City mall crime hotspot

A popular shopping centre in Windhoek’s central business district may potentially become a crime hotbed if its managing company does not take necessary measures to improve security.

17 September 2018 | Crime

Ogone Tlhage - The Wernhil Park Shopping Centre, one of Namibia’s most visited retail spaces, this week suffered a robbery at one of its shops. This is the second time a shop has been burgled, seemingly unnoticed.

A jewellery shop was robbed of merchandise valued at N$1 million The Villager reported earlier this week. “When I arrived at the scene, the burglars had already done their job. We were outside the mall. We work outside at night. Now how will we be able to monitor what happens inside?” the owner of the shop, who did not want to be identified,” had said.

A worker at the mall said, “Imagine that we have so few guards and already the mall has been extended above. Other tenants have complained due to this poor security.”

Broll Namibia that manages the centre, confirmed that a robbery had taken place, saying that they activated an investigation into the incident. While this is the second incident of theft at the centre, Broll was of the opinion that it had stringent security processes to guard against break-ins at the shopping centre.

“The Wernhil Park Shopping Centre has stringent processes as well as a state of the art surveillance system in place which safeguards the mall against such incidents. It is for this reason that foul play is not to be ruled out and will be part of the focus of our investigation into the matter,” Broll Namibia spokesperson, Sylvia Rusch, said.

She added that measures are now being put in place to safeguard against potential incidents in the future. She would however not go into detail despite being asked by Windhoek Express. “The safety and security of our shoppers and tenants alike is our top priority. Parallel to the full investigation regarding this incident, further improvements pertaining to the security of our centre are being put in place,” she said.

“At the current investigation stage it is too early for Broll Namibia to provide further details until the complete assessment of the incident has been done.”

The Huawei Experience shop, which is also located in the Wernhil Shopping Centre, was robbed earlier this year of goods to the value of N$148 600. Closed-circuit television footage of the shop at the time showed how three men had gained entry by breaking the door open and then plundering the shop of top of the line Huawei phones. At one stage a security guard can be seen walking past the shop without seemingly noticing the three men busy inside. One of the robbers can be seen looking through the windows of the shop to see if the security guard will return before continuing to plunder the cellular phone shop weekly Informante reported at the time.

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