By Confidente Reporter
SUSPENDED Meatco Chief Executive Officer and OvaHerero Paramount Chief, Advocate Vekuii Rukoro, says that it is members of his tribe that threatened that the meat producer will end up slaughtering dogs, if it pushes ahead with its plan to get rid of him, and that he did not personally make the threat.
Clarifying his comments to Confidente last week, Rukoro said that he had warned the Meatco board that if it continues with its plan to dismiss him, the OvaHerero, who make up the majority of its cattle suppliers, will retaliate by not selling their cattle to the parastatal.
He said it should not be misconstrued that he had personally made the threat.
“I referred to the views being expressed by members of the OvaHerero community, that what the Meatco board is doing to me is a politically motivated campaign of victimisation, and their (the OvaHerero) comments on the social media, that if they (Meatco) don’t stop it very soon, it is going to slaughter dogs in its abattoirs,” Rukoro said.
“I simply alerted the board in its misguided campaign, and that I am not only their employee, but that they are also dealing with a respected leader of an important community, who interprets this and other events around their leader in a broader political and economic context. The bottom line is that I did not personally make the threat, I simply alerted my employers to the threat,” Rukoro said.
Rukoro, who was sent on administrative leave recently, amid an investigation into alleged irregularities at the parastatal, told Confidente last week that OvaHerero farmers will stop selling their cattle to Meatco, in retaliation over the ill-treatment of their leader.
“The pity of all this is that there is going to be very serious consequences. Unless they reverse their decision, these consequences will not only be for Meatco, but the entire meat industry.
“You see, I happen to be the paramount chief of the OvaHerero people, and unfortunately my people at this point feel that this political harassment is not only directed at me as a person, but that it is a political agenda,” Rukoro said.
“As you know the OvaHerero are cattle people and 52 percent of the cattle marketed by Namibia, leave this country on the hoof to South Africa, as weaners. These weaners are marketed by farmers in communal areas. I don’t know whether you have seen messages on social media, from angry OvaHerero, saying that Meatco will end up slaughtering dogs, for what it has done to their paramount chief. We are going to implement alternative marketing channels for our cattle. It’s not an empty threat my friend, and they have the political will and the capacity to implement that, even before the end of this year.
“Mark my words, if the government wants to risk this because of a ‘cowboy board’, and bring this industry to its knees, they shouldn’t say they haven’t been forewarned,” Rukoro said.
Confidente. Lifting the Lid. Copyright © 2015