Nothing dubious about Otjiwarongo hospital renovation

27 May 2014 10:50am
OTJIWARONGO, 27 MAY (NAMPA) – The Ministry of Health and Social Services says there are no irregularities involved in the renovation project underway at the Otjiwarongo State Hospital.
The Health Ministry’s public relations officer, Esther Paulus told Nampa in an interview in the capital last Friday that the project, which involves the renovating of a section of the Otjiwarongo State Hospital, was awarded to Hatworld Trading CC last year by the office of the Otjozondjupa Regional Health Director, Maria Kavezembi.
“Head office is only responsible for co-ordinating capital projects in the ministry, not minor renovation projects like the one underway at the Otjiwarongo State Hospital,” Paulus stated.
She said the project went through Kavezembi’s office and therefore there is nothing dubious about the manner in which it has been handled.
These renovations, which include work on the hospital’s kitchen, began in November 2013 at a cost of about N.dollars 1,3 million according to quotations for the job seen by this news agency.
The renovations are being carried out by Windhoek-based Hatworld Trading CC.
The Otjozondjupa Regional Health Director last week said she does not know how the contractor was given the tender to renovate a section of the hospital since she was neither involved in the tendering process, nor did she identify the type of work that needed to be done.
She nonetheless tried to hunt down the person who had authorised the renovation work, but her efforts failed – such as getting a clear answer from the ministry’s headquarters in Windhoek.
The Permanent Secretary (PS) in the Ministry of Health and Social Services, Andrew Ndishishi last Monday also denied any knowledge of renovations underway at a section of the Otjiwarongo State Hospital.
“Who approved such renovations? That is something I am not aware of. I never signed documents for any renovations at a section of the Otjiwarongo State Hospital, nor authorised somebody to do so,” he said in an interview.
The PS said no renovations can be carried out at any State hospital in the country without his knowledge, as he is the accounting officer of the Health Ministry. Ndishishi said the only construction work he is aware of at that hospital is on the nurses’ home.
Contacted for comment last week on how Hatworld Trading CC obtained the tender to do renovations at the Otjiwarongo State Hospital, company owner Herold Gaeseb asked to see written questions so that he could reply in writing.
The questions were faxed to his office in Windhoek last Monday, and he confirmed receipt of the fax.
However, by Tuesday this week, Gaeseb had still not replied to the questions.