Ya Nangoloh, Asino sued for N$500K

Defamation lawsuit for online comments

28 February 2018 | Justice

Outspoken human rights activist Phil Ya Nangoloh and former Ondonga Traditional Authority secretary Joseph Simaneka Asino have been slapped with a defamation lawsuit, which could see them cough up N$250 000 each for Facebook comments and online newspaper articles.

They are being sued by IT professional Werner Simaneka Kaniita and Ananias Natangwe Iiyambo, who are both members of the Ondonga King's Commission.

They are suing for N$250 000 each over the allegedly defamatory comments and articles.

Kaniita and Iiyambo claim the online articles were intended and were understood by readers to mean, among other things, that they are inciting tribalism as well as hatred and violence.

The articles were widely distributed and widely read by the general public.

They claim that the articles are allegedly understood and intended to mean that they are acting without authority or a mandate, and therefore unlawfully, and that they are contravening legislation prohibiting racial discrimination and are criminals.

The plaintiffs further claim that the articles indicated that they are subverting the Namibian government and are treasonous to the state, as well as the Ondonga king, the traditional authority and the Ondonga people.

They argue further that the articles are were intended to mean that the plaintiffs are subverting Swapo and that Kaniita is dishonest and manufactures evidence.

Ya Nangoloh, who the director of NamRights, and Asino, were further accused of telling their readers on Facebook and in the online newspaper articles that Kaniita and Iiyambo are anti-Kwanyama and are intent on undermining and subverting the “Pohamba-Geingob team” and are divisive.

The two plaintiffs are also arguing that the articles and comments intimated that Kaniita is a spy and that both he and Iiyambo are of low morals, ethics and integrity.

They are claiming N$250 000 each plus interest on the amount calculated at a rate of 20% per annum, worked out from the date of the final judgment.

The case is still at status management level.