Deputy PG Appointed As Judge

A SENIOR staff member in the Office of the Prosecutor-General, deputy Prosecutor-General Herman January, has been appointed as a judge of Namibia’s High Court.

President Hifikepunye Pohamba appointed January as a judge in the Northern Division of the High Court, situated at Oshakati, on a recommendation from the Judicial Services commission.

January was the most experienced staff member in the Office of the Prosecutor-General after the retirement of former Chief Public Prosecutor Danie Small at the end of last month.

He is the first practising prosecutor to have been appointed directly to the bench from Namibia’s prosecution service. Other former prosecutors who have been appointed as judges have first spent some time in private practice after leaving the prosecution.

January is also the first son of the Rehoboth area to become a judge of Namibia’s High Court.

Over the past 11 years January has been the leader of the prosecution team in the marathon main Caprivi high treason trial.

He has made a personal sacrifice for his involvement in the trial, after he was critically injured in a road accident in which he and two colleagues were involved in March 2005. One of his colleagues, Corelie Barnard, died in the accident on the road between Otjiwarongo and Otavi, while another colleague, deputy Prosecutor-General Taswald July, was also critically injured.

July is expected to now step into January’s shoes as the leader of the prosecution team in the trial.

January was born at Rehoboth in April 1960. He received his primary school education at a farm school in the Rehoboth area and completed his schooling at Dr Lemmer High School at Rehoboth, before he went on to study law at the University of the Western Cape in South Africa.

After graduating in 1986 with BA and LL B degrees, January started his legal career at the Windhoek Magistrate’s Court. He was transferred to the Rehoboth Magistrate’s Court as a prosecutor in the same year, and returned to Windhoek in 1990 to take up a post as a prosecutor in the High Court.

He was appointed as a deputy Prosecutor-General in 2000.

Source : The Namibian