Controversy over an Administrative Officer position in the Ministry of Education Arts and Culture in the Hardap region at the A.M.E Community Private Primary School in Hoachanas became the order of the day, with alleged irregularities and unauthorized interviews by school staff members.
Allegations are that the interviews were conducted without the involvement of the school board members.
As a result, the Hardap Regional Education Director Gerhard Ndafenongo said that the post has lapsed and will now be readvertised.
According to Ndafenongo, the said post was advertised on the local notice board with a closing date of 29th of October 2021.
A total 240 applications were received, of which a total 29 candidates who met the minimum requirements were invited for a written interview.
“To my understanding, seven candidates turned up for the interview but there is no clear indication of when the first interview took place. The school board members forwarded their recommendation to HR, however for reasons unclear to me it was sent back to the school to redo the interview”, Ndafenongo explained.
He further stated that the school had a second interview without the knowledge of the school board members and only four candidates were interviewed.
The back and forth between HR and the school led to the lapsing clearance of the Administrative position and for this reason, the post could not be finalized.
“We wanted to know whether we got the job or not, but they just ignored us, and it was lies after lies, to the point where we no longer know what to believe, hence, our decision to engage the media”, a source who opted to remain anonymous said.
Meanwhile, the Windhoek Observer is in possession of a letter directed to the HR department concerning the A.M.E. Community Private Primary School from the school board members dated 29 March 2022 referenced “Compliant on deliberate irregularities pertaining to the interviews for the administrative office post’.
“This urgent script serves to bring to your attention that we have a vehement objection to the recently held counterfeit shortlisting and interview process at our above school.
“We have noticed an extremely unprocedural practice that was haphazardly meted out by some staff members, which we consider as unsatisfactory, fraudulent and deceptive to the rights of others, who have applied for the post”, the letter read. The School Board Members vented their dissatisfaction on the grounds of the unsubstantial process, which they say was done without their involvement and consent.
The School Board Chairperson in the same letter said that a fully constituted school board facilitated the process of shortlisting shortly after receiving applicants via the HR office of the said post, way back in December 2021.
Names of the 24 selected candidates were subsequently forwarded to the HR office with minutes that were compiled and upon approval, proceeded with the interview process, facilitated in collaboration with a panel composed of the neighbouring school P.J. Tsai-tsaib Combined School.
Since the beginning of the new academic year, he said that it has seriously annoyed them to note that the interview was nullified without any written notice.
The Chairperson also indicated that it was strange for them to note that some teachers had dubiously handled the shortlisting process in their absentia or without proper communication with them.
Mungandjela Sonia Ndafapawa one of the four interviewed candidates scored 48 percent from the panelist, Kauraisa Vetjavi scored 74 percent, Uukongo Eudokia scored 61 percent and Mutileni Loide scored 49 percent.