Health Ministry Defrauded of N$7 Million

TWO accounting officers at the Ministry of Health and Social Services’ Otjozondjupa regional directorate allegedly defrauded the ministry of over N$7 million.

Sources say the fraud came to light after a series of internal investigations were carried out at the orders of the health ministry permanent secretary Andrew Ndishishi at the end of last year.

According to sources, the alleged fraud took place between 2006 and 2013.

Speaking to The Namibian yesterday, Ndishishi confirmed the theft but said he could not comment further as the case was with the relevant officials.

He however said following the internal audits, the two officers were found to have a history of financial irregularities and abuse of funds entrusted in their care.

“We know who these two individuals are. All I can say is that we have taken up the case with the relevant authorities. We will not condone stealing of any kind in this ministry,” said Ndishishi.

He added that investigations were still ongoing, and that he did not want to interfere with the course of justice.

The director at the Otjozondjupa health directorate, Maria Kavezembi, could not be reached for comment yesterday.

Otjozondjupa police commander Commissioner Joseph Anghuwo confirmed that reports of the fraud had reached his office, but said the ministry is yet to open a case on the matter.

“We are aware of the allegations, especially that more than N$7 million has been stolen from the ministry but we do not have the case in our records. I was also informed that the suspects had to be moved from their offices at the Otjozondjupa health regional office to Otjiwarongo district hospital,” he said.

Anghuwo also said the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) might be dealing with the case instead.

Contacted for comment, ACC Chief of Investigation and Prosecution Nelius Becker said he was not aware of the case.

Source : The Namibian