THE Keetmanshoop Regional Court on Friday set July 2 as the day for the judgement in the trial of former Karas governor and Berseba Constituency regional councillor Dawid Boois, who is charged with 24 counts of corruption.
Boois is accused of using his position as governor for gratification by allegedly pocketing a monthly housing subsidy of N$7 500 over a 24-month period between 2005 and 2007 while living in a government house.
At the start of the trial, Boois pleaded not guilty to charges of corruption but admitted that he received the housing subsidy while he was living in a government house. He however claimed that the residence was not an official governor's house.
When the State closed its case on Friday, defence counsel Sisa Namandje requested that his client be discharged, claiming that the State had failed to prove his guilt.
"While asking for my client's acquittal, I just want to note in passing that it's shocking how people are arrested and brought to court without any legal foundation," said Namandje.
Namandje argued that the State had failed to prove that his client directly or indirectly had corruptly used the position of his office for gratification.
Namandje added that none of the State witnesses suggested during their testimony that Boois had used his powers as governor for gratification.
"There was no allegation that the office was used. It disturbs me to note the mixed-up use of contraventions to constitute corruption," said Namandje.
Namandje described the illegal housing subsidy as just an "administrative hiccup" which does not constitute corruption.
"It's a disagreement. Council knew they voluntarily paid him [Boois]. My client did not demand the payment or used his position, Namandje said."
State prosecutor, Pieter Smit contended that Boois knew long before he had moved into the government house that it was illegal to receive a housing subsidy while living in a government house.
This, Smit contended, demonstrated intention on the part of Boois to commit an offence.
Saying there is a wider interpretation of the phrase, "use of office for gratification", Smit said corruption was indeed proved against Boois because he used his high position to refuse to correct what was wrong when the illegal housing subsidy payment was brought to his attention by junior staff.
"He committed the act by refusing to correct what was wrong," said Smit.