Poverty Ministry concludes regional consultations

01 Oct 2015 19:50pm
WINDHOEK, 01 OCT (NAMPA) – The Ministry of Poverty Eradication and Social Welfare has concluded its three-week regional consultative meetings and National Dialogue on Wealth Redistribution and Poverty Eradication in all 14 regions.
The meetings started on 14 September 2015 and ended 01 October. It was meant to engage with communities and stakeholders in order to seek their input on poverty eradication strategies for Namibia.
Speaking at the last meeting here on Thursday, Minister of Poverty Eradication and Social Welfare, Zephania Kameeta described the engagements with people from different regions as successful and helpful.
Kameeta said his ministry takes cognisance of the multi-faceted nature of poverty and the great need for a multi-sectoral approach to fight the war on this social ill.
He said his ministry will play a crucial and central role to ensure that the myriad of initiatives and programmes relating to poverty eradication and social welfare, executed by Government Offices/Ministries/Agencies, including those under State-owned Enterprises (SOEs), are coordinated, evaluated and synchronised.
Kameeta stressed that gaps be identified and filled so that all such programmes make a significant impact on the lives of the people they are intended for.
“We are holding these regional consultations under the overarching theme of wealth redistribution to arrest poverty and with the key objective to build a national consensus, and to stimulate inclusive and innovative proposals from you, the stakeholders,” he said.
The consultations provided guidelines on how to effectively and sustainably drive a national wealth redistribution agenda, which points to a high level of skewness with resources only vested in the hands of a few.
“We are building a nation based on a shared vision as per our Vision 2030; a country where poverty would not have space,” he said.
The minister stressed that these consultative meetings afforded them the opportunity to engage with stakeholders as representatives of wider communities, including the poorest of the poor, and to propose workable and sustainable wealth redistributive strategies to eradicate poverty.
Through these engagements, Kameeta said clear recommendations should be provided as workable proposals and not wish lists.
The ministry has been tasked with the establishment of food banks across the country to abolish hunger and improve nutritional levels in Namibia.
“We are in the process to establish the Windhoek Food Bank, and use it as a pilot for the other regions,” Kameeta said.
The construction of the envisaged food bank is expected to commence in October this year.
The building will be erected on a piece of land between the Swapo Headquarters and the Katutura Red Cross Complex in Windhoek.
The idea of a food bank was initiated in 2012 after media reports highlighted how hundreds of people scavenge for rotten and stale food at dumpsites in Windhoek.