A SHOOTING incident where the driver of a car was shot and seriously wounded by a police officer in the North and which was kept hidden from the Namibian Police’s high command, is currently the subject of a high level investigation after it was uncovered by Informanté.
The incident in the Ohangwena Region comes at a time where there are growing concerns that Namibia’s security forces are increasingly becoming trigger-happy following two recent shooting incidents, one involving the Namibian Defense Force (NDF) and the other involving the Namibian Police (Nampol).
While the incident in which a Windhoek taxi driver was allegedly shot and killed by a member of the NDF Thursday morning, was widely reported and immediately went viral on social media, the incident in which a police officer allegedly shot and injured a driver at Oshikango in the Ohangwena Region Saturday morning practically went unnoticed.
It is alleged that the 20-year-old Ali ‘Kabila’ Nanyeni and four passengers were driving on a two track road through the bushes from the Okanghudi kaKamati Village to Oshikango when he passed a police van going in the opposite direction.
Moments later, the driver was informed by one of the passengers that the police van had turned around and was speeding towards them.
Kabila pulled over to give the speeding police van the right of way when suddenly a shot went off and he was wounded in the thigh while still seated behind the steering wheel of his now stationary vehicle.
It is alleged that Kabila got out of the vehicle and fell onto the ground.
It is further alleged that the two occupants of the police van descended on him and one of them slapped him, accusing him of ignoring their order to stop.
The police officers rushed Kabila to the Engela district hospital, but he was immediately transferred to the Oshakati Intermediate Hospital where he underwent emergency surgery and was discharged days later.
“He is now recuperating at home but is still in pain. He underwent emergency surgery but the surgeons were unable to remove the bullet which is still stuck inside his body,” said Kabila’s mother, Ndepunikwa Nanduda.
“They shot my son for nothing. He was merely taking the car, a Toyota Runx, to the garage at Oshikango and all his passengers were close relatives, including my sister and my brother,” she said.
Nanduda is accusing the police of being trigger-happy and of applying double standards.
“Police spokespersons in all regions are every morning on the NBC radio reporting criminal incidents in their respective regions. They report even trivial incidents. What they never report are incidents in which police officers are the culprits,” she said.
When contacted for comment today, Ohangwena police spokesperson Andrew Nghiyolwa said that he was not aware of the incident that occurred last weekend.
He promptly made inquiries at the Oshikango police station but came back empty-handed a few hours later.
Approached for comment, NamPol’s Inspector General Sebastian Ndeitunga said that he, too, was not aware of the incident, but promised that he will immediately demand a full report from the Ohangwena regional police leadership.