Namibia: Community Members Blame Police for Murder

COMMUNITY members at Walvis Bay assert that the murder of five-year-old Wilfred Eiseb could have been prevented if the police had assisted his mother when she sought help at the police station last week before the murder.

Yesterday, Wilfred’s 29-year-old stepfather Rikki Narib appeared in the Walvis Bay Magistrate’s Court for his death.

Narib allegedly murdered the boy on Friday and buried him in the dunes.

Narib pleaded not guilty and will conduct his own defence. The case was postponed to 22 March 2023, for further investigations to be carried out. Narib was remanded in custody.

This follows Narib allegedly attempting to burn down his sister’s shack on Wednesday night, believing that his estranged wife, Memory Eises, was inside.

Eises went to the police station the following morning at 06h00 to tell the police that she was in danger.

She said the officer indicated that the officers who deal with gender-based violence cases would fetch her. “At 08h00 I was told that the police car would not start. I sat there until 09h30 but kept getting excuses until I just walked away. I told them that my blood will be on their hands if something happens to me. They found me walking on the road and said a car was now available, but I just proceeded to my sister-in-law’s house,” said Eises.

She said she was especially shocked when they returned to the police station with her sister-in-law, who wanted to make a case against her brother for burning her shack.

“The police officer said that a ghetto is useless. It would have been better if it was a house. My one-year-old baby was making a noise and he asked me rudely to go out. I asked him if he was crazy to shout at me like that, and we started to exchange words until I walked out.

“The police took our statement and told us to inform them if we see my husband. I asked if it was not their job to find him, and they said that they cannot just arrest someone for nothing,” Eises said.

She said she again spent hours at the police station on Friday after she was told that her child was taken.

The police allegedly left her to sit and wait while they were busy with other people, and only started reacting when she showed them that the suspect sent a message stating that he had killed her son.

Family spokesperson Maureen Somaes said changes are needed at the Tutaleni and Kuisebmond police stations, as well as the gender based violence division.

“The police do not take cases, especially that of gender-based violence seriously, and always have an excuse with transport. They speak to community members in a bad way. Memory could not walk freely on the street, because she feared that he would attack her. She has been trying to report her problem to the police from August, as her husband kept threatening her. The police are racist and impolite, especially against Damara speaking people. We are puzzled that so many police vehicles were at the crime scene, while Memory was told earlier that there were no cars available.”

The group demanded to see the Erongo police commander to air their grievances and for president Hage Geingob to intervene in the matter. They also said that they were disappointed that the town’s leadership did not visit the family. They want police members to wear name tags to be easily identifiable when community members want to complain.

Erongo regional commander Niklaus Kupembona called for calm while the allegations are being investigated.

“I have put up a team to investigate the allegation. If we find out about negligence on our part or that any member did not behave according to the Namibian Police rules and regulations, steps will be taken.

“I want to urge public members to immediately inform station commanders if they encounter such conduct from police officers. I also urge them to visit my office or contact me immediately to avoid such issues. My number is available. We are there to render quality services to the public,” he said.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *