The police have completed their investigations into the case of three Zimbabwean nationals accused of beating to death a nine-year-old girl whereafter her body was found burnt in a rubbish skip in January 2020 in the capital.
Upon making their appearance in the Windhoek Magistrate’s Court on Friday, Edward Nkata and Rachael Kureva – parents of the victim - and Edward’s wife Caroline Nkata, were informed that investigations into their case has been completed.
State prosecutor Like Phelem said they are ready for the accused to tender their preliminary plea in terms of section 119 so the matter can be summarised, and be forwarded to the prosecutor general’s office for a decision.
Magistrate Celma Amadhila postponed the case to 28 May for the preliminary plea explanation, remanding the accused in police custody.
The prosecution is charging the trio with murder, read with the provisions of the Combating of Domestic Violence Act, defeating or obstructing the course of justice, and violating a dead human body.
They are charged with having murdered nine-year-old Akundaishe Natalie Chipomho in Windhoek on 23 or 24 January last year, and of having tried to destroy evidence of the killing by dumping the girl’s body in a rubbish skip in the city’s Rhino Park suburb and setting her remains on fire.
The remains were discovered on 25 January 2020.
Caroline, who admitted guilt to the charges during their first court appearance, confessed in court that her husband (Edward Nkata) beat Chipombo. She was allegedly home when the deceased was being beaten. After the child died, her husband forced her to help him dispose of the girl’s body which was placed in a rubbish skip, big orange metal bins used to dump garden refuse. It was her testimony that he further forced her to accompany him to buy paraffin and thereafter dispose of the body, and to set it alight.
According to court documents, a post-mortem revealed the little girl’s death was caused by trauma to her head and lower abdomen.
The Nkatas were spotted dragging a wheelie bin in the eastern direction of Ooievaar Street around 21h00, and a witness felt it was suspicious because it was at night. The couple was caught on surveillance camera in the area.
According to the police, neighbours reported that the children, and specifically Chipombo, had been assaulted on several occasions, and that this had been reported to social services since 2019.
In an attempt to run from the law, the Nkatas tried to flee the country before they were arrested by the police at the Okakarara turn-off of the B1 road.
Murder accused… Caroline Nkata and Rachael Kureva.
Photo: Emmency Nuukala