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Home / City gives Lutombi ultimatum cold shoulder 

City gives Lutombi ultimatum cold shoulder 

2022-08-04  Loide Jason

City gives Lutombi ultimatum cold shoulder 

Loide Jason 

A war of words has erupted between Roads Authority chief executive Conrad Lutombi and the City of Windhoek over the failed CEO recruitment process. 

Lutombi, who was reported to be the frontrunner, last month served the city’s acting CEO O’Brien Hekandjo with an ultimatum, demanding interview scorecards and an explanation as to why they failed to inform the unsuccessful candidates about the interview outcome.

Hekandjo has since responded to an urgent correspondence, filed by Lutombi’s lawyer Jermaine Muchali on 25 July, saying the interview outcomes are confidential.

“The interview process and all information remain confidential, and the council is at this stage under no legal obligation to disclose such information to your client,” said Hekandjo.

However, he agreed with Muchali that the city failed to comply with their regulations. “We concur with you that your client, including all applicants, has not received any official correspondence from the council on the recruitment, as there are no unsuccessful applicants as contemplated by Regulation 30 (3) of the selection and Recruitment Regulation for Local Authorities,” read the letter to Muchali.

However, Muchali wrote another urgent letter yesterday (Wednesday) to Hekandjo, demanding that interview results be shared with his client, as the city relinquished the privilege to invoke confidentiality by live-streaming the interview. “Kindly be advised that your council waived off the privilege to invoke confidentiality when your institution and staff members breached Regulation 5 (1) (a) & (b) by exposing our client’s identity through the live-streaming of the public presentations on 6 October 2021 on your City of Windhoek Facebook page, the issuance of the media release dated 15 September 2021 and the disclosure of the interview outcomes,” cited Muchali.

Regulation 5 (1) (a) and (b) provide that confidentiality is an important part of the recruitment and selection process.

 To maintain confidentiality during the recruitment and selection process, all staff members and panellists must ensure the identity of candidates and all information about candidates is treated as strictly confidential, and no information about the performance of candidates at an interview, or reason for the selection or non-selection of candidates is discussed outside the interview.

“In regard to the regulation, take note that they are embodied with contradiction and anomalies with each other. Your missive states that there are no unsuccessful applicants as contemplated by regulation 30(3). Councillor Ndeshihafela Larandja’s media briefing on 25 July states that instead the management committee relying on recruitment and selection requested the relevant department to restart the recruitment process,” maintained Lutombi’s lawyer.

At a press conference on 25 July, management council chairperson Larandja said the process was tampered with and cannot achieve an outcome that is beyond reproach. 

It should, therefore, restart.

“Kindly be advised that our client is fully entitled to the disclosure of requested information. And this further entitled to the correct position or decision regarding the recruitment and selection of the CEO for the City of Windhoek,” the second urgent letter from Muchali reads.

The city is again given until Friday to respond to the ultimatum. 

The letter has since been copied to the mayor, Sade Gawanas, and Larandja.

The city has been without a substantive CEO since November 2020 after Robert Kahimise resigned to join the Central North Regional Electricity Distributor (Cenored).

The position was advertised, and five candidates were shortlisted for interviews to present their short- and long-term strategic plans publicly, the first time that City executive candidates were interviewed on a public platform.

The public interviews were followed by a psychometric test. The five shortlisted candidates included NamWater executive Eino Mvula, deputy executive director for administration in the ministry of works Joyce Mukubi, researcher and entrepreneur Charmill Zamuee, Roads Authority CEO Lutombi and Moses Matyayi, who is the CEO of the Otjiwarongo municipality.

Lutombi, who scored the highest during the interviews, is allegedly not favoured by the management committee.

According to the minutes of the interviews conducted by the City of Windhoek, Lutombi scored 80%, followed by Matyayi with 74% and Mvula with 71% in the interviews and psychometric tests.


2022-08-04  Loide Jason

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