OPG not responsible for withdrawal of Conradie case

03 Jun 2013 12:00
WINDHOEK, 03 JUN (NAMPA) ? The Office of the Prosecutor-General (OPG) has refuted allegations that charges were withdrawn against prominent lawyer Dirk Conradie and Sara Damases because of the unavailability of a decision from the OPG.
Conradie and his friend Damases were arrested in June 2012 by the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) in connection with a N.dollars 60 million advertisement contract for Mobile Telecommunications Limited (MTC), on whose board Conradie serves as the chairperson.
Damases is accused of allegedly ?conspiring with Conradie to commit an offence?.
The matter was first remanded on 14 September 2012 to 18 January 2013 for the Prosecutor-General's decision, and again to 31 May 2013 for the same reason.
On 31 May 2013, Windhoek Magistrate Hileni Riana Kavara withdrew the charges following a prolonged failure by the OPG to pronounce itself on the matter.
In addition, the court also ordered the cancellation of their bail, and that their bail money of N.dollars 30 000 each be refunded to the depositors.
The OPG explained in a 10-point statement issued late Monday afternoon that the case docket was sent back and forth between the OPM and ACC several times for the ACC to conduct further investigations.
It said the Prosecutor-General (Martha Imalwa) appreciates that it is in the interest of the proper administration of justice that decisions in case dockets submitted to her office should be made as early as possible, but this depends on whether investigations are complete at the time case dockets are submitted to her office.
?It is therefore not true that the PG was given nine months in which to make the decision, as there were interventions as investigations were incomplete,? the document read.
It further said the docket is receiving the office?s utmost attention, so as to assure that the decision is available as soon as possible.
?However, the decision of the court in refusing of the remand does not preclude the prosecution from pursuing the matter if it decides to prosecute based on the totality of the evidence,? it said.