Fishrot: Fishcor’s Nghipunya arrested
17 February 2020 | Crime
Fishcor CEO Mike Nghipunya was arrested today in connection with the Fishrot bribery saga, police sources confirmed.
He was placed on suspension in December after it came to light that he had allegedly used his office as leader of the state-owned fishing company to allocate fishing rights in exchange for money. He becomes the 10th person arrested in connection with the Fishrot bribery scandal.
The main accused in the matter are James Hatuikulipi, who was forced to step down from his position as Fishcor board chairperson, his cousin Tamson, former justice minister Sacky Shanghala, former fisheries minister Bernhardt Esau, suspended Investec executive Ricardo Gustavo and Hanganeni employee Pius Mwatelulo. Others arrested are hangers-on of the main accused. They face separate charges.
During the filming of an Al Jazeera documentary titled ‘Anatomy of a Bribe’, Nghipunya was secretly recorded promising journalists posing as investors access to fishing quotas, using Fishcor as a vehicle.
Esau had stripped several private companies of their fishing quotas and handed them to Fishcor, which is now at the centre of allegations that it passed on huge allocations of its quotas to Icelandic company Samherji, which paid the company’s officials and local politicians handsome kickbacks in return.
Some of the companies that lost their quota allocations ended up retrenching employees as a result.
Al Jazeera journalists spent three months undercover posing as foreign investors looking to exploit the lucrative Namibian fishing Industry. Nghipunya was one of the officials the undercover journalists held private meetings with.