Ondonga faction wants queen to leave palace

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Staff Reporter

Ondangwa-The faction of Ondonga people who earlier attempted to have the king of Ondonga declared mentally unfit to administer the affairs of his people voted on Saturday for a resolution that asks the Queen of Ondonga to leave the palace.

The resolution demands that Sesilia Ndapandula Elifas, the wife of King Immanuel Kauluma Elifas, leave the Ondonga palace within the next 30 days of Saturday, May 13, when the resolution was adopted.

The resolution was adopted at a packed Oluno Community Hall, where those gathered also collected money to launch an appeal in their Windhoek High Court against the ruling which a fortnight ago dismissed the application for King Kauluma to undergo mental observation.
The Saturday meeting raised N$3,000 in cash, as well as N$13,000 in pledges towards the legal costs.

The court ruling also found that dismissed senior headman John Walenga, “was never mandated to act on behalf of Ondonga Traditional Authority.”

The meeting again resolved that the queen is meddling in the affairs of the Ondonga Traditional Authority, denying the subjects of Ondonga Traditional Authority access to the King and therefore she must leave the palace.

However, the acting secretary of Ondonga Traditional Authority, Nepando Amupanda, meanwhile rubbished the resolution as one without teeth, saying it is neither possible to remove the queen from the palace, nor was it going to happen.

“Are they going to enforce divorce? Will they remove her with a court order or how are they going to do it? It should be understood that this is a wife who is rightfully married by law,” Amupanda retorted.

The speakers at the meeting, which was chaired by suspended headman Vilho Kamanya, also proposed that they march in protest to the palace to air their grievances on the ongoing disputes. However, such the proposal to protest was not received well by some of the suspended traditional leaders in attendance, as well as some senior members of the public.

The meeting also alleged that Ondonga Traditional Authority personnel are on the verge of losing their jobs, because they have been asked to furnish the traditional authorities with copies of their qualifications.

Kamanya alleged that the traditional authority wants to employ competent office personnel. “Will they really afford qualified personnel? The young people in the office are volunteers, who just receive an allowance,” Kamanya said.

Amupanda dismissed allegations that the traditional authority is about to go into recruitment drive, saying he is not aware of any job losses at the OTA office. “We respect the Labour Act and the employees at the [OTA] office are fully aware of their rights, as stipulated in the Labour Act,” he said.

Amupanda nevertheless alleged that there are those who had stopped coming to work of their own accord. “But then they should not accuse the authority of dismissing them,” he said.

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