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Lutombi fate in Uutoni’s hands

2022-10-27  Edward Mumbuu

Lutombi fate in Uutoni’s hands

The appointment letter of Conrad Lutombi as Windhoek CEO is currently on urban and rural development minister Erastus Uutoni’s desk, awaiting his rubberstamp. 

If Uutoni gives the appointment the greenlight, the City of Windhoek will make a formal offer to the Roads Authority supremo in the coming days, mayor Sade Gawanas announced yesterday at a press briefing. 

Uutoni’s involvement in the recruitment process is in line with Section 27 of the Local Authorities Act.  

“We are waiting for the minister, to then move forward with the organisation’s policies in terms of appointing the successful candidate,” Gawanas said.  

The press conference was aimed at updating the public on how far the municipality is regarding the recruitment of a substantive CEO. 

“Should the recommended candidate not accept the offer made to him for whatsoever reason, that the position of CEO be offered to Mr Moses Matyayi, who achieved the second highest score during the recruitment and selection process,” a council resolution of 12 October 2022, seen by New Era reads. 

Should Matyayi, who is currently the CEO of Otjiwarongo municipality, reject the offer, it will be offered to Eino Mvula, who came third in the race. 

If none of the three accept it, the position will be readvertised, as none of the 13 other shortlisted candidates met the 60% mark.

What is more is, the entire recruitment process was marred by controversies, ranging from allegations of corruption, nepotism and favouritism to a management committee (MC) decision to nullify the process in order to start afresh. 

Peculiar among the ambiguities was the absence of former Windhoek CEO Robert Kahimise among the shortlisted candidates. 

About 61 people applied for the position, including two audacious grade 12 holders. 

Kahimise, who vacated the position in 2020 under a heavy political cloud, was not among the 16 shortlisted candidates. 

Both Gawanas and acting CEO O’Brien Hekandjo could not explain why the Cenored boss failed to make the cut, despite his vast experience and having occupied the same position not so long ago. 

“We will not indulge in your first question on Mr Kahimise and Mr [Boniface Mutumba],” Gawanas said before pointing to Hekandjo who washed his hands off the process.

“Obviously, this thing started last year. I only came in this year [as acting CEO]. So I wouldn’t know,” Hekandjo said. 

However, Gawanas was pressed further to shed light on Kahimise’s omission.

“Do not put me in a position to identify one candidate [Kahimise] and want to say, as the chairperson of not wanting to interfere with the processes, you want me to say, why not Kahimise? 

“Why not the 15 others? Regardless of the fact that he had experience, applied and is a former CEO, should I now engage in that conversation? I will not,” Gawanas said, adding that all doubts surrounding the process were cleared, making it beyond reproach. 

Meanwhile, Uutoni who is on regional visits with his ministerial work, has not yet seen Gawanas’ submission. 

This paper also understands that a group of employees have petitioned Uutoni not to endorse Lutombi’s appointment. 

“I am not in office. When I am back, I will look at it,” the minister said. 


2022-10-27  Edward Mumbuu

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