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School incident puts caregivers and families under spotlight

School incident puts caregivers and families under spotlight

Samuel Shinedima

THE Windhoek City Police released a woman into the care of medical and healthcare workers as well as family members after she was caught on video attempting to drive away with a child at a Windhoek primary school on Saturday.

The Chief of the Windhoek City Police, Chief Abraham Kanime, revealed that the woman was immediately recognised by the Victim Support Unit from previous incidents.

Since the incident that sparked public uproar after the woman was heard saying: “I only wanted to kiss her”, the City Police have, through interrogation and tracing, established that the woman was often institutionalised for mental health issues in the past.

PICTURED: City Police says the state patient is harmless. Photo: Facebook.

Kanime praised his staff, pointing out that officers on the scene already established that something is not right from the actions and answers the woman gave in a video recording when she was confronted by angry members of the public.

“After we took the woman from the scene to our offices, we quickly established that she is classified as a Patient of The State because of recurring mental issues,” Kanime said.

Kanime said the police was satisfied by her behaviour and answers, as well as clarity by health workers and her family, that the person is harmless and was thus safely taken to the relevant authorities for care and further support.

“Our officers on the scene already realised that something was not okay and that there was a need to protect her. They immediately contacted the victim support team and they identified the woman from past encounters. She was then taken to the Katutura Hospital and later to a psychiatrist for further assistance,” he said.

Kanime said those entrusted with such responsibilities, either the State or the family of such persons, must take care of them in order to protect the patients and the public.

“If you see that they are not taking their medication or they are not where they are supposed to be, try by all means and make sure that they are handled with care and understanding,” he added.

Kanime said that while recognising the reaction of Namibians – given the nature of the incidences of children going missing in the country—Namibians must be guided by humanity when they are confronted by unusual behaviour so that the issues at hand can be dealt with properly.

Kanime said the conduct of the woman and her answers to questions from police officers demonstrated that she was an innocent person who meant no harm, and could hardly reconcile with herself.

“We only have one country and we should clearly be there to assist each other. When I watched the video, this lady was not aggressive. She innocently answered every question. I understand, but I don’t think she deserved to be filmed and exposed, but rather she should have been protected.”

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