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By: Justicia Shipena

Professor Mutjinde Katjiua says the Ovaherero Traditional Authority (OTA) will not hand over the vehicle allocated to the authority until the court of law finalises the matter.

A faction of the Ovaherero community elected Katjiua as the paramount chief, succeeding the late Vekuii Rikoro.

Another faction led by the OTA secretary Chief Vipuira Kapuoo has argued that Katjiua’s election was unprocedural and requested the urban development ministry to ask for the return of the vehicle.

The urban development ministry requested the OTA hand over the vehicle assigned to the authority.

“I have agreed to bring the vehicle after the court cases are resolved and that after that, your ministry shall do the necessary repair and replacement of dilapidated parts,” said Katjiua in a letter to the executive director of the urban and rural development ministry, Nghidinua Daniel.

According to Daniel, there has been information circulating on social media that the GRN 80742 vehicle of OTA was impounded.

“You confirmed that your division needed the vehicle for repair

after you had inspected the vehicle during the same week. You have also indicated that you received calls from sources that you refuse to disclose that have requested the ministry to impound the vehicle,” he said.

Katjiua said he asked if it would play a role in impounding the vehicle to be raised in the court papers in the ongoing case in the Windhoek High Court.

“Your response was a no,” he said.

He indicated that he and the ministry agreed that he would bring the vehicle for repair after the court judgement.

He added that this court judgement would clarify the roles and responsibilities of either Chief Kapuuo or him in the affairs of OTA.

Katjiua stressed that the vehicle would be under his care as the Paramount Chief of the Ovaherero people while the matter is sub judice.

“After that, you shall commit your division to replace bumper, tyres, all seats, fog lights, carry out minor panel beatings on the car and service the vehicle,” he added.

He thus raised his suspicion that the ministry seems to have ulterior motives to bolster Chief Kapuuo’s agenda to impose himself on the Ovaherero community.

“This is through his newly found “Ovaherero Traditional Authority Office of the Chairman” to which the ministry has taken side by participating in diverting OTA funds to a fraudulent account,” he said.

Speaking to The Villager on Monday, Katjiua said the process that installed him is the same one that has always been there.

“The traditional authority has a normal process in appointing and electing a paramount chief. That process is within the ministry to sort that out. It is not new, and it has been like that,” he said.

He added that they had informed the ministry in writing of the process of designating him.

The OTA has an account with Standard Bank in which government deposits N$1 000 for the fuelling of the vehicle.

“One of our chiefs went to the ministry and instructed them to reallocate the funds to a new account. The question now is, who gave Kapuuo the authority to create a new account? Is it correct for the ministry to take that instruction from chief Kapuuo to change the old account to a new account,” he said.

In a letter dated 28 March 2022, the MURD ED agreed to a request by Kapuuo to impound and park the vehicle.

In another letter on Thursday, the ministry had also said that it does not recognise Katijua.

“Kindly be informed that according to the ministry’s records, the Ombara Otjitambi of the Ovaherero Traditional Authority passed on, and no official designation to replace him was done,” it read.


In his answering affidavit in Katjiua’s case against MURD, Kapuuo said that in 2021 the first payment of proceeds from fishing quotas to various traditional authorities was made by the government.

“That payment was not paid into the Community Trust Fund. Instead, it was diverted to a company in which all the shares are owned by the Ovaherero Traditional Community headed by Katjiua,” he said.

Kapuuo said the opening of the account in the name of “Ovaherero Traditional Authority Office of the Chairperson was to, as an interim arrangement, safely house the funds of the Ovaherero Traditional Authority.

“I did this upon the request of the government, who were aware of the dispute and had taken the stance of working with the chairman of the chief’s council meeting, which is me. That is the government’s decision, and no relief is sought against the government.”

He added that government controls the money, and there is no money in the account he opened.

“The funds were paid into the bank account effectively controlled by Mutjinde Katjiua. Those funds have since been recalled by the government. That is not my doing. It is, therefore, a non-issue and certainly one which on the admissible facts provides no basis whatsoever for a final interdict,” he expressed.

He also denied that the Senate meeting was correctly or adequately constituted.

“The purported attendance list poses more questions than it does answers and compared to the attendance list to the government gazette, found that 214 of the 354 attendees are not gazetted.”

He also denied the allegations that Katjiua was lawfully elected as the Paramount Chief.

“Apart from the fact that the meeting was not constituted in terms of Ovaherero customary law, traditions and protocols, no evidence whatsoever is furnished as to the manner in which the meeting was conducted. The applicants speak of an election contradicted by the purported resolution, which refers to the appointment.”

Justicia Shipena

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