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Staff Writer

The Affirmative Repositioning has summoned its leader, Job Amupanda, to their Head Quarters to explain his role in the proposed budget at the City of Windhoek.

The budget presented Monday shows that for 2020/21, the mayor’s annual allowances should be N$790,491 and for 2021/22 the amount goes up to N$849 539.

For 2020/21, the mayor’s monthly allowance is N$65 874.25, while for 2021/22 the monthly allowance goes up to N$70 794.91.

The deputy mayor’s salary for 2020/21 should be N$766 449 and for the 2021/22, it goes up to N$797 699.

Surprisingly, the chairperson of the management committee earns higher than both the mayor and deputy mayor for the 2020/21 budget with a salary pegged at N$811 719 and then for 2021/22 it should go down to N$745 859.

The AR Movement said they are a Marxist-Fanonian-Sankarist Movement that is anti-capitalist in character charged with the responsibility to Bringing about equitable socioeconomic development in Namibia and to vigorously oppose, for the purposes for defeating, the capitalist economic order harming Namibians.

In a statement Tuesday, the movement said all representatives of the AR movement must uphold the principle that the masses come first and always ready to make a personal practical contribution in the lives of the people.

“An AR Activist must understand that he/she must be first to endure hardships and last to enjoy fruits.

“In-light of our ideological outlook, policy perspective, content and character we have summoned our two deployee’s to the AR headquarters to explain and brief the movement on their collective and singular participation on the proposed budget,” the movement further said.

In a statement, the AR movement said that they are bent on ‘defeating, the capitalist economic order harming Namibians’.

“We have noted with great concern and disgrace the content of the media briefing on the City of Windhoek budget as presented by Mrs.  Jeniffer Comalie, the strategic executive for finance and customer services on the 23rd of August 2021. Subsequently, we have also taken note of the article in the Namibian newspaper, today’s edition titled “Fat Salaries for City bosses” asserting that the city council has increased city tariffs, in particular the electricity by 3,7 % and household refuse by 5%.

“Consequently, it is also reported by the same newspaper that the city Council will pay its councillors a combined N$8m, of which N$2. 8m is for management committee members, while N$5, 3m is allocated to ordinary council members.

“Further, the annual allowance of council stands at N$850 000. Disturbingly, over 58% of the revenue of the city is earned through electricity and water tariffs. This has proven over the years to be an unsustainable state of affairs,” said the AR.

The movement has blasted the budget for dismally failing to outline a diversification in revenue.

The movement said, “As a result; the continuous capitalist city proposes more tariffs on rates and taxes while lacking innovation, with no justification and validation for the ever-increasing tariffs”.

“Therefore, the Affirmative Repositioning, as a radical and leftist movement that seeks to quarantine and liquidate the capitalist and neoliberal order that characterise post-colonial Namibia and responsible for Namibia’s inequality, underdevelopment, suffering and despondency, condemn the proposed tariff increases on electricity and the purported 5% increment for the city council.

“We retaliate, the character of all representatives of the AR movement must be to uphold the principle that the masses come first and always ready to make a personal practical contribution in the lives of the people. An AR Activist must understand that he/she must be first to endure hardships and last to enjoy fruits,” said the movement.

However, both the City of Windhoek acting chief executive officer George Mayumbelo and Amupanda have dismissed this.

Amupanda took to social media Tuesday dismissing the reports that he had been given an increase.

“I can confirm that it is not true that the mayor of Windhoek has increased his salary/allowances higher than previous mayors. This is part of the malicious propaganda machinery. The City Officials will set the record straight. Just know it’s not true! Also know that they won’t stop with lies! The Highest Tree Always catches most wind,” he said.

Mayumbelo said the alleged increase in the allowance of Dr Amupanda is factually incorrect and that council meeting of 7 November 2019, (Resolution 270/11/2019) resolved that there would be no increments to the allowances of the Councillors.

“This position was further re-confirmed recently in a directive received from the Minister of Urban and Rural Development, Honourable Erastus Uutoni which advised of a zero increment on Councillors’ allowances for the financial year as per the approved City of Windhoek 2021-2022 budget,” said Mayumbelo.

Mayumbelo said the same information was shared during the budget presentation to the media on 23 August 2021, which the author of this article attended.

“In the same article, the author incorrectly stated that the approved budget for 2021/22 has recorded a deficit of N$213 408 333.00, however, this amount is clearly indicated in the presentation made to the media that it is a surplus and not a deficit as reported.

“It should further be noted that the City of Windhoek remains committed to prudent financial management and principles of good corporate governance.

“Therefore, journalists are hereby requested to kindly confirm their facts prior to publication and demonstrate ethical and responsible journalism in order to ensure the dissemination of factual information to the public.

“It is against this background that the City of Windhoek expects an apology and re-publication of the said article, with facts or a retraction, with immediate effect.”

Staff Writer

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