Attempt to stop coronation of Gibeon /Khowese clan leader fails

An attempt by Namibia's former ambassador to Zambia, Salomon Josephat Witbooi, to stop the coronation of the newly-designated leader of the Gibeon /Khowese clan (Witbooi Nama clan), has failed in the High Court on Friday.

The coronation of Hendrik Ismael 'Isaxub' Witbooi as the new designated leader or Kaptein of the Gibeon /Khowese clan can now go ahead as planned for tomorrow, Saturday, 06 July 2019, at the village of Gibeon in the Hardap Region.

The coronation can now proceed because the application by the former ambassador to stop the ceremonial event was on Friday morning struck from the roll of the Windhoek High Court.

The application was struck from the roll of the High Court because it is not urgent and cannot be allowed to jump the long queue of filing cases before this court to be heard on urgent basis or as an urgent matter.

High Court Judge Thomas Masuku said on Friday the application was struck from the roll of the High Court in terms of the provisions of Rule 73 for non-compliance with the strict requirements to be heard as an urgent matter.

The reasons for the striking of the case from the roll of the court will be made public through the Judiciary's official e-justice website on 12 July 2019, said Judge Masuku when handing down the order.

In the matter, the former ambassador unsuccessfully wanted the High Court to issue an immediate interim interdict to stop and set aside the coronation of Hendrik Ismael 'Isaxub' Witbooi as the new designated leader or Kaptein of the Gibeon /Khowese clan.

The former ambassador is claiming that he is rightful heir to the throne of the Gibeon /Khowese clan, and not Hendrick Ismael 'Isaxub' Witbooi.

Minister of Urban and Rural Development, PeyaMushelenga and other senior government officials are expected to be present at the coronation ceremony after the ministry approved the application of Hendrik 'Isaxub' Witbooi for recognition over the past few months.

In his heads arguments, Attorney NgatatueKandovazu (for the respondents) also strongly asked the court not to entertain the application because it does not meet the strict requirements to be heard as an urgent matter.

This court should not allow this application to jump the long queue of filing cases before the High Court. This application should be thrown out of this court, said Kandovazu.

Dennis Khama, who represented the applicants, wanted the court to allow the application to be heard on an urgent basis.

The former Namibian ambassador to Zambia was initially installed as the leader or Kaptein of the Gibeon /Khowese clan in a controversial event on 06 October 2015 amid unresolved succession disputes within the members of the clan.

He wanted to succeed former Prime Minister Hendrik Witbooi, who led the clan for 31 years until his death in 2009.

The applicants in the failed matter are Ambassador Salomon Josephat Witbooi, Elizabeth Kock Witbooi, Christina Fredericks, Anna Jacobs and PeniasEduartTopnaar.

The respondents are Minister Mushelenga, President Hage Geingob, Hendrik Ismael Witbooi, Simon Otto Jacobs and traditional leaders of the Witbooi Traditional Authority.

Lawyers SyliviaKahengombe and JolandaHinda assisted Kandovazu during the hearing.

Source: Namibia Press Agency