James Hatuikulipi, one of the central figures in the multi-million-dollar fisheries bribery scandal called Fishrot, is at it again as he stands accused of attempting to tamper with the ongoing investigations by orchestrating misleading lies.
The former Investec Asset Management Namibia managing director and Fishcor board chairperson is accused of having prepared documents for individuals and entities in different jurisdictions instructing them to lie about the questionable funds they have received.
This came to light during the bail hearing of suspended CEO of Fishcor Mike Nghipunya, the co-accused to Hatuikulipi, former ministers Bernhardt Esau and Sackey Shanghala, Tamson Hatuikulipi and Pius Mwatelulo, in the case in which they are accused of syphoning N$75.6 million from Fishcor.
Hatuikulipi allegedly informed the beneficiaries they should say the money they received was not paid to them under the pretext of corruption, said Willem Olivier, an investigator from the Anti-Corruption Commission of Namibia (ACC).
The anti-graft agency has allegedly been trying to get cooperation from different states where some of the money was transferred.
ACC wants to conduct investigations in Dubai, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Zimbabwe, Angola, Cyprus, Norway, Iceland and Spain.
Olivier testified that these countries have not been forthcoming.
It is not the first time Hatuikulipi stands accused of trying to tamper with ongoing investigations.
He currently has a case against him in which he, Jason Iyambo and police reservist Sakaria Kuutondokwa are accused of attempting to bribe an ACC investigator in order to get hold of evidence seized in connection to N$130 million fisheries bribery case.
Olivier testified the money was transferred from Fishcor and allegedly paid through the company Celax Investment Number One (Pty) Ltd, via the law firm De Klerk, Horn & Coetzee Incorporated under the pretext it was for governmental objectives.
De Klerk, Horn & Coetzee Incorporated then distributed the money to entities such as Olea Investments, Amadara Trust, Otwafika Logistics, and JTH Trading amongst others. These entities are tied to the accused persons in the matter.
Celax Investment Number One (Pty) Ltd allegedly paid an amount of N$10 million to Saga Seafood Investment Trust, who then paid Fine Seafood Investment Trust where Nghipunya is one the signatories.
From Fine Seafood Investment Trust, money was transferred to Endjabo Investments, who then made payments to Gwanyemba Investment Trust in which Nghipunya is a trustee and a beneficiary.
Olivier testified ACC is investigating Lotus Investments and Sisa Namandje & Co law firm trust for money paid to them by Fine Seafood Investments.