By Kuvee Kangueehi
The case of the Avid seven was transferred to the Windhoek High Court on Wednesday after magistrate Elsie Schickerling ruled that the magistrate’s court has no jurisdiction over the case.
The seven accused who have appeared in the Windhoek Magistrate’s Court on three occasions following their arrest at the beginning of this month, are now expected to make their first appearance in the High Court on June 19.
During the brief appearance on Wednesday, Deputy Prosecutor General, Danie Small, appearing for the state argued that the magistrate’s court has no jurisdiction and thus the court should not allow any new submissions, as the case must be transferred immediately to the High Court.
Small said defence lawyers are being opportunistic by trying to raise issues and make submissions in a court that does not have the mandate to try the case.
He added that according to the Criminal Procedure Act, if an indictment is given it clearly shows that the case has commenced in the High Court and said all the defence lawyers can raise their objections and make their submissions at the High Court.
However, one of the defence lawyers, Sisa Namandje, demanded to know whether the Prosecutor General had made a decision on the case, adding that the state has failed to inform the accused people in writing about the Prosecutor General’s decision.
Namandje said defence lawyers are trying to avoid a delay in the case. He said he has no problem with dealing with the matter when it goes to the High Court.
He added that given the huge public interest in the case, a delay in the case would be an injustice to the public and to the accused people.
Namandje said he expected the Prosecutor General to cooperate for fairness and justice, but claimed that the attitude of the state was bad.
“We are all left to guess about the Prosecutor General’s decision and that is clearly nonsense.”
Small, who replaced Linus Samaria on Wednesday, ensured that some progress was made in the high-profile case, as at the previous appearance the case made little progress after the defence lawyers raised objections about the indictment.
The high-profile case implicates former Deputy Minister of Works, Transport and Communication, Paulus Kapia, Inez /G??????’??