WALVIS BAY – Walvis Bay municipal CEO Muronga Haingura says local residents who qualify to move in terms of the decongestion process will be moved permanently, including at Farm 37.
Half of Walvis Bay’s residents, about 50 000, live in backyard shacks and are subjected to deplorable living conditions without proper sanitation.
This posed a challenge during the town’s earlier brush with Covid-19, which resulted in the Cabinet approving the decongestion of close to 800 households in Walvis Bay alone.
As part of the process, at least 400 residents of Twaloloka, including 235 families whose shacks were gutted by fire in July this year, will be permanently relocated.
“We don’t believe in temporary relocation, although this was the initial idea. Hence, the families that will be moved to Farm 37 will also be permanent,” he said.
Haingura earlier this week told New Era they are making good progress to make the land ready, although he could not say when people identified for the process will be relocated.
According to Haingura, they have already surveyed the plots and also appointed a contractor to carry out the civil works.
“Some work was done internally, such as the surveying and the installation of water pipelines to cut down cost for the decongestion process,” he explained.
Haingura, however, pointed out that nothing will be free and that families will have to pay for their portion of plots allocated to them.
This, he says, is due to the costly process involved when land is serviced. This will be done on cost recovery to ensure affordability for the residents, according to him.
“Being aware of this challenge, coupled with efforts to curb the further spread of Covid-19, the municipality embarked upon a decongestant survey from 2 October until today.
The purpose of the survey is to collect data regarding informal housing in Walvis Bay. That study will guide us as to who should be relocated,” he said.