Dismay over Okahandja funeral violations

According to Ndeitunga, police tried to manage the situation at the burial, but their efforts failed.

20 July 2021 | Local News

OGONE TLHAGE







WINDHOEK

Arrests may beckon for those involved in arranging the burial of late Ovaherero Paramount Chief, Advocate Vekuii Rukoro, because of Covid-19 violations, Namibian police chief inspector-general Sebastian Ndeitunga said.

Hundreds of mourners flocked to Okahandja last weekend to pay tribute to Rukoro, who had succumbed to the virus.

When asked about the large number of people who gathered for the funeral, Ndeitunga said it seemed as if there was intentional disobedience of the Covid-19 regulations.

“There is a defiance of law from people who were organising. It seems there is a deliberate move not to comply with Covid-19 regulations. We are doing a post-mortem to see if we can nab some of them,” he said.

“The message was clear to the organiser. We are astounded to see such a big number,” he added.

According to Ndeitunga, police tried to manage the situation, but their efforts failed.

“They [the mourners] did not heed the call of the police. We could not use force and we will try to use appropriate measures to deal with the organisers to see if these people came on their own,” he said.

Minimal force

The police were also against using force to disperse the crowd because it would not send out a good message, Ndeitunga said.

“It would have been awkward if we used tear gas or rubber bullets. If we used tear gas, people would start running [through] the graveyard. It would not be a beautiful thing,” the police chief said.

The chairperson of the Ovaherero Traditional Authority Mutjinde Katjiua did not respond to questions on Rukoro’s funeral.

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