RedForce owners allegedly default on municipal bills

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RedForce owners allegedly default on municipal bills

WALVIS BAY – Debt-collection agency RedForce is being called out for double standards after details emerged that its owners defaulted on their municipal bills.

The leaked documents reveal that properties owned by RedForce’s owners were in arrears for at least 60 days before being settled.

Statements seen by New Era show that one of the accounts was in arrears with N$4 200, while the second account was in arrears with N$5 220 by February this year, before they were both settled on 2 April. Council employees confirmed that both accounts had fallen behind for over 60 days.

“The accounts were only paid on 2 April. Those accounts were worth handing over. In fact, they were among the age groups given to RedForce, but were never charged a commission fee up to 31 May,” a municipal employee stated.

It is not clear whether the properties are being rented out, or occupied by the owners at this stage.

RedForce, co-owned by Julius Nyamazana and Selma Nangombe, was awarded a contract to collect over N$300 million owed by residents to the Walvis Bay municipality. The two accounts in question are for a property situated in the luxury beachfront residential area Dolphin Beach, co-owned by Nangombe and Nyamazana.

Nyamazana did not respond to questions sent to him.

However, RedForce lawyer Margaret Malambo indicated that the accounts are currently up-to-date, and any publication of the said arrears shall warrant a defamation suit against this journalist and New Era.

“Kindly be advised that as of this date, our shareholders’ accounts with the municipality are up to date and/or fully paid up. Any allegations of arrears are vehemently denied, and you and/or your source are put to strict proof thereof,” she stated.

“You are accordingly cautioned to verify your facts and obtain conclusive evidence prior to your intended publication,” Malambo continued.

The municipal employees were adamant the latest invoice for the period of 16 April to 15 May received from RedForce includes the payment made or received for the period between 25 and 29 April 2024.

The bills were allegedly settled on the same day that RedForce launched an urgent application in the High Court, just days after the council passed a motion to terminate their services.

People with direct knowledge underlined that these accounts should have been handed over for collection, with an additional 12% collection fee applied, as with other accounts handed over for collection to RedForce.

The company has now been accused of double standards and unethical behaviour for allegedly bending the rules for Nyamazana and Nangombe.

The council’s legal representative, Richard Metcalfe, told New Era when contacted this week that there is an ongoing investigation.

In an update on the ongoing issue, Metcalfe indicated that Nyamazana and Nangombe are the joint owners of the two properties at Dolphin Beach, Walvis Bay.

“Copies of their accounts showing monies that were owed to the municipality were provided on 7 June 2024 for investigation. Despite such accounts having been in arrears for a period of 60 days, there was no 12% collection commission levied on such accounts. The accounts were subsequently brought up to date on 24 April 2024. This creates a distinct impression of nepotism, and has been vehemently queried by municipal employees on the basis of why the owners of RedForce are indemnified from the 12% collection commission imposed on other account holders’ arrears,” Metcalfe said.

He added that any trace of criminal conduct will be handed over to the Namibian Police’s commercial crime unit for further investigation.