OMUTHIYA - Staff and councillors of Oniipa Town Council are determined to transform the town into a modern urban centre.
This, according to mayor David Kambonde, can only be achieved through close working relationships with the community.
“Oniipa still has a rural face. At the moment, our mission is geared towards transforming the town from a set of villages to an attractive urban centre to live, invest, work, play and learn in,” said Kambonde during a community meeting on Friday.
The town council is holding community meetings for two weeks to engage residents on projects lined up, successes and challenges as well as get input on how to drive the developmental agenda.
Oniipa was proclaimed a town in 2015, becoming the third local authority in the Oshikoto region. It is home to over 24 000 inhabitants from diverse cultural backgrounds. The former Finnish Missionary Station is situated along the B1 Road between Omuthiya and Ondangwa.
It was revealed that council received N$4 million funding from central government for the 2020/21 financial year.
Over the past year, council has managed to survey 1 155 erven at newly formalised townships of extension 1-7 at a cost of N$1.4 million. A further N$3.3 million was spent on electrification of 80 residential erven, while N$369 816 was paid on lighting the main street.
Other projects undertaken include the construction of the N$24.3 million council administration office, maintenance of gravel roads as well as upgrading and spot-gravelling of access roads in various areas.
“The maintenance of gravel for a stretch of two kilometres was done at a cost of N$917 100, while access roads required N$202 014. Another activity is upgrading feeder water pipelines and relocation of water meters of customers to areas such as Okalunga, Iinongo, Omuhozi, Ondado, Onamulunga and Okakwiyu,” added councillor Hileni Idhogela.
She also said 1 500 tippy-taps were installed in the community in collaboration with Development Workshop (DW).
In addition, Idhogela said DW, a non-governmental organisation that focusses on sustainable urban development, also trained community members on how to install tippy-taps in an effort to improve sanitation, especially in informal settlement.
Other projects in the pipelines include the construction of a solar power plant as well as ongoing pre-planning of the entire Oniipa into 38 townships.