Minister of Education, Arts and Culture Katrina Hanse-Himarwa must still provide an explanation for the corruption
claims levelled against her in that she influenced the allocation of a resettlement farm to her son, the Anti-corruption Commission said yesterday.
She must also clarify allegations that she misused her public office by ordering the removal of the names of two residents from the list of beneficiaries of the mass housing project in Hardap Region, and replaced them with
other residents who are allegedly related to her, the ACC said further.
Responding to a wide-ranging set of questions from New Era yesterday, the ACC’s director general Paulus Noa revealed that the minister was summoned to give her explanation over allegations that she influenced
the allocation of a resettlement farm to her son. “She has requested to be given time to consult with her lawyer
before she decides whether she will give an explanation in respect of both matters or not. ACC respects her request, because it is her right to consult her lawyer.
“ACC is still waiting for her to give her explanation before a decision is made whether to submit the dockets to
the prosecutor general or not,” he said. Contacted for comment yesterday, Hanse-Himarwa said: “Ok… I do not
know anything about that.” Noa did not say how much time Hanse-Himarwa has to answer to the allegations.
“It is further alleged that one of the two relatives of Honourable Hanse- Himarwa is instead renting out the house
rather than living in the same house.
These are allegations which must be investigated to either confirm or refute the claims,” he said. “It is not the policy of ACC to discuss the facts of matters under investigation in the public domain, but because these matters were publicly discussed in parliament I am compelled to put certain information reported in the media in the
correct perspective,” said Noa. Noa said by virtue of her being summoned, it is a way of giving Hanse- Himarwa a fair chance to give her side of the story. Noa made it clear that no person is above the law.
“I need also to state clearly that the ACC is not investigating the son of Honourable Hanse-Himarwa, because
no case of alleged corruption was reported to the ACC against him. Allegations are against Honourable
Katrina Hanse-Himarwa. ACC still awaits her explanation,” he said.
Hanse-Himarwa is one of the lawmakers that last week in the National Assembly expressed displeasure
about the manner in which the ACC conducts its affairs. They aired their frustrations when lawmakers discussed
the reappointment of Noa and his deputy Erna van der Merwe. Hanse-Himarwa claimed that the ACC is being used as a “tool to witchhunt some of us”. “I was perhaps one of the first senior government officials to be embarrassingly arrested. The bad part is that you are charged and prosecuted in the newspapers even before you reach the court by being labelled as a corrupt person,” said a visibly infuriated Hanse- Himarwa.
Although she said she does not have a problem being probed, she added: “But when your children, husband or relatives become victims, it is not good.”