By Marianne Nghidengwa
A police couple with a three-week old baby are in danger of ending up on the streets, after they were stripped of a three-bedroom government house in Otjimuise, so that Otjozondjupa Regional Police Commander, Commissioner Heinrich Tjiveze’s sister, could be accommodated on the property.
The top cop’s sister, Hendrika Trudie Tjiveze is aged 27 and is an administration officer in the force.
She and other members of the Tjiveze family were living with her brother in a Klein Windhoek government house, while he was serving as Khomas regional commander. After Tjiveze was transferred to Otjozondjupa in March, they continued living at the property and are only paying for water and electricity.
Hendrika is single, and according to Khomas Police Housing Committee regulations, she only qualifies for single room accommodation.
However, it has now emerged that a three-bedroom house in Otjimuise, which was earmarked for the married couple and their young baby, has been assigned to Hendrika, on the grounds that she has a lot of furniture and lives with her relatives, who are students, as well as the commissioner’s daughter.
Confidente understands that Hendrika was verbally allocated the house by Khomas Police Housing Committee Chairperson, Erich Anderson.
Sources claimed this week that it was on the instruction of Tjiveze and other top cops.
The same house was assigned to the married couple by the committee in April, after they applied for accommodation late last year.
The couple had already registered the water and electricity accounts onto the husband’s name at the City of Windhoek during April, but on 2 June, the accounts were transferred onto Hendrika’s name.
Documents in Confidente’s possession show that Hendrika had initially applied for accommodation in 2013, and had indicated that she is a single woman without dependents.
She later applied again last month, while indicating the same marital status, and that she had no children.
The housing committee scrutinised her application and decided that because of her status, she qualifies for a single room which she reportedly turned down.
“Hendrika was renting a place of her own, before she moved in with her brother, when he became Khomas regional commander. After her brother was transferred to Otjozondjupa, they made plans to get her a place on the grounds that she has a lot of furniture and lives with three nieces, i n c l u d i n g her brother’s daughter,” a source said.
“There are no reasons justifying why she should live in that house, when she indicated that she is single. This is a clear case of conflict of interest,” the source, who preferred anonymity, said.
“The fact that she lives with relatives is not the committee’s concern. She is not their guardian and their parents are well-off. The fact that she was also verbally assigned that house shows that they do not want to be held accountable.”
Tjiveze said that if anybody is not happy with what transpired, they should follow the appropriate complaint procedures.
“There are procedures within the police. If anybody is not happy with what has been done or how it was done, they know what procedures to follow,” he said.
Hendrika referred Confidente to the housing committee on Tuesday, when she was approached for comment.
“I have nothing to say,” she added.
The matter has reportedly caused anger among officers on the housing waiting list, who feel that Hendrika was favoured, because of her brother.
“If you are not connected, it is a struggle. The allocation of houses is not a privilege, but help accorded to officers in dire need. This girl feels entitled, just because she is a sister to Commissioner Tjiveze,” a source said.
“This is really unfair to those on the waiting list. There are a lot of married couples living in one-bedroom houses with their relatives. There are officers deployed straight from training, who have no accommodation.”
Other officers felt that the housing committee should be dissolved, because it is only used to rubber stamp decisions made by high-ranking officers.
“When will the committee become consistent and transparent, if such things still happen? Today Hendrika is given preference, and tomorrow that preference is given to someone else, who is equally connected in the force.
“The committee should be dissolved, because it only serves for formality purposes, it has no powers.”
Anderson said that the matter was a misunderstanding, when Confidente made enquiries on Tuesday. He also claimed that the married couple had moved into the house on Monday night.
“It was just a misunderstanding, but everything is in place now. The couple even moved into the house last night (Monday). I assure you the matter is resolved.”
In a bid to cover his tracks shortly after the call, Anderson hurriedly wrote to City of Windhoek, informing it that the municipal accounts should be changed back to the couple’s name.
Confidente. Lifting the Lid. Copyright © 2015