High bail amounts for foreigners driving drunk

16 Dec 2014 15:10pm
SWAKOPMUND, 16 DEC (NAMPA) – Foreign visitors to Namibia caught driving under the influence of alcohol will face bail amounts of up to N.dollars 4 000.
Prosecutor-General (PG) Martha Imalwa confirmed to Nampa on Tuesday that prosecutors and the Namibian Police are allowed to recommend and give bail of N.dollars 4 000 to foreigners caught driving drunk.
“This is due to the fact that visitors have a high chance of absconding from trials on drunken driving.
If they receive a high amount for bail, then it will indirectly force them not to abscond and lose the money to the State,” explained the PG.
She, however, stated that the police and the courts give bail depending on the circumstances of the crime for every person, including locals.
Some prosecutors, however, informed this agency on the customary condition of anonymity that they have already been recommending bail of N.dollars 4 000 for all drivers since last year.
To the contrary, Imalwa said there was no such directive from her office.
“If you decide that everyone should pay N.dollars 4 000, it is like you are denying people, especially Namibians, the right to afford bail.
Some of them might not be able to pay such a high amount,” she explained.
The PG said Namibians should not take drink-and-driving cases lightly because it is similar to deliberate murder.
She said motor-vehicle accidents caused by drunk drivers kill many innocent people, and that is why the law must make sure that offenders are punished accordingly.
“Namibians should be serious! If you are drunk, get someone to drive for you, or call the police to assist you instead of driving yourself and ending up killing innocent people,” she advised.