Twist in Jonas’ case revealed
Namibian boxer Jonas Junius Jonas is still awaiting judgement in a court case that was opened after his alleged attempted sexual assault of a Brazilian house maid at the Athletes' Village in Rio de Janeiro during the 2016 Olympic games.
A recent twist in Jonas’ case has now revealed that the term of office of case witness Erastus Lazarus, who is Namibia's military attaché in Brazil, came to an end on the 31st of March. Lazarus, however, is still in Brazil.
Jonaa has been under the supervision of Lazarus in Brazil ever since he was released from custody last year.
NNOC secretary general Joan Smit confirmed that Lazarus’s term of office has come to an end and explained how this could complicate the case.
“Lazarus is one of our strongest witnesses in the case and he is familiar with the environment, with the laws and also speaks Portuguese fluently so we have requested that Lazarus stays and that's where we are” said Smit.
Smit stressed that the NNOC has appealed to the ministry of sport, the permanent secretary of international relations and corporation as well as the ministry of defence and the Namibian ambassador in Brazil for Lazarus to stay until the case is finalised
“We are positive that the minister of defence will deem it necessary and in the interest of the athlete that Lazarus should stay on until the end of the court case” she said
Smit added that she is in contact with Jonas on a weekly basis. Inasmuch as the young boxer longs to come home and be with his family, he is keeping himself busy with training and is doing well under the given circumstances.
The NNOC administrator hopes that Jonas will be coming back to Namibia on time to qualify for the Commonwealth games next year, because he was the silver medallist in the 2014 games in Glascow and has to defend his title.
Meanwhile, NBC Sport has been reliably informed that the Ministry of Defence informed the NNOC that Lazarus’ office term has officially come to an end.
The Ministry of Sport allegedly did not respond on time to state how much longer Lazarus would have to remain in Rio and on whose cost he would stay there.
As a consequence, the defence ministry went ahead to arrange for Lazarus’ return with the Brazilian government.
Contacted for comment, the permanent secretary of sport in the ministry, Alfred Ilukena, however said his ministry is still in consultation with the Ministry of International Relations and Cooperation to allow Lazarus to remain in Brazil at the cost of the ministry of Sport.
Attempts to get hold of the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of International Relations Selma Ashipala-Musavyi were not successful.