Warrant of arrest for alleged academic fraudster

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Windhoek

A warrant of arrest for one of the 29 people accused of obtaining forged qualifications from Zimbabwe was issued Friday in the Windhoek Magistrate’s Court.

Nghaanekwa Lineekela now stands to be arrested after he failed to show up in court.

Some other accused in the matter are Sofia Nevonga, Regina Nelumbu, Annely Shilunga, Saima Nakathila, Josefina Iita, Benedicta Stefanus, Eliah Kaiko, David Ndemusuunye Shivinga, Monica Itengula, Paulus Ndara, Gregor Mbanze Sikerete, Samuel Samwel Sem, Nghaanekwa Linea Ingavenya, , Johanna Sackaria, Shaamena Lossina Ndeshipanda, Fillemon Jatileni, Tyson Pickard and Elmo Mathias.

The court was informed that the investigations that had to be conducted in Zimbabwe have been finalised. The only outstanding issue is the authenticity to be obtained from a college in the United Kingdom.

The Namibian Police arrested the 29 job seekers last year on suspicion they submitted fake qualifications from bogus colleges in Zimbabwe in their desperate quest to secure jobs.

The matter has been separated as the accused were not arrested all at once.

Magistrate Justine Asino presided on Friday and remanded the matter to October 30 for further investigations.

Sources informed New Era last year that the police were looking for 200 other suspects with fake Grade 12 certificates – among them bogus doctors.

Some of the suspects submitted the fake qualifications to several institutions of higher learning for entrance, while nine used the “qualifications” to secure jobs in the Namibian Defence Force (NDF) and City Police.

Sources said the suspects informed the Namibian Qualifications Authority (NQA) they obtained their qualifications from colleges in Zimbabwe, which upon inquiry turned out to be bogus.

They were arrested in October, November and December last year. Twenty-eight have been granted bail except one, Pickard and Sikeret, who remains in custody.

After the incident the NQA warned of fake educational institutions.

Speaking in an interview regarding bogus learning institutions and academic fraud, NQA Chief Executive Officer, Franz Gertze, cautioned parents to be wary as they desperately try to find their children further study opportunities after completing their Grade 10 and 12 exams.

“My eyes are always filled with tears when I realise that someone was studying with money for which three of the goats in the kraal were sold and people went hungry and then they come back to NQA and say I was robbed,” Gertze said.

“’I went to an institution that NQA does not know’ – that hurts literally and it happens mainly to the poorest of the poor who send their children to these unfortunately not always honest institutions. I call them criminal institutions. The rich send their children to well-renowned institutions.”

He urged parents and guardians to approach the NQA for advice before they enroll their children in bogus institutions.

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