Five people were robbed of equipment and items worth N$500 000 while producing a music video for a South African musician in the mountains near Elisenheim on the outskirts of Windhoek on Friday.
Director and producer of Endemic Productions, Liberty Verbaan, told The Namibian yesterday that they had just finished filming music videos for a South African violinist and Namibian Blues musician Riaan Smit, and were wrapping up for the day when five men appeared out of nowhere in the late afternoon. She said the men, wearing masks and armed with knives and stones, then started manhandling them.
"One of our friends, Smit, who was performing in the music video, tried to fight back. However, he was beaten, hit with a large stone and stabbed on the elbow. He lay there in his blood. We thought he was dead," said Verbaan.
She said while the rest of her friends were held on the ground and told to behave, she was held up against a car at knife-point.
"One of them punched me on the head, and I fell on the ground," she said. Verbaan said the robbers then took their shoes and jewellery, including her engagement ring worth N$45 000.
"One of them made sure we remained on the ground, and he told us that we should remain still because he does not want to have to kill us," she explained. Verbaan said before leaving, the men also took their filming equipment, including cameras and microphones, and made a show of dropping their car keys in a nearby rubbish bin.
"The entire ordeal lasted 45 minutes to an hour," she recalled, adding: "We are just grateful to be alive."
Verbaan said none of the stolen equipment was insured, and they had taken six years to collect it all.
Smit, who was initially taken to the Windhoek Mediclinic after the incident, was flown to Cape Town with a fractured jaw yesterday. Smit, who is also a frontman of the band Crimson House, was due to perform at the Warehouse Theatre in Windhoek that night with South African musician Luca Hart, who was also present during the attack, but had to cancel due to his extensive injuries.
Police chief inspector Kauna Shikwambi confirmed the robbery yesterday, and said the crew was attacked by six robbers while they were on set.
Shikwambi urged anyone with information about the suspects to contact the nearest police station. Police investigations continue.