Obrein Simasiku Omuthiya-Anti-Corruption Commission director-general Paulus Noa says certain laws in Namibia – such as the one government used to award the multi-million dollar Namdia contract without putting it out on tender – create avenues for abuse, as they give autonomy to one person. The contract to evaluate diamonds from Namdia was awarded to C-Sixty Investment, which according to media reports, stands to make between N$600 million and N$1,5 billion in revenue over the next five years. Namdia is mandated to distribute up to 15 percent of Namdeb Holdings’ total diamond production. Noa, responding to questions from New Era at Omuthiya this week, said the ACC has made recommendations for review of some laws that give absolute powers to individuals or leaders, as this creates room for the abuse of such powers. Noa, often criticised for supposedly being too afraid to investigate major cases of suspected corruption, said due to the way certain laws are structured, the ACC was unable to proceed with certain investigations. He made specific reference to the Namdia deal, and said he could not investigate certain allegations made when Minister of Mines and Energy Obeth Kandjoze hand-picked C-Sixty for the diamond evaluation contract. He said the awarding of the contract was not preceded by any requests for expressions of interest or any standard tender procedures. Kandjoze last year appointed C-Sixty Investments through powers vested in him under Sections 44 and 45 of the Diamond Act of 1999. “We want those laws giving one man power to be reviewed. You know how people are these days, they use this discretion to make certain decisions,” Noa said. “I remember when I was looking into the issues of Namdia when I approached the minister of mines to give me an explanation, he did not hesitate to give me an explanation on all the questions I had asked. “And one thing he underlined was that he did it under a specific Act, which gives him power to appoint a company to market the country. Now I was left with no power, because a person did something in terms of the law, but in the end the nation was looking at me. Yet, the minister did it within the scope of the law,” he explained. Noa was speaking at a meeting here to sensitise the governor, councillors and various stakeholders to the National Anti-Corruption Strategy and Action Plan (NACS), what it entails and its implementation plan. The ACC director general explained that the purpose of the meeting was to inform the stakeholders that the NACS has been approved by Cabinet for implementation. “It is so critical that the NACS must be implanted from local and regional level in order to see its successful implementation,” he added.
New Era Reporter
2017-08-17 10:11:03 1 years ago