8 February 2018

Namibia: PDM Condemns Killing of Commercial Farmers

Windhoek — Opposition party, the Popular Democratic Movement (PDM) has condemned the killing of white commercial farmers, Giel and Sarie Botma at their farm in the //Kharas region, over the weekend.

New Era on Tuesday reported that three men accused of murder of an elderly couple at the farm, were denied bail in the Keetmanshoop Magistrate's Court.

The suspects Julius Arndt, Johannes Christiaan and Andries Afrikaner, are accused of the brutal murder of the couple, and were remanded in custody until their next court hearing on April 23.

In a statement yesterday, PDM secretary-general, Manual Ngaringombe said he has noted with a great concern brutal killings of white commercial farmers, as well as women and children in Namibia.

"Please stop the killings. Stop, stop, stop," he said. He said commercial farmers play a great role in the country's agricultural sector and economic growth, for they contribute to the country's GDP.

"Namibia has become a safe haven for these brutalities and it must be condemned with the contempt it deserves." He added these brutal murders tarnish the country's good image and result in foreign investors and tourists eyeing other safe destinations. Ngaringombe however applauded efforts by the members of the society as well as the Namibian police for their efforts to combat crime and bring the culprits to book.

Hence, he said, PDM is urging the strengthening of neighbourhood groups on commercial farmers in order to tighten the safety and security of those vulnerable similar acts, especially pensioners living on their farms. "All these actions are not the government's making, but a failure to respond, is direct result of the current government that has over the years failed to adhere to its constitutional obligation on ensuring the protection of the general welfare of all its citizens, including safety and security, because the measures in place are very minimal and only come aftermath."

Ngaringombe also said, the state alone cannot fulfil this mandate without cooperation from the general public, hence a need for all members of the public to be actively involved in fighting crime.

"We are also calling upon the perpetrators of these crimes to embrace and act within the legal frameworks, and refrain from any criminal activity. We call upon the leaders from all walks of life to strongly condemn all unlawful acts."

Ngaringombe also called upon the government and private sector to create employment opportunities for the unemployed so as to stem crime.

"This will eventually reduce crime if everyone lives in peace and harmony," he said.


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