12 Jul 2013 10:00
WINDHOEK, 12 JUL (NAMPA) - The special advisor to Lands and Resettlement Minister Alpheus !Naruseb has been suspended after he was arrested for allegedly raping a woman at Katima Mulilo in the Caprivi Region last weekend.
Vincent Likoro has been suspended as special advisor to Minister !Naruseb with immediate effect, pending the outcome of the court case regarding the allegation of rape levelled against him.
His suspension was made public by the Minister of Presidential Affairs and Attorney-General, Dr Albert Kawana, in a media statement availed to Nampa on Friday afternoon.
?Comrade Vincent Likoro, the special advisor to the Minister of Lands and Resettlement, has been suspended with immediate effect. He has been suspended pending the outcome of the court case regarding the allegations of rape against him,? Kawana stated.
The statement went on to say that President Hifikepunye Pohamba recognises the fact that in terms of Article 12 (1)(d) of the Namibian Constitution, all persons charged with an offence shall be presumed innocent until proven guilty according to the law.
?It has, however, become untenable, given the fact that Comrade Vincent Likoro shares the same office complex with the alleged rape victim. This makes some of Likoro's bail conditions difficult to comply with. As a nation that believes in the rule of law and justice for all, the law must take its course,? Kawana explained.
The statement also indicated that the President ?fully believes in the independence of the judiciary?.
?We hope the case of Comrade Vincent Likoro will be concluded soon so that this matter is brought to its logical conclusion,? the Presidential Affairs? Minister indicated.
Likoro was arrested at Katima Mulilo by members of the Namibian Police Force (NamPol), and appeared in the Magistrate's Court at that town on Tuesday on a charge of raping a 38-year-old woman, who is reported to be his colleague.
He was released on bail of N.dollars 2 000.
Likoro was appointed in April this year by President Pohamba as special advisor to the Lands Minister, after serving for years as Swapo-Party regional coordinator in the Kavango Region.
Before this appointment, Likoro was tipped to become the governor of the Kavango Region.
Earlier reports carried by the daily 'Namibian Sun' newspaper had it that the alleged rape victim, who works for the Ministry of Lands and Resettlement in the Kavango Region, accused Likoro of raping her during an official visit to the Caprivi Region last weekend.
The incident allegedly occurred at Camp Kwandu on the outskirts of Katima Mulilo, where !Naruseb's delegation was booked in.
The delegation was on an official visit to Caprivi to consult traditional authorities on land matters.
Likoro, who spent Monday night in police custody following his arrest earlier in the day, appeared before Magistrate Nomsa Sibanda on Tuesday.
It is claimed that Likoro allegedly had sexual intercourse with the woman in her room on Saturday night.
According to the statement the woman gave the police, the sexual act was performed without her consent.
The woman stated that after dinner, Likoro remained behind, and it was during that time when he allegedly started making sexual advances towards her.
He allegedly joined the woman in her room, after which the two started kissing.
The woman claimed Likoro took advantage of the moment when he allegedly started having sex with her without her consent.
One of his bail conditions is that he may not discuss the details of the alleged rape incident with the minister, or members of his delegation.
He may also not be assigned to official delegations which the complainant forms part of.
The court also ordered him not to change his residential address in Windhoek, and the matter was postponed to 19 August for further police investigations.