WALVIS BAY – The newly elected Walvis Bay council yesterday postponed the sale of about 200 erven indefinitely in order to scrutinise what they termed a “flawed” procedure.
The sale of the erven was expected to take place on Monday but was initially postponed to yesterday before being postponed again – dashing the hopes of hundreds of residents who had been camping in front of the municipal offices in Kuisebmond since early this week to secure a piece of land.
According to a notice issued two weeks ago, the municipality was expected to sell 79 single residential erven, five general residential erven, 14 local business erven and 36 light business erven situated in Meersig, Narraville and Kuisebmond.
The sale was open to anyone but this was objected to by many seeing that it disadvantages first-time buyers under very relaxed repayment plans.
However, some business people also paid locals to camp at the municipality building in order to scoop up the erven.
According to the advert buyers were expected to pay 5% of the erf price, with an option to repay within 39 months or 90 days after agreeing to buy the property.
However, Walvis Bay mayor Trevino Forbes yesterday said the new council wanted to familiarise itself first with the terms and conditions of the sale, as first-time homeowners were being disadvantaged.
“Because of land that was previously sold fraudulently we cannot allow the sale or any land deals to continue unless we as the current council scrutinise it,” said Forbes.
He added that the conditions of the sale are one of the aspects council will look at before they can continue with the selling of land.
“We will have people already owning property and huge land also competing with first-time buyers. Hence, the whole procedure is wrong. We as the new council cannot also just continue with things that was left by the old council, especially when it comes to land due to the challenges we are facing when it comes to land,” he explained.
Reginald Kooper, who resides in a shack at the harbour town, was one of the residents who camped outside the municipality with the hope of securing a plot for himself.
“I have been here since Monday hoping that I will be able to secure a plot for my family,” he said.
According to Kooper he and his three sisters withdrew all their savings so that they could invest in a plot together as they have been struggling to get a house at Walvis Bay.
Miriam Ndenga, who also camped outside the municipality, said she was disappointed that the sale was postponed as she was also hoping to buy herself a plot.
“I just got a nice bonus from my job and I thought using it to pay a deposit on a plot is a better way of spending it,” Ndenga said.
The sale of the erven was initiated by the previous council and supposed to take place earlier this year but was postponed due to the Covid-19 outbreak at the town.