PM explains Diescho's dismissal

18 Feb 2016 21:20pm
WINDHOEK, 18 FEB (NAMPA) – Former Namibia Institute of Public Administration and Management (NIPAM) Executive Director, Joseph Diescho's dismissal was based on a mutual understanding, says Prime Minister Saara Kuugongelwa-Amadhila.
DTA of Namibia president, McHenry Venaani last week in the National Assembly (NA) asked the PM to explain whether the NIPAM Council ever held a meeting that deliberated on Diescho's performance, with a possible outcome to terminate his employment contract on the basis of such a council decision.
Responding to Venaani in the NA on Thursday, Kuugongelwa-Amadhila said the DTA leader had made “assumptions without any basis” that irregular suspensions and dismissals at public enterprises without due process have become common practice.
She said the council entered into performance agreements, including with the executive director.
She added that she was also informed that NIPAM employees last received performance bonuses during the financial year that ended on 31 March 2013.
“Under the leadership of the former executive director, management failed to produce an institutional performance report for the financial year ending in March 2014.”
The PM further noted that the training and development board of NIPAM referred back to management the institutional performance report for the financial year ended in March 2015, and the Mid-Term Review report, however to date, these crucial reports remain pending.
Kuugongelwa-Amadhila said the council on various occasions required Diescho to furnish the reports with his performance report for appraisal and on various occasions, the committees of the council rejected and referred back the performance reports that he submitted.
She further stated that the performance report produced by Diescho, despite obtaining services of an external human resources expert, “was of no consequence to the institutional targets to NIPAM”.
While dealing with the issue of performance, the PM placed emphasised that the financial year of NIPAM ends on 31 March each year.
This means that NIPAM ought to have submitted its 2016/17 Business and Financial Plan by 31 December 2015.
“However, the management of NIPAM under the leadership of the former executive director failed to produce for approval and submission by the council to the PM the 2016/17 Business and Financial Plan.”
Kuugongelwa-Amadhila also explained Diescho’s occupancy of a Government house located in the Eros residential area, which he was to occupy for a period of six months from November 2013; but which he has still not vacated.
He had by August 2014, when he received notice to vacate the house, also not paid his rental and municipal accounts.
“However, it is unfounded and an assumption to conclude that the continued stay Prof Diescho in a government-owned house was the reason that triggered the mutual and cordial termination of his employment relationship with NIPAM.”
She also noted it was incorrect that the mutual separation was as a result of Diescho’s weekly dictum column, which is published in the New Era newspaper on Fridays or expressions of views that are critical of Government, individuals or NIPAM.
The PM said she had expected Venaani to deal with the matter in a comprehensive way; however, it appeared that he had used his position as a Member of Parliament to advance his own interest.
“I would also like to state that the executive and the legislature are equal but separate; both should be respected.”
Responding to the PM’s comments, Venaani said during her presentation, she failed to indicate that disciplinary action was taken against the former NIPAM director.