Otjozondjupa governor James Uerikua has appealed to residents of Okahandja who might be affected by the pending land eviction to remain calm, saying his office is working directly with the municipality in the implementation of the accelerated land delivery programme in an orderly and organised manner.
Okahandja municipality on Friday approached the Windhoek High Court to evict residents currently occupying municipal land “illegally” in the areas of Eekunde Proper, Eekunde Extension 5, Veddersdal extensions 1, 2 and 3 and Vyf Rand Extension 3 and 4.
The move by the municipality has been heavily condemned by opposition parties with some political leaders claiming the application was filed to clear the land as it has allegedly been sold to profit Namibia’s political elite.
However, Uerikua yesterday told New Era that the issue of land at Okahandja is high on government’s agenda, yet there are those who want to use it as a propaganda tool aimed at scoring political points with the people ahead of the regional and local authority elections.
“We call upon the Okahandja community to remain calm as it has become a practice that when approaching elections, everyone needs a breeding ground to amass support and votes and there are those who hopes to make Okahandja that ground but alas the land delivery programme is a serious initiative that government will see through up to its end,” Uerikua said.
Firstly, Uerikua said, government have launched a low-cost housing programme to cater for the low to middle class and ultra-low-income earners under the urban and rural development ministry championed directly by minister Erastus Uutoni.
This programme, he said, is in line with the National Development Plan (NDP5) and the Harambee Prosperity Plan (HPP) under the Social Progression Goal of ensuring the accelerated delivery of land in all regions’ towns and settlements.
“This programme is ongoing and Okahandja is earmarked as one of the municipalities to benefit from this initiative,” he added.
On the eviction order, Uerikua said the Okahandja community through a public meeting held at Nu Aib stadium nominated and selected eight community representatives who are working side by side with the municipality in the implementation of the accelerated land delivery programme in an orderly and organised manner.
“The land delivery process has been ongoing and it is at an advance stage where the committee has scrutinised and verified the land application forms submitted to the municipality and came up with one master list of all applications with clear and verified information of every individual,” said the youthful governor.
“The verification process determines whether one qualifies according to the minimum set criteria such as first time landowners to avoid double allocation, the type of land use applied for, the category being low to middle or ultra-low income.” – email@example.com