Land Conference: Statistician-General makes crucial recommendations
WINDHOEK – Institutions responsible for generating land statistics for administrative records must harmonise their databases through the Namibia Statistics Agency (NSA) for regular reporting and central archiving.
This is one of the five recommendations made by the Namibia Statistics Agency (NSA) Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Alex Shimuafeni, during yesterday’s symposium under the auspices of NSA, titled “Namibia Land Statistics”, themed “Statistics for Land Use Planning: Land Debate in Perspective”.
“There is an urgent need for a harmonised and centralised national land statistics database for easier access and dissemination of land statistics in the country,” said Shimuafeni, who is also the statistician-general.
Within a fortnight, Namibians from across the country will gather in Windhoek to deliberate on the burning issue of a land reform programme and other anticipated land-related issues.
The upcoming conference aims to create a platform where Namibians will be accorded an opportunity to air their views on land reform.
Shimuafeni says there are observed differences in reporting on land in Namibia in many publications, including official reports.
He advises the Ministry of Land Reform to pronounce the correct and gazetted land extent of Namibia in forder to have uniformed figures and comparisons.
He said this is important for the safeguarding of Namibia’s territorial sovereignty.
Shimuafeni added that there is a need for Namibia to adopt clear guidelines on its land tenure classification system, which must be regularly updated and publicised.
“It must be clearly understood as to what constitutes state land in order to classify land correctly for both planning and development,” he charges.
In addition, he said there is an urgent need for recording important indicators or variables on source date depending on required thematic information for reporting purposes.
“Categories such as previously advantaged or disadvantaged in the farm acquisition programmes are not formally recorded, despite such categories being required for planning and decision-making,” he said.
Meanwhile, according to statistics released by NSA yesterday, Namibia’s land tenure consists of 23% state land, 35% communal land and 42% freehold agricultural (commercial) land, compared to 20% state land, 36% communal land and 44% freehold land in 2010.
Both communal and freehold land have slightly lost out to state land at 1% and 2% respectively.
A total of 12,382 commercial farms and portions of farms in Namibia account for 39.7 million hectares of land of which 97.7% is owned by Namibians.
Much of the 39.7 million hectares of land (34 million hectares) is privately owned (86%) while government owns the remaining 5.4 million hectares of land (14%).
Previously advantaged Namibians own 27.8 million hectares (70%) of the freehold agricultural land, while previously disadvantaged Namibians own only 6.4 million hectares (16%)
Non-Namibians own 1.2 million hectares (3%) of land. German nationals own 639,667 hectares of land in Namibia, followed by South Africans who own 353,875 hectares, and Americans who own 82,024 hectares.
A total of 3 million hectares has been acquired through the National Resettlement Programme since 1990 with 5,352 beneficiaries.
The programme acquired 496 farms of which more households originating from Hardap, Khomas, Omaheke, Otjozondjupa and //Kharas regions have benefited compared to other regions.
Government waived a total of 5.1 million hectares from 1992 to 2018 with Otjozondjupa Region having the biggest portion of waived land.
A total of 6.4 million hectares of land was acquired through the Agricultural Bank of Namibia during 1992 -2018.
Of this, 3.4 million hectares (54%) of commercial farmland were acquired through the Affirmative Action Loan Scheme Programme, while commercial banks funded 2.8 million hectares (46%).
Only 10% of females benefited through the AALS programme, compared to 60% males.
2018-09-14 08:09:09 8 months ago