By: Julia Heita
Warrant officer Lisias Nakanyala says it is not in the public’s interest for Namibia Economic Freedom Fighters (NEFF) commissar Michael Amushelelo and Affirmative Repositioning (AR) activist Dumbulukweni Nauyoma to be granted bail.
Nakanyala was testifying in the bail application of the pair at the Katutura Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday.
Nakanyala opposed bail for the two saying it is not in the public’s interest and the administration of justice.
“It is not in the interest of the administration of justice. If they happen to be released, they might re-offend a case of a similar issue,” he said.
He said that the charges Amushelelo and Nauyoma are facing are serious.
The warrant officer said that several videos are in his possession, showing the unruly behaviour of the pair.
“The state has evidence and witnesses about the matter,” he said as he took the witness dock.
Nakanyala said Amushelelo and Nauyoma are facing similar charges to six others who were released on the day of arrest on warning.
Nakanyala added the two were kept behind bars because they were the kingpins of the riot at China Town in Windhoek’s industrial area.
He said a video in his possession shows that Nauyoma had instructed the group of protesters not to disperse.
Upon cross-examination with defence lawyer Kadhila Amoomo, Nakanyala was questioned on why the two are still in custody.
Nakanyala, however, said they were arrested based on their involvement.
The state is objecting to granting bail to Amushelelo and Nauyoma for fear of interference with state witnesses and because “it would not be in the interest of the public or the administration of justice.” The state had also argued that investigations are still at an early stage.
On Monday, Amushelelo testified that he has a six-year-old daughter who depends on him. He also said he provides for his wife, Julieta Amushelelo, who was also part of the protesters arrested last Friday.
Amushelelo indicated that he would plead not guilty to the charges.
Nauyoma and Amushelelo were arrested in connection with the shutting down of China Town last week, following the Namibia Revenue Agency’s (Namra) decision to burn N$ 5 million worth of counterfeit goods.
Amushelelo on Thursday went to China Town in Windhoek, demanding that the Chinese nationals close their shops as they too are selling fake items.
The following morning, he handed himself over to the Windhoek police station. He demanded that he be handcuffed after Police Chief Inspector General Sebastian Ndeitunga said Amushelelo should hand himself over to the police for inciting violence and threatening.
That same Friday, Nauyoma and others went to China Town to demand the shops’ closure. They also protested for the release of Amushelelo, leading to police reserve officials using tear gas and rubber bullets to disperse the crowd.
Now known as the “China Town 8”, the arrested persons are Amushelelo, Nauyoma, Epafrass Mukwiilongo, Laurence Mwatile, Emily Mununga Annacky Amupanda, Risto Ithikwa and Julieta Amushelelo. Except for Nauyoma and Amushelelo, they were all released from police custody on a warning.
Magistrate Venatius Alweendo has since postponed the matter to 05 July for further investigations.
Defence lawyers Kadhila Amoomo and Nambili Mhata represent the accused.
The bail application was postponed to Wednesday at 14h00 for final submissions on the matter.