One of the men accused of conspiring with those implicated in the fisheries bribery scandal to divert N$75.6 million from the State-owned National Fishing Corporation of Namibia (Fishcor) for their benefit has approached the court for bail consideration.
The suspended CEO Mike Nghipunya yesterday brought a formal bail application before Windhoek magistrate Ingrid Unengu. However, the hearing could not take place, as the State was not ready to proceed. Both parties then agreed that the hearing should take place on 4 and 5 June.
Nghipunya is being represented in the matter by Thabang Phatela and Milton Engelbrecht whilst the State is represented by deputy prosecutor general Ed Marondedze, assisted by Hesekiel Iipinge. Nghipunya, who has been in custody for nearly two months, is facing three charges, including fraud, contravening the Anti-Corruption Act and corruptly using office for gratification as well as money laundering.
In this case, Nghipunya is charged alongside former fisheries minister Bernhard Esau, former minister of justice Sacky Shanghala, former Investec Asset Management Namibia managing director James Hatuikulipi, Esau’s son-in-law Tamson Hatuikulipi and Pius Mwatelulo. On the charge of corruptly using office for gratification, the prosecution is alleging that Nghipunya alongside Esau, Shanghala and James used their offices or positions in a public body to obtain gratification to obtain N$75.6 million that was paid to them or entities of their choice between August 2014 and December 2019.
The money was allegedly paid through the company Celax Investment Number One (Pty) Ltd, via the law firm De Klerk, Horn & Coetzee Incorporated. Tamson and Mwatelulo are charged with conspiring with the other four to commit the offence of corruptly using an office or position to obtain gratification.
On the charge of fraud, the prosecution is alleging that Nghipunya together with Esau, Shanghala and James defrauded Fishcor and government by channelling payments totalling N$75.6 million to themselves or entities of their choice.
The money went through Celax Investment Number One and the law firm De Klerk, Horn & Coetzee Inc. The prosecution is charging all six men with money laundering. In the second case, Nghipunya’s co-accused are facing tax evasion with counts ranging from corruptly using office, fraud, money laundering.
2020-05-28 10:08:49 | 1 months ago