KAMANJAB – Kunene Regional Police commander, Commissioner James Nderura revealed stock theft and assault cases continue to dominate crime statistics in the north-west Kunene Region. zFrom January to April this year, 74 cases of stock theft were reported. Another 57 cases of assault were reported, while 44 housebreaking cases were also reported. eriod, 20 drug-related cases, 8 rape cases, 4 cases of robbery and 3 murder cases were reported. Assault cases dominated the crime statistics for last year, with 60 cases, while 56 cases of stock theft, 48 housebreaking and theft, as well as 28 cases related to drugs were registered.
Cases of rape remained the same at 8 for the same period last year, while for domestic violence, 4 cases were reported, which showed an increase by 8 cases comparing to this year. There was no murder cases reported last year over the same period.
Housebreaking and theft cases mostly involved residential areas and businesses, especially at Khorixas and Opuwo.
Of the 7 cases reported at Opuwo, all suspects were apprehended.
Nderura appealed to business owners to install surveillance cameras.
About a month ago, some employees of OK Supermarket broke into the store and stole gas cylinders, but were arrested promptly after they were captured on CCTV cameras, while those who stole N$77 000 at Opuwo’s Yambeka business complex were also apprehended.
The police managed to recover N$47 000 of the N$77 000.
“We will not compromise on crime. Stock theft is the livelihood of communities and we will not allow people to lose their valuable animals,” Nderura warned. He also said that those who engage in criminal activities must refrain from doing so.
Some of the livestock reported as stolen from Kunene were smuggled into neighbouring Angola, while livestock stolen from Omusati and Oshana regions were taken to Kunene.
Livestock stolen from southern part of Kunene such as Khorixas and Kamanjab were transported to the coast. Sesfontein reported the highest cases of livestock.
In Ehomba, Khorixas and Okanguati, cattle were the favourites for those involved in stock theft, while in Opuwo it is small stock.
Last month, police chiefs from Kunene, Ohangwena and Omusati regions and Angola’s Cunene province set up a strategy to deal with cross border crime especially stock theft.
“We set a strategy for our sister countries and this is working well,” said Nderura. Twenty-six cattle were stolen from Omusati last month, but due to prompt action by the police, the cattle were recovered.”
Nderura said that stock theft was high in the Kunene region due to the fact most people are farmers and that unemployment was an attributing factor.
According to him, domestic violence declined due to sensitisation campaigns undertaken jointly by the police and residents, while cases of housebreaking and theft slightly went up due to businesses mushrooming in the region.