New Era (Windhoek)

Namibia: Suspect Calls Witness a Liar

Windhoek — The third rape suspect in the ongoing rape trial of four young men accused of raping a schoolmate during 2008 told the court that his principal was lying when he identified him as one of the school's Under-15 football players.

Twenty-one-year-old Kahijambua Kamuingona told Judge Nate Ndauendapo last Friday he never was a part of the team and he could not even had been as he was already 16 years old at that stage.

Kamuingona also told Judge Ndauendapo that he knew nothing of the rape and that he never ever touched the complainant.

Kamuingona however admitted that he was friends with the complainant and that he used to help her with her schoolwork when they were both in Grade 9 the previous year. He said he proceeded to Grade 10 in 2008, while the complainant failed and stayed behind in Grade 9.

He related to the court that on May 23 2008 he was waiting at the hostel for his lift to arrive from Otjiwarongo when he happened upon the complainant and a friend. He said that he first called the friend over for a chat, but she declined and then he asked the complainant to join him, which she did. He said that he and the complainant went to a hall where a TV was to see if there was anything worthwhile watching. He narrated that they however only stayed in the hall for a few minutes whereafter they went to stand between the hall and the hostel block talking.

He said that after they talked for a while, the fourth accused, Utjatae Mureti, arrived and called the complainant away from him.

"That was the last time I saw her until the Tuesday at school," Kamuingona replied to a question from his lawyer, Bronell Uirab.

On Friday, Mureti admitted that he had sex with the complainant, but claimed that it was consensual. He claimed that he found the complainant in the company of Kamuingona and called her to walk with him. He told the court that he walked in the direction of the hall, but that when they reached the boys' toilet, they stood there for a while and started kissing.

However, he said, the approach of a security guard stopped them and they decided to duck into the boys' toilet where they again started fooling around and eventually proceeded to the deed.

He explained that after their intimate encounter he left her in the toilet and went about his own business and did not see her again until the next Monday.

Mureti together with Kamuingona, Johnson Matundu and UazengaTjamuhua are charged with 20 counts of rape.

The complainant and all four accused were learners at the Okakarara Secondary School at the time of the incident and were all 16 years of age or younger and in Grade 9 or Grade 10.

According to the indictment the four youths are facing, the complainant and some of her friends failed to secure a lift on that Friday to their respective homes where they were to spend the weekend off school and returned to the hostel.

The complainant and her friends were on their way later that evening to get food when Matundu and Tjamuaha stopped her, while her friends proceeded without her. It is further alleged that both of them then dragged the complainant to a nearby toilet where they took turns to rape her while the other held her down.

The indictment further states that after the two boys were finished, they left the complainant crying in the toilet. She then started to walk to the hostel, still crying when Kamuingona called her. It is further alleged that Kamuingona threatened the complainant with a knife and pushed her towards the boys' hostel where he was joined by Matundu, Tjamuaha and Mureti who then took turns to violate her while the others held her down.

Mureti is represented by Edwin Coetzee, while Matundu has the services of Monty Karuaie, Tjamuaha has Titus Mbaeva and Kamuingona has Bronell Uirab in his corner, while Deputy Prosecutor General Karin Esterhuizen appears for the State, all on the ticket of the Directorate of Legal Aid in the Ministry of Justice.

All the accused pleaded not guilty to all the charges against them and were released into their parents' care at the start of their case.

The matter was postponed to March 22 to 24 for submissions on the verdict.

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