NamRights condemns police killing of 'struggle kid'

28 Aug 2014 17:20pm
WINDHOEK, 28 AUG (NAMPA) – Namibia's human rights watchdog organisation has strongly expressed its condemnation, dismay and sadness over the senseless killing of a female member of the group of the 'Children of the Liberation Struggle.'
Frieda Ndatipo, 26, was shot dead by the Namibian Police in the streets of the capital on Wednesday morning, allegedly after a scuffle and stone-throwing-street battle with members of a law-enforcement unit over the group’s plan to march to the Swapo-Party headquarters.
NamRights' Executive Director Phil Ya Nangoloh said in a media statement availed to Nampa here on Thursday that “although the senseless killing incident involves only one person, the modus operandi and the exact reason for the killing is reminiscent of the 16 August 2012 brutal Marikana massacre of the 34 South African mineworker demonstrators”.
He is, therefore, calling for an urgent judicial enquiry to be launched into the circumstances of this “cowardly act of police brutality”.
Ya Nangoloh also requested the Inspector-General of the Namibian Police Force (NamPol), Lieutenant-General Sebastian Ndeitunga, to immediately suspend the police officer who gave the orders for this “brutal massacre of the unarmed and defenceless female civilian”.
According him, at least 35 citizens and Windhoek residents have fallen victim to alleged police brutality at the hands of both members of NamPol and the Windhoek City Police in the capital alone between December 2012 and November 2013.
Ndatipo, a mother of three minor children, died on the spot.
She was allegedly shot and killed during a scuffle which apparently erupted between the ‘struggle kids’ and members of the Namibian Police Force (NamPol) along Leonard Auala and Hans-Dietrich Genscher streets, just a few metres from the Swapo-Party headquarters in Katutura.
The deceased was part of a group of about 30 youths, widely known as the ‘struggle kids’, who had decided to march to the ruling party’s headquarters on Wednesday, despite warnings from the police that no such march would be allowed.
The struggle kids marched nonetheless, and this led to the confrontation with the police.
The body of the deceased young woman was later taken to the police mortuary.
Windhoek Police Crime Investigations’ Coordinator, Commissioner Sylvanus Nghishidimbwa and Senior Superintendent of the Windhoek City Police and Emergency Management Department Gerry Shikesho, who were both at the scene, refused to provide the media with details of the shooting incident.
“I cannot give any information to media practitioners at the moment,” said Nghishidimbwa.