DORDABIS - The community of Dordabis held a peaceful demonstration yesterday demanding the immediate removal of the police station commander, Warrant-Officer Given Kaura and other police officers.
The demonstrators claim that Kaura and his colleagues are inconsistent in applying the law in the course of executing their duties.
They accuse police of ‘taking sides’ when handling criminal cases.
“They are only arresting blacks and not whites. Last year December, a certain white farmer started a veld fire deliberately. A man in his 50s (Jan Mathys) burned to death in that fire. We asked the station commander to arrest the white man and to charge him with arson, but nothing happened,” complained group spokesperson, Salomon Visser.
They allege the same white farmer whose name is known to New Era fired gunshots at six minors in 2010 when he found them playing in one of his camps.
Fortunately, the bullets did not strike any of the children. The children fled in different directions, but the farmer managed to catch a nine-year old boy and assaulted him before reporting him to the police.
“The [relatives] of the assaulted child went to the police station with the Councillor of Dordabis, Arie Fredericks, and laid a charge against the white farmer for assaulting the minor,” Visser explained. However, to the shock and dismay of the community the white farmer, who is also a police reservist, was never arrested.
The group claims that earlier in January this year a white farmer threatened one of his workers with a shotgun in an attempt to have him leave the farm.
“He chased him with a gun while shooting in the air. The man came to Dordabis and told me, and the councillor, what transpired. We accompanied him to the police station so that he could lay a charge for attempted murder, but a case was never opened against the white farmer. The man has since left the farm and is unemployed now,” Visser said
The community demands the immediate removal of Kaura and his officers. “We want a station commander who will serve us without fear or favour.” They are also unhappy over the recruitment process when it comes to police reservists.
The councillor who took part in the demonstration refused to comment, referring this reporter to Visser. The protesters claim all 14 police reservists are white farmers.
“We want that number to be divided equally between blacks and whites. We want a race- and gender-balanced force with blacks on board. These white farmers who are police reservists are also not consistent at roadblocks. They only stop and search vehicles and donkey carts belonging to black people, while whites are moving freely.
“We know these farmers are giving police officers meat to keep quiet while oppressing us. Are you telling us that we, blacks are not qualified to be police reservists or should we own farms first?” the protesters demanded to know.
They also accuse Kaura and his officers of transporting alcohol for certain shebeen owners at Dordabis with police vans.
Approached for comment, Kaura said he does not deal with the appointments of police reservists and that such arrangements are done at the police headquarters in Windhoek.
He was not willing to comment on all the allegations, but denounced the councillor as someone lacking vision.
“All those who participated in the demonstration are being led by a un-visionary leader (the councillor). All those people who participated were in the cells for one reason or the other. If not, then they are all [related to] the councillor. He likes to protect criminals,” Kaura offered in his defence.
Kaura said the councillor personally hates police officers, because his own son was arrested last year for the alleged rape of a woman at the settlement.
“Even the councillor himself was arrested for stealing a donkey cart. And also, his daughter was arrested for obstructing police officers while performing their duties. How can he (councillor) like me? Those people are lawless and [the lawlessness] is caused by the councillor,” Kaura charged.