• September 18th, 2019
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Low-income households qualify for drought relief




Eveline de Klerk

SWAKOPMUND - Households with a combined income not exceeding N$2600 per month and are from drought stricken rural areas will be eligible for government drought relief food.  
They should however not be beneficiaries of other intervention programmes.
This is according to Japhet Itenge, the Director of Risk Management in the Office of the Prime Minister. 
Itenge was one of the officials that accompanied the Deputy Prime Minister Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah to Erongo Region to discuss the criteria under which drought relief will be distributed in the country.
President Hage Geingob last week declared the drought a national disaster, availing N$570 million to assist hardest hit farmers and households until the next rainy season.
Explaining the criteria, Itenge said traditional leaders, councillors will be some of the people tasked to identify vulnerable Namibians in drought stricken rural areas.
According to him such households will receive maize meal, fish and cooking oil for at least nine months. 
Itenge explained government is aware that rural populations in terms of households differ in the way they are structured and it is quite difficult but “we need to make sure that we are not overlapping”.  
Hence, he says that one of the criteria is that vulnerable Namibians should not be benefitting from other intervention programmes.
“For instance, an elderly couple, both receiving pension will qualify. However in the case of two pensioners having two grandchildren who receives a grant from government will not be able to qualify for drought relief and hence cannot be registered as such. We know it is a heavy one but we need to make sure that we do not target the same people that are already benefiting from other programmes so that we help as many Namibians as we can, be it from any other intervention programmes,” he said.
Apart from the households, farmers will also be assisted in terms of water, livestock marketing, transport in terms of relocation of animals as well as a fodder and farmers who will be forced to lease elsewhere due to the drought will also be assisted. As for Erongo, he says that at least 10 boreholes has already been drilled, while broken boreholes will also be rehabilitated in due 
course.
 


Loide Jason
2019-05-14 09:18:58 4 months ago

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