11 August 2017

Namibia: Tweya Dispels Malima 'Fabricated' Story

Windhoek — Information and Communication Technology Minister Tjekero Tweya has come out with guns blazing and dismissed a Windhoek Observer article that alleges the director-general of the Namibia Central Intelligence Service (NCIS), Phillemon Malima, and President Hage Geingob are at loggerheads.

The article also implicates Attorney-General Sacky Shanghala and Mines and Energy Minister Obeth Kandjoze, on the basis of unnamed sources. According to a press release issued by Tweya, the report in its entirety was false. He said the relationship between Geingob and Malima remains "cordial and solid".

He said at no point did President Geingob instruct Malima to resign or risk being dismissed, as alleged in the article and that this could not be true, as there have never been any grounds for such instruction.

Tweya said it is a standing truth that all political officebearers serve at the behest of their appointing authority. It is the prerogative of the president to appoint, reshuffle, relieve, promote or demote any member of Cabinet or other office to which he can appoint.

"Any future re-arrangement of Cabinet or other offices should be seen in this light, and nothing should be linked to this malicious fabricated story orchestrated by some fantastic minds, masquerading as journalism," Tweya stressed.

He further said allegations that Malima had made remarks that Geingob was protecting criminals and refusing to take action against those who were in charge of the collapsed SME Bank, are untrue, as neither Malima, nor Shanghala had discussions on the subject and neither made such remarks.

"The director-general is a seasoned public officebearer, a liberation hero who has outlived (and will continue to do so) petty fabrications in the media, hence the unwavering trust of... the president in him," Tweya stated.

He added that Attorney General Shanghala is a young professional, who has already made indelible marks on the political landscape of Namibia, and who will continue to be groomed to lead.

According to Tweya, the Observer article also alleged that NCIS director-general Malima has on numerous occasions declined to "authorise the carrying of huge contingency funds whenever the president travels".

Again, he said, this is an unfounded and baseless fabrication. The fact is that the NCIS has no contingency fund, as alleged in the report. Furthermore, the president's travelling expenses (subsistence and travel arrangements) locally and abroad are fully attended to by the Office of the President.

In the same vein, Tweya's press release states that Malima could not at any time refuse Geingob the use of any funds from NCIS, because no such request ever arose, given that political officebearers do not deal with finances.

In fact, Tweya said neither Malima or Geingob would have been in a position under the public finance laws and regulations to do so. Therefore, he said, such allegations are sheer fabrications devoid of truth.

"It must be clear to all, that Namibia is a country founded on the rule of law in terms of Article 1 of the Namibian Constitution. The government subscribes to these foundational principles. All organs and O/M/A's (offices, ministries and agencies) are bound by the rule of law."

The operations of the NCIS all conform to law. The public funds at the disposal of the NCIS are managed strictly in terms of the State Finance Act of 1991 and National Central Intelligence Service Act of 1997 and are audited by the auditor-general in terms of the State Finance Act and as provided for under the NCIS Act, Tweya emphasised.

He further said no report of the auditor-general thus far has indicated any financial wrongdoing on the part of the

NCIS over the past 27 years. He added that the government urges all citizens to remain vigilant and to observe calm in the face of such blatant provocation and falsification.

"It is nothing more than hysteria or perhaps the inarticulate prevailing anger towards... order, government and established institutions. It shall pass. Let us just learn to discern fact from fiction, whilst we remain committed under the slogan: One Namibia, One Nation," Tweya concluded.

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