Nampol sends detectives to Botswana

16 November 2020 | International

TUYEIMO HAIDULA

OSHAKATI



The Namibian police have sent three detectives to Botswana for a joint investigation into the killing of three Namibian citizens by the Botswana Defence Force (BDF) along the Chobe River, near Kasane.

The three Namibian brothers were killed alongside their Zambian cousin, Namibian police Inspector-General Sebastian Ndeitunga said.

He said the bodies could not be repatriated to Namibia before post-mortem examinations were conducted according to the laws of Botswana. The police chief said the Namibian government assigned a doctor from Katima Mulilo to observe the autopsies but this was delayed as the doctor needed a visa.

“On Wednesday [last week], the first team made up of two police officers and two family members left Namibia for Botswana. Speaking to my counterpart today (Thursday), I was informed that they have arrived safely and they were received warmly,” he said.

The bodies arrived in Namibia on Saturday.





Investigation

Ndeitunga said the joint investigation would start tomorrow. “We are going to identify seasoned detectives. They will be departing on 16 November from Namibia. The government is doing all that is possible and we have to trust the process that has been embarked on by both governments. Secondly, we should thank the government of Botswana for their commitment and dedication to cooperate with us without any reservation,” he said. Ndeitunga also used the platform to tell Namibians to respect the laws of other countries. “We have to respect the law to avoid inconveniences. Government is engaging the Botswana government. We ask our citizens not to cross into other countries without using entry points,” he stressed.

The three Namibians were shot on 5 November under Botswana's shoot-to-kill policy because they were assumed to be part of a poaching syndicate. Their family said they were fishermen and were unarmed.

President Hage Geingob last week met with the deceased men's family. “The shooting incident by the Botswana Defence Force, in which four Namibians from the same family lost their lives, is deeply regrettable. “Prior to my meeting today with the bereaved family of the deceased, I had a telephone conversation with President Mokgweetsi Masisi to discuss the incident. I assured the bereaved family that this unfortunate incident is receiving the utmost attention it deserves from the relevant authorities in our two countries. A joint investigation will be carried out,” Geingob said. The president said he had also summoned Botswana high commissioner Batlang Comma Serema to express the Namibian government's concern over the shootings.

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