THE Inspector General of the Namibian Police, Lieutenant General Sebastian Ndeitunga said he has the highest appreciation and regard for the officers and soldiers that are doing their national duty and ensuring the safety security of Namibians through direct actions like Operation Kalahari Desert.
Referring to the death of the 32-year-old Benesius Kalola on Thursday General Ndeitunga said that although the loss of life is regretted it is firmly believed that due process of the law will follow its course.
“We have taken the necessary legal steps that should be taken in cases like this. The incident will have no influence on Operation Kalahari Desert and it will continue as planned,” General Ndeitunga said.
Kalola, who died in hospital after he was shot by a member of a joint task team participating in the second phase of Operation Kalahari Desert on Thursday was an armed robber with two outstanding cases against him.
According to a statement released on behalf of the Joint Operation Command of Operation Kalahari Desert Phase II by the public Relations Division of the Namibian Police, preliminary investigations into the background of Kalola have revealed that he had two outstanding criminal cases against him. The first case being Robbery with Aggravating circumstances committed in 2015 while the second armed robbery case was registered against him during January this year.
In the same vein a case of murder was registered and a member of Operation Kalahari Desert Phase II was arrested and is expected to appear in the Katutura Magistrate Court on Monday.
General Sebastian Ndeitunga confirmed that a soldier was taken into custody on a charge of murder.
According to General Ndeitunga people in uniform are working hard to ensure the safety and security of the public. He said that the operation is very complex and the incident on Thursday just means that the joint task teams of Operation Kalahari Desert will have to work harder.
“We have reiterated to the people on the task teams to focus on their conduct and to be extra vigilant when they deal with the public to avoid such incidents at all cost.”
General Ndeitunga also repeated his request to the public to give their full cooperation to members of the joint task teams when asked to do so.
“Do not run from the members participating in this very important operation. Even if a person is a suspect in some case, it would be better to cooperate with law enforcement officers.”
Kalola was shot while he fled from the scene where a search for narcotics at house near the old Single Quarters was underway.
The statement further indicates that a substantial amount of dagga was recovered at the house and that three suspects were arrested during the raid.
“The victim later succumbed at the Katutura State Hospital as a result of injuries sustained. At this point it is not known what sparked the shooting as police investigations are still in the early stages.”