Man gets 25 years for murder

Oshakati-Ndilinawa Gabriel has been sentenced to 25 years' imprisonment for intentionally killing Shuunto Nameto Petrus by hacking him with a panga on the neck at Okatwitwi location on December 4, 2011.

Oshakati High Court Judge Herman January, when delivering the sentence, said while the court is cognisant of his personal circumstances presented before court and that he has already spent three years behind bars, it does not compensate for the life he took away.

You took away the life of a valuable person, one you considered a friend or an acquaintance. There are limits within the law, but you have overstepped those boundaries because of anger, said the judge.

Gabriel is already serving a jail term for another sentence.

Gabriel pleaded not guilty and stated during the trial that he acted in self-defence, without providing further information.

However, the court disputed that he acted in self-defence when looking at the nature of the weapon used together with the position on the body where the injury was directed and force used.

In his testimony Gabriel said that a customer brought him a panga to sharpen it. However, when he was done he could not find the customer. So he tucked the panga into his waist belt and went to join his friends for a drink.

Gabriel claimed it was while he was enjoying drinks with friends that Petrus approached him to confront him about his girlfriend. That confrontation led to a scuffle between the two.

He testified that he hacked Petrus because he did not know Petrus' intentions.

He further told the court he wanted to slash Petrus on the shoulder because Petrus stormed at him.

However, evidence before court indicated that Petrus was chased by Gabriel, and another person, and was struck in the neck when he turned around. Petrus died on the scene.

Gabriel is said to have run away with the panga leaving behind his sandals and T-shirt. The State was represented by Advocate Taodagog Gaweseb.

Source: New Era Newspaper Namibia