Arrested protesters get date for trial

The trial of three people arrested two months ago in connection with a public demonstration about Namibia’s high unemployment rate is due to start in the Windhoek Magistrate’s Court in Katutura in August.

Popular Democratic Movement parliamentarian Inna Hengari and the activists Dimbulukeni Nauyoma and Michael Amushelelo were informed during a court appearance before magistrate Linus Samunzala yesterday that their trial is scheduled to start on 25 August.

Hengari, Nauyoma and Amushelelo were arrested in Windhoek on 21 March, after they had allegedly been involved in a public demonstration about unemployment in Namibia that the police had prohibited from going ahead.

Inna Hengari

They are charged with counts of public violence, incitement to public violence and malicious damage to property.

During the court appearance yesterday, defence lawyer Kadhila Amoomo, who is representing Nauyoma and Amushelelo, told the magistrate that Amushelelo is being kept in solitary confinement and that this is affecting his mental faculties and his ability to give instructions to his lawyers.

Amoomo added that he will be asking the prison authorities to end the solitary confinement.

Hengari was released on bail in an amount of N$5 000 after three days in police custody.

DETAINED … Dimbulukeni Nauyoma and Michael Amushelelo at Otjomuise Police Station on Tuesday after their arrest.

Following a bail hearing, Nauyoma was also granted bail in an amount of N$5 000, on 3 April.

Amushelelo, however, did not succeed with an application to be released on bail.

His application was dismissed in the Windhoek Magistrate’s Court in Katutura on 20 April.

Amushelelo did not testify in person during his bail hearing.

In an affidavit submitted to the court, he said he and Nauyoma were escorting a group of protesters to the areas where they are residing when they were arrested by the police.

His arrest and prosecution are unlawful, and he had been unfairly targeted by members of the Namibian Police who want to portray him as unruly, Amushelelo said in the statement submitted to the court.

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