Swakopmund – Well-known Swakopmund resident and passionate crime fighter John Basson, 43, allegedly received a text message from his wife just minutes before he fatally shot himself on Friday, but police would not divulge its content while investigations are underway.
Basson, an active member of the neighbourhood watch in Mondesa, was co-owner of Ombala Security Company with his wife Connie, a Swapo district coordinator for Swakopmund.
Basson’s son, 19-year-old Zinzan, was shot four times during what appears to have been the high school learner’s attempt to stop his father from killing himself.
Zinzan is said to be in a critical condition in a hospital at the coast.
Basson, a father of three, was a community activist and staunch supporter of the ruling party Swapo.
Detective Inspector Erastus Iikuyu yesterday confirmed the existence of the text message although he said the contents of the message cannot be revealed to the media.
Iikuyu however dismissed speculation Basson shot his son because he was defending his mother.
According to Iikuyu, Basson’s wife was not at home on Friday morning when the disturbing incident occurred.
“In fact, only the son, Basson’s mother-in-law and their domestic worker were at home during the shooting. We suspect that the son was trying to stop his father from shooting himself,” Iikuyu said.
Police officers who attended to the crime scene on Friday told New Era that the son, before slipping into a coma, allegedly told the officers that his father, shortly before shooting himself, said that his mother knows the cause of his actions.
A close friend of the couple, Sioni Ikela, on Saturday told New Era that he was deeply shocked by the incident as Basson, as he knew him, always defended his family, no matter what.
According to Ikela, Basson was never a violent person or did not believe in solving matters with violence
“I spoke to Basson earlier this week when he called me as he needed a friend to confide in. However, I told him that I will be back on Sunday as I was travelling in connection with work to Lüderitz and that we can meet when I returned.
He insisted that it would be too late. Then I told him that I would come back on Friday rather and then we can meet on Saturday,” a shocked Ikela told New Era on Saturday.
He however said that he did not find anything strange and was under the impression that Basson wanted to discuss Swapo matters with him.
According to Ikela, Basson was a great, kind-hearted man that always cared about the well-being of others.
“Basson made the fight against drugs and alcohol his personal fight. He was an unprotected informer of Nampol and was instrumental in many drug busts in our town and region.”
Basson’s death unleashed a series of ironies. His father was a police officer who is credited with the arrest of some of the people suspected of having killed revered Swapo activist Anton Lubowski. But the real irony is that his father too died by committing suicide, also aged 43, like his son.