OTJIMUHAKA - Residents of the Otjimuhaka in Kunene region are still over the moon after Telecom Namibia installed a network tower two years ago at the village. As a result of the network reception, the community is also able to receive radio frequency skywave, which made the dissemination of information from various stakeholders easier to reach the inhabitants. For the past years, residents used to climb on trees or on hills to borrow network signals from Okanguati, which is the nearest settlement. The lack of network coverage proved challenging for the community, especially in cases of emergencies. With the network tower installation, communication has not just been made easier but also convenient, especially for the youth that are seeking for employment. The young people are now in a position to make calls and verify information with officials instead of travelling to Opuwo to collect information. “We have internet access, some of the grade 12 failures get the information about the vacancies and see which post suits them and which one they do not qualify. Previously, we used to travel to Opuwo and by the time you reach Opuwo, the vacancy deadline is already due or one does not meet the requirements. With internet, posts are shared via social media platforms, which is faster than getting a newspaper especially here,” said local resident Dina Muandjendavi. The community members are also able to tune in to national radio stations in order to be updated on current affairs and other programmes, including updates from their local councillor on matters that personally affect them.
“There is a lot of information shared on radio, while there are educational programmes that affect our lives, such as death notices, weather reports and the distribution of social grants and old-age pension,” said Rauna Timoteus.
“It is through the radio that the nation is informed when not to cross the borders because there will be elections or there is a disease outbreak just like now that there is coronavirus but back in the days, you will just be in the dark not knowing what is going on around you, except around your village. We give thanks to our government.”
* Cecilia Xavier works for the Ministry of Information and Communication Technology in Opuwo, Kunene region