It is imperative that the government assists citizens who are in need to make them self-sustainable, especially in these challenging economic times of the Covid-19 pandemic, said Keetmanshoop rural constituency councillor Elias Kharugab.
Kharugab made these remarks while undertaking follow- up visits at ongoing income-generating activity projects (IGAs) initiated through the office in the constituency.
Vytjie Hanse, one of the beneficiaries who received 10 goats last year, has notwithstanding the devastating drought, through perseverance and sound farming skills, increased her small livestock to close to 50 goats. “Through the grace of God I have never given up hope and what you see here today is the result of hard work and sacrifice,” she shared her story with New Era.
Another beneficiary Niklaas Kooper was provided with a cement mixer, 200 bags of cement, 12 brick-making forms and other equipment to start a brick-making project. Kooper says through the government assistance he has in turn employed six women and six men on the project.
Also benefitting from this much needed government intervention is Stefanus van der Byl who got a portion of land for crop production. “I started with the project three weeks ago and planted 3 600 watermelon seeds, but will also expand to pumpkin, cabbages and beetroot,” he said.
Van der Byl wants to employ unemployed community members from time to time on a casual basis to assist him as his gardening project eventually progresses.
Willem van Wyk, who owns the only funeral parlour in Aroab, said he has been assisted with equipment and material worth N$45 000 through the constituency office.
“We are running more of a community project through assisting vulnerable residents not having funeral insurance policies, at a very low cost when having funerals, thus operating more on a break-even financial system,” he enthused.
His biggest obstacle is to buy a hearse, and strong competition from surrounding rival undertakers in the area and to secure a contract from the poverty eradication ministry that partially assists pensioners’ next-of-kin financially in times of bereavement, are some of the other challenges he faces.
Kharugab during his visits said he would address the challenges faced by the beneficiaries and furthermore through engaging stakeholders to secure public funding to empower people willing to uplift their living standards.
“Through this one can contribute towards government’s priority to enforce inclusivity for all, eradicate poverty and empower needy citizens to become self-sustainable,” he concluded.