Windhoek-Cabinet has approved the proposed amendments to provide for the protection of estate monies and assets as well as administrative and financial matters of the Guardian’s Fund. The amendments will, among other things, look into how government can close loopholes, which have resulted in the Guardian Fund, under the Ministry of Justice, being overshadowed by reports of fraudulent activities.
The fund is currently valued at some N$1.4 billion, Deputy Minister of Information and Communication Technology, Engelbrecht Nawatiseb, announced on Friday.
He said Cabinet has referred the Bill to the Cabinet Committee on Legislation for scrutiny before it is tabled in the National Assembly.
The Guardian Fund, which falls under the Administration of Estates Act (Act 66 of 1965), is administered by the Master of the High Court with the aim of managing the estates of children, who inherited money from their deceased parents, as well as absent heirs and untraceable persons.
The money is kept under the auspices of the fund until the minor child reaches the age of 21 years, but quarterly allowances are paid out by the Guardian’s Fund to the person whose cares for the child.
The quarterly allowance includes all expenses for the maintenance of the child such as food, clothing, transport and accommodation.
The fund informs the guardian of the beneficiary that the money has been paid over to the Guardian’s Fund. Beneficiaries usually claim their monies when they reach the age of majority.
The Master of the High Court, who administers the Guardian’s Fund, currently has some N$1.3 billion on the fund’s books, which consists of N$1.2 billion for minors and N$65 million as unclaimed monies. The fund currently lists 24,784 minors as beneficiaries of the N$883 million received by the fund as capital. The accumulated interest on that capital is in the amount of N$417 million.
Meanwhile, Nawatiseb has also announced that Cabinet has extended the term of office for the Namibia Post and Telecom Holding (NPTH) board of directors. The changes include the replacement of two directors, and the appointment of the chairperson and deputy chairperson respectively.
In this regard, Nawatiseb said Cabinet endorsed the extension of the term of office of the current board members, replacement of the two directors and the appointment of the chairperson and the deputy chair for a period of one year from April 1, to March 31, 2019 or until such time that NPTH is dismantled whichever comes first. The chairperson is Leena Kangandjela who was re-appointed. She is deputised by Leilanie Hochobes, who was also re-appointed into the position. Other members include Henning Seelenbinder (re-appointed), Koos Van Staden (new member) and Dennis Shidume (new member).
NTPH is a holding company for Namibia Post Limited (NamPost), Telecom Namibia Limited, and Mobile Telecommunications Limited (MTC).