Former member of parliament, Paulus Kapia, who was convicted of fraud in the Social Security Commission corruption saga has coughed out N$3 million worth of legal expenses over the 13-year period of his trial and still owes N$100 000 to his legal practitioner, it has come out.
The centre of the saga is the loss of N$30 million of SSC’s money meant for investments which were to be handled by Avid but later went down the drain.
Kapia was in court yesterday where his lawyer, Sisa Namandje of Sisa Namandje & Co took a grueling two hours pleading before High Court Judge Christie Liebenberg for a lesser punishment in light of his personal circumstances, the time the trial has taken and how the fraud was committed.
Pleading the jury to sentence him with “compassion” and “mercy” Namandje pushed for Kapia’s case not to warrant imprisonment which he said “would be destructive” on the accused.
“He is remorseful, he regrets. He was saddened that public money went missing,” said Namandje.
He indicated that a lenient punishment would be justified for Kapia given that he has three biological children studying at tertiary level, four others from his extended family and one biological child born in 2008 (year he was indicted) and has special needs.
Namandje submitted that Kapia was a first time offender who had a serious eye condition.
His thrust in his submission was also that despite the fact that Kapia had been accused of fraud and had a court trial at his back, he was able to find tolerance from the public given that he was re-elected as a member of parliament between 2010 and 2015.
Kapia managed to serve the nation as Chairperson of the Parliamentary Standing Committee of Foreign Affairs, Defense and Security, having been appointed by the president with the approval of parliament.
“He served this nation,” submitted Namandje, “There is no evidence that Kapia did not do his work. He was entrusted with an important role.”
Currently, he was serving the Swapo party at branch level, a big political fall, Namandje said, further stating that party colleagues had isolated him, which was punishment enough.
“Kapia has been humbled. He has paid. The effect of the offense was devastating for him," he said.