14 December 2012

Namibia: Suspended SSC CEO to Fight Back

THE chief executive officer of the Social Security Commission (SSC), Kenandei Tjivikua, plans to go to court to challenge his suspension.

Tjivikua was informed on Wednesday afternoon that he is suspended without pay.

According to him, there was no disciplinary hearing before he was suspended. Furthermore, he said, he had by yesterday afternoon not received any charges. "All I was informed is that I was suspended without remuneration - which is against [the] law."

Asked whether he plans to challenge it, Tjivikua said: "Obviously. How can you just be suspended and not do anything about it? It's an obvious route. I'm waiting for them to charge me and then I will go to court."

Tjivikua joined SSC about two years ago from FNB where he was a manager.

David Keendjele, the general manager of operations, has been appointed as the acting chief executive officer. Upon enquiry, he yesterday said: "I don't have much information. He has been suspended."

He said he it was "not clear" how long he would be acting.

Like Keendjele, SSC spokesperson Rino Muranda yesterday referred questions about the details of the suspension to board chairperson Rick Kukuri.

Various attempts to get hold of Kukuri yesterday proved futile.

Joseph Garoëb, a board member, yesterday afternoon said he could no divulge the reasons for Tjivikua's suspension. "It was a board decision. For now, we want to keep it as an internal matter. There is no way that the board would suspend anyone without reasons."

He admitted that Tjivikua had not been formally charged yet. "We are busy formulating the charges."

Tjivikua's suspension follows a week after Doreen Sioka replaced Immanuel Ngatjizeko as the minister of labour and social welfare after a Cabinet reshuffle.

In September, a group of SSC employees held countrywide demonstrations during which they called for Tjivikua's removal - allegedly because of his management style.

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