16 Jul 2013 10:10
WINDHOEK, 16 JUL (NAMPA) - The Omusati Regional Council has secured close to N.dollars 2 million to construct a facility which will accommodate expectant mothers at Outapi.
The council has already secured three plots, one of which was donated by the Outapi Town Council, for the construction of the centre.
Currently, expectant mothers who hail from as far as neighbouring Angola and a number of rural villages within the Omusati Region sleep at an open space next to the Outapi State Hospital.
Some of the women do so in order to attend prenatal appointments, while others want to be near the hospital as their due date draws closer.
Not only are they exposed to harsh weather conditions, but they also have to get by without proper bathroom facilities.
Omusati Regional Governor Sophia Shaningwa on Friday told members of the media during a visit to the area where the centre will be constructed that her council has secured N.dollars 100 000 from Standard Bank Namibia, N.dollars 805 000 from the Namibian Ports Authority (Namport) and more than N.dollars 1 million from the office of First Lady Penehupifo Pohamba.
?I want to make sure that this situation changes from worse to better for these pregnant mothers,? she said, adding that the women are forced to sleep under a tree until they have to go to the hospital.
Shaningwa stated that there are no ablution facilities, no water supply and also no decent space for the women to cook in.
?The women have to walk a distance away from the trees to wash themselves and their clothes in a canal,? the governor stressed.
She indicated that the current situation is tantamount to the abuse of unborn babies.
?This is an insult to future generations,? she fumed whilst standing amongst some of the expectant mothers on Friday.
Apart from bedrooms to accommodate more than 100 women, the facility will have a conference centre, which will be used to educate the expectant mothers on health-related matters.
Shaningwa said the council has already appointed a local company to construct the centre, and building work is expected to commence ?as soon as possible?.