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City Councilors Tell Utoni It Can Function Without Complete MC

By:Justicia Shipena
Five councillors of the City of Windhoek council say they will assess the prospects of participating in electoral activities as this is not their priority mandate.
The five councilors are Affirmative Repositioning (AR) councilors Job Amupanda and IIse Keister, Landless Peoples Movement’s (LPM) Sade Gawanas and Ivan Skrywer as well as Popuar Democratic Movement’s (PDM) Clemencia Hanases.
This comes as the city council were summoned to a meeting by urban and rural development minister Erastus Utoni last week Tuesday at 10h00to discuss the state of leadership at the city council.
“Where and when it is possible, we will engage and assess the prospects of participating in electoral activities although this is not our immediate priority given the current configuration that grants absolute power to one political party whereas none has absolute majority in Council,” said the group of councilors who now named themselves “Windhoek G5”.
After a failed election in December last year for office bearers, the City of Windhoek councillors this yearhave on two occasions failed to elect a complete management committee.
The committee comprises of five members and the council only manage to elect three members at the moment.
“We have explained and provided a briefing to the minister on matters of law as provided for in the Local Authority Act and the political developments, such as the lack of quorum created by those that walked out during the election session of 1 December 2022, and the subsequent meetings of the 19 and 26 January 2023,” said the“Windhoek G5” councillors.
In a press statement, the five said they informed the minister about the operation of council and the legal position that council can discharge its powers and duties despite the two vacant positions in the management committee.
“We affirmed our commitment in ensuring that the governing body, Council, remains functional. We further informed the minister that although undesirable; the state of Windhoek is not a new phenomenon remembering local authorities such as of Oranjemund, Ongwediva, Grootfontein and Gobabis were in a similar situation and prevailed. There was no bloating of these situations,” the statementread.
They added that they encouraged the minister to continue curing such anomalies in the proposed amendments to the Local Authority Act that are scheduled for tabling in parliament.
At the same meeting, Utoni expressed hopethe scheduled meeting for 9 February 2023 will resolve the impasse and the remaining two councilors will be elected, a sentiment that was also echoed by IPC councilor Bernadus Araeb.
However, the “Windhoek G5” say they remain firm in our convictions and principles given these developments.
“We have resolved to start our community, communication and developmental programmes addressing the pertinent matters that are frustrated by current shenanigans,” they noted.

Justicia Shipena

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