Kooper to be sworn in when parliament resumes today

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Staff Reporter

Windhoek-The sixth session of the current parliament kicks off today and the first piece of business will be the swearing-in of the youthful Paula Kooper as an MP, New Era has confirmed.

Also urgent during this session will be the issue of the Roads Contractor Company (RCC), with an urgent motion for a rescue plan to be brought to parliament for approval.

Kooper, a senior private secretary to Swapo’s chief whip in the party’s parliamentary caucus, replaces Bernadus Swartbooi who was recalled from the National Assembly recently, following a fallout with the leadership of the ruling party. He has since terminated his Swapo membership altogether.

Regarding the RCC, it was announced last week that a plan has been set in motion to place the loss-making entity under a court-supervised rescue arrangement. A Cabinet resolution is now set for urgent tabling as a motion before parliament.

If parliament endorses the decision, Public Enterprises Minister Leon Jooste would have to approach the High Court for an application to have the RCC placed under judicial management.

The sixth session – stretching from today to November 23 – will also scrutinise the long-awaited Gaming and Entertainment Control Bill, which will be tabled before parliament.

The Bill intends on making provisions for, amongst others, licences in the gambling industry and to improve control and regulatory measures through a central monitoring system, while providing for the establishment of a lotteries’ board. It also spells out the required conduct of a national lottery.

David Nahogandja, spokesperson of the National Assembly, said in a statement yesterday that during the August recess some standing committees undertook visits to regions to investigate progress on government projects and conduct public hearings on items referred to them by parliament.

“It is expected that reports on the activities undertaken during the recess will be tabled in the House for consideration,” Nahogandja said.

Several Bills were received from the National Council without amendments, namely the Whistle-blower Protection Bill 2017, Controlled Wildlife Products and Trade Amendment Bill 2017, One-Stop Border Posts Control Bill 2017, Usury Amendment Bill 2017, Regional Council Amendment Bill 2016 and the Namibia Time Bill 2017.

Bills received with amendments were the Lotteries Bill 2017, Namibia Revenue Agency Bill 2017 and Local Authorities Amendment Bill 2016, Nahogandja noted.

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