Residents of Samora Machel constituency are demanding the City of Windhoek relocate them following heavy rains that damaged their properties over the weekend.
According to councillor Nestor Kalola, more than 100 people from Havana and Goreangab informal settlements suffered a huge loss over the weekend after water flowed into their homes and damaged books and appliances.
“This situation has been going on for the past three years now. The water is coming from the riverbed that is blocked by garbage. The city did not clean this riverbed for the past three years, hence they need to come to our rescue,” said Hilma Nakandjembo who suffered severely from the flood.
Her house has been damaged by the water that also damaged almost everything she possesses, including her daughter’s books.
Nakandjembo also lost two beds, cupboards, a fridge and a microwave in the flood.
“Luckily, no one was in the house. It was going to be disastrous, although it is still a disaster. The water was too much to contain,” she added.
She is now accommodated at a neighbour’s house while waiting for assistance from the disaster risk management office of the Khomas Regional Council.
Another resident, Natanael Emweudjala, said if the City of Windhoek does not clean the riverbed soon, it will lead to more disasters in the near future.
“This is one of the main rivers that flow from the dam and other informal settlements. The water pressure is too strong and once it diverts into the shacks, everything will get damaged,” he added.
Andreas Shigwedha also indicated all his belongings got damaged by water, including his children’s books.
Councillor Kalola said last Sunday, several residences got flooded, and shifted the blame to the City of Windhoek.
“The colleagues from the City of Windhoek are not coming forth to do their job. The riverbed has not been cleaned for the past three years, that‘s why we have this situation.
When we tell them to relocate the people, they are not acting. If people lose their lives the councillors who are on the ground get blamed,” he furiously stated.
The chief regional officer of the Khomas Regional Council, Clement Mafwila also confirmed the council’s knowledge of the flood, adding that the council has responded by providing quick assistance to the victims.
However, the accounting officer indicated that the City of Windhoek is the custodian of the land and hence is mandated to relocate people by the Disaster Risk Management Act.
“We have provided bags of maize meal, oil, boxes of canned fish, blankets and tents, for the time being, while we are waiting for a comprehensive report from the constituency office,” he added.
Mafwila said the donation was done through the disaster risk management department in the region and so far only one constituency got affected.
“We are still waiting for the report. As soon as we get it, we will determine the way forward. The assistance was rendered based on an oral report and observations by the regional councillor,” he said. Queries sent to the city’s spokesperson yesterday were not answered by the time the paper went to print.