Telecom board recommends Klein for MD post
Telecom Namibia Acting Managing Director, Theodorus Klein, is likely to be unveiled soon as the substantive MD, after the parastatal’s board recommended that he be given the post, the Windhoek Observer has established.
Klein, who has been acting in the position for almost two years after long-serving former MD Frans Ndoroma retired, is said to have received the nod from the company’s board to take up the position permanently.
Telecom Namibia currently still resides under the authority of Namibia Post and Telecommunications Holdings (NPTH), as the holding company, and the Ministry of Information and Communication Technology (MICT), as the government shareholder.
NPTH board Chairperson Ally Angula refused to comment on the appointment of Klein, and instead referred the Windhoek Observer to the Telecom Board Chairperson Dr Catherine Beukes-Amiss.
“Kindly note that this is a decision for the Telecom Namibia board, kindly direct your questions to the board chairperson,” Angula said.
Beukes-Amiss, however, referred all questions to the Telecom Namibia Head: Corporate Governance, Legal Services and Regulatory Affairs, Jinah Melanie Brown-Buys, who said they are expecting feedback from the shareholders soon, since they had communicated two weeks ago that they were eager to appoint Klein on a permanent basis.
Brown-Buys said Klein had emerged as the successful candidate, and had successfully completed a six-month probation period.
“The deadline has already passed and we are waiting for feedback from the shareholders to get back to us, but in terms of the process of his appointment and everything internally, it has been done, and according to the process that has been followed, Klein is most likely to take over.
“At this stage, we are waiting for input from the shareholders, but the board of directors for Telecom Namibia has completed the process, since Klein was given a six-month probation two years ago, which he has complied with.
“We can expect the decision anytime soon, as the process is in the hands of the shareholders, to make the final decision after the board’s recommendations in favor of Klein’s permanent appointment to the post.
“We last communicated with shareholders last week and the deadline to reach a conclusion has ended as we speak,” Brown-Buys said.
In 2014, the Telecom Namibia board announced Klein’s acceptance to lead the public entity in an acting capacity for a period of six months, from 1 November 2014 until 30 April 2015, after which his performance was to be assessed against his 100 days in office strategy, which he presented to the interview panel during the recruitment process.
His substantive appointment was expected to follow a satisfactory performance rating, based on a mutually agreed performance contract with the board.
Klein was tasked with implementing the state-owned telecommunications company’s turnaround strategy dubbed “Mending the Net” after it became clear that the company was in dire financial straits.
The eight-point turnaround strategy entailed funding, cash flow, service orders, mobile network rollout and the migration of the company’s Code-Division Multiple Access (CDMA) service to the new GSM platform.
It also involved fixing the billing platform, raising the company’s business performance and implementing new strategic initiatives.
Klein started his career at Telecom Namibia before independence in 1985 and worked his way up over the past 31 years, through the various levels, which includes numerous general management positions, until he held the position of Chief Strategic Officer: Corporate Strategy.
He was also the Interim Chief Executive Officer of Powercom - trading as LEO - in 2012.
Klein holds a Bachelor of Science in Engineering Degree (1984), an Honours Degree in Business Administration (2005) and Master in Business Administration (2007), from the University of Stellenbosch.
He is a registered professional engineer and is acknowledged by his peers as a seasoned professional.