WINDHOEK – Secretary of the National Assembly (NA) Jakes Jacobs, who last year turned 60, will continue serving in that position until September this year to enable him to finalise issues.
After September, National Assembly Speaker Professor Peter Katjavivi – as per constitutional requirements – will be required to appoint a new NA secretary.
During a press conference on Monday to brief media on the outcomes of the recently concluded induction workshop of the members of the sixth parliament, Katjavivi confirmed that Jacobs would stay on until September.
Katjavivi responded, “I am happy to be working with someone with experience and knowledge instead of a new person coming.” He added that said Jacobs’ extension is not a “big issue” and will be dealt with accordingly at an appropriate time.
He also did not say anything regarding Jacobs’ possible replacement.
New Era last year reported that former Secretary to Cabinet Frans Kapofi, recommended that the National Assembly extend Jacobs’ tenure as secretary to enable him to “finalise some pending parliamentary matters” before he retires.
“It is true that I made the recommendation because there were a few incomplete things. I recommended that he stay on for six months or a year. There is nothing illegitimate about the extension. Although he wanted to retire in September, he could not leave things incomplete,” said Kapofi at the time.
According to the country’s Constitution, subject to the provisions of the laws pertaining to the public service and the directives of the National Assembly, the Speaker shall appoint a person or designate a person in the public service to serve as the Secretary of the National Assembly.
“The Secretary shall perform the functions and duties as assigned by the Constitution or by the Speaker. Subject to the laws governing the control of public monies, the Secretary shall perform his or her functions and duties under the control of the Speaker,” reads a section of the Constitution.
Jacobs is the fifth secretary of the National Assembly.
Andre Kilian was the country’s first secretary of the National Assembly. After serving in that position from 1990-1996 he was succeeded by Stephanie Winson (1997-2000), Moses Ndjarakana (2001-2005) and Simon Goabab (2006-2009).