Omaheke Police toughen up against 'Dankie Botswanas'

23 Jul 2014 14:10pm
GOBABIS, 23 JUL (NAMPA) - Policies and legislation governing the import of second-hand vehicles into Namibia from Botswana could soon become stricter to avoid fraudulent activities often accompanying such activities.
A recent meeting of high-ranking police officers from Namibia and Botswana in Gobabis concluded that requirements for the import of vehicles need to be intensified to close any possible loopholes in the system.
The Namibian Police Force (NamPol)'s Regional Commander for the Omaheke Region, Commissioner Josephat Abel, in an interview with Nampa on Tuesday said the so-called 'grey imports' or 'Dankie Botswanas' as they are commonly known, have presented problems for the two countries.
“We have experienced various problems with the importing of these vehicles from Botswana. People have time and again attempted to defeat the system by reducing their invoice amounts, amongst other acts of dishonesty committed by those importing the cars,” he said.
Although not specifying what the new regulations will be, Abel said the two countries have agreed in principle to structure strict procedures for the importing of vehicles.
The regional commander admitted that most of the problems concerning 'grey imports' are on the Namibian side - pointing out clearing agencies as some of those who complicate the process.
“We have clearing agents who operate within the police zone. This makes our work very difficult as they apparently handle all paper work concerning the import of cars. We need to seriously review this system and see how we can have all role players work in harmony,” Abel noted.
The importing of second-hand vehicles from Botswana into Namibia has for long been a topical issue - with many car dealers and traders in Namibia arguing that such cars open up the Namibian market to cheaper and inferior quality vehicles.
However, those importing cars from Botswana argue that such cars are cheaper even when import and excise duties are added on. Local dealers have continuously had to bear the brunt as local buyers prefer to import cars rather than buying in Namibia.