08 Aug 2013 05:10
BERSEBA, 08 AUG (NAMPA) - The /Hai-/Khaua traditional chiefs at Berseba in the Karas Region have requested Government to avail their official vehicle as allocated to all traditional chiefs in the country to them.
Chief Johannes Isaak and Deputy Chief Stephanus Goliath were sworn-in as recognised leaders of the /Hai-/Khaua community in 2011.
At a meeting between the traditional leaders of Berseba and the Deputy Minister of Lands and Resettlement Theo Diergaardt here on Wednesday, Goliath used the opportunity to raise the vehicle issue with Diergaardt.
He asked that Government consider the fact that they need an official vehicle (a double-cab pick-up) to move around and do their work, as they currently struggle without transport.
In response, the deputy minister said although his ministry does not deal with the allocation of such vehicles, he will channel the request to the relevant ministry, which is the Ministry of Regional and Local Government, Housing and Rural Development.
Speaking to Nampa shortly after the meeting, Goliath said they had expected to receive the vehicle last year, but it did not materialise.
We have requested them (Ministry of Regional and Local Government) to avail a vehicle before, but we are still waiting for a response. It will be better for us if we can get that vehicle, Goliath stressed.
During the meeting Diergaardt, who is in Karas on a week-long tour to meet with traditional leaders and communities to deliberate on land issues, urged all community members to register their Customary Land Rights with the recognised authority.
This must be done in order to avoid duplication in land allocations, as well as conflict amongst community members who sometimes fight over land ownership.
He also warned unrecognised leaders in Berseba to stop the alleged illegal allocation of land, and to stop misleading people by telling them that they have the right to allocate land.
The deputy minister explained that recognised traditional leaders have the right to allocate 20 hectares of land to community members, but no more than that.
If anyone wants to extend their land to more than 20 hectares, they should seek the ministrys approval.
Even the 20 hectares allocated by traditional chiefs is not yet legal until it is approved by the regional Lands Board, he indicated.
Responding to a question by this news agency regarding a complaint by some residents of Berseba that some traditional leaders measure land with their feet instead of the right equipment, Diergaardt said the chiefs know where to find the equipment, so they should get it from the ministry.