Teko trio's corruption trial to continue next year

06 Nov 2015 12:50pm
WINDHOEK, 06 NOV (NAMPA) - The continuation of the case of the three people being tried in the High Court for fraud committed at the Ministry of Finance in 2009, will resume in August next year.
The trio - Namibians Teckla Lameck, 48, and Jerobeam Mokaxwa, 30, as well as Chinese national Yang Fan, 39 - made another appearance before High Court Judge Christie Liebenberg here on Friday morning when their alleged fraud trial was remanded until 29 August 2016.
The continuation of the three accused persons' trial was on Friday postponed in order to allow the Supreme Court to pronounce itself on an appeal application by the group against the dismissal of their application for the recusal of Acting High Court Judge Maphios Cheda from presiding over their fraud and corruption trial.
Judge Cheda, who is originally from Zimbabwe, dismissed the trio's application for recusal in a judgment handed down by himself in the High Court here on 14 November 2014.
Following the dismissal of their application for the Judge's recusal, the accused's privately-instructed defence lawyer Sisa Namandje approached the Supreme Court with an urgent application appealing against the dismissal of his clients' application on recusal of Judge Cheda.
The appeal application by the three accused persons is still pending in the Windhoek Supreme Court.
In the fraud and corruption trial proper, Lameck, a former Public Service Commission (PSC) member; Mokaxwa, who is Lameck’s business partner in the Teko Trading company; as well as Yang are accused of having defrauded the Ministry of Finance of some N.dollars 120 million in 2009 in dubious circumstances.
They denied all 18 charges of fraud against them when they entered not guilty pleas at the beginning of their trial in April last year.
The two Namibians are free on bail of N.dollars 50 000 each, while Yang is free on bail of N.dollars 1 million.
The three accused persons were arrested on 08 and 09 July 2009 by officials of the Anti-Corruption Commission in connection with the alleged scam through which the Ministry of Finance bought security-scanning equipment from a Chinese company.
About 20 people out of a total of over 80 witnesses have already testified in this trial on behalf of the State.
The trio's bail was extended until their next court appearance on 29 August next year (2016).
State Advocate Shakwa Nyambe appeared for the prosecution while Windhoek-based defence lawyer Kadhila Amoomo represented the accused persons.
Amoomo was only on Friday standing in for his colleague Namandje.
High Court Judge Christie Liebenberg adjourned the continuation of the trial until August next year as per agreement reached by the parties involved in the case.