THE bribery case of fishrot implicated, James Hatuikulipi and his co-accused, Jason Iyambo and police reservist Sakaria Kuutondokwa, has been postponed to July next year despite the completion of investigations.
The state is, however, arguing that just because investigations in the matter are complete, in which the accused persons allegedly attempted to bribe a police officer in exchange of Hatuikulipi’s banking cards, it does not warrant the trio being granting of bail.
Hatuikulipi, his friend Iyambo, as well as Kuutondokwa, this afternoon made a brief court appearance at the Windhoek Magistrate’s court.
All three were denied bail because of fears that they might interfere with investigations in the main fishing corruption matter, which involves prominent local figures and international fishing companies.
Magistrate Molefe Siswaniso has since postponed the matter to July next year.
State Advocate Tangeni Iitula also objected to the granting of bail on the grounds of the seriousness of the offences, fear of abscondment and public interest.
The suspects face charges of corruptly offering a N$250 000 bribe to a police officer, defeating the course of justice, as well as influencing an officer.
The incidence occurred in January this year.
It is further alleged that they attempted to get documentation from the investigator, as well as Hatuikulipi and Pius Mwatelulo’s banking cards.
Iitula has, however, indicated that the state is ready to proceed with the plea and trial at any given time, even before July next year.
Meanwhile, Hatuikulipi and his main co-accused in the Fishrot case, former fisheries minister Bernard Esau, former justice minister Sacky Shanghala, Tamson Hatuikulipi, Ricardo Gustavo, Mike Nghipunya and Mwatelulo will make another court appearance on Friday.