WINDHOEK, Mar. 10 – After local media reported that she is part of a cabal that serves as a conduit for an international firm that seeks control of a N$5 billion oil storage facility, Presidential Advisor on Constitutional Affairs and Private Sector Interface Inge Zaamwani-Kamwi rubbished the accusations as ‘malicious and baseless.’
“If I was looking for advancing my personal interests I should have stayed in the private sector,” said Zaamwani-Kamwi.
Prior to her current appointment to State House, Zaamwani-Kamwi is the former Managing Director of state-owned Namdeb, and she reassured that her interests are strictly compliant with her job-description, emphasising that her services are exclusively rendered toward President Hage Geingob’s drive toward fostering economic growth.
“I should emphasize that my interest was and remains that of supporting His Excellency the President in promoting Namibia as an attractive investment destination. Moreover I have to ensure that our systems and processes are responsive to the needs of investors, both local and international,” she said.
As companies scramble for the management of the N$5 billion oil facility, state-owned NAMCOR, to name a few, and other local and international companies find themselves in an arena, battling each other for the lucrative tender.
In November 2016, Namibia held an investment conference coined “Invest in Namibia International Conference” to attract foreign investors, ultimately leading to United States-based company Vitol showing interest in Namibia.
Zaamwani-Kamwi said,”As the Advisor on Private Sector Interface, I work closely with the Ministry of Industrialization, Trade and SME Development (MITSMED), Namibian Embassies and Trade Councillors across the world and the Namibian embassy to the USA, in particular the office of the Trade Counselor.”
Tess Serranti factor
Tess Serranti is a consultant who represents multiple international companies, and her firm was contracted by the Namibian Embassy to assist with the marketing and promotion of the 2016 Conference.
Vitol Energy was one of the companies invited.
Explaining the circumstances of her meeting with Serranti, Zaamwani-Kamwi explained, “In the United States, and as part of these promotional activities, the Namibian Government organized an investment promotion seminar as a precursor to the highly successful Invest in Namibia International Conference, held in November 2016.
“The Namibian Embassy in Washington contracted an agency to assist. It was during the preparations of the seminar and the conference that I met Tess Serranti whose firm was formally contracted by the Namibian Embassy to assist with the marketing and promotion of the event. Tess invited a number of USA based business people with interest in Namibia to attend the seminar. Vitol Energy was one such company,” she said.
She dismissed any suppositions of her having a relationship with Vitol.
“I do not have any relationship with Vitol other than the fact that I met them as I did with many other potential investors who were interested in Namibia. Prior to the Seminar referred to earlier, we organized several B2B meetings with sector Ministers.
“Investors were given an opportunity to meet with Ministers and ask them detail sectorial questions they may have after which they attended the Seminar, which was addressed by His Excellency the President. Some of the investors were asking for appointments to see His Excellency the President but we advised them to see the Ministers first.
“I can assure that there has never been a time when there was a need for special sanction for my official dealings with Vitol.”
“It was against this background that I was introducing them to the Ministers. Tess Serranti was accompanying the investors when they were meeting Ministers. I would and as I should in line with my duties also attend certain meetings to make sure that if there was a need for follow-up, we did provide the necessary information.”
She has since challenged anyone with allegations that align her with Vitol to come forward with credible evidence while reaffirming that she has nothing to hide and would continue her work.
“I am committed to carrying out my work with absolute integrity and dedication to the work at hand. I am not here to use my office to advance other interests other than that expected of me by the President. ” – Musa Zimunya