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Martin Shalli

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Title: Martin Shalli  
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Subject: Namibia Defence Force, Solomon Huwala
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Martin Shalli

Lieutenant General Martin Shalli is a former Namibian diplomat and military commander. In 2005, he was appointed to the post of High Commissioner of Namibia to Zambia by then President Sam Nujoma but was recalled in October 2006 by his successor, Hifikepunye Pohamba and appointed Chief of the Namibia Defence Force (NDF). He replaced controversial former NDF commander Solomon Huwala. He was replaced as High Commissioner to Zambia by regional councillor Solomon Witbooi. In July 2009, Shalli was suspended by President Pohamba due to "serious allegations of irregularities".[1] Without the alleged irregularities being proven, refuted, or even officially substantiated, Shalli retired with full military privileges in January 2011.[2]


Shalli joined SWAPO's military wing, the People's Liberation Army of Namibia (PLAN) in 1971 in exile and eventually was trained as an anti-aircraft artillery battalion commander in the Soviet Union before eventually becoming a PLAN platoon commander. When PLAN merged into the military structure to help create independent Namibia's military, the Namibia Defence Force, Shalli was given the position of Policy and Operations Director with the rank of Brigadier General.[3] In 2009, Shalli was suspended from the NDF due to allegations of fraud. He allegedly had large amounts of money given to him by a company working in Namibia from the People's Republic of China from which the NDF bought equipment. He was replaced by Major General Peter Nambundunga.[1] Prior to his suspension, Shalli earned three medals for his service, the Order of Eagle 2nd Class, the Omugulugwombashe Medal, and the Namibia Cross for Bravery in Silver. Despite the allegations Shalli retired with full military privileges in January 2011.[2]


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