The protection of national and visiting VIPs (Very Important Persons) will cost taxpayers N$432 million in the 2016/17 financial year.
This includes the cost of bodyguards protecting President Hage Geingob, Vice President Nickey Iyambo, and Prime Minister Saara Kuugongelwa-Amadhila, her deputy Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah, cabinet ministers and senior officials of the judiciary.
Also, VIP protection extends to visiting foreign dignitaries who have bodyguards in their country of origin. The homes and offices of local VIPs and those of foreign ambassadors are funded from the same allocation.
This was part of the budget motivation by Safety and Security Minister Charles Namoloh during 2016 Appropriation Bill debate in the National Assembly recently, when he requested over N$3,4 billion to prevent and fight crime and to provide a safe and conducive environment for economic development and to attract investors.
With sufficient funds the ministry would be able to engage a number of stakeholders in the fight against crime, Namoloh noted.
The money will also be used to facilitate participation and cooperation on international, regional and bilateral level, as entered into by the ministry with the International Police Organisation (INTERPOL) and the Southern African Regional Police Chiefs Cooperation Organisation (SARPCCO), the African Correctional Services Association (ACSA) and the International Corrections and Prisons Association.
It is under the same combating crime programme that intelligence on criminal activities is collected and crime investigations are carried out as well as ensuring that accused persons and witnesses are brought to court. Namoloh said the programme forms the core function of the department of police.