Murder charge dropped for lack of paperwork

09 June 2021 | Justice

TUYEIMO HAIDULA

OSHAKATI

A man who allegedly murdered his girlfriend in 2019 has been released from prison because the State failed to submit the required documents for the case to be transferred to the Oshakati High Court.

Three years after his arrest in connection with the murder of Lucillia Bunita Quimbra (30), Edward Haiyambo (31) was released from prison in March this year.

When the murder was committed, Haiyambo was a fugitive after having escaped from the Oshakati State Hospital on 24 August 2019. He had been in hospital under police guard after having been arrested on a theft charge.

Provisionally withdrawn

The court records show that the murder charge was provisionally withdrawn by the Oshakati Magistrate’s Court on 3 March 2021 to allow the State to submit the necessary documents for the case to be transferred to the High Court.

Legal aid lawyer Pombili Shipila, who was appointed to represent Haiyambo in 2020, said the matter was withdrawn in terms of Section 6 of the Criminal Procedure Act because the prosecution was not ready to proceed to trial.

Shipila said the prosecutor-general had decided to transfer the matter to the Regional Court for trial.

“The prosecutor-general’s decision was submitted to court, only for the prosecution to make a U-turn claiming that the matter was wrongly transferred and that they wanted another postponement of the matter.

“We opposed the application and argued that the accused was entitled to a trial within a reasonable time,” Shipila said.

Fears about children

At the time of the murder, Inspector Thomas Aiyambo of the Namibian Police's public relations unit in the Oshana Region said Quimbra's three-year-old son was found sleeping next to his mother’s body.

Quimbra’s sister, Lucina Mwoombola, expressed disappointment in the manner in which the case has been handled.

Mwoombola said they worried for the safety of her sister’s four children, as Haiyambo had allegedly threatened to kill them.

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