ONGWEDIVA, 03 SEP – Northern business tycoon, Erastus ‘Chico’ Shapumba of the Chico Group of Companies has appealed to public servants to refrain from the trend of granting government tenders to entrepreneurs on the basis of political connections.
Shapumba made the request whilst lecturing during the Night of Inspiration organised by the Sem Shivute Foundation on the sidelines of the Ongwediva Annual Trade Fair (OATF) here on Saturday.
He stressed that Namibia has good leadership and laws, but that many of the country’s administrators allocate government tenders on a favouritism basis and without consideration that the national cake needs to be fairly-distributed.
Shapumba believes public tenders are in most cases granted to politically-connected entrepreneurs, including those who lack the capacity and have already failed to deliver on their promises.
He wants government works to be given without discrimination and without considering political affiliation or connections.
“Namibia will remain a good country if government officials exercise fairness and refrain from corruption when carrying out their civic responsibility,” Shapumba told his audience.
As a primary school learner, Shapumba actively engaged in the business of cutting poles during weekends for sale to his neighbours and teachers.
His full-time business career started in 1995, and he now owns a chain of business outlets supplying building materials across Namibia.
Shapumba won himself numerous awards including Best Business Personality of the Year from the Namibia Chamber of Commerce and Industry in 2009 while the International University of Management awarded him an Honorary Doctorate in Business Administration and Commerce in 2016.
At an occasion held in Dubai last year, Shapumba was awarded Honorary Doctorate in Business and Entrepreneurship by the London Business School in collaboration with the Commonwealth University.