Nampol Inspector-General, Sebastian Ndeitunga dismissed claims the Namibian police “did dirty work” for Ramaphosa as alleged.
Ramaphosa has come under fire for the February 2020 robbery since the crime was not reported to the South African Police Service (Saps).
The president denied criminal conduct on his part, saying the alleged millions of US dollars – which were said to be found in couches and mattresses – were not the proceeds of crime, but from the sale of game.
‘Ramaphosa sought assistance’
In his initial statement to the police, Fraser claimed the suspects who broke into the president’s property were subsequently kidnapped, interrogated, and paid off to keep silent as a cover-up for the robbery.
But Ndeitunga on Thursday denied these allegations.
“As a custodian of law and order, we vehemently refute allegations in the media that, and I quote, ‘the Namibian Police Force did dirty work for President Ramapbosa’.
“Furthermore, we refute allegations of torture and or abduction of the suspect, Mr lmanuwela David, and that currently there is a joint investigation underway between the Namibian Police Force and the South African Police Service,” he said in a 3-page statement.
The Nampol Inspector-General explained that David, who was found in possession of some US dollars notes among other things, was arrested after entering Namibia illegally in June 2020, therefore, contravening the country’s Immigration Act.
It was also alleged by Fraser that Ramaphosa “sought assistance” from Namibian President Hage Geingob in apprehending a suspect – who is said to be David – connected to the robbery.
The Namibian presidency has since denied the allegations against Geingob, saying there was “absolutely no truth” that he “inappropriately used his office to assist” Ramaphosa.
The presidency said the details regarding the suspect’s arrest on 14 June were matters of public record, adding the suspect returned to South Africa in November 2020 after paying a fine for unlawfully entering Namibia.
‘No man’s land’ meeting
Ndeitunga echoed the same statements on the suspect’s arrest but revealed that Namibian police met with South African authorities at “no man’s land” on 19 June.
“It is worth noting that indeed the two police authorities met at what is termed no man’s land near Noordoewer, Karas region to share operational information pertaining to Mr lmanuwela David and other Namibian nationals suspected to have stolen money in South Africa and fled to Namibia,” the Nampol Inspector-General said.
He said it was resolved that the two police authorities would investigate the matter within their jurisdiction.
Fraser also alleged in his statement to the police that when Ramaphosa asked Geingob to help find the suspects, this resulted in Presidential Protective Unit head Major-General Wally Rhoode entering and exiting Namibia using unofficial channels.
Meanwhile, Ndeitunga further revealed that Nampol received no response from the South African government after attempting to find out certain information in relation to the robbery.
“The Namibian police had identified individuals, bank accounts and various properties including lodges, houses and vehicles suspected to have been bought with the proceeds of crime and consulted the Office of the Prosecutor-General to consider a preservation order of the assets.
“A preservation order was issued and a formal request was made through the Ministry of Justice to South Africa to confirm whether or not a crime was registered in South Africa.
“However, no response was received from South African authorities, resulting in the cancellation of the preservation order and release of assets,” the Nampol Inspector-General explained.
Leaked police report
A leaked Namibian police report revealed that Ramaphosa and Geingob were in contact with each other after the robbery took place.
The June 2020 report – compiled by Namibia’s former head of the police’s criminal investigations directorate, commissioner Nelius Becker – states both presidents knew about the robbery and were in talks, according to The Nambian.
“Due to the sensitivity of the matter and the envisaged fallout it will create in South Africa they requested that the matter is handled with discretion. Discussions are allegedly ongoing between the countries’ two presidents,” the document reads.
The report, The Nambian said, also confirmed the “no-man’s land” meeting at the Ariamsvlei border post.
“The South African representative allegedly confirmed that Imanuwela David was the mastermind behind the burglary and supplied some names and photographs of his co-accused,” the report further states.