Murder case provisionally withdrawn

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Roland Routh

Windhoek-Another murder and attempted murder case was provisionally withdrawn in the Windhoek Magistrate’s Court in Katutura for failure to get a decision from the office of the Prosecutor General.

Magistrate Bernedine Kubersky issued a stern warning to the Prosecutor General’s office when she struck the case of Sakeus Nghifikwa, who was charged with one count of murder and two counts of attempted murder, from the roll and refunded his bail deposit.

Nghifika, who was represented by Kalunudu Kamwi from the Orben Sibeya and Partners stable, was told that he is free, but that the State can re-summon him to Court to face the charges should they get their house in order. Public Prosecutor Ellen Shipena informed Kubersky, the prosecutor who previously worked with Nghifikwa’s case did not send the docket for the PG’s decision and asked for a further remand. Kamwi would, however, have none of that and told the magistrate they have been waiting for the PG’s decision since July last year.

He said they understand the predicament the public prosecutor finds herself in, but they cannot be punished for their failure to perform their duties.

“We take into account the charges, but the accused is innocent until proven guilty and has the right to a speedy trial,” Kamwi informed the magistrate. Kubersky concurred with Kamwi and stated that the matter has been on the roll since February 20, 2015, and has been five times for PG decision, the first being March 30, 2016. “This is unacceptable and the only one being prejudiced is the accused who has to come to Court every time merely to be informed that the PG decision is not available,” she emphasised. According to the magistrate, she took the seriousness of the charges into account, but stressed that the State had ample time to get their house in order and refused a further remand.

According to the charge sheet, Nghifikwa allegedly killed a person by the name of Kauluma by shooting him at close range with a 9mm pistol at February 18, 2015.

He was also charged with attempted murder, alternatively negligent discharge of as firearm, for shooting Josefa Ndahafa in the head and shoulder with the same firearm on the same date as well as another count of attempted murder alternatively negligent discharge of a firearm for shooting at Tweumena Ndeshihafela with the same firearm on the same date. It is not clear from the record what led to the shooting incident.

Nghifikwa entered a Section 119 plea of not guilty on all charges on March 30, 2016. A Section 119 plea is for an accused to indicate his plea and for the PG to decide on what charges and in which court he will be tried. He was granted bail of N$3 000 on August 15, last year.

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