Staff Writer

Government has availed N$40 million in financial support to Namibia Wildlife Resorts Limited (NWR).

The funds were allocated to the company in the FY2020/21 Mid-Year Budget Review and Medium-Term Budget Policy Statement.

This comes as the tourism company’s board and management had engaged the Ministry of Public Enterprises) to find ways of mitigating the effects of COVID-19 on the business, ensuring the sustainability of the company.

“The past six months have been the most challenging for most Namibian companies in Namibia. The Covid-19 pandemic has and is still having, an enormous impact on the tourism and aviation-dependent organisations worldwide. Most, if not all, shareholders, company boards, executive management, in private and public sectors alike, have done the same in being first concerned with the wellbeing of their organisations,” said Dr Matthias Ngwangwama, NWR Managing Director.

We are therefore grateful to the shareholder, the Government of the Republic of Namibia, for their assistance in the current times. The large amount of the funds received are to be re-injected in the Namibian Economy through immediately settling overdue suppliers’ invoices. Equally, part of the funds received will be used for our employee costs (our wage bill and the current voluntary separation exercise).”

The last time the company received financial support from the shareholder was in 2017 for an amount of about N$6 million.

The announcement comes as the company has begun a voluntary separation exercise to align its staff numbers in light of the impact that Covid-19 has had on the tourism sector.

On offer to the employees is two week’s salary for every year of uninterrupted service as a severance pay-out, any leave balances as at 30 September 2020, subject to a maximum of 60 days will be paid-out, any accrued leave days above 60 days will be paid at 50 percent or half of the excess days, any employee entitled to an annual birthday bonus, a proportion equal to the months since the last bonus will be paid out, one month’s salary in lieu of notice, total Pension Fund credit in line with the Pension / Provident Fund Rules / Laws and transport to the place of normal residence (within the borders of Namibia) for them and their belongings.