Cabinet has approved the appointment of Werner Schuckmann as Chief Executive Officer of the Namibia Airports Company after a recommendation by the airports operator’s board, sources close to the company said on Thursday.
Works and Transport Minister, John Mutorwa, did not respond to a text message asking him to confirm the appointment, while Public Enterprises Minister, Leon Jooste, said he will only be able to give a definite answer on the appointment on Tuesday next week.
NAC Chairman, Leake Hangala, said Cabinet was still to communicate to the board about Schuckmann’s appointment.
He, however, said he expects Cabinet to pronounce itself before the end of the year.
Schuckmann’s LinkedIn profile shows that he has worked for Tyrepro Namibia, Roads Contractor Company, Bidvest Namibia Commercial Holdings, Namibia Construction and Air Namibia.
He is a chartered accountant who studied at the University of Cape Town and has over 30 years of work experience.
Schuckmann was appointed by Mutorwa in June as part of the temporary board for the troubled Roads Contractor Company.
Schuckmann told the Windhoek Observer on Thursday that he was not aware of his appointment, but said he had sent his CV in the past to various employment agencies.
“That is news to me, I am not aware of that,” he said.
Lot Haifidi, who is the Strategic Executive: Corporate Governance, was appointed Acting Chief Executive Officer on 5 September, his second stint as Acting CEO.
Haifidi replaced another Acting CEO, former State House aide, Albertus Aochamub, who has since been appointed as Namibia’s Ambassador to France.
Josephine Soroses acted as CEO when former CEO, Tamer El-Kallawi was suspended on 21 June 2017. She was then replaced by Haifidi.
El-Kallawi was suspended on 21 June, 2017 facing various misconduct charges.
He had faced up to 36 charges of corruption, bribery, fraud and dishonest, but later reached a settlement with the NAC to leave the company.
The company has seen a number of CEO’s go through its seemingly revolving doors in the past decade.
Acting CEOs have included Toska Sem and Advocate Matti Asino.
Ben Biwa was appointed CEO in 2012, but was suspended in 2013 before he left in 2013.
Meanwhile, Hangala has expressed joy and relief after Namibian airports run by the NAC passed a security audit by the International Civil Aviation Organisation this week.
Hangala said Namibia passed the test due to the collective efforts of the government and the NAC.
He said ICAO concluded that Namibia had good aviation standards, and officials were also impressed that the government does not interfere in the operations of the Namibia Civil Aviation Authority.
“The audit found that there are no security concerns with Namibia. We are now working on the upgrade of the airport. We also need to change the attitude of the people working at the airport through training,” Hangala said.
The NAC has started renovation works at the airport and they are expected to be completed in March next year.
The upgrade will cost N$245 million, with N$95 million coming from the NAC’s own coffers while government will provide the rest.