The Ministry of Health and Social Services and the University of Namibia media lecturer, Fred Mwilima, are currently in mediation after the latter sued the ministry for N$18 million over the death of his wife, who was shot at work in Windhoek City Centre.
The case was referred for mediation to allow the parties through a mediator to see if they can reach a settlement in their matter.
On Tuesday, High Court judge Eileen Rakow postponed the matter to 21 June for the ongoing mediation to continue, as it was not yet finalised.
Mwilima filed an N$18 million lawsuit last year against the health ministry, stating they failed to protect his wife Sarah Mwilima while on duty.
In addition, they failed to act when the alleged killer displayed mental illness, dating back to 2015 – four years before the shooting incident.
Sarah, who was a management unit director at the health ministry under the Global Fund, died after her subordinate Simataa Simasiku charged into her office and shot her three times on 28 January 2019.
Sarah was 51 at the time of her death.
According to Simasiku’s indictment, he went to his workplace on the second floor of the City Centre building, armed with a pistol and seven live rounds.
Thereafter, he went to the eighth floor, where Sarah and Ester Nepolo had their offices and once there fired at least three to four shots at Sarah that struck her in the chest, neck and arm, causing her to die on the scene due to the injuries sustained from the gunshots, it is stated.
He then fired one shot at Nepolo, which struck her in the neck, and he then left the scene, collected his child at daycare and took the child to his residence, the indictment further reads.
It is further stated that Simasiku then drove to a police station where he reported the shooting and handed his firearm and its licence, holster and two bullets to the police.
Simasiku, however, cannot be held liable for the shooting after two psychiatrists diagnosed him as being schizophrenic, and he was found unfit to be tried.
In the suit, Mwilima said his wife’s death has affected him and the family greatly, and they have suffered emotional shock.
According to him, his wife, who was gainfully employed, would have continued to support their family had she not been killed.
This tally to N$10 million for the remainder of 13 years of her life before retirement at the age of 65.
Furthermore, his wife would have received a pension and other benefits from the date of her retirement at the age of 65 for the remainder of her natural life in the sum of N$20 000 per month.
For patrimonial loss, Mwilima is seeking compensation of N$15 million and N$2.2 million for emotional shock and loss of his wife.
The ministry, through government attorneys, has since denied liability for the tragic incident.
They claim they were not aware of Simasiku’s mental illness or when it developed.