Samaria’s GBH case postponed over ‘missing docket’

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Windhoek

The case in which one of Namibia’s renowned football coaches faces an assault charge, for allegedly beating his wife, was postponed in the Windhoek Magistrate’s Court to April 14, because the docket with all the information on the complaint has gone “missing”.
Bobby Samaria, who has coached several local clubs in the Namibian Premier League, was arrested for domestic violence in Windhoek last November and brought before the Windhoek Magistrate’s Court. The matter was yesterday remanded because the docket was not at court. Samaria is free on bail of N$2 000 on condition that he does not interfere with the ongoing police investigations and must not have direct contact with his wife, Clementine Samaria, the complainant.
“Samaria has a fiery temper and she does not know how he will react now that she has reported him. There are cases she filed against him between 1988 and 2006, but those dockets apparently disappeared. We brought all this to the attention of the court but he was still granted bail,” a family member informed The Namibian then.
Clementine filed for divorce in 2006, but until now Bobby has reportedly refused to sign the divorce papers. His lawyer Patrick Kauta, was reported as saying they would sign the papers in December last year.
The founder and director of Women Solidarity Namibia, Rosa Namises, said the granting of bail in this specific case is proof that women are not getting the protection they need.
New Era has reported numerous times on cases being remanded because the docket was not at court.
Inspector Slogan Matheus from the Police Public Relations Division said “the reasons why a docket may not be at court in time varies from case to case.”
“It could be as a result of the requirements for due process of law, or at times due to human error,” Matheus said.
The inspector said that in some instances it could be that the docket may have been sent to the prosecutor-general`s office for a decision or for further instructions thereon, and by the time the case is due in court, the docket is not yet back.
“Whilst in some cases it can happen that an investigator inadvertently locked up dockets in the office and went on leave (vacation), or out of town,” he added.
“But in the past we also had a few incidents in which dockets went missing, either through theft or by illegal disposal of dockets by indisciplined police officers. However, we have devised methods to mitigate the loss of dockets, such as docket accountability by investigators, and the duplicate docket system which runs concurrently with the court docket.”
A lawyer speaking on condition of anonymity said: Hearings being remanded for dockets “are a result of laziness of investigators, unavailability of investigators and misplacement of dockets by prosecutors”.
Magistrate Verinao Kamahene presided. Prosecutor Ivan Tjizu prosecuted.

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