Sister Namibia calls for justice in Ilonga’s death

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WINDHOEK – Sister Namibia says justice should prevail in the recent deaths of nursing student Martha Ilonga and ‘struggle kid’ Frieda Ndatipo, who were shot by the Namibian Police.

In a statement, Innocentia Gaoes, the media officer at Sister Namibia Trust, said the organisation is numbed by the fact that Ilonga and Ndatipo lost their lives at the hands of the police.

Gaoes said it is disheartening to see that the police, which is supposed to protect and uphold peace and stability in the country, is breaking it with little repercussions.

The police shot Ilonga, who was studying at the Namibia Health Training Centre in Windhoek, in the head while she was seated in the backseat of a sedan vehicle about two weeks ago.

Ndatipo was shot last year in August during a demonstration in front of the Swapo Party head office, where a group of young people born in exile were involved in clashes with the police.

“Sister Namibia would like to express our profound disappointment in the Namibian Police Force for continuously finding a scapegoat after wounding or killing members of the public. Two young women lost their lives, no arrests have been made. What message is sent to the nation and the international community?” queried Gaoes.

She added that continuous reports of violence perpetrated against members of the public by the police are an indication that police officers lack basic training in handling firearms.

“The statement sent out by Nampol of regret and no intention to kill an innocent life makes us as an organisation wonder whether there will be ever justice for the lives of Ilonga and Ndatipo in the near future,” added Gaoes.

Additionally, she said cases of police assaulting the public are increasing with no arrests being reported in the news.

“If arrests have been made, it is in the public interest that this information is shared to restore our faith in Nampol as genuinely protecting the people and not holding anyone above the law,” Gaoes remarked.

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