The Ministry of Finance and Development Planning has refuted allegations that the Minister of Finance and Development Planning Kenneth Matambo had a hand or role in the inclusion or exclusion of disciplined forces the Housing and Upkeep allowance.
The Ministry was responding to a report, ‘Matambo chops disciplined forces pay’ which appeared on the issue of 29th August to 4th September 2015.
Jacob Momene of the Ministry of Finance explained that Matambo has never had a hand or role in the inclusion or exclusion of disciplined forces the Housing and Upkeep allowance.
“As such there is completely no truth in the reports that the Minister of Finance and Development Planning ‘raised his hand against the inclusion of the disciplined forces in the housing and upkeep allowance, subsequently forcing the government to withdraw the money and make gradual deductions of the overpays’.”
He said: The truth of the matter is that Housing and Upkeep allowance is a Condition of Service falling under the ambit of the Directorate of Public Service Management (DPSM) as the employer of public officers.
“As the paying agency of government the Ministry of Finance and Development Planning through the Office of Accountant General only comes in to implement the instruction from DPSM which details who should or not be paid,” he further explained.
He said in the case of the Housing and Upkeep allowance of disciplined forces referred to by Weekend Post, a similar process of receiving an instruction from the DPSM and implementing the same was followed as an administrative arrangement which has absolutely nothing to do with the Minister of Finance and Development Planning.
“Against the foregoing we wish to register our disappointment that the Weekend Post published a news item without even according the Ministry an opportunity to present its side of the story. We therefore request the newspaper to apologize and retract the statement that ‘Matambo chops disciplined forces pay’,” he said.
The Minister of Justice, Machana Shamukuni says the search to appoint the Ombudsman and other critical heads of department is currently ongoing and the process is expected to be completed before end of the year.
The Ombudsman position fell vacant almost five months ago after Augustine Makgonatsotlhe was removed from the office and appointed as Ambassador to Kuwait.
Two Batswana nationals have been arrested in Zimbabwe for illegal trade in mercury. The duo is being held together with a Zimbabwean national who is being questioned by the Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP).
This publication understands that the suspects who are aged between 39 and 56 years hail from Tutume and Selebi-Phikwe. At the time of the arrest, they were found in possession of a pistol, bomb motor and four live rounds. It is understood that the suspects told investigators during interrogation that the deadly substance has a lucrative market in Far East countries, where the demand is high. It is further reported that the suspects claimed that the mercury can be easily accessed in mines through middleman.
The Namibian Lives Matter Movement has weighed in on the looming border dispute between their country and Botswana.
Commenting on reports that the Namibian Parliament has dispatched a committee along the border between the two countries on fact finding mission, the group commended“the National Assembly’s Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs, De-fence and Security that will engage community members living along the Namibia Botswana Border in conducting public hearings into acts of aggression and brutality by Botswana Defence (BDF) Force against innocent and unarmed Namibians.”