KEETMANSHOOP - A recent approval by the Ministry of Urban and Rural Development will put smiles on the faces of 26 residents of Aus settlement in //Kharas Region. They have been anxious to get decent houses and their patience will pay off as they will soon become first-time home owners.
According to Jan Scholtz, !Nami#Nüs Constituency Councillor who also serves as the chairperson for //Kharas Regional Council, approval has been obtained from ministerial level for the alienation of the said houses as a means to ?install a sense of pride? for these residents.
The councillor in addition informed New Era that these houses will be given to the beneficiaries at a low-cost basis, making it financially possible for them to own it.
A list availed to New Era indicated most of the beneficiaries under the alienation scheme as being elderly, hence the chairperson’s view that this project will mostly cater for the elderly, of which some may have a shorter life expectancy. The councillor further expressed the concern that people want to upgrade these houses they lived in for so many years, but are unable since it first needs to become their property.
“This, in return can be seen as an investment for future generations whilst simutenosly secure them (next generations) with a place of their own,” he explained.
“Being downgraded from the status of a village council to that of a settlement, this intervention can greatly contribute towards upgrading the settlement back to become a village council again,” he said.
He further noted a village council can run their own affairs with democratically chosen councillors whilst settlements are maintained by the regional council, thus the urgent need for the upgrade.
“These people will become pride homeowners once their title deeds of transfer are finalised,” explained the councillor.
He concluded that a submission has been made to the Ministry of Urban and Rural Development under the Build Together Programme in order to provide Aus residents with low-cost loans to build their own houses and further as a means of addressing the prevailing housing crisis.
Aus is located in the Aus Mountains above the plains of the Namib Desert. The climate is usually hot and arid, but snow has been recorded many years ago. The settlement furthermore records some of the coldest winters in Namibia at times.