“Rotten apples” in Nampol will be exposed – Commissioner Basson

Eba Kandovazu

CORRUPT police officers will eventually be exposed for their unruly conduct, Khomas Commander, Commissioner Ismael Basson said, reacts to the recent arrest of a police constable on allegations of stock theft using a police van.

The usage of roadside cameras assisted in the arrest of Joseph Konghola, the police officer stationed at Otjomuise police station who is accused of stealing livestock and transporting the meat in a police van yesterday. Another man, Timoteus DesBasson also appeared in the Katutura Magistrate’s Court this afternoon on the same charges. According to Nampol Spokesperson, Chief Inspector Elifas Kuwinga, the duo has been charged with the possession of suspected stolen meat product.

Basson, in an interview with the Windhoek Observer described the incident as an embarrassment to the Namibian police force.

“It is embarrassing. It is something that we have been working hard on destroying and getting rid of. It is quite difficult to identify these type of officers but fortunately some of them are arrested. Eventually, all corrupt officers in the system will be caught. We suspect that this is not the first time. We suspect it happens and they get away with it. Police officers abusing resources for their own gain will be dealt with,”Basson says.

He adds that Konghola will possibly face suspension. Konghola and his co-accused were denied bail by Magistrate Jo-Rina Jagger, due to the seriousness of the offense and fear of interference with police investigations.

A third suspect is yet to be arrested, the court was informed.

“Yesterday at about 8AM, the police officer stationed at Otjomuise Police Station was operating the police vehicle and he approached the Dan Viljoen Road Traffic Point. He was stopped by police officers and they searched his vehicle and cattle meat was found in the loading box. They confronted him regarding ownership of the meat but he failed to give satisfactory answer. He and his passenger, a civilian were therefore arrested on the spot,” Nampol Spokesperson, Chief Inspector Elifas Kuwinga says.

Preliminary reports found that footage from the roadside camera show the police officer and three other men loading the meat of two slaughtered cattle. The suspects will return to court again on 11 January next year, after Magistrate Jagger postponed the case for further investigations. Konghola indicated he would be getting a private lawyer, while DesBasson says he would be conducting his own defense. Prosecutor Victoria Thompson represents the state in the matter.

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