28 January 2013

Namibia: Khorixas to Appeal Labour Case

THE Khorixas Town Council is planning to approach the High Court in a bid not to pay a former senior employee the N$90 000 awarded to him after an arbitration hearing.

Former finance chief Amingo /Honneb resigned from the council last year following a fallout between him and other senior management members during an Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) investigation into an alleged fictitious tender in which the municipality lost N$300 000.

The N$90 000 settlement, which is the equivalent of six months' pay, was awarded on December 17 last year and was supposed to be paid on January 15.

According to highly placed sources within the council, the town's chief executive officer, Nicodemus Gaeseb, is approaching the High Court over the matter.

"The council will not pay /Honneb as he resigned without any pressure. The High Court must decide on the case," the senior official said on condition of anonymity.

Gaeseb refused to talk to The Namibian.

Augustinus Ben !Aebeb, senior regional labour inspector, told The Namibian that the labour office was also waiting to be served with appeal papers by the Khorixas Town Council.

"We don't know when the appeal papers will be filed with us but I am aware that the council is planning to take a legal route," !Aebeb said.

/Honneb allegedly became the target of his colleagues after he revealed during the ACC investigation that no tender board or management meeting had decided on the tender which was the subject of the probe.

In his submission at the arbitration hearing, /Honneb said his working conditions and relations between him and his colleagues became unbearable, leaving him with no option but to resign.

/Honneb claimed that his signing rights were taken away and given to his subordinate because he cooperated with the ACC investigation.

The ACC investigation landed Gaeseb, human resources head Eben Xoagub and Daniel Geiseb, two Swapo councillors, behind bars. They have since paid bail and are trial awaiting.

/Honneb is now working at the /Uis Village Council at a lower salary than he earned at the Khorixas Town Council.

He wanted a N$600 000 settlement and said he was not happy with the N$90 000 awarded to him.

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