A 51-year-old vendor who was left with a broken leg after a suspected case of police heavy-handedness and brutality in an incident at his home in Havana informal settlement has opened a case of assault with intent to cause grievous bodily harm against law enforcement officers.
On Tuesday three police officers allegedly beat and viciously kicked David Shambo at his house in Havana information settlement where he sells raw meat and kapana on a take-away basis in compliance with Covid-19 regulations.
He said the incident happened in full view of his children, housemates and his brother who was visiting him at the time of the incident.
Shambo said police issued him two tickets of N$2 000 each for breaking the state of emergency regulation on gathering and obstructing an officer(s) of the law to execute their duty.
But Shambo said there was no gathering at his home as there are 26 people living at his residence. Among these people are his eight children, nephews, cousins and relatives.
“I didn’t fight them (police). It was my questioning that caused this (sic),” narrated Shambo as he spoke from his hospital bed at the Katutura state hospital.
He said he questioned the police why they had to arrest him after they pitched up at his abode but apparently the police in turn shouted, ‘We will arrest this man, he thinks he has money.’
Shambo said he was sitting in the company of his brother who was visiting him at the time. The police asked him to whom did the meat belong and they simultaneously entered his corrugated-zinc shack.
Police allegedly handcuffed him, while pushing, strangling and suffocating him, causing him to fall. The police also allegedly pulled him outside the shack causing his trousers to fall to the ground.
“They threw me in the police van and they repeatedly stepped on my leg while on the way to the police station,” said the latest victim of police heavy-handedness and brutality.
He was whisked to the police station at around 12h00 but was only taken to the hospital around 15h00 as police ignored him when he said his leg was broken.
Namibian police spokesperson Deputy Commissioner Kauna Shikwambi said Shambo was not assaulted but an investigation has been launched to determine what actually happened.
Shikwambi said the police were going about their operation when they came to the particular street and found vendors selling from an undesignated area. She said some allegedly took their items and ran while some left their items there.
“But this man was adamant. When the police said, you need to vacate this place because it is not designated for sale, he said he was not going to leave, he is hungry, he is poor and that he needs to make a living. He is going to sell,” said Shikwambi, adding that this led to a confrontation to the extent that Shambo was threatening and insulting the police in the presence of a number of witnesses.
So the police decided to lock him up. “But he started to resist arrest, and that was when the wrestling occurred to an extent, and he fell on the ground and got injured in the knee. Police only realised at the station that he was limping, so they took him to the Katutura hospital where he is reported to be in a stable condition under police guard,” said the deputy commissioner.
She said a case of obstructing the police from executing their duties as well as assault through threatening was opened by the implicated police officers.
Shikwambi emphasized that police need cooperation from members of the public at all times and she insisted that police officers do not just go into streets to beat up civilians but to enforce the law.
2020-06-05 10:11:02 | 1 months ago