WINDHOEK - Under-fire Gobabis Megasave manager Sarel de Waal who was filmed assaulting a store employee in a widely closed-circuit television recording has been described by workers as a “well-known bully” who sometimes lock employees in refrigerators.
De Waal who is currently in hiding was seen assaulting an employee of the shop, Sam Afrikaner, by slapping him several times for allegedly stealing fellow worker, a certain Riaan’s knife. Afrikaner speaking to New Era yesterday narrated the ordeal, saying De Waal assaults on fellow employees is nothing new and he has become a third victim after other two employees were assaulted and then later locked in a refrigerator.
“Yes I took Riaan’s knife because he took my cellphone, my intention was not to steal but to take his knife so that he can return my cellphone that he took in November,” said the 43-year-old resident of Kanaan informal settlement. A worker, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said De Waal who has only been at the shop a few months, has a tendency of beating up fellow employees.
“He is white nothing happens to him but I was just waiting for him to touch me so that I can teach him a lesson. We hear stories that he locked up fellow workers in refrigerators and all that but nothing is happening,” said the worker who claims to have worked at the store for over 20 years.
Namibia police spokesperson, Kauna Shikwambi yesterday confirmed that a case of assault with intent to cause grievous bodily harm was opened on Friday at the Gobabis police station but the suspect De Waal was not yet arrested as he is presumed to be in hiding. However, police investigations are underway. Gerrie Mostert, owner and manager of Omaheke Megasave at Gobabis, said in a media statement on Friday that one of the shop’s managers, Sarel de Waal, “was asked to leave our employment and our premises with immediate effect” on Friday morning.
In his statement, Mostert said the incident, which took place at Omaheke Megasave on Monday, “does not reflect our policies or management style” and that he did not condone or tolerate such behavior.
Mostert indicated that the incident took place after Afrikaner had been accused of having stolen from a fellow employee.
He said he received the recording of the incident in a cellphone message on Thursday evening, and had a meeting with De Waal on Friday morning. “The result of the meeting was that Mr De Waal was asked to leave our employment and our premises with immediate effect.”
Mostert also said: “I wish to apologise to the Namibian public for the hurt and anger the distribution of the video on social media has led to.”
Afrikaner is still employed by the shop, pending a police investigation, he added.
Lawyer Norman Tjombe has pledge to offer free legal service to Afrikaner asking people with more details to the incident to come forward.
2020-01-27 07:12:16 | 22 days ago