…as Mulunga’s A-team drags Namcor to court
The spat between the Namcor board and the company’s managing director Immanuel Mulunga took a turn for the worse last week when Mulunga refused to pay for a probe conducted, despite claims that he was part of a meeting that endorsed a budget that made provision for the probe fees.
While Mulunga maintains that the company will not pay the N$1.7 million bill for the services rendered by Deloitte, The Patriot understands he was part of a meeting that was held on 11 April 2018 with the company’s chief financial officer as well as board chairperson Patrick Kauta in attendance. It was during that meeting that Namcor’s total budget for 2018/19 was approved by line minister Alweendo.
Mulunga confirmed the meeting that made provisions for the payments when approached this week.
“The Board did eventually budget for the investigation being conducted by Deloitte at that Board meeting you are referring to, however the Procurement Committee requires an Accounting Officer to certify that funds are available before a product or service is procured,” he said.
On 27 April 2018, Mulunga told the board that he did not certify the availability of funds prior to the commencement of Deloitte’s procurement process, nor was he asked to provide a written assignment in which such a duty is delegated to another entity.
“As the Accounting Officer of this public entity, I would be failing in my duty if I were to discharge payment on the Deloitte Invoice absent being satisfied that there was full compliance with statutory the statutory obligations of the Procurement Act and absent making a submission to Ministry of Finance Procurement Policy Unit to seek urgent guidance on the payment of the Deloitte Invoice and any other further payments which may arise for these services,” Mulunga explained.
Mulunga said he will need guidance from Treasury’s Policy Unit before making the next move.
“I would like to make such submission with due regard to oversight, guidance and input from the Board members on these matters and therefore request that each Board Member kindly send written responses to me by Monday 30 April 2018 so that I am able to include these in my request for guidance to the Ministry of Finance Procurement Policy Unit,” Mulunga said.
Mulunga told The Patriot that the board members did not make any submissions on the matter.
“They[board] have not reverted to me by 30 April with responses to include in my request for guidance from the Procurement Policy Unit. I have proceeded to engage the Unit for guidance on the matter and we await their response” he said.
Board chair Patrick Kauta yesterday indicated that the board did not heed Mulunga’s request because “we do not answer to him”.
Mulunga and the board have been on a collision course from the day the board was appointed.
The board feels Mulunga’s handling of company affairs and operations are allegedly exposed to questionable dealings which he[Mulunga] orchestrates with his cronies.
Mulunga has specifically been linked to a Malaysian-based oil giant, Hyrax Oil, which is said to be treated with special gloves when it comes to awarding tenders.
Mulunga has maintained his innocence and subsequently made pronouncements that he was being victimised by board.
Court case looms
Meanwhile, The Patriot understands the 10 workers who were suspended by the board after it was found that they were recruited by Mulunga without job advertisements or interviews as well as endorsement by the company’s human resource department has dragged the company to the Labor Court.
Their case will be heard next month.
The board cancelled the contracts of the workers after it discovered that they were allegedly employed without following due procedures. According to Namcor’s HR policy, Mulunga needed board approval.
The 10 workers cost Namcor at least N$360 000 in salaries monthly.
They were employed in various positions such as secretaries, consultants and advisors. The other employees were in other departments such as finance as well as health and safety.
The appointments were not sanctioned by the board.
Namcor sources say Mulunga requested the board for additional staff so that they can help the company to penetrate the domestic retail fuel market as he felt the team he had at the time lacked the skills to do so.
At the time, a frustrated official in the company said the 10 staffers are similar to President Hage Geingob’s ‘A-Team’ and they have usurped the powers of Namcor’s substantive executive members.
Mulunga had denied employing the 10 workers unprocedurally at the time, saying he only signed off their contracts as MD.