Windhoek-Eleven people died as a result of drowning within a span of 11 days, including two children.
Namibian police spokesperson Chief Inspector Kaunapawa Shikwambi said: “With the rainy season upon us, the public are encouraged to be careful and to not underestimate the level of water when crossing. It is very important to assess first, and be sure, that it is safe to cross.”
A particularly tragic case of drowning happened at Von Bach dam where three people lost their lives on December 23, 2017. It is alleged that a group of people were having a party at the dam.
Two women took a canoe to row in the water but unfortunately the canoe capsized.
According to the police report, a man jumped into the water to rescue them but he too ended up drowning.
The victims were identified as Valentino Griffeths, 21, Amalia Ndeshipanda Shilongo, age unknown, and Letichia Michaels, 27. In another incident, an epileptic man drowned in the river near farm Driebos, Keetmanshoop on December 24. It is suspected that Ernst Isak Willems, 20, drowned while swimming.
The Namibian Defence Force-Navy lost an employee, Erens Uriseb, 29, to drowning on January 1.
It is alleged that Uriseb and his friends were having a braai at the Lüderitz lagoon. “The deceased got out of the car, undressed himself and went into the sea for a swim. Strong wind and waves moved the deceased deeper into the sea, which caused deceased to drown,” explained Shikwambi.
Nampol is urging the public to be cautious at all times when approaching or crossing water. Parents are also urged to deter their children from environments full of water especially, if there is no supervision.
“In as much as we know that water is life, water can equally take lives, hence the need to be cautious at all times,” noted Shikwambi.