Comalie still facing drug charges as she continues to serve as Namcor board Chair

While Jennifer Comalie, the Chairperson of the Board of Directors of the National Energy Corporation of Namibia, has largely been found to be innocent by public opinion, she still faces the judicial consequences of being found in possession of illicit drugs.

The Minister of Finance and Public Enterprises, Iipumbu Shiimi, while attending the spring meeting of the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank Group in Washington, took time out to address questions by the Windhoek Observer regarding Comalie’s status as the Namcor board Chairperson.

“Ms Comalie is indeed still serving as the Namcor board Chairperson,” Shiimi said.

Comalie’s position as the Namcor board Chairperson came into question after she was taken into custody by members of the Namibian Police at the corporation’s head office.

The arresting officers acted on a tipoff that she had illicit drugs hidden in her official vehicle from an informant. During a search of the vehicle, the officers found drugs estimated to be worth N$57 000 inside. The drugs were allegedly hidden inside a takeaway food container.

Comalie spent a night in the custody of the Namibian police and was granted bail of N$7 000 when she appeared in the Windhoek Magistrate’s Court the day after her arrest.

Since being freed on bail, Comalie has fulfilled her mandate as the board Chairperson of the energy corporation.

In the same week as Comalies’ arrest, the board announced the suspension of Immanuel Mulunga from his position as Managing Director while allegations of him acting without the authority of the board in paying up to N$270 million on behalf of Sungara Energies as a deposit to Sonangol to secure working shares in three offshore oil wells in Angola. The Anti-Corruption Commission has since called Mulunga as well as some of the Namcor board members to their offices for investigative interviews regarding the payment of the deposit money to Sonangol.

In the meantime, the Namibian Police are still busy with an assessment to determine a security threat against Comalie.

In a letter addressed to both the Minister of Mines and Energy and the Minister of Finance and Public Enterprises, Comalie indicated that she fears for her life.

The Inspector General of the Namibian Police, Lieutenant General Joseph Shikongo, indicated that the assessment is being finalised and that feedback in this regard will be given to the Ministers. With regard to the investigation into the charges of drug possession as well as the security threat against Comalie, Shiimi said that the Namibian Police must be allowed time to conclude their investigation into the matter.“I hope that the investigation into the matter will be finalized soon,” Shiimi said.

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