Court refuses to release prosecutor on bail

08 May 2017 16:10pm
WINDHOEK, 08 MAY (NAMPA) – The High Court on Monday refused to grant bail to a Windhoek-based public prosecutor arrested in December 2016 on charges of fraud and corruption.
Ivan Tjizu, 29, who was fighting an initial bail refusal by the Windhoek Magistrate's Court, again failed to convince presiding High Court Judge Christie Liebenberg that he is a suitable candidate for bail.
Tjizu, who allegedly fraudulently claimed witness fees, was ordered to remain in police custody at the Hosea Kutako International Airport, where he has been since the Windhoek Magistrate's Court refused to grant him bail late last year.
He was first refused bail in a judgement on his formal bail application handed down by Magistrate Duarte Kesslau in the Katutura Magistrate's Court on 15 December 2016.
Not happy with the ruling, the arrested prosecutor in April 2017 approached the Windhoek High Court with the failed urgent application in which he again requested bail.
Tjizu informed Judge Liebenberg that Magistrate Kesslau made a number of legal misdirections when he ruled that he is not a suitable candidate for bail while police investigations were at an initial stage.
Judge Liebenberg did not agree with Tjizu's arguments and refused to grant him bail.
State Advocate Dominic Lisulo represented the prosecution.
Tjizu appeared in person with no legal representation due to lack of funds.
During the hearing of the first bail application last year, Public Prosecutor Lourinda Seredine Jacobs strongly objected to the granting of bail, arguing Tjizu will interfere with police investigations because he has the contact details of others implicated in the case.
Tjizu was arrested on 07 December 2016 by investigators attached to the Anti-Corruption Commission.
It is alleged that he defrauded the State of N.dollars 280 000 by claiming fees for State witnesses from outside Windhoek.
The witness fees were then paid out at the Windhoek Magistrate’s Court.