The joinder application hearing in the case of former justice minister Sacky Shanghala and his former employee Nigel van Wyk was postponed to November by Windhoek Magistrate’s Court yesterday.
According to State prosecutor Hiskiel Iipinge, the matter could not proceed as inmates at Windhoek Correctional Facility where Shanghala is being detained are not allowed to leave due to the spike in Covid-19 cases at the facility.
Shanghala and Van Wyk had their matter postponed in absentia to 14 December.
In August, the State brought an application to have the current case joined to the Nengomar case.
According to the State, the charges that Shanghala and Van Wyk are facing derive from the main case in which Shanghala is also an accused.
During yesterday’s court proceedings, Van Wyk’s lawyer Jermaine Muchali informed the court that they intend to oppose the State’s application.
He explained his client allegedly does not want to be linked or associated with the Fishrot case.
Shanghala’s lawyer Appolus Shimakeleni said that in the meantime, they do not intend to oppose the State’s application.
However, both lawyers brought forth their concerns regarding magistrate Venatius Alweendo being the presiding officer in the matter.
They requested that a different officer presides over the matter, as Alweendo was a respondent in a matter in the High Court in which the accused were challenging their warrants of arrest.
Alweendo was the magistrate who issued the warrants used by the Anti-Corruption Commission of Namibia last year.
Shanghala and Van Wyk are accused of attempting to defeat the course of justice. It is alleged that Van Wyk was caught by ACC removing potential evidence from Shanghala’s residence in Windhoek.
The prosecution alleges that the material he removed could be evidence in the ongoing investigations of the bribery fishing quotas case, a case that is sensitive and of a serious nature.
In addition to the charge of obstructing the course of justice, the duo faces another charge of money laundering and alternative charges that fall under the Prevention of Organised Crimes Act (Poca).
The prosecution alleges that between in January 2018 and December 2019, Van Wyk received more than N$697 000 from Otuafika Logistics.
The company is co-owned by James Hatuikulipi and his cousin Pius Mwatelulo. It is alleged that during the same period, Van Wyk further received more than N$309 000 from Olea Investments, a company owned by Shanghala.
The money was allegedly transferred to Van Wyk’s personal account at Bank Windhoek. The State indicated that Van Wyk knew that the funds were derived from unlawful activities.
Both accused are currently in police custody.
2020-09-18 10:03:59 | 2 months ago