Omaheke governor Pijoo Nganate has denounced court battles by traditional leaders and their respective authorities in Omaheke, saying the time, energy and resources spent on such fights should be better used to develop the region.
“It has now become an open secret that our courts have now become the battlefield of our traditional leaders and their respective authorities. Unfortunately, most court cases emanate from our region and are mainly on successions, land allocations, recognition, and so on,” Nganate said while delivering his state of the region address on Friday.
“Something must be done. We truly cannot continue like this.” According to Nganate, what is more disturbing is that those entrusted with the responsibility of being the custodians of customs and tradition of their communities are abdicating their mandate to legal courts. “Considering the amount of time, energy and resources (both material and financial) spent in these court battles, one cannot help but imagine how far our traditional communities would have been if the same was spent on their development and wellbeing,” Nganate said further.
Unfortunately, he said, government and its leadership are dragged into disputes and court cases and thereby subjected to the same wastage of time, energy and resources. He said earlier this year, he convened a meeting with traditional leaders in the region, with the purpose to introduce a platform where the traditional leaders will meet to discuss traditional matters of common interest, share best practices and try to resolve disputes in a mature and amicable fashion.
Nganate said he now plans to convene a second meeting by the end of July this year. Furthermore, the governor acknowledged the high rate of youth unemployment in the region, saying it is a huge concern and his office has since designed a project that would serve as a catalyst for youth employment creation.
“This project is tasked with the responsibility of creating job creators and not job seekers. Distinguished ladies and gentlemen, I am referring to the O-Space,” he explained.
The politician revealed the O-Space has designed the incubation hub programme, which will cater to 20 entrepreneurs per year. This will capacitate the aspiring business start-ups from product or service ideation into the market. “O-Space has commenced with the innovation kitchen which aims to contribute to regional food security and community education for improved nutritional in-take and an eventual healthy community in the region,” said Nganate.
He also announced Uranium One, an exploration company has found rich deposits of uranium in the Aminuis constituency, saying investment that will flow into the region through this mining will be tremendous.
“Once mining starts, 800 jobs will be created. Also, once the mine is in full production, it will contribute to growing Namibia’s GDP by between 1.5% to 2%.”
“The company has already illustrated its commitment to the upliftment of the region, by committing to drill 18 water boreholes and work on this will start soon. They have further committed to supporting the Governor’s Social Fund and will also support the primary school in Leonardville with a feeding programme,” he said.