Erongo police accused of racially profiling suspects when making arrests

Stefanus Nashama

Lay lawyer and community activist, August Maletzky has accused police officers of racially profiling crime suspects when making arrests.

He made these allegations during a community meeting between the police and the Swakopmund police last week.

“The hands of police officers itch when it comes to arresting non-white Namibians when they commit crimes just because white is right, black is wrong. Drugs are moved from where white people are to the DRC,” Maletzky stressed.

According to Maletzky, the crime rates in the DRC location would naturally be high due to the large number of people living there.

“When you are living on 50 square metres and you have 100 people put together in that area, naturally the crime would be high,” he explained.

Maletzky has called on the police to create institutions that transcend skin colour when investigating crimes.

He said criminals should not be tolerated based on colour when only one side is mostly affected.

“Let’s not tolerate crimes. Let’s call a spade a spade. The white police reservists arrest non-whites roaming their streets because their interests are threatened,” he said.

Maletzky further asserted that despite some police officers’ corruption, they have never faced an arrest during their tenure.

“These are people who are supposed to investigate corruption, he added.

He urged the Inspector General of the Namibian Police, Lieutenant General Joseph Shikongo, to look into the matter.

A resident of the DRC, Selma Hoffni, said it is hard to find the police patrolling in town or at places where white Namibians stay.

However, she commended the police for doing their job of fighting crimes.

Hoffni also urged the police to treat everyone equally when dealing with crimes.

“It does not mean that when more crimes happen where non-white Namibians stay, the police shouldn’t investigate the places where white Namibians live. All people should be investigated regardless of colour,” she emphasised.

She said that this is the sole method for apprehending criminals.

“DRC has become a place of crime. Many things are happening here. We need the police to be on patrol to ensure no one becomes a victim,” she said.

Commenting on the crime-related issue, Lawmaker Maximalliant Katjimune said the police should deal with the crime decisively.

“We should never surrender the state to criminals. The police must deal with these things decisively,” he stated.

Katjimune added that Namibia should address the nation’s socioeconomic challenges.

“Equally, we must address the urgent prevailing challenges related to poverty, inequality, and unemployment,” he stressed.

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