Nine candidates vie for electoral commissioner posts

COMMITTEE … A selection committee yesterday conducted public interviews to select electoral com- missioners for the Electoral Commission of Namibia

NINE candidates participated in public interviews for electoral commissioner positions yesterday, conducted by an independent selection committee facilitated by the National Assembly.

The sessions, held at the National Council office in Windhoek, featured a pool comprising one female candidate and eight male candidates.

The interviewed candidates included Vilyo Ndapopiwa (45), Simeon Nghipandwa (48), Elago Filippus (38), Rakkel Andreas (33), Fillepus Kambonde (41), Evaristus Evaristus (42), Gerson Tjihenuna (69), Pius Iikwambi (29) and Linus Simataa (52).

“We initially received 30 applications, shortlisted 13, and received four withdrawals in writing,” selection committee chairperson Batseba Katjiuongua said.

Commissioners of the Electoral Commission of Namibia (ECN) are key in upholding democratic values, ensuring transparency and fostering public trust in the electoral process.

“The purpose of this selection committee is to make recommendations to the president in terms of sub-section 16 (of the Electoral Act, 2014) with respect to the suitability and experience of the applicants,” Katjiuongua said.

The committee, consisting of Neli Tjahikika (deputy chairperson), Sebastian Kandunda, Zaa Nashandi and Harmonic Beukes, carried out the interviews, with National Assembly secretary Lydia Kandetu documenting the proceedings.

The panel consists of members from the Public Service Commission, Public Accounts and Auditors Board, the High Court, Law Society of Namibia and the Namibia Qualifications Authority.

Commissioners are in charge of ensuring fair elections by overseeing voter registration, maintaining voter registers and supervising political party registration.

Additionally, the commissioners manage the entire electoral process, promote voter education, coordinate with political parties and the public for transparency and contribute to system improvement through research.

The commissioners also have authority to establish and maintain ECN’s organisational structure for effective leadership.

The ECN last year conducted public interviews to select its new chief electoral and referenda officer. Petrus Shaama was appointed in the position.

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