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NSC staff unhappy with board member interference

2024-02-16  Correspondent

NSC staff unhappy with board member interference

Maqonda Ndlovu


Disgruntled employees of the Namibia Sports Commission (NSC) are questioning the legality of Turky Tiisa Shifotoka-Ndashiiva’s appointment to the NSC board, whom they are also accusing of meddling in the daily operations of the commission. 

Speaking to this publication on condition of anonymity, dismayed NSC staff members said Shifotoka-Ndashiiva has lost grip of her role and mandate as a commission board member, which should be to contribute and improve the NSC’s policy and strategic outlook. 

On the contrary, Shifotoka-Ndashiiva is being accused of throwing her weight around and unlawfully expanding her functions beyond her prescribed job scope by interfering in operational matters, which fall under the office of the chief administrator and his line managers, and not the board.

They further accuse her of abandoning her duties at Liberty Insurance where she is a full-time employee.

The biggest bone of contention, however, is Shifotoka-Ndashiiva’s alleged illegal appointment to the NSC board, which the staff members contest was illegal and undermines the provisions of the Namibia Sports Act of 2003, which governs all functions of the NSC.

As per the Sports Act and through recommendations from the various sports federations, the minister is empowered by law to choose and appoint nine members to the NSC board. 

Of the nine, one person is nominated by the national umbrella sports body for schools; one by the national umbrella sports body for tertiary institutions; another is nominated by national sports bodies; one by the national umbrella sports body for people with disabilities. 

One more is recommended by the national umbrella sports body for women in sport, and the remaining four persons are nominated by the minister herself.

When making her appointments, the minister is obliged to appoint the said nine persons based on their abilities and experience in sports or sports administration or any other related field.

“We have a new boss here. We have received many complaints from community sports members (federations) who say they did not nominate her to represent their interests on the board. Whose interest is she representing? How was she appointed?” the staff members questioned.

The members who are said to have held a meeting on 25 January in the absence of the chief administrator (CA) to discuss Ndashiiva’s ‘interference’ said she has rendered management ineffective.

“Shifotoka-Ndashiiva’s has taken over the duties of the CA and finance manager. She decided what gets paid and when it gets paid. She also decided who goes where and when for official duties,” the irate staff members said.

Other accusations from the staff members at NSC include Shifotoka-Ndashiiva accompanying the Brave Warriors to the recently concluded 2023 Africa Cup of Nations tournament where she was authorising her expenses in Cote d’Ivoire. 

Upon return from Afcon, she did not write any report to add value to the institution, meaning she was just on holiday, the staff said.

The staff members are said to have almost downed tools a day before the 2023 Namibia Sports Awards in Swakopmund because their travel and sustenance funds were not approved.

“We wrote a letter with complaints to the board through CA Freddy Mwiya. He submitted our complaints to the board, and up to now we have not received any response,” the staff member said.

Information reaching New Era Sport also suggests that some board members privately raised concerns about the actions of Shifotoka-Ndashiiva’s. 

Meanwhile, Mwiya said he could not comment on the issue.

“I did receive a letter from the staff members, and I submitted it to the board. I am still waiting for the response. I am also yet to receive the minutes of the meeting that was held in January,” Mwiya said.

When contacted for a comment, Shifotoka-Ndashiiva refused to comment referring this reporter to the chairperson of the board.

The board chairperson, Professor Cilas Wilders, said the information or complaints from some workers of the commission are just allegations.

“There are structures within the NSC that should be used for this. The people who complain must use these structures to find a solution to their challenges. Their allegations are not true and should first be clarified with the CA and board,” he said in a brief response to this publication via email.

This publication has been told that a meeting is scheduled for early next week.

The Minister of Sport, Youth and National Service, Agnes Tjongarero, said she was on national duty outside the country and could only comment next week when she is back in Namibia.

2024-02-16  Correspondent

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