By Petronella Sibeene
About 250 local and international experts on crime prevention are expected to meet in Windhoek for a three-day conference that will look at how to reduce the alarming crime rate in Namibia.
The conference scheduled to take place next month will review current crime prevention programmes and explore, discuss and present possible strategies of preventing crime in the country.
The first ever conference will be organised by the Centre for Training and Projects Development (CTPD), and will draw its delegates from municipalities, town and regional councils, Namibian policy and lawmakers, police and emergency service officers, justice, professional and criminologists, youth organisations, academics, community leaders and social workers, among others.
The conference, to be held under the theme, ‘Making Namibia the safest country for investment, tourism and human inhabitance through intensified crime prevention approach,’ will take place from 24 to 26 September 2007.
One of the conference organisers, Tokkie Nchindo, said President Hifikepunye Pohamba and Prime Minister Nahas Angula would open and close the conference, respectively.
She said crime constrains development of national economies, prevents good governance and erodes stability and trust.
In Namibia, crime has become a daily threat to human life.
This could be attributed to decaying moral values and respect for human life.
“Women are murdered, dismembered and frozen in deep freezes before [separate] body parts are thrown apart, children and adults are getting more involved in suicidal crime…” she said.
Another member of the organising committee, Norma Uazengisa, said for a long time Namibia has relied heavily on the police and the criminal justice system alone to maintain peace and order and instil that sense of safety in all citizens.
However, she said the criminal justice system alone cannot stop the escalation of national violence or even control it.
The conference will motivate and inculcate a sense of responsibility in all community members to actively participate in crime prevention to make Namibia a safe country for human inhabitancy and business investment.
“The conference provides an opportunity to discuss the types of crime prevention policies, strategies and programmes which have been implemented on a national, regional, town, or municipal council level as well as to formulate and recommend possible future strategies to combat the increasing rate of crime in our society,” said Uazengisa.