OMUTHIYA – Popular Democratic Movement town councillor at Tsumeb Daniel Venaani claims the party’s advice and input towards the smooth and timely recruitment of a substantive CEO for the local municipality is being ignored by the majority members of the council who are from the ruling party.
He said politics has taken centre stage in the recruitment, which has further delayed the process. Tsumeb has been without a substantive CEO since January 2019 following the resignation of Archie Benjamin, who then joined the Swakopmund municipality.
“We as a minority with less powers are not considered in making the final decision on such matters – you give input and suggestions but are often ignored. This always has little effect in changing how things are run,” he stressed.
Venaani further said the delay in finalising the recruitment of a new CEO has been negatively affecting the efficiency and effectiveness of the municipality.
“When you have a CEO, you have an executive person who will be able to bring to the present ideas, plans, and execute such to the council who would then advise. But in the absence of such a technocrat, things do not move smoothly and yield greater results,” he said.
“Now we are tiptoeing to the tune of those in power.”
Tsumeb mayor Mathew Hangula said that process is nearing fruition as five candidates have already been shortlisted as of last week, while interviews would be held on 27 August.
“We do not sideline any party or individuals as all decisions are made by a full bench of councillors of which I know there is no single meeting that an opposition missed. They should also understand that appointing a CEO is not an easy task as there are procedures and processes done in line with the ministry also,” said Hangula.
“The councillors know that in the last case of the interview we had there were a couple of issues we needed to iron out. As a local authority, we did out part, but the ministry failed to exhaust those issues fast. So, there is no truth in the other claims, but some people want to shy away from the truth.”
The position had to be re-advertised after the best candidate, who is reportedly employed at the Oshikoto Regional Council, turned down the offer. About 50 candidates had applied to be considered for the chief executive position following the initial advertisement.