WINDHOEK – A total of 187 liquor outlets were closed down during the just concluded Operation Basadi, spearheaded by women in the law enforcement and various ministries.
During a visit to 714 liquor outlets, police found 56 children under the age of 18 at these outlets. Both shebeen operators and the children were warned. Also warned were nine women visiting liquor outlets with their babies.
Police also issued 17 fines to owners operating without liquor licenses.
This information was shared by Namibia police Deputy Inspector-General for Operations Annemarie Nainda while briefing the media about the success of the just-ended operation.
A total of 1837 women across Namibia, including representatives from Nampol, correctional services, municipal polices, various ministries such agriculture, environment and tourism, fisheries, gender equality and child welfare, and various anti-crime groups participated in the operation from November 28 to December 2, 2018.
The crimes of focus for the Basadi operation were rape, murder, kidnapping, common assault, assault with intent to do grievous bodily harm, underage drinking and baby dumping, amongst others. The women officers conducted stop and search operations, set up mini roadblocks and raised awareness through stop, talk, visible policing to enhance crime prevention.
Nainda said that 249 people, 215 men and 34 women, were arrested. The figure included 203 Namibian nationals and 46 foreign nationals from countries such as Zambia, Angola, Zimbabwe and China.
On gender-based violence (GBV) and child protection, 42 cases of domestic violence were reported, while 32 arrests were executed on GBV-related crimes. Nainda said 14 warrants of arrest were served for failure to pay maintenance.
“Due to the fact that GBV is a silent crime, which is mostly committed within household setups, it was imperative to conduct awareness campaigns on GBV to break the silence,” stated Nainda. Furthermore, one case of child trafficking involving a boy under the age of 15 was reported in Kunene Region.
The boy was reported missing on November 10, 2018 and found the following day at another village with multiple wounds. Two Namibian males, aged 39 and 37, were arrested in connection with the incident, while investigations still continue.
Nainda said upon investigation it was found that the biological mother of the boy, who is of Angolan origin, gave him to an unrelated male person who took him to a cattle post to look after livestock.
“At some stage the boy was severely assaulted when one sheep went missing, thus the boy allegedly decided to leave the village and as a result got lost,” stated Nainda.
She said the boy is currently in the care of his biological mother.
Nainda thanked all stakeholders, specialised units and women in uniform that portrayed profound enthusiasm in operation Basadi, which is geared primary to tackle crimes that affect women and children in general.
“I was indeed delighted to see all women being empowered whilst taking on their roles with eagerness. We look forward to the next Basadi operation,” stated Nainda.