Matheus Hamutenya Keetmanshoop-Kosis residents still pray and hope that this will be the year when they will have their dilapidated clinic renovated and opened, despite waiting for years without any good news. The clinic at the area was closed just after independence due to the area’s low population, and residents there and nearby farms have over the years had to travel to Bethanie to seek health services, which is about 40 kilometres away. And they have over the years expressed their frustrations, especially on the cost of going to the clinic at Bethanie, which they claim can be N$350 to hire a vehicle, and that while Bethanie seems just nearby, and there is a lack of vehicles at the settlement. They therefore have over the years knocked at relevant offices so that their clinic can be renovated and reopened again, so that it can cater for the mostly elderly population at the settlement, and the schoolchildren, who cannot afford to pay huge amounts in order to access basic medical services. Community activist Anna Joseph told New Era that although it has been a long journey, the residents are still hopeful that this year can be the year that they get the clinic opened again, saying this is very much needed so that everyone can have access to health. “We are really suffering, like on Christmas Day there was a girl giving birth at a nearby farm, and an ambulance had to drive from Keetmanshoop, which is over 100 kilometres away, to pick her up, but this can be avoided if we have our clinic opened,” she said. Joseph said what is special about their plea is that the community is not asking for a new clinic to be built, but simply for their old structure to be renovated, and for nurses to be placed there. She noted the community is hopeful that regional governor Lucia Basson can assist in making their dreams a reality, so that they do not have to spend so much money in an attempt to access basic healthcare. “We hope and trust that we can finally get our clinic renovated and operating this year,” she said. Basson in an interview with New Era said the Kosis clinic is one of the many projects she would give more attention to this year, but noted that the government alone cannot do it, and she thus urged the private sector to assist where possible. “The facility is already there, it is just a matter of renovating it and putting nurses there, so I call upon all private companies to assist me in renovating this building,” she said. The settlement is about 140 kilometres west of Keetmanshoop.
2018-01-09 09:28:09 8 months ago