From left; Hon Sipapela, Chairperson of NC Habitat Committee, Chairperson of Management Council, Omaheke Hon Doeseb, Governor of Omaheke Region Hon Pijoo Nganate
|Story by Immanuel Kooper
The National Council Standing Committee on Habitat commenced its investigatory revisits to selective regions from 13 - 29 July 2020. This oversight function and in particular this investigatory exercise is meant to get feedback from the selected Regional Councils whom are to account for the appropriate usage of drought relief funds disbursed from the Office of the Prime Minister during the State of Emergency on drought in 2019 and extended until March 2020.
“The Committee engaged all Regional Councils, except the Khomas Regional Council earlier this year and learnt that some regions failed to appropriately implement the drought relieve programme and subsequently the funds meant to alleviate the plight of communities severely affected by the drought situation across the country. The revisits to the selective regions were therefore deemed necessary to assess the progress made by these councils this far in the effective implementation of the programme and the subsequent usage of the drought relief funds appropriately.
When drought was declared a National Disaster by His Excellency President Hage Geingob, an amount of N$ 35.5 million was disbursed to the Regional Councils. An additional amount of 214.5 million was released towards the end of 2019 for water provision and drilling and rehabilitation of boreholes. The regions visited this far i.e. Hardap, Omaheke and Kunene Regions reported substantive progress, though some areas again were identified that needs serious intervention and guidance, for example in the case for the Omaheke Region. The Committee under the leadership of Hon Cletius Sipapela from the Zambezi Region is undertaking the visits. Other Committee Members are Hon Betty Kaula - Vice Chairperson, Hon Laina Mekundi, Hon Weich Mupya, Hon Simon Dukeleni, Hon Lukas Muha and Hon A K Abraham.