Ombudsman to Investigate Ndatipo’s Death

The Government has instructed the Office of the Ombudsman to investigate the exact circumstances which led to the tragic death of Frieda Ndatipo this week.

The 26-year-old Ndatipo- a member of a group called the ‘Children of the Liberation Struggle’ – was shot dead by the police along Leornard Auala and Hans-Dietrich Genscher Streets in Katutura on Wednesday morning during a scuffle with the members of the law-enforcement unit.

The investigation was officially announced by Prime Minister Hage Geingob during a media conference held at his office on Friday afternoon.

The Ombudsman himself, Aocate John Walters, has been appointed to lead this investigation.

“I, hereby, announce that an independent, credible, impartial and transparent investigation into the death of Frieda Ndatipo will be carried out in order to establish the truth as to what exactly happened that day.

I am, therefore, pleased to inform the Namibian nation that the Ombudsman, Aocate John Walters, under the powers vested in him by Articles 91 and 92 of the Namibian Constitution, as well as the Ombudsman’s Act Seven of 1990, is empowered to investigate an incident of this nature.

Accordingly, the Ombudsman has been requested and appointed to handle this matter”, Geingob told journalists.

The Premier said Government has full confidence in the Ombudsman and, therefore, he has no doubt that the matter regarding Ndatipo’s death will be handled in an impartial and transparent manner.

He then called upon all Namibian citizens to render their full cooperation to the Office of the Ombudsman.

Geingob further called upon potential witnesses to come forward, and give their evidence to the Ombudsman’s investigating team without fear or favour.

He also appealed to both local print and electronic media not to prejudge the matter, or the outcome of the investigation.

“Let us be patient and wait for the report of the Ombudsman. Let us allow the Ombudsman to exercise his constitutional and statutory functions”, noted the Premier.

Meanwhile, the leadership of the Democratic Turnhalle Alliance (DTA) of Namibia earlier described the killing of Ndatipo by the police as “sickening and morally indefensible”.

The DTA’s national chairperson Jennifer van den Heever said in a media statement that the use of deadly force against unarmed civilians can under no circumstances be condoned, defended or justified, and should be condemned by the leadership of the Namibian government and the nation at large.

Ndatipo was shot dead in the streets of the capital on Wednesday morning after members of the Namibian Police Force opened fire and shot with live ammunition at the ‘struggle kids’ to prevent them from marching to the Swapo-Party headquarters.

There was apparently a scuffle between the two groups, allegedly involving stone-throwing.

Ndatipo died on the spot.

Arrangements for her funeral are reportedly in full swing now, and she will be laid to rest at her home village in the Okongo district of the Ohangwena Region.


Source : The Namibian