Five alleged robbers killed in gunfight

By Eliaser Ndeyanale

FIVE Namibian men believed to be hardcore criminals were gunned down in a gunfight with police officers in the capital of Zambia last Thursday.

According to law enforcement sources with knowledge of the matter, the gang, which is alleged to be based in Ohangwena region, left Namibia on 25 November for Zambia but soon went off the grid.

When they left Namibia they were said to be seven in the group, but since the reported deaths of five, it is not yet clear what happened to the other two.

The police in Ohangwena region said on Wednesday that they were aware of the shooting, but could not confirm that the criminals shot dead were indeed Namibian nationals.

“It is not yet confirmed but the rumour is there. We have to confirm with our Zambian counterparts,” said a police officer who spoke on condition of anonymity because he is not allowed to talk to the media.

The online news outlet, Zambian Watchdog, reported last Friday that the shooting occurred on Thursday last week at around 19h00 in Lusaka’s Makeni Simson area after the police received a tip-off from members of the public that suspected criminals were about to stage a robbery in the area.

A search of the suspected criminals’ vehicle, a Toyota Ipsum, produced 36 rounds of ammunition of a revolver, two number plates, two masks, 22 assorted cell phones, and assorted foreign currency, among them Chinese, Indian, Zimbabwean, Malawian and Singapore currencies.

Efforts to get more information on the matter proved difficult.

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Questions sent to Nampol attaché deputy commissioner Victoria Hainana were not responded to at the time of going to print.

The executive director in the Ministry of International Relations and Cooperation Selma Ashipala Musavyi could also not be reached for comment as her mobile phone was off.

Namibian high commissioner to Zambia Siyave Haindongo could also not be reached.

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The Zambian Watchdog said that the “criminals” were suspected to have been involved a spate of aggravated robberies in Lusaka, targeting foreign nationals in particular.

Their remains were reported to be at a mortuary in Lusaka awaiting identification and postmortem examination.