WINDHOEK – Joy and delight was evident last week when the Windhoek Magistrate’s Court provisionally withdrew the fraud case against former employees of Namibian Sports Commission (NSC).
NSC former acting chief administrator Walter Haseb, 46, and Ivonne Nande, 35, a former development officer at the commission were arrested for their alleged involvement in the theft of N$4.9 million that went missing at NSC during 2016.
During their brief appearance in court on Friday before Magistrate Vanessa Stanley, state prosecutor Marcus Angula brought forward an application to have the matter provisionally withdrawn.
“At this stage we bring an application for the matter to be provisionally withdrawn pending the prosecutor general’s decision. Once investigations are finalised and the decision is available, the state will re-summon the accused persons,” explained Angula.
According to the state, the prosecutor general’s decision is not yet ready as there are still pending matters that needed to be sorted out.
Haseb and Nande appeared to be ecstatic and overjoyed by the news that their case was temporarily removed from the court roll.
The pair, who resigned from their positions, are facing a count of corruptly using an office for gratification and an alternative charge of theft, respectively.
According to the substantial evidence on their charge sheet, it is alleged that during the period of 2016, Haseb and his co-accused managed to misappropriate N$4 965 542.75 from the Commission.
The charges emanate from 30 cheques that were issued for the benefit of different sports associations. However, according to the internal auditor from the Ministry of Sports, Arts and Culture - who took the stand during the bail application proceedings - although the cheques were written to benefit different sports associations, they never reached the intended recipients.
During their bail hearing, Nande and Haseb were shifting blame between each other. Nande, accused of cashing 26 of the 30 cheques worth over N$2 million, denied pocketing the money. She claimed in her defense that she handed the all the funds over to Haseb.
Haseb has refuted Nande’s notion, stating that although he signed off on all the cheques, he had no idea where the money went.
He never received funds from Nande after she cashed the cheques, he argued.
With the order being granted to have the case temporarily withdrawn, the state refunded the bail money to the depositors. Haseb and Nande were on bail of N$40 000 each.