The Namibian Police Force (NamPol) will no longer fill vacant positions in the Gender-Based Violence (GBV) Protection Unit because the funds have been redirected to the fight against COVID-19.
This was confirmed by Minister of Home Affairs, Immigration, Safety and Security, Albert Kawana in a recent interview when Nampa followed up on the recruitment of police officers, which government announced last year in order to fight gender-based violence.
In October 2020, Prime Minister Saara Kuugongelwa-Amadhila announced in Parliament that the government would avail resources to ensure that NamPol identifies suitable candidates to fill the 159 available vacancies at GBV Protection Units as a matter of urgency.
She said this while responding to demands by anti-GBV protestors who last year submitted a petition to Cabinet, requesting government to capacitate the police with enough resources that will enable them to finalise GBV cases and arrest culprits.
During her announcement, the premier said government would capacitate forensic investigators and experts by recruitment and training of personnel in the areas of biological trace identification as a priority starting with the 2020/21 financial year.
However, Kawana said due to the pandemic that is wreaking havoc on the country’s economy and putting the health system under extreme pressure, government has to prioritise public health, thus some of the available funds have be redirected to procuring medical equipment and vaccines. However, he did not reveal how much was budgeted for the recruitment of police officers.
“We have an enemy called COVID-19 and as you know our hospitals, both private and public, are overflowing. We need to procure medical equipment as we stated already last year, and now most of these resources are redirected. Redirected to hospitals,
redirected to procuring all sorts of services. All the retired nurses are being recalled to come back and help on a voluntary basis, and they are volunteering due to the lack of resources,” said Kawana.
He added that Namibians should put their political differences aside and unite in the fight against the virus as a united people.
Source: Namibia Press Agency (NAMPA)