By: Kelvin Chiringa
Three former councillors of the Okahandja municipality management committee are now set to appear in court after being arrested and charged for corruption by the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) this Thursday.
The three have been identified by the Prosecutor General as Gideon Uwu-Khaeb, Helmi Maruru and Hileni Iita and have been charged under the Anti-Corruption Act for contravening section 43 (1) read with sections 32, 43 (2), 43 (3), 46, 49 and 51 of the ACC act 2003 (act number 8).
According to their charges, the three had appointed Pellesa Nundo for the strategic executive position: finance and asset management, when he had performed poorly during the interview process.
Nunda is said to have been outperformed by Elifas Amunyela, who ended up not getting the job, against the recommendation of the interview panel.
The trio has thus been accused of directly and corruptly using their office or positions for the gratification of Nunda in the appointment for the position.
The penalty is either a fine not exceeding N$500 000 or imprisonment to a period not exceeding 25 years or both such fine and a jail term.
“I Thought the Case had Gone Cold”
A high placed source has also told The Villager that in July 2021, the ACC approached the Okahandja Municipality requesting the minutes and all the supporting documents for that position.
“The ACC also called all former Councillors and the CEO, Madam Mutilifa, for questionnaires/ Summons, which all they did. Mr Elifas was tipped off about what happened; therefore, he informed the ACC through his lawyer.
In the meantime, Elifas had expressed delight at the arrests when The Villager spoke to him over the phone.
“This is ideal because you see, there has been an ongoing case, and at some point, I felt that I was victimized. I almost gave up even. I thought everything went cold. If this is the latest direction, to be honest, I am now looking forward to what the council is going to do in that regard,” he said.
Amunyela said he would consult his lawyer on the way forward on whether he will sue the municipality.
The source has also said that the arrested trio “jumped all the panellist recommendations and appointed the third candidate, Mr Pessella Nunda, who was a finance manager of Otavi town council.”
“Mr Nunda’s father is well known as big a supporter of Swapo, and it’s alleged that it might influence the management committee to take his son. As far as we understand, Mr Elifas, with his lawyer, is suing the Okahandja Municipality for the unfairness, corruption, favouritism and traumatizing he went through to the tune of N$5million N$10 million. Mr Elifas is a resident of Okahandja, and he owns a house in Okahandja where the wife and kids stay”.