King Elifas suspends councillors

14 Apr 2017 16:50pm
ONGWEDIVA, 14 APR (NAMPA) – King Immanuel Kauluma Elifas of Ondonga Traditional Authority (OTA) on Thursday suspended four of his senior councillors and four traditional councillors on charges including insubordination and bringing the authority in disrepute.
Suspended senior councillors are the OTA Council Chairperson, Peter Kauluma, OTA Council Secretary Joseph Asino, Vilho Kamanya and John Walenga, while Kashona kaMalulu, Joseph Akawa, Tonata Ngulu and Fillemon Nambili are the suspended ordinary traditional councillors.
They are also charged with misrepresenting a document purported to be a resolution of the OTA taken at a meeting of councillors, which included names of councillors who did not attend such meetings.
Alleged reckless exercise of their duty and expenditure of the council towards legal costs for the launch of an urgent application and promotion of disunity in the Ondonga community is what got them suspended.
Asino told Nampa Thursday that at the time he was directed to immediately return all property and documents, including electronic materials belonging to the OTA to a certain Nepando Amupanda, who has been appointed to act as secretary of the OTA Council.
“You are further directed not to enter the premises of the council and/or to remove any property or document during the period of suspension,” read the suspension letter to Asino seen by this agency.
The eight leaders were suspended with immediate effect and remain entitled to all their monthly salary or benefits, depending on the completion of investigation on the alleged transgression and misconduct within 60 days.
Besides the suspension of the said leaders, a group identifying itself as members of the Ondonga royal family, seized the keys of the council office and closed it Thursday afternoon in the presence the Namibian Police Force (NamPol).
This saga is a result of the OTA Council’s urgent application to the High Court in Windhoek to issue an interdict and prevent the installation of Kuku Ester gwaShamba Nepando as the new Ondonga Senior Councillor for Uukwanambwa District.
However, the OTA Council on Tuesday withdrew its application, following Monday’s demonstration by a faction of the Ondonga community demanding the suspension of the OTA Council for trying to drag King Elifas to court because of Nepando’s (gwaShamba) appointment.
Elifas earlier this year appointed Nepando (gwaShamba) a senior councillor after he dismissed Wilbard Lidker from that position due to an alleged transgression.