• Claims he did not receive justice
Convicted liar Dr. Tobie Aupindi says real corruption crimes of epic proportions in Namibia are yet to be brought to justice, further stating that he has been advised by his lawyer to lodge an Appeal to The High Court.
Aupindi, whose marathon 12-year case came to an end last month issued a statement in which he sought to clear his name.
“I would as a point of correction, like to clarify a few things. Firstly I was convicted of lying to an Anti Corruption Commission (ACC) officer and not for corruption as some pundits keep deliberately referring to in this matter,” said the former Namibia Wildlife Resorts boss.
He added that his beliefs surrounding corruption and the need to root it out has never changed and that he believes that it robs the country of massive wealth and opportunities.
“I am however of the opinion that the ACC, has ventured into an arena where the institution has left itself susceptible to being used for political witch-hunts.
I fully agree and thank our SG of SWAPO, Meme Sophia Shaningwa for her sentiments.
Those are comforting words of a mother. It does not mean the SG condone corruption,” he said.
Aupindi described the past 12 years as “painful” because his character, integrity and professionalism came into question over the prima facie case.
“I still believe that a different Judge in the same or different court may have arrived at a different judgment for me.
I also believe that much time has been wasted in this case as the judgement was delayed for a very long time.
I believe that “justice delayed is justice denied”. In the end I don’t believe I received justice at all,” he said.
He said he has embraced the decision of our Magistrate Court and holds high the value of the independence of the country’s justice system.
“I have paid the sanctioned N$50,000 and that chapter is gone.
I was advised by my lawyer to lodge an Appeal to The High Court.
I leave that in my Attorney’s hands and will abide by the decision of the High Court as a law abiding citizen of this beautiful country,” he said.
The SWAPO Code of Conduct and Disciplinary Procedures reads under the heading ‘Activities of Misconduct, at number 16 and 16.1’ “A member shall be guilty of misconduct if he or she is convicted in a court of law and is sentenced to a term of imprisonment without the option of a fine for any serious non-political offence”.
Equally, the Namibian Constitution, which is the supreme law of the land under Article 47 on the ‘Disqualification of Members’ to serve in the National Assembly or higher structures states, “(1) No persons may become a member of the National Assembly if they, (a) have at any time after Independence been convicted of any offence in Namibia, or outside Namibia if such conduct would have constituted an offence within Namibia, and for which they have been sentenced to death or to imprisonment of more than twelve (12) months without the option of a fine, unless they have received a free pardon or unless such imprisonment has expired at least ten (10) years before the date of their election”.
“I believe in our statutes and our constitutional democracy and I will respectfully request the pundits and vengeance seekers to allow me to be judged by those who elected me in our Party’s governing organs at the Electoral College next year and at Congress 2022, as I commit myself, once again selflessly, with dedication and unwavering commitment to the unity of our Party and prosperity of our people.
I shall never waver nor shy away from protecting the gains of our liberation struggle.
I shall be focused to the hard work of delivering prosperity to the masses of our people,” he said.
Magistrate Helvi Shilemba convicted Aupindi and Di Savino on a charge of corruptly providing false information to an officer of the Anti-Corruption Commission.
The charge was based on an allegation that Aupindi and Di Savino lied to an ACC investigator in March and April 2010 by telling him that Aupindi himself had paid N$50 000 for the installation of a swimming pool at his house in Windhoek in 2006, while they knew Di Savino had actually paid for the pool.
It has been claimed that at the time the pool was installed, Di Savino was doing business with Namibia Wildlife Resorts, where Aupindi was still the managing director at that stage.
Aupindi, who was elected as a member of the Swapo politburo and central committee in December last year, and Di Savino denied guilt on the charge during their trial.