Namib Desert Diamond (Namdia) has maintained that it does not have a contract with the John Walengwa co-owned C-Sixty Investments, a company that has been evaluating its diamonds for the last two years
The government diamond marketing company has previously clashed with the Ministry of Mines over who will honour payments to C-Sixty Investments for its services since it did not engage the company.
C-Sixty, according to media reports, is expected to make between N$600 million and N$1,5 billion over a five-year period.
The development comes as the Ministry of Mines recently advertised a tender to appoint Government Diamond Valuators, amid speculation the ministry was going ahead with its plans to put the Namdia contract to tender.
“As we stated in September this year, issues around C-Sixty would be best answered by the Ministry of Mines and Energy as the C-Sixty contract is between C-Sixty and the ministry,” Namdia Spokesperson, Usi //Hoebeb said.
Mines and Energy Minister, Tom Alweendo, said the advertised diamond evaluation tender would not affect Namdia operations, but will mainly focus on diamonds produced by Namdeb and Debmarine.
“It has nothing to do with Namdia or C Sixty, but we looking for a company to evaluate diamonds on behalf of government. We had a company doing that for a long time and the contract has come to an end and we decided to put it to tender,” he said.
Quizzed on the criteria of appointing the prospective company and the value of the contract, Alweendo said the tender document has a spelt out criteria.
“I don’t have the exact details on that including the value, but even the company that was previously doing the job is free to tender,” the minister said.
Namdia was founded after De Beers and the government of Namibia signed a new 10-year sales agreement for the sorting, valuing and sales of Namdeb Holdings’ diamonds.
As part of the revised agreement, up to 15 percent of Namdeb Holdings’ total production will be allocated to the company that is being used as a window on the market to find out what the international market is willing to pay for Namibia’s sought after diamonds.
C-Sixty Investment's directors are Walenga, Patricia Kauazunda, Uushona Shiimi and Rosa Nangolo.