RUNDU: The case of eleven people accused of stealing 180 cattle valued at over N.dollars 757 000 from the Namibia Development Corporation (NDC)’s cattle ranch at Mangetti in the Kavango Region has again been delayed to 19 September this year for plea.
The accused persons were arrested on 19 November 2010 after they allegedly stole the cattle from the Mangetti cattle ranch, situated some 130km south of Rundu, between October 2009 to July 2010.
During their brief court appearance on Wednesday, Rundu Magistrate Victor Nyazo could not go ahead with the plea and instead postponed the case to 19 September to enable the accused persons to get legal representation.
The accused persons are Ihemba Haimbili, 53, who was employed as a cattle herder at the NDC farm; Johannes Kance, 31; Ncarasa Ncugora, 40; Kalihonda Mushongo, 28; Anima Kefas, 52; Thomas Zoko, 37; Ihemba Nzamene, age unknown; as well as Bonifatius Nauyoma and Surumbu Singangu, both ages unknown.
The accused persons allegedly cut the veterinary cordon fence which belongs to the Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Forestry, and drove the animals to the farm of accused person Anima Titus Kefas, who was previously employed at State House but had since been suspended after his arrest.
The police only recovered 14 cattle in Kefa’s possession at his farm, while the rest are believed to have been sold.
Two other accused persons, being Paulus Nghamwa, 36, and Thomas Mbambi, 35, had absconded soon after their release on bail.
Although a warrant of arrest has been issued against them, they are still at large.
According to the charge-sheet, only 17 of the 180 cattle have so far been recovered, while the rest have apparently been slaughtered, with most of them sold to butcheries and individuals.
Fourteen of the recovered 17 cattle are currently being kept at the Mangetti quarantine camp as exhibits in the court case, while the remaining three are still at the Omakange village in the Kunene region, where they were apparently driven to by the accused.
These three cattle are yet to be collected by the police.
All the accused facing charges of stock-theft are out on bail of N.dollars 1500 each.