Namibia
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Walvis hammer-wielding passion killer gets 20 years

Elias Kalume (36) was yesterday found guilty of the murder of Frodina Ndemulunda (26) by regional magistrate Gaynor Poulton and sentenced to 20 years imprisonment of which two years were suspended.

He was sentenced to another three months for malicious damage to property. Both charges were read with the provisions of the Combating of Domestic Violence Act.

Kalume killed Ndemulunda, who he had been in a relationship with for nine years. The incident took place on 9 September 2021 at Kalume’s residence at Walvis Bay when he, feeling deeply betrayed by Ndemulunda’s infidelity, acted violently.

Kalume had financially supported Ndemulunda since her school years, all through her vocational training and into adulthood, even securing her a job at a fishing company at Walvis Bay. However, his long-standing financial support turned into resentment and anger when he discovered Ndemulunda had started an affair with a co-worker.

His wrath spiralled out of control when, on the day of the murder, Ndemulunda refused his advances, saying she was no longer his girlfriend. Enraged, Kalume cut up a jacket Ndemulunda got from to her new boyfriend and then turned his fury towards her. After hitting her with his fists and knocking her to the ground, he grabbed a hammer and hit her on the head three times.

Following this brutal act, he walked to the police station and reported his crime. Ndemulunda was found dead at their residence.
Throughout the trial, Poulton stressed the severity of the crime and the need for the court to reflect society’s disapproval of such violence. She noted that murder and robbery top the list of crimes committed daily, and often with impunity, in Namibia.

“This is sickening to think that the same person you loved and shared your life with for nine years, you end up bludgeoning to death with a hammer,” the magistrate said. “It is a brutal way to die at the hands of your lover.”

According to her, the court has a duty to society to act in a way that deters future offenders and the sentence must show that these types of actions will not be tolerated.

“Irrespective of the punishment, the public needs to feel satisfied that justice has been served,” she said, adding that no matter how severe the punishment is, it will never bring back the victim.

Poulton condemned the rise in domestic violence in Namibia.

“It seems life is seen as worthless, and domestic violence is on the increase in this country. Men must understand that women are not property,” she said.

She acknowledged the mitigating factors, such as his personal circumstances, and remorse shown by Kalume, who had confessed his crime to the magistrate and pleaded guilty. He had been in custody for 22 months before the trial.

In her final judgement, Poulton sentenced Kalume to 20 years imprisonment and suspended two years on condition that he is not convicted of murder, attempted murder or any offence where violence is inflicted, causing serious injuries.

Adding the three months imprisonment for malicious damage to property, Kaulme will spend 18 years and three months behind bars.
Albert Titus represented Kalume, while Tresia Hafeni prosecuted for the state.