ACC boss wants out

02 November 2018 Author   Eliaser Ndeyanale

Head of Investigation at the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC), Nelius Becker, has told the Windhoek Observer that he is willing to leave his plush position at the anti-graft agency and return to Nampol’s Serious Crime Unit.
Becker, who resigned from the police force in October 2004 after nine years in charge of the specialist unit, said he misses police work. 

“I miss that work every day, but the police don’t want me there.  They apparently have a policy that once you leave you can’t go back,” he said.
Becker would not say why he wants to leave the ACC.
Nampol Inspector General, Sebastian Ndeitunga, confirmed to the Windhoek Observer on Thursday that Becker, whom many in the police force describe as a “giant”, had approached his office asking to be reinstated.
“I remember he approached us at some point. We also want him back, but we could not take him because of this cumbersome policy. 
“Now that there is one of my commissioners who is retiring, I would love to have him back. If I can be helped on how I can go about changing this unwieldy policy, I would love to have him back; I seriously want him,” Ndeitunga said.
ACC Director General, Paulus Noa, told the Windhoek Observer that he was not aware that Becker wants to leave.
“I haven’t heard about it, it’s just a rumour and I don’t think it’s true,” he said.
Often times, the ACC has been labelled a “toothless dog” that goes after perceived small cases while letting “big fish” go. 
But Noa has previously insisted that there are deliberate efforts to discredit the work of the ACC.
Last year, he told an Affirmative Repositioning (AR) Critical Conscious meeting that the corruption watchdog is driven to satisfy public morality, despite continuous claims that it targets junior-ranking government officials while protecting the elite and their cronies. 
The ACC boss said there was never a case that was reported to the agency that they did not investigate, irrespective of the parties involved.
“There is no case that was given to the ACC to investigate where we failed to investigate out of fear or favour of those involved,” he said.
The ACC has investigated some prominent people  over the years, including Namibian Police’s Head of Human Resources, Commissioner Abed Kashihakumwa, who was probed for neglect of duty after one of his in-laws, who had been discharged from the force as a result of his criminal record a few years ago, was recruited back into the force in 2015. 
The case is still pending in court.
Basic Education Minister, Katrina Hanse-Himarwa, has also been a subject of investigation by the ACC for allegedly abusing her position when she was Hardap Regional Governor in 2014 to benefit her relatives.
The matter is currently being heard in the Windhoek High Court. 
Works and Transport Permanent Secretary, Willem Goeiemann, the Namibia Airports Company and the Director of Civil Aviation, Angeline Simana, were also subject to an ACC probe to determine the circumstances under which British firm Westminster Aviation Security Services was awarded a 25-year contract to service airport security systems in Namibia. 
Asked whether there were any high profile cases that the ACC had helped in the successful prosecution of offenders, Noa said he could not say as he was out of office.
The ACC came under fire in 2010 when it failed to investigate how the children of top government officials, including former President Hifikepunye Pohamba, several Cabinet ministers and senior military and police officers, had acquired scholarships to study in China at the expense of the poor.
The ACC said at the time that the investigation into the matter was halted, partly because the Chinese Embassy in Namibia refused to divulge information on the scheme.

WINDHOEK OBSERVER

The Windhoek Observer is an English-language weekly newspaper, published in Namibia by Paragon Investment Holding. It is the country's oldest and largest circulating weekly.

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