SME Bank haunts Hangula, as she agrees to pay back N$4m

Tania Hangula

Businesswoman Tania Hangula has agreed to pay back N$4 million of the N$6,6 million she benefited from the now defunct Small and Medium Enterprises (SME) Bank.

Hangula received N$6,6 million from the bank between 2015 and 2019 – some of which was used to purchase a beach property, a Mercedes-Benz and to fund her trips to Dubai and other countries.

Hangula is said to have been reluctant to pay back the money over the years, but last month changed her mind. She has now agreed to refund the bank in installments starting in September this year, until 2029.

This is according to the settlement agreement, dated 8 March 2024, between herself and the SME Bank’s liquidators – Ian McLaren and David Bruni.

“The defendant shall, without admission of liability, in full and final settlement and while acknowledging that if a court may find in other cases that she is a joint wrongdoer with others, the amount payable by the defendant in this case proportionally be taken into consideration in respect of all the losses suffered and recovered from any other identified wrongdoer by the plaintiffs – pay to the plaintiffs the amount of N$4 million free of interest,” reads the settlement agreement submitted in the Windhoek High Court.

Questions sent to Hangula over the weekend were not responded to.


Hangula entered into a consulting agreement as a “fundraiser” with the SME Bank during 2012.

The Namibian reported in 2020 that part of the SME Bank funds received by Hangula purchased a N$1,2 million property in the Long Beach residential area between Swakopmund and Walvis Bay.

The funds allegedly also purchased a N$740 000 E250 Mercedes Benz vehicle, while N$1 million was paid to her in cash.

Other funds, the SME Bank spent, went towards her accommodation and flight tickets to fly around the globe between 2016 and 2017.
She was going to be paid a monthly fee of N$50 000 and was also entitled to a 0,5% commission.

The SME Bank undertook to pay her travel expenses, as well as a travel allowance when conducting fundraising endeavours.

Despite the agreement having been penned during 2012, Hangula only started receiving her monthly payments in 2015.

The Namibian’s investigation into the SME Bank, which was allegedly used as a slush fund for Hangula and other politically connected individuals, shows how money meant to support upcoming businesses was used to maintain the personal lifestyles of an elite club.

The SME Bank also spent more than N$2 million on hotel accommodation and flights to fly Hangula around the globe between 2016 and 2017. Most of the money went towards paying for flights to Dubai.


Hangula will pay back N$4 million in total after six years.

According to the settlement agreement, Hangula will make the first payment of N$580 000 before 30 September 2024.

The second payment of N$760 000 will be made before September 2025, followed by N$760 000 before September 2026, N$760 000 before September 2027, N$760 000 before September 2028 and the final payment of N$380 000 will be made before September 2029.

Hangula will not pay any interest, except when she fails on her payment obligations.

“In the event of the defendant failing to pay any installment on due date, or being in breach of any other term of this agreement, then in such event the full amount of N$6,6 million claimed plaintiffs together with interest at the rate of 20% per annum calculated on the amount of N$6,6 million from date of service of summons (30 June 2020), shall immediately become due, owing and payable by the defendant to the plaintiffs,” the settlement agreement reads.


In 2015, Hangula served as the Development Bank of Namibia board chairperson and deputy chairperson of Namibia Desert Diamonds.

Before that, she served as an assistant to the late Hage Geingob, before he became president.

The SME Bank was created when Geingob was trade minister. The bank was shut down in 2017, and in October 2020, the Windhoek High Court found that the Zimbabwean banker and minority shareholder, Enock Kamushinda, and his associates had allegedly looted the bank to the tune of hundreds of millions of Namibian dollars, that were routed through South African, Zimbabwean and Namibia entities.

Last week, lawyer Kadhila Amoomo questioned why no one was arrested in the looting of the SME Bank.

“A total of at least N$247 535 004 was looted from the SME Bank. Economic crime of more than N$247 million within the context of the Namibian economy justifies an appropriately serious response. The Supreme Court has ordered that the prosecutor general should get the record. The bank was closed in 2017. Jobs lost. No one has been arrested yet. Why?”

More than 200 Namibians lost their jobs when the bank closed in July 2017.

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