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Gobabis mayor on N$42m NamPower ‘headache

2022-05-11  Kuzeeko Tjitemisa

Gobabis mayor on N$42m NamPower ‘headache

GOBABIS – Gobabis mayor Elvire Theron has described the town’s N$42.5 million debt to NamPower as the “biggest headache”.

However, Theron was quick to point out that the council is working hard to find a solution.

“Council inherited a debt of about N$42 500 000 from the previous council. NamPower wrote demanding letters and threatened to cut electricity to the town. Council had to negotiate to keep the electricity on for Gobabis,” Theron told New Era in an interview.

She said, currently, the municipality is paying the debt in instalments, together with the current monthly electricity bill. 

“Residents might take these negotiations for granted – but, imagine life in Gobabis with load shedding. One only appreciates certain services once you lose them,” she said.

Theron further stated that critical gear and equipment in the town, such as the water truck, JCB and bulldozer, have been out of commission for some time.

“It is very costly to repair it, and there are no finances to buy new ones. We are currently renting some of the machinery needed, which is very expensive too,” she said.

She also complained of leakages, saying the town’s pipeline is old, and the asbestos pipes cannot take the water pressure anymore.  

“As far as we can, new PVC pipes are being installed. However, this is very costly, and council does not have the necessary funds to replace our main water supply pipes yet,” she said, adding that it will cost the council a few million to repair. 

Furthermore, Theron warned “certain employees” that she said have made it their mission to sabotage council activities. 

“Council would decide on matters – and once we check whether the resolution or instruction was done, we would find some staff intentionally decided they will not do what council wants,” she said, adding this boils down to insubordination with the intention to frustrate the system and delay operations. 

Another issue faced by the council, Theron said, is a directive sent by the line ministry that the council would not receive funds for capital projects due to the national economic crisis. 

“This is making it difficult for the council to embark on new capital projects for the town, as the central government is in a financial crisis,” said Theron. 

“We will need to find other ways of raising funds, like income-generating projects for the council, to grow the town,” she added. 


2022-05-11  Kuzeeko Tjitemisa

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