Katrina's joyous celebration questioned

02 August 2019 | Justice

Former education minister Katrina Hanse-Himarwa and her supporters have been criticised for celebrating her N$50 000 fine for corruption.

A video clip of Hanse-Himarwa giving a speech to a crowd of supporters at her house after the High Court slapped her with a fine on Wednesday has gone viral.

She was found guilty of corruptly using her former office as Hardap governor for gratification by removing two Mass Housing beneficiaries from a waiting list to make way for two of her relatives.

South African professor Nixon Kariithi believes Judge Christie Liebenberg was quite lenient when he fined Hanse-Himarwa N$50 000 or 24 months. Kariithi also believes it might be interesting to see if there is scope for an appeal against the rather light sentence.

“The judiciary could greatly assist society in stamping out corruption by handing down sentences that fit the crime,” he said.

Political commentator Ndumba Kamwanyah believes National Council chairperson Margaret Mensah-Williams dancing in support of someone who has been convicted of corruption on national television is unacceptable.

Although he pointed out that there is nothing wrong with her supporting her friend, Kamwanyah questioned whether she was on official leave during the trial.

“It does not send a positive massage when a national leader is celebrating a case involving corruption - a scourge Namibia is fighting so hard to root out. I am sure there are other high-ranking officials who supported Hanse-Himarwa, but they were not seen,” he said

Mensah-Williams declined to comment on whether she was on official leave during the trial.

“Unfortunately, with all due respect, I will not respond to any criticism because I will give it legitimacy. I have my conscience, my conscience speaks to me and it is clear,” she said.

Kariithi said politicians and other public leaders often show double standards when they stand by their comrades, even in the face of serious malfeasance.

According to him, the question that emerges from such actions is whether expressing solidarity with a convicted fellow politician devalues anti-corruption messages.

Popular Democratic Movement (PDM) leader McHenry Venaani said people should not celebrate corruption.

“Even if one is convicted it is natural to have supporters who support you in whatever you do. All of us can wish any person well, but the way we wish them well must show our sympathy and not a celebration,” he said. Venaani also feels Hanse-Himarwa must apologise to the people whose names she has removed from the Mass Housing list.

Ombudsman John Walters said there is nothing untoward about Mensah-Williams supporting her friend.

“What I can infer from that is that they celebrated their great relief of her being fined and not being given a custodial sentence, but that is a tag she will carry for a long time.”

[email protected]


Similar News


No reprieve for Fishrot 6

5 days ago - 21 February 2020 | Justice

The so-called Fishrot Six yesterday returned to the Windhoek Magistrate's Court, which ordered that they be remanded in custody until 23 April to allow for...

Judiciary hits back

1 week ago - 19 February 2020 | Justice

The Office of the Judiciary has defended itself against “undue attacks”, including a Landless People's Movement (LPM) allegation that it has been captured by the...

Lack of funds bedevils access to justice

1 week ago - 14 February 2020 | Justice

Namibia is struggling to serve justice because of inadequate funding, Chief Justice Petrus Shivute said at the official opening of the legal year this week....

Hands off Judiciary - Geingob

1 week ago - 13 February 2020 | Justice

President Hage Geingob has cautioned Namibians not to question the integrity of the Judiciary, because that would cause chaos or anarchy. Geingob was speaking...

Courts' hands tied

2 weeks ago - 12 February 2020 | Justice

Money and staff shortages have led to the National Forensic Science Institute (NFSI) being unable to conduct scientific examinations on time, which is causing court...

Court scraps EVMs without trail

2 weeks ago - 06 February 2020 | Justice

The Supreme Court yesterday declared that the use of electronic voting machines (EVMs) without a paper trail during the November 2019 presidential election was unconstitutional,...

Captain fined N$950k, Samherji vessel released

2 weeks ago - 06 February 2020 | Justice

The captain of an Icelandic vessel linked to the Fishrot bribery scandal has been fined N$950 000 or 12 years in prison by the Walvis...

Supreme Court upholds presidential poll result

3 weeks ago - 05 February 2020 | Justice

JEMIMA BEUKESThe Supreme Court has ruled it will not nullify the result and order a rerun of the 2019 presidential election, which means that Hage...

Itula vs Geingob: Endgame beckons

3 weeks ago - 05 February 2020 | Justice

STAFF REPORTER With judgment in the presidential election challenge brought by independent presidential candidate Dr Panduleni Itula set to be handed down...

Hanse-Himarwa suffers setback

3 weeks ago - 04 February 2020 | Justice

Former education minister Katrina Hanse-Himarwa suffered a setback yesterday when High Court judge Christie Liebenberg struck her appeal from the roll, saying he did not...

Latest News

WBSR invests N$93.6 mln in...

20 hours ago | Business

With an investment of N$93.6 million in a new salt processing plant Walvis Bay Salt Refiners (WBSR) can now target international markets as the company...

Wanted: Business direction

20 hours ago | Business

Jo-Maré Duddy – Government policy – or the lack thereof, government regulation, government failure, government’s fiscal position and the recession: Ask the business sector in...

Africa Briefs

20 hours ago | Economics

SA could use mining royalties for sovereign fundSouth Africa could use mining royalties to set up a proposed sovereign wealth fund, mineral resources and energy...

Let's work together and solve...

20 hours ago | Business

Chantell Husselmann - The PwC Business School has started the year 2020 on a high note with a special occasion that marks the first of...

Dark shadow over fishing quotas

20 hours ago | Opinion

With a total of 5 190 fishing rights applications received by 31 August 2018 for the 90 to 120 rights available in the new allocation...

Deere taps into tech in...

20 hours ago | Business

It's ride-hailing, farm style. Deere & Co. is teaming up with the “Uber of tractors” in Africa and betting on a future where farmers summon...

NSX bears brunt of recession

20 hours ago | Business

Jo-Maré Duddy – The recession didn’t spare the Namibian Stock Exchange (NSX) last year: Trading volumes dropped and the share prices of most of the...

Nust staff expose 'rot'

20 hours ago | Education

A group of concerned Namibia University of Science and Technology (Nust) staff members have appealed to President Hage Geingob as the “last resort” to rescue...

Ndeitunga wants more operational manpower

20 hours ago | Police

Nampol Inspector-General Sebastian Ndeitunga says some of the biggest challenges facing the police force are the increase of violent crimes, gender-based violence and the high...

Load More