Councillors complain about ‘sabotage’ in Gobabis municipality

Two Gobabis municipality councillors say they are unhappy with how things are done at the eastern town municipality, alleging that there is sabotage among the local councillors.

Councillor Elvire Theron from the National Unity Democratic Organisation and Izak de Beer of the Gobabis Residents Association on Monday held a press conference blaming the town council for not adhering to the Electricity Control Board recommendation and interrupting management work.

The councillors indicated that the status of the electrical network in Gobabis is dilapidated as close to 47 per cent of the network is 40 to 50 years old, and could collapse at any time.

According to the joint statement read by Theron, the procurement management unit advised for the emergency procurement of an electrical consultant, because the municipality was incapable to rehabilitate and restore the network themselves.

“The engineer was issued with a formal award letter, thereafter the submission was tabled to the management committee for consideration and recommendation to the council to grant its approval. Council adopted the recommendation and resolved to grant its approval on 27 July 2023,” she alluded.

According to the dejected councillors, the consultant was then put on hold, which they claim was illegally, adding this is sabotage.

“We want the unnecessary unending sabotage to stop with immediate effect, and we request the cooperation from all relevant stakeholders for the betterment of Gobabis,” Theron said.

In a counter press conference on Tuesday, Gobabis Mayor, Melba Tjozongoro, updated on the Electricity Control Board report of 2018 up to 2023, saying the municipality is busy working on the issue of electricity in the town.

“As much as we are doing this, the procurement process in question where the consultant was procured and it is not that the municipality is refusing to work with the consultant to ensure that the electricity network is restored, but the processes of how the consultant was appointed is the one in question,” she said.

According to Tjozongoro this came after the finance ministry recently queried the processes or procedures on how the consultant was appointed.

“Thus, I want to put it clear that we are not against the consultant as is said by certain councillors, but the process is the one in question and as law abiding councillors we are waiting for the management to fix the problem at hand,” Tjozongoro said.

Source: The Namibian Press Agency

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