WINDHOEK - Minister of Home Affairs and Immigration Frans Kapofi has complained about the dress code of some people visiting the ministry's offices.
He said the dress codes of some members of the public, especially men and women who show up in "bikinis", is an insult to ministry officials.
"Men are coming here with their 'short broekies', khaki and 'veldskoene' all over in our offices. Men come here with little things like this, short things, and you find them all over. They should not be allowed in our office," said Kapofi while addressing staff on Wednesday.
"Short bikinis, short bikinis like panties, like underwear, they should not be allowed here, they should respect our authorities here. They must come here smartly dressed," he said, adding that officials should not attend to people who are not smartly dressed or with "unpolished shoes". Furthermore, Kapofi said there are a number of foreigners who wish to make Namibia their permanent but lawful home.
However, due to the lengthy, legal and administrative processes used, a number of applications go unanswered.
"Too often we receive complaints that applicants' files cannot be found or traced, and that files are missing, etc. In many of these instances, our ministry is dragged to court," he said.
Kapofi says they have also noticed that because of these frustrations, applicants are resorting to buying their way into the country.
"This is an illegal way of obtaining status in Namibia and would not be condoned," he said, adding that everyone aspiring to become a Namibian citizen or resident must just follow the requirements and procedures as outlined in the applicable laws.
Kapofi says during familiarisation visits to the various regional and sub-regional offices, and border posts, he was able to directly interact with staff and those from other stakeholder such as Customs, Nampol, and Veterinary Services.
"I am was very much impressed with the frank yet constructive deliberations and exchanges I had with those colleagues," he said.
"What those of you here at headquarters may not be aware of is that these colleagues operate under harsh conditions, some without safe drinking water, no stationery or operational printing facilities, in dilapidated buildings and quarters, and where hygiene officers work without appropriate protective clothing and yet, they are expected to clean and maintain premises without the necessary detergents and implements," he said.
The reality though, he said, is that certain managers as well as officials based at head office, "turn a deaf ear or blind eye" to the plight of fellow colleagues and subordinates.
"These officials timely report stationery and procurement needs; they register urgent maintenance needs; immigration officers call the visa and permit department for verification of the status of persons who were supposedly granted these; report IT and other related problems; phones of managers and other support staff at head office go unanswered and requests are left unattended for months without any explanation; and sometimes using budget allocations or lack of money as an excuse," he said.