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State wants eight years for Madisia, Mulundu

2023-05-19  Roland Routh

State wants eight years for Madisia, Mulundu

State advocate Henry Muhongo on Wednesday asked Windhoek High Court Judge Christi Liebenberg to send both Azaan Madisia and her brother
and co-accused Steven Mulundu to jail for not less than eight years on the conviction of defeating the course of justice.

He further asked for a sentence of one year each on the two counts of fraud that Madisia (30) was convicted of, adding that he has no objection if the sentences run concurrently.

The judge exonerated them the previous day on charges of murder and robbery over the death of 22-year-old Shanon Wasserfall, which led to
scenes of unrest as family members and friends were visibly upset with the judgement and shouted ‘justice for Shanon’, and called the judgement a “farce”.

Judge Liebenberg found that the State did not prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Madisia and Mulundu (25) were culpable for the death of

He, however, convicted both on a charge of defeating the course of justice, and Madisia alone on two counts of fraud on their own admissions.

During submissions on the sentence to be imposed, Madisia’s Legal Aid  lawyer Albert Titus implored the court to impose a sentence of five years on the defeating conviction, and one year each on the two fraud convictions.  He, however, asked the court to order the sentences to run concurrently. 

Tanya Klazen, the Legal Aid lawyer of Mulundu, asked the court to sentence her client to three years, with one year suspended for five years on the usual conditions. 

Klazen argued that Mulundu’s moral blameworthiness was less than Madisia’s as he was at first reluctant to help her get rid of the body, but only agreed after seeing his sister’s

 She further said that he was also a youthful offender, who was influenced by his elder sibling. According to her, the court must thus draw a distinction between the moral blameworthiness of the two accused persons. Muhongo, on the other hand, wanted to know nothing about a distinction between the accused. He submitted that they were equally to blame for the offence they committed. 

He further said it was a gruesome crime, as it robbed a family of their chance to have a decent funeral for their loved one. “It was harsh and brutal, and traumatised the family and society in general,” Muhongo stressed.  He said Madisia in particular had no concern for the deceased and her family. In the first instance, he said, she did not seek help for the deceased and instead decided to throw her body away like trash. And to add insult to injury, she made continuous progress requests from the family and the police whilst knowing what happened to Shanon. 

This, he added, resulted in her body being found only six months later in a bad state. Muhongo further attacked Klazen’s assertion that Mulundu was a youthful offender. 

According to him, the act was that of an adult, and wanted to know what young person would commit an act like that. Wasserfall – a close friend of Madisia – died in April 2020, ostensibly from a fall in Madisia’s flat after some pushing between them. Madisia then reported Wasserfall missing, and allegedly also took part in some of the searches conducted to find her.

 Both pleaded not guilty to charges of murder and robbery with aggravating circumstances, but pleaded guilty on a charge of  defeating or attempting to defeat the course of justice. Madisia pleaded guilty to two additional counts of

2023-05-19  Roland Routh

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