N$250 000 Swindled From Pensioner

Two men posing as employees of the Ondangwa Town Council last Tuesday allegedly conned Emilia Venondumbo (72) out of N$250 000 before they vanished into thin air.

According to Deputy Commissioner Naomi Katjiua of the Namibian Police, one of the men called Venondumbo a week before the swindle to inform her there was a cheque due to her from the Ondangwa Town Council.

“Upon arrival at Omuthiya the men informed Venondumbo that the car bringing the said cheque had broken down and the elderly woman was asked to withdraw money to pay for the costs to which she allegedly obliged,” explained Katjiua.

“Venondumbo initially withdrew N$10 000 but she was told the amount was not enough and she was instructed to withdraw an additional N$25 000. One of the two men somehow managed to add an additional zero to the withdrawal slip changing the amount from N$25 000 to a staggering N$250 000,” she said.

“When asked what such a huge amount was for, Venondumbo told the bank teller she was planning to distribute the money to members of her family. The teller then issued what she (Venondumbo) thought to be N$25 000 but was in actual fact N$250 000 which she in turn gave to the two men apparently without bothering to count the money,” said Katjiua.

One of the suspects is allegedly known as a certain ‘Saki’.

Police suspect the elderly woman’s nephew is the key to solving the crime. Police believe he was in on the plot to steal from the old woman, as he allegedly had knowledge of his aunt’s dealings with the Ondangwa Town Council.

Sakaria Upindi was arrested a day after the incident.

Katjiua aised the elderly to stop seeking the help of family members when dealing with monetary issues but to rather enlist the assistance of bank clerks and cashiers.

“No one will ask you for an amount as big as N$25 000 unless he or she has assurance of your banking details. It is most unfortunate that most of our parents cannot read but I urge them to stick to the amounts they wanted to withdraw from the beginning. Avoid being rushed into speedy transactions, as this is tricky. Initially Venondumbo was to get money and the next thing she was paying, so be careful,” aised Katjiua.

Source : New Era