To the surprise of many the outgoing president of the Namibia Amateur Boxing and Wrestling Control Board (NABWCB), Kelly Nghixulifwa, who voluntarily relinquished power over the weekend, insists he has no hard feelings after parting ways with the board.
Nghixulifwa, who had been at the helm of NABWCB for more than two decades – 22 years to be precise – this past weekend surprised friend and foe when he called for an emergency meeting in the capital to announce his immediate resignation as president.
In recent years, Nghixulifwa has been a target of wild allegations and widespread criticism, with some influential people within the local boxing fraternity accusing him and his henchmen of having developed an unquenchable desire to remain in power.
Besides accusations of him forcefully clinging on to power, his critics have also fingered the veteran boxing supremo of having on numerous occasions deceptively postponed elective congresses, which are supposed to be held quadrennially, a practice many felt boiled down to pure ‘corruption’.
But despite the wild allegations levelled against him, Nghixulifwa remains unfazed and insists that voluntarily stepping down was the right thing to do for the future of boxing and was not at all influenced by his naysayers.
“I just felt now is the right time to step down and make way for someone new with fresh ideas. I was not forced into quitting, in fact I was the one who called the meeting so that I could meet up with all our regional members and let them know I’m voluntarily stepping down as president,” maintains Nghixulifwa.
Nghixulifwa, who until last weekend doubled up as NABWCB president and chairman of the Namibia Boxing Federation (NBF), will however remain as NBF chairman. NBF is the presiding authority of professional boxing in Namibia, while the NABWCB presides over amateur boxing.
Meanwhile, NABWCB’s vice-president Herman Garus-Oab, long-serving secretary general Joe Kaperu and development officer Ambrosius Kandjii all jumped ship along with Nghixulifwa at the weekend’s meeting.
Kaperu’s overall style of administration was harshly questioned by various critics in the past, while Kandjii was also equally blasted and questioned for his continuous involvement in the internal affairs of local boxing.
With Kandjii being councillor of Katutura Central Constituency the law clearly prohibits him from being part of any sports body. The Namibian Sports Act of 2003, (2) (c) reads verbatim that a person does not qualify to hold office as a member of a sports umbrella body or association if he is a member of the National Assembly or of a regional council or local authority.
The newly elected interim committee members are: Benjamin Rabang (president), Jeremia Njembo (vice-president), Memory Mannase (secretary general), Kenneth Mwatara (treasurer), Vilho Shikeva (vice-treasurer) and Joshua Toivo (PRO). The committee will serve until November 2016.