ONGWEDIVA – The person suspected to have leaked photos of the decapitated body of the late Mirjam Tuyakula Nandjato that went viral on social media is said to be a policewoman at the Oshakati police station. The Deputy Police Commissioner Edwin Kanguatjivi revealed this to the head of the Police Public Relations Division at police headquarters.
The posting of the graphic photos on social media has outraged both politicians and the general public and has traumatized specifically the grieving family.
There was a national uproar on social networks after the policewoman fed the gruesome images into social media.
The posting of the graphic photos also triggered debate about irresponsible social networking.
There are now appeals for censorship of what should appear on social networks and that people found guilty of posting socially unacceptable images should be brought to account for their mischief.
The leakage of the decapitated head has caught the Namibian Police Force by surprise hence the public relations division sent a stern warning to the public to stop further distributing the pictures on local social media.
Kanguatjivi stressed the police have a mandate to protect the deceased hence it is unethical to take pictures of crime scenes, much less distribute them.
“Police officers are not allowed to take pictures of the crime scenes – it is unethical. The first thing that the police officers should do is cordon off the crime scene and keep the public away. There is a special unit that takes pictures at crime scenes, however, the pictures are meant for the docket and are used as evidence in court,” said a perturbed Kanguatijivi.
It is alleged the police officer took photos of the deceased with her cellphone at the mortuary when the curator took the body out for preparation.
However, she denied having leaked the pictures when confronted.
Kanguatjivi said that investigation is ongoing to establish the true sequence of events and bring the person(s) responsible to book.
“In the meantime our efforts are being frustrated by the fact that the administrators of the social networks are elsewhere in the world and we find it difficult to trace the true sequence of events, but rest assured that the police will leave no stone unturned until the culprit(s) is brought to book,” he said.
Research indicates depression is the main factor in the spate of murders and suicides.
Social background contributes to the depression although many people have similar backgrounds but do not engage in extreme violence, says clinical psychologist Shaun Whittaker.
By Nuusita Ashipala