Former Education Minister Katrina Hanse-Himarwa says President Hage Geingob has always maintained a strong stance against corruption and has called any Cabinet minister to book when such allegations surfaced against them.
Earlier this year, Hanse-Himarwa resigned as Education Minister after a court conviction which found her guilty of corruption following her involvement in the allocation of mass houses when she was Hardap governor in 2014.
Her remarks comes hot on the heels of the recent resignations of Justice Minister Sackey Shanghala and Fisheries Minister Bernard Esau over allegations of fishing quota bribes worth N$150 million.
The resignations follows a meeting between Geingob, vice-President Nangolo Mbumba and the two former ministers at State House when news broke that the latter received bribes in exchange for fish in the Namibian waters.
Hanse-Himarwa took to social media to defend Geingob, stressing that the Head of State is on record since day one in his stance on fighting corruption.
“Nobody before has ever voluntarily declared in public his/her assets, including that of his wife. Where there were ‘unproven’ allegations among his ministers, all ministers under suspicion were called in and appeared in front of him,” said Hanse-Himarwa.
“We were instructed to give written reports. Those reports were submitted to the Anti-Corruption Commission for investigation.
“Illegal and suspected corrupt tenders were canceled under the personal instruction of the President. Loose taps were locked under his administration (which partly) caused the passionate hatred, disrespect and undermining of his administration as many could no more eat, drink, drive and live large from wealth they never really sweated for.”
According to Hanse-Himarwa, stringent procurement policies were introduced for better checks and balances. This, Hanse-Himarwa added, also frustrated many who had it ‘nice’.
“I am one of the ministers who went through the court proceedings. I appeared in front of a competent court of law for alleged corruption. Not as a minister, but from my previous position as governor,” she indicated.
“I was found guilty (however questionable it may be) without any interference. I am dubbed as a Hage ‘blue eye girl’, but he did not rescue nor interfere in the judicial process. How is he to be blamed and found wanting?”
Hanse-Himarwa added: “Performance agreements were signed for the first time by ministers to account and for transparency on their performance.”
She added that Geingob never entertained any of them when they were at fault as ministers.
“Some accused him of not protecting his own ministers. Why do we always find a stick to beat him? Whether a minister resigns or is fired, the bottom line is that person has recused, removed or excused him of herself, from public office to give opportunity to better, clean, or deserving Namibians.
“Also, to allow unhindered investigations etc. Why do we always want to humiliate and suppress others? As if we are not human? My father always says ‘die lewe draai soos n koedoe horing. Niemand het altyd skoon hande ( the world changes like a kudu’s horns. No one has clean hands always.”
“For me, President [Geingob] did a lot to rescue this country and must be applauded for that by honest Namibians. I remain Katrina Hanse-Himarwa. Hate or Love. I only fear God”