Judge Marlene Tommasi of the Oshakati High Court yesterday sentenced Johannes Shipanga, 59, to 38 years in prison for murder and obstructing/defeating justice.
Shipanga was sentenced to 35 years for murder and three years for obstructing or defeating the course of justice, for which one year will run concurrently with count one.
Shipanga shot his wife Justina Shipanga twice in the head and burnt her body beyond recognition on June 17 last year.
The judge, during sentencing, said Shipanga murdered his wife out of pure jealousy. Tommasi said she was not convinced the shooting was to repulse an attack or a result of provocation as claimed by the accused during his trial that generated a lot of interest.
“That is not provocation. If he had respect for the wife he would have respected her decision when she left her marital home. Instead of being loved and treasured, women are slaughtered,” said Tommasi.
Shipanga’s wife had moved out of the marital home on April 26 before she was brutally murdered by her husband.
Tommasi said although the accused is a first time offender and pleaded guilty from the onset, she said the courts have a responsibility to protect the interest of society, women and children against acts of domestic violence that are prevalent.
“I will concur with the school principal that after the occurrence of such incidences all women feel vulnerable in their relationships with their spouses and partners,” said Tommasi in reference to the testimony of the principal of the school where the victim was employed at the time of her demise.
She further said the courts have a commitment to hand down harsh sentences involving domestic violence and to deter would-be offenders in the prevention of such crimes.
Tommasi further alluded to the fact that Shipanga had no mercy and had literally taken away forever the late Justina from her loved ones.
She said the court has taken into consideration the personal circumstances of the accused and the forgiveness pleas and although they came a bit late they were still very genuine.