Retired general sues for ‘illegal detention’

Retired major general, Thomas Ngilifavali Hamunyela has instituted legal proceedings against the Ministry of Home Affairs, Immigration, Safety and Security for an alleged unlawful arrest.

Hamunyela is claiming N$150 000 for unlawful arrest, N$100 000 for further detention of three days in a holding cell in January last year in Rundu and an additional N$170 000 for both claims and legal costs.

“The arrest and detention were not necessary and appropriate as the members of the police did not have any fear that the plaintiff (Hamunyela) if given summons would appear in court. There was no reasonable suspicion that the plaintiff had committed any offence and there was no warrant for the plaintiff’s arrest,” stated the court documents filed at the High Court of Namibia.

Furthermore, Hamunyela is claiming had it not been for the misrepresentation of facts by the Namibian police, he would have been released earlier.

“The Plaintiff 9 (Hamunyela) was remanded in custody on 13 January 2021 by the Rundu Magistrates Court, and remained in custody until granted bail on 15 January 2021.Had it not been for the unlawful actions of the members of the Namibian Police involved and their misrepresentation of facts and their malice-motivated opposition to the Plaintiff’s release, the Plaintiff would have been released when he appeared in Court on 13 January 2021, or earlier than 15 January 2021,” he added.

It is alleged that the 64-year-old Hamunyela was arrested in the Kavango West region at his farm last year January 12 for stock theft charges of three oxen and two cows, with a combined value of N$20 000.

He appeared before acting magistrate Rufinus Hikerua and prosecutor Hilia Munzenze.

Additionally, there was an alleged attempt by the Minister of Safety and Security Albert Kawana to drag the Inspector General Sebastian Ndeitunga into the lawsuit of Hamunyela, which was dismissed in April this year in the High Court.

Hamunyela is not a stranger to the Rundu Magistrate’s Court. In 2016 he appeared on fraud and corruption charges.

Hamunyela is alleged to have used a Namibia Defence Forces motor vehicle to transport building materials to his homestead, and also used NDF property, including a water bowser and trailer, in the

construction of his residence.

Hamunyela’s defence lawyer, Sisa Namandje told local media that he is convinced that there is no case against his client, and that they will vigorously challenge the charges brought against him.

Jabulani Ncube, who is representing Kawana, argued that Ndeitunga should form part of the proceedings as he is the employer of the police officers, who arrested and detained Hamunyela.

By Observer