Ohaingu District Senior Councillor Accused of Maladministration

20 Mar 2015 09:10am
EPUNDI, 20 MAR (NAMPA) – A resident of Epundi village of Oukwanyama Traditional Authority in the Ohangwena Region, Theopherus Willem is accusing his Ohaingu District senior headman, Nghidinihamba Ndilula, of being an autocrat and practicing maladministration.
Speaking to Nampa at the village recently, Willem said Ndilula abuses his senior headman position by firstly dismissing him as headman of Epundi for no apparent reason in 2012 and then went on to give away a portion of his land to an unqualified young man, Eliaser Kaulinge, without his consent.
Willem claimed that Ndilula appointed Benjamin Mukongelwa to replace him as the headman of Epundi village without informing him about the reasons for his removal.
“This was done against me by Ndilula, despite the fact that my late uncle, Erastus Shitana, who was the village headman, informed the Oukwanyama Traditional Authority (OTA) before his passing away in 2011, that I should succeed him,” said Willem.
He claimed that his uncle took him to Ndilula’s predecessor and now fired senior headwoman of Ohaingu district, Sipora Weyulu-Dan, who accepted him as the headman of Epundi village already before 2011.
Willem paid N.dollars 4 000 and two cattle to Weyulu-Dan in December 2010 as the fee to qualify him for the headman position of Epundi village before the death of Shitana.
“Ndilula rejected me as Epundi village headman when he took over from Weyulu-Dan after 2010, saying I was not properly appointed and I should claim the fee I paid to become headman from those who received it,” Willem explained.
He, however, indicated that he has no idea to fight Ndilula in order to reclaim ownership of the village, but is adamant that he will continue to demand for the OTA to return the portion of his land that Ndilula has allocated to Kaulinge without his blessing.
Ndilula on his part said Shitana passed away while he was already the senior headman of Ohaingu district and Willem was disqualified as Epundi village headman for failing to meet the three-month period normally given for anyone to register interest in becoming headman.
“He came to us seven months and 28 days later to register his interest after the three months lapsed and after Mukongelwa, who declared his interest to take over the village, has been already appointed by the leadership of Oukwanyama Traditional Authority. Mukongelwa is said to be cousin to Willem.
Regarding the portion of land given away to Kaulinge, Ndilula said Kaulinge was landless and had nowhere to live after Willem chased him away from his homestead.
The homestead in question belonged to the late Shitana and it was where Kaulinge and other young men stayed for years before Willem took it over at the death of his uncle.
“The traditional authority has also the responsibility to assist the poor people, hence that portion of land was given to the young man for being in dire need of land to live on,” Ndilula stated, adding that Willem’s land is large and can accommodate more households.
He also informed this news agency that Willem, who is a retired Namibia Defence Force (NDF) soldier, chased Kaulinge from his house while accusing him and other young men of theft of his uncle’s several cattle.
Willem is busy consulting with one of the human rights organisations in Namibia, NamRights, to defend him in his quest to claim back the portion of his land that has been allocated to Kaulinge.
A NamRights official, Ananias Aipinge, confirmed his office is taking Willem’s issue up with both Ndilula and the OTA.