven by an alternative agenda,” he wrote.
Furthermore, Mayumbelo said it was disappointing to observe and note the various attempts to bring his name into disrepute through unprofessional and clandestine efforts aimed at fabrications to achieve a specific outcome through insincere means.
“It is common knowledge that a small, determined clique of employees with undisclosed rivalries, but who are tribalistic, corrupt and conflicted have reached out to politicians and councillors to spread falsehood and to tarnish the image of innocent and committed employees.
“These efforts are aimed at capturing politicians and councillors in such a manner as to ensure that the organisation is corrupted and that their hidden objectives or previous transgressions are safeguarded,” he said.
Mayumbelo said the culture and environment of mistrust linger within the City of Windhoek, and as a result, the atmosphere is currently not conducive to progressive actions or outputs.
“Decision-making, as well as execution and enforcement thereof, have also subsequently become challenging, and the council has been placed in a precarious position which in turn negatively impacts the residents of Windhoek,” he also said.
Mayumbelo’s letter to Larandja this week echoes a similar letter he wrote to the former Windhoek mayor Agnes Kafula in 2014.
The only difference this time is that Mayumbelo says he does not mind going. In 2014, he lamented being overlooked for position.
In the letter he wrote in November 2014, Mayumbelo said he had participated in the recruitment process for over a decade and was considered one of the top candidates.
“Over the years, I cemented my experience and increased my wisdom. I participated in the same process this year (2014). The outcome is unfair treatment leading to this letter of grievances,” he wrote.
He also told Kafula that he felt victimised because he had participated in interviews for CEOs.
Mayumbelo chose to vent his frustrations when he could not participate in the readvertised position that saw Ndangi Katoma, the Bank of Namibia spokesperson, emerging as the desired candidate.
Katoma could not come to serve after the then Minister of Regional and Local Government, Housing and Rural Development Charles Namoloh ruled the process flawed.
In his letter to Kafula, Mayumbelo said it appeared as if he was being mistreated so that he did not talk or start a confrontation that could cause a disciplinary hearing.
He accused some management committee members of provocation, humiliation and discrimination.
Mayumbelo complained that because of his desire to become the CEO, his efforts and contributions regarding his duties were not taken seriously.
“I am being prevented from objectively articulating the type of professional advice and opinion that I constantly have been giving council,” he complained.
“I hereby place it on record that I have no objection to the removal should the prevailing hostile environment continue.
“I wish to further place it on record that I am by no means conflicted nor have participated in any corrupt activities during my overall employment or tenure as acting chief executive officer and shall remain steadfast in my fight against corruption or activities serving the personal interest of corrupt individuals at the expense of the residents of Windhoek,” he told Larandja.
Larandja said: “I am restrained. I can’t speak on council matters until I am back. I am restrained.”
Mayumbelo was unreachable for comment.