WINDHOEK - Concerned about the sky-high crime rate across the country, President Hage Geingob is considering bringing in the army to assist the Namibian Police Force to help maintain law and order.
Geingob said this while addressing traditional leaders during the official opening of the 21st Annual Meeting of the Council of Traditional Leaders in Windhoek yesterday.
The head of state said Namibia is currently under a dark cloud of a societal evil which threatens to destroy the moral fabric of the country’s social harmony as there is an increase in murders.
“Our nation is reeling – we reeling from the shock and devastation caused by the gruesome murders and killings of our women and girls by the very men and boys who should be protecting them from harm,” said Geingob.
He said ending gender-based violence and ensuring the security of women and children should become a national priority.
Therefore, Geingob said, each and every leader in the society, including traditional leaders, has a responsibility to ensure that “cowards who harm and kill our mothers and daughters are brought to book”.
“I am calling first on the Namibian Police Force to pull up their socks – they are doing a good job already but the situation is getting out of order and therefore we may even enlist the help of the army; we have to take action from government side while you are doing your part too,” he said.
“I am calling on all of us, including traditional leaders, to continue to act decisively to bring an end to these senseless killings,” he added.
Furthermore, Geingob said he recalled that during last year’s meeting at Rundu, the Deputy Chairperson of the Council of Traditional Leaders, Goab (Chief) Immanuel /Gaseb, on behalf of traditional leaders assured him that traditional leaders would rise to the occasion and assume their role of being a source of unity and resolution of conflicts and disputes, and move away from being a source of problems and a mere drain on public resources.
“Acting Chairperson [/Gaseb] told us today that there is a now a fund to try and address a few of the problems. I mention that traditional leaders shouldn’t depend on government alone, otherwise I will think they are civic servants and therefore I might give them orders, so we have to come with other ways to give dignity to those offices, so I am glad that there is a mention of funds,” he said.
“But the fund is not going to solve everything, citizens must contribute, subjects must contribute, we must stop depending on government on everything,” he added.
Prominent human rights lawyer Norman Tjombe yesterday said that with the current rate of crime, it is understandable that politicians would want to get the defence force involved in combatting crime.
However, he said, there has to be the understanding that the army is not trained to fight crime, like when to arrest, how to effect and make an arrest, how to take statements from witnesses and from suspects.
“It has to be carefully implemented, otherwise we will see that more cases are opened by members of the public than cases resolved by the law enforcement agencies,” he said.
2018-09-11 09:11:09 7 months ago