Olive/Date plantations for Okombahe and Otjimbingwe

31 Aug 2014 08:20am
OKOMBAHE, 31 AUG (NAMPA) – Residents of Okombahe settlement in the Erongo Region will soon be able to plant their own olive plants, after an olive plantation project was launched here on Friday.
Olive is harvested mostly for oil production, which helps fight high levels of cholesterol, treats sunburns and reduces strokes, especially amongst elderly people.
Work on the Olive plantation, situated 10 kilometres west of Okombahe, will start next month simultaneously with the Dates project in Otjimbingwe and a Greenhouse vegetable garden at Namanpost.
The Erongo Regional Council and Namsov Fishing Enterprises will fund the three agricultural projects to the tune of N.dollars 1 million.
Namsov contributed N.dollars 500 000 while the Erong Regional Council provided the remaining N.dollars 500 000.
Erongo Regional Governor Cleophas Mutjavikua launched the three projects at the Olive plantation site in Okombahe on Friday.
He explained that the aim of the projects is to ensure food security, employment creation and the alleviation of poverty in rural communities.
Mutjavikua said the three projects will start first with the fencing of lands, then the water supply systems and later the actual planting.
The much-anticipated plantations will provide employment to more than 300 people from the three areas and their regions.
“This is a big and tough project. Therefore, as a community you must work hard to ensure that the future of your children is better. Those who will be employed here must be very committed. If you don’t want to work, resign and go home to sleep,” he instructed.
Mutjavikua said the future of Namibia’s economy depends on agriculture, and it is therefore crucial that young people develop a keen interest in land cultivation.
“Some of our children do not want to work in the fields. They claim not to know anything about agriculture. My advice is that they need to change their mindset. We must make it a point to stand in the sun and work on the land because it is the future,” he said.
The governor explained that the Olives and Dates projects will take four years before the first harvest, adding that four years is a long time which would require commitment and hard work.
About 50 people attended the launch, where 15 residents were given Olive trees to plant at their houses.
Those who take good care of their plants will be given more.
With enough plants they are able to sell to the project in the future.
Three Olive plants were planted at the site in Okombahe on Friday to signal the commencement of the project.
Okombahe is situated in the Daures Constituency, which falls under Councillor Ehrnst Katjiku.
On his part, Katjiku also urged the communities to be dedicated toward the projects and to collectively guard against the theft and vandalism of properties.
“This is history in the making. Launching projects like these was never done before in Daures and the greater Erongo. These projects are our babies, and that’s why we need to take good care of them,” said Katjiku.
Chief Sustainability Officer at Namsov, Tuna Willem also encouraged the community and politicians to be in touch with her company, as Namsov is willing to support rural development.
“This is not the last support we will give. So if there are any projects that need funding, you are welcome to approach us and we will see how to help,” said Willem.
Okombahe is located some 60 kilometres west of Omaruru.