WINDHOEK – Minister of Urban and Rural Development Peya Mushelenga has hit back at Ondonga chieftainship throne claimant Fillemon Shuumbwa Nangolo, saying he is not above the law and can only act within the parameters of law, as he has taken an oath to uphold, protect and defend the constitution and laws of the country.
Mushelenga’s response follows an ultimatum by lawyer Elize Angula, one of the firm supporters of Shuumbwa and who gave Mushelenga until Monday this week to officially recognise Shuumbwa as the legitimate Ondonga Taditional Authority leader.
Angula, narrating the way forward at a mass meeting held at Ondangwa Trade Fair Centre this past Saturday, according to New Era reporter Nuusita Ashipala, said failure by Mushelenga to recognise Shuumbwa as Omukwaniilwa of Ondonga means the fight for the throne will now be between Shuumbwa’s group and Mushelenga – and not between the two factions as is the status quo. But Mushelenga, speaking to New Era yesterday, said he communicated to them on Monday and informed them the process of designation is regulated by both customary and statutory laws. “Both laws are to be applied. Section 5 (1) of the Traditional Authority Act, No 25 of 2000 provides for the Minister to approve the application for the designation of a head of a Traditional Authority, which complied with Subsection 5 (1). Subsection 5 (1) provides for the application to be made by the Traditional Authority Act,” he explained.
He said the matter of the Ondonga Traditional Authority Council is sub judice before the court.
“The Minister is cited as a respondent in the case and can, therefore, not proceed to act as if he doesn’t know that there is a case pending before the High Court,” he said.
“I have informed the Ondonga community in my communication yesterday that accordingly, given the aforesaid legal intricacies of the matter, I have written to the legal advisor of the Government, the Attorney-General on 23 April 2019, seeking a legal opinion on the designation, and am now awaiting the legal opinion from the Attorney-General,” he added.
Mushelenga who is Ndonga himself says he also informed them that he communicated this information in writing on 7 May to Ondonga Traditional Authority (OTA) secretary Joseph Asino when he enquired from his office about the status of the application.
“I have further informed the Ondonga community in my reply that as a Minister I can only act within the parameters of law, as I have taken an oath to uphold, protect and defend the Constitution and laws of the Republic of Namibia. I am not above the law and cannot act as such,” he said. Following the passing of Omukwaniilwa Immanuel Kauluma in March this year the Aandonga community currently have two omukwaniilwa, as two factions each crowned their own leader as the omukwaniilwa.
Shuumbwa Nangolo was crowned at his homestead of Onambango village, while Konis Eino Kalenga was chosen by another faction of the royal family as Elifas’ successor on the same day.
Kalenga is the nephew of Kauluma, seen as the next Omukwaniilwa of Ondonga, while Nangolo is the nephew of Kalenga and his supporters claim that Elifas appointed him in 2012 as his deputy and successor.
2019-05-22 08:49:47 3 months ago