Namibia: D&M Rail Boss Granted N$15 000 Bail

DAVID 'Dawie' Moller and his co-accused in a money-laundering case were yesterday granted bail in the amount of N$15 000.

Magistrate Eden Iyambo also postponed the managing director of D&M Rail Construction and his co-accused's case to 28 April in the Gobabis Regional Court.

The railway company is co-owned by James Hatuikulipi, one of the accused in the Fishrot corruption scandal.

Moller and Hendrick Rooi are accused of money laundering, the failure to declare funds, being found in possession of unexplained funds, theft and the possession of suspected stolen property.

Both Moller and Rooi were released on bail on condition that they hand their passports over to the police and do not interfere with witnesses.

The state and defence lawyers agreed on the bail amount and conditions.

The accused were represented by Christian Nambahu, while Faith Nyaungwa prosecuted.

Moller and Rooi were arrested and appeared in court on 5 January where their case was initially set for 18 January.

Sources said Moller's arrest could be linked to Fishrot property transactions by Hatuikulipi and former justice minister Sacky Shanghala, involving a farm in the Omaheke region, among others.

It could, however, not be established whether Moller and Rooi's arrests were linked to the Fishrot corruption case.

The railway construction company last Wednesday said their firm is not linked to money-laundering charges against its managing director.

D&M Rail defended Moller, saying: "D&M Rail has always conducted its business with honesty, credibility and professionalism under the leadership of Mr Dawie Moller, and remain steadfast in our belief that he will be exonerated of all charges - which to our understanding are not linked in any way to the operations of the D&M Rail - against him in due course."

Moller has been in charge of D&M Rail Construction, a politically connected company, that has for years won questionable multimillion-dollar rail deals at TransNamib and the Ministry of Works and Transport, including a controversial state railway maintenance contract that cost taxpayers N$100 million a year.

Hatuikulipi is one of the alleged masterminds of the multibillion-dollar Fishrot corruption scandal and is currently in custody awaiting trial with five other accused, including former minister of fisheries and marine resources Bernhard Esau, and ex-minister of justice Sacky Shanghala.

Moller last year insisted that his dealings with Hatuikulipi were clean.

The two have been business partners for years.

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