Voters vent their frustration …want sanitation, water woes addressed
WINDHOEK – Residents of Kilimanjaro and Babylon informal settlements in the Tobias Hainyeko constituency have expressed unhappiness over the lack of basic municipal services such as water, electricity and poor sanitation facilities.
Some of the residents, New Era spoke to, say they are hesitant to vote for political parties contesting the Presidential and National Assembly elections next month.
About 70 percent of Tobias Hainyeko constituency is made of informal settlements, which has also seen a rapid growth over the years.
Most of the residents live in slum-like conditions and have no access to proper sanitation facilities. There are about 48 000 people living in the constituency.
Some residents claim political party leaders only reach out to them when elections are close.
A pensioner, Ndapewa Shamwaha, said she does not see the need to vote this time around.
“They keep making empty promises that they will bring us electricity, water, and toilets. We have been voting for years but there is no change. Why should we vote? We can’t just be giving mandates to people while there is no change and differences in our lives,” she said.
According to residents of Kilimanjaro, Babylon, Okahandja Park, Ongulumbashe, and One Nation, they still don’t have access to electricity, despite politicians promising to deliver over the years.
Residents say they too need to be brought on par with others residing in Windhoek. On sanitation, the residents say they don’t have toilets, adding the few public facilities that were erected years back, have been vandalised and damaged.
This has forced them to make use of riverbeds, which they claim are not safe.
According to 55-year-old Johanna Kambala, their leaders have neglected them. “As old as we are, we are forced to relieve ourselves in the riverbeds. We are really demoralised to vote.
We have been voting for change but the situation remains the same. We have been neglected by the government,” she complained. Another resident of Goreangab, Johannes Lazarus, said he would not vote because “citizens are not taken seriously.”
He feels politicians make empty promises and disappear after they get their votes. Lazarus also took issue with the joint Namibian police and Namibian Defence Force anti-crime prevention operations.
“The government has deployed soldiers and police officers on the streets and they are threatening us every day. Our rights are taken away because we are not allowed to question their actions,” he said.
Another resident of Hakahana, 66-year-old Theresia Kauazunda, said she is going to vote, as she has no issues with the current administration.
She said it was important for her to vote and exercise her democratic right.
“If you don’t vote, then you don’t have a voice. As the elderly generation, we have been taken care of by the government. We receive our monthly pension grants and our municipal bills are written off. We are also given electricity which is subsidised. The government is also planning to subsidise our water bills. So, with all these benefits, why should we not vote?” she asked.
2019-10-24 07:15:45 | 18 days ago