Kalkfeld Communal Farmers Demand Resettlement

19 Mar 2015 11:50am
KALKFELD, 19 MAR (NAMPA) – The Minister of Lands and Resettlement on Wednesday promised to avail resettlement farms for the communal farmers who have livestock grazing along the Kalkfeld roads and corridors.
Alpheus !Naruseb held a public meeting with more than 100 communal farmers at Kalkfeld to update them on their requests for Government to provide them with resettlement farms.
Kalkfeld is situated approximately 70 kilometres south of Otjiwarongo in the Otjozondjupa Region.
Sitting under a tree while their herds of cattle, goats and sheep are grazing just a few metres away, !Naruseb told the communal farmers that following their meeting in April 2014 where their concerns were raised, he did not rest at all and immediately tasked a technical assessment team under his ministry to look into their needs.
The minister said the team that conducted assessment also did not rest as they launched their studies immediately to assess the communal farmers’ resettlement needs.
It emerged in the study that over 27 000 hectares (ha) of land is needed on which these communal farmers here would keep and have their approximately 1 400 small and large livestock graze.
He said the study vividly revealed that the capacity of 752 ha of land currently available to the more than 100 communal farmers is too small.
The findings of that study were forwarded to the Land Reform Advisory Committee that has so far advised !Naruseb to proceed and purchase resettlement farms for the Kalkfeld communal farmers, !Naruseb explained.
“We are now definitely looking into your requests for resettlement. A team from the Ministry of Lands and Resettlement will be sent around this area to hold talks with commercial farmers so that they sell some of their farms to us for resettlement purposes,” he said.
!Naruseb urged commercial farmers owning more than one farmland in the country to cooperate with Government and put some of their farms on sale for the programme of resettlement to continue.
!Naruseb during his speech also called on all land-hungry Namibians to exercise patience in their quest for resettlement.
He said Government is busy to amicably address the situation.
Meanwhile, a community member of Kalkfeld, Sipho Kauripeke told !Naruseb during the meeting to take people’s resettlement requests seriously, saying this year’s drought has already made farmers’ lives difficult in communal areas.
Kauripeke claims to have heard that three commercial farms around Kalkfeld are for sale since January this year.
He said that Government must capitalise on the opportunity and buy these farms for resettlement purposes.