WINDHOEK - Hendrick Uirab, a resident from Mariental who confessed to stabbing his girlfriend and mother of his young son, will be sentenced on September 25, Windhoek High Court Judge Dinnah Usiku said yesterday.
This, after Judge Usiku heard submissions on the sentence at the High Court situated at the Windhoek Correctional Facility.
Uirab admitted that he stabbed Katrina Maria Rooi to death at the Mariental cemetery during the period June 18- 19, 2017.
“I was overcome with anger as I was the one who maintained the deceased and her children and I took out the knife and stabbed her in the chest. I don’t know how many times,” Uirab said.
The judge convicted Uirab on his own admission, but discharged him on a charge of attempted murder.
Testifying in mitigation yesterday, Uirab told the court that he was very sorry for what he has done and regrets it deeply.
He further said that he not only hurt his own family and the two sons of the deceased, but also the family of the deceased and he apologised unreservedly.
He however denied that he attempted to murder another person by hitting him with a panga on the forehead.
Judge Usiku acquitted him on the charge of attempted murder as she found that the wound the alleged victim suffered was not severe enough to be considered attempted murder.
She said that the victim testified that he did not seek medical assistance, but treated the wound himself.
During submissions on the sentence, the defense counsel asked the judge to be lenient on Uirab as he is a first offender and pleaded guilty thereby not wasting the court’s time.
According to him, a sentence in the region of 30 years with five years conditionally suspended would be a fair sentence to the accused and society.
While society expects the court to harshly deal with this type of offences, the lawyer said, they do not expect the courts to impose a sentence that will break such an offender.
He further said that Uirab was a productive member of society before his incarceration and could continue to be one if released in future.
Ian Malumani, on behalf of the state, argued that society is pleading with the courts to send out a very strong message to likeminded persons as the accused that violence against women and children will not be tolerated.
According to him, a life sentence would be appropriate in the circumstances.
The state also called the aunt of the deceased, Aletta Rooi to testify in aggravation of sentence.
The distraught woman, who started crying as soon as she laid eyes on Uirab told the court that she basically brought up the deceased and her brother after their mother passed away.
According to her, the brother of the deceased was so affected by his sister’s murder that he had to get injections to keep him calm.
She further denied claims by the accused that he assisted financially to the funeral of the deceased and said she had to knock on the door of the governor for assistance.
She asked the court to send Uirab to prison for a long time as she is afraid what he would do to the children of the deceased if he is released from prison any time soon.