Speaker of the National Assembly, Hon. Prof. Peter Katjavivi (left) at the Sikondo irrigation project. On the extreme right is Kavango west Governor, Hon. Sirka Ausiku
|Story by George Sanzila
Speaker of the National Assembly, Hon. Prof. Peter Katjavivi has embarked on an outreach programme covering the regions of Kavango west and east and Omaheke. The visit themed “Parliament for social development” is meant to gauge development efforts of government and find solutions as part of the Speaker’s oversight responsibility.
The Speaker is currently in the Kavango west region where he has met the regional leadership looking at specific issues such as early child development, social welfare, education and skills development.
Kavango west regional governor, Hon. Siirka Ausiku noted during the meeting that her region was faced with a myriad of challenges including lack of access to health, housing and sanitation, lack of portable water and other infrastructure development efforts that have stagnated due to financial constraints.
Despite challenges, new infrastructure that is being built such as the Rupara youth development centre would play a bigger role in addressing skills shortage among the youth. The Sikondo irrigation project covering over 800 hectares and one of Namibia’s most successful green schemes, has also greatly reduced the scourge of unemployment in the region with over 60 workers and 40 small scale farmers benefiting from the project.
Katjavivi who was fascinated with the progress despite challenges, pledged his support for the development of the region urging the regional leadership to identify and quantify their needs before a holistic solution can be found.
Nkurenkuru, the new regional capital for Kavango west also faces challenges of its own including lack of serviced land and a chronic shortage of office space and accommodation for may government institution officials.
Nkurenkuru was declared a town in 2013 after Kavango was divided into two regions. It is situated approximately 145 kilometres west of Rundu with over 15 000 residents. Apart from visiting the Sikondo irrigation project, Hon. Katjavivi also assessed progress at the Rupara youth development centre and the health clinic, both still under construction.