Swapo councillors at Khorixas do not want the five-year contract of Nicodemus #Gaeseb to be renewed when it expires in April though UDF councillors want the contract to be extended.
It has come to light that Swapo councillors who are now in the majority at the previously UDF-controlled council held a meeting at Khorixas on January 28 to agree not to renew #Gaeseb’s contract when it expires in April.
In the special meeting held at the town council chamber Elizabeth Geises, who is the deputy chairperson of the management committee, handed in a written motion that #Geiseb’s contract not be renewed after April 31 and that UDF councillors were not mandated by Swapo to extend the contract.
Geises stated in her motion that #Geiseb’s mandate will lapse on April 31 and that a new CEO should be appointed though #Gaeseb was advised to apply for the position that will be advertised in local newspapers.
#Gaeseb became the CEO of Khorixas in 2006 and his contract has been renewed twice – once in 2011 and again last October – by the then UDF-led council though Swapo says it did not mandate the UDF to renew his contract on its behalf.
The motion further says the issue of the CEO’s appointment has been a sensitive matter and therefore it has been given the necessary attention. Also that there is a need to table and debate it at the ordinary council meeting and that the Swapo Party, as mandated by the electorate wants change.
Swapo councillors want a CEO who can implement its party manifesto as well as fast-track development and be in sync with their mandate.
On last year’s victory in the local and regional elections, Swapo’s Geises says: “It took us 25 years to get there through a hard political battle and since achieving this through hard work the electorate look upon us with high hopes.”
Eddy /Narib, one of the three UDF councillors who objected to the motion, refused to talk to this reporter before he switched off his phone.
After an objection by UDF councillors Swapo councillors voted in favour of advertising the position of CEO, while UDF members refused to take part in the deliberations.
Geises told New Era that her motion was not about hurting anyone and that her party was simply following the electorate’s wishes.
“We want a person in the same line with us. UDF had a CEO who hailed from their party and Swapo also wants someone from Swapo. We (Swapo) want a person who will work with us for the next five or ten years and that person must be a Swapo member,” Geises explained.
Erwin /Howoseb who was the then chairperson of the management committee when #Gaeseb’s contract was seemingly controversially renewed insists the contentious appointment was done “legally”.
/Howoseb who represents the UDF said that the contract was renewed until 2021 since #Gaeseb brought development at Khorixas.
Swapo district coordinator Ou-Rice Haraeb yesterday said his party will not tolerate a different political party member to lead the town council while the majority is held by Swapo.
“As a political leader I will not allow it (the controversial appointment). Besides, we don’t know that his contract was extended as there is no evidence as some of our party councillors say they did not approve it,” Haraeb further stated.
Haraeb advised #Gaeseb to reapply for the position once it is advertised and that he is also at liberty to approach the courts if he so wishes.
“He can approach the courts if he is unhappy,” said Haraeb who also feels #Gaeseb did not bring development to Khorixas.
An acting CEO will be appointed from the beginning of May from a staff member of the town council who has a qualification in commerce, economics, business or public management. #Gaeseb was unavailable for comment.
Since last year’s election Swapo currently has four seats, while UDF has three seats. Since independence Khorixas had been a UDF stronghold.