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Hanse-Himarwa trial to resume next week

Hanse-Himarwa trial to resume next week

Hanse-Himarwa trial to resume next week

Eba Kandovazu

THE High Court trial of education minister Katrina Hanse-Himarwa in which she stands accused of corruption, will resume on Tuesday.
Court proceedings were adjourned on Thursday after the testimony of the Anti corruption Commission Director Paulus Noa.
Noa was called to the witness stand to answer to the minister’s counter accusations that the ACC carried out an irregular investigation when it came for her in 2014.
This week, the Investigating Officer Franco Esterhuizen was accused by Hanse-Himarwa for deliberately manufacturing evidence to incriminate her.
Esterhuizen however told the court that the reason the witness statements appeared to be the same in the first paragraphs was because the witnesses corroborated each other’s version of events. According to him, they were all in the meetings and related the version that the then Hardap Governor, Hanse-Himarwa indeed changed the mass housing list to include her sister in law and her niece.
The minister’s legal counsel, Sisa Namandje argued in court that the Hanse-Himarwa was treated differently from other people who were suspects in the matter. These are Councillor Edward Wambo and former Mayor Alex Kamburute. He claims that Esterhuizen adopted a different approach in investigating his client.
“I put it to you that you placed allegations on the statements for the witnesses to sign your version. The statements were signed on the same date and hour. This is irregular. The first statement you compiled was used as a guideline and that is why you even forgot to change the witnesses’ ages. You tailored these statements,” Namandje argued.
On Thursday ACC Director Noa testified that he was not aware that the statements were similar, although he added that procedures and rules are mandatory at the ACC.
“The procedure is very simple. Once a decision to investigate is made, an investigating officer gathers the evidence based on the allegations and the Director General considers if the matter has merits to be handed over to the Prosecutor General for prosecution,” Noa testified.

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