The Namibian police have been ordered by the High Court to reinstate a senior police officer, who was forced to resign from the force in 2019 after his refusal to be transferred to Mariental.
The High Court has now ordered that former Chief Inspector George Mathe be reinstated within 30 days.
The reinstatement is effective 23 June.
Mathe was constructively dismissed from the force after falling out with former Zambezi police commander Karel Theron.
Mathe then approached the court and opened the case of constructive dismissal against the force.
In a High Court judgment seen by New Era, and delivered on 23 June 2022, Judge George Coleman stated police chief Sebastian Ndeitunga failed to address Mathe’s grievance and instead proceeded to sign his transfer.
Mathe and Theron’s disagreements emanated from the fact that prior to Theron’s appointment as Zambezi regional commander, Mathe had been promoted to the rank of Chief Inspector with effect from 1 August 2016.
His employment contract reportedly stipulated he would also be in charge of the Commercial Crime Investigation sub-division in the region.
“This, in my view, created a legitimate expectation with the plaintiff. While this unit was never created, the plaintiff was left in limbo. The few dockets allocated to him for investigation were taken away from him on instructions of Commissioner Theron. The evidence is clear that Commissioner Theron had a problem with the plaintiff,” reads the judgment.
The judgment further states that Mathe is to be reinstated as “Chief Inspector in the Zambezi region in a position commensurate with his rank and experience with effect from 1 November 2019. The defendants are ordered to pay the plaintiff’s costs. The matter is removed from the roll and is regarded as finalised”.
Contacted for comment, Mathe stated that he is happy with the outcome, and that justice has prevailed.
“I was betrayed and accused of things I had no idea of by the then regional commander, Commissioner Theron. I complained to the Inspector General, but my complaints were in vain,” he said.
He said he is ready to resume duty “and work with honest people”.
Approached for comment, Ndeitunga stated that he was not aware of the judgment.
“I am not aware of it. I would have to consult with the legal department,” said Ndeitunga.