24 Jan 2016 14:20pm
WINDHOEK, 24 JAN (NAMPA) The Khomas Regional Council held its official opening for 2016 on Friday.
This was the first time the Khomas Regional Council sat since new councillors were elected during the Regional Council and Local Authority Elections last November.
The councillors were sworn-in during December.
The elected councillors are Fanuel Shivute for the Samora Machel Constituency; Martin David for the Moses Garoeb Constituency; Margaret Mensah-Williams for the Khomasdal Constituency; Rachel Jacob for the John Pandeni Constituency; and Ruusa Namuhuja for Windhoek East Constituency.
Other councillors are George Trepper for Windhoek West; Penina Ita for Windhoek Rural; Ruben Sheehama for Katutura East; Ambrosius Kandjii for Katutura Central; and Christopher Likuwa for the Tobias Hainyeko Constituency
Jacob was elected as chairperson of the Khomas Regional Council, replacing Zulu Shitongeni, who was the former constituency councillor for the Tobias Hainyeko constituency.
Speaking during the official opening, Jacob promised a renewed sense of determination towards serving the people.
We are ready and determined to serve to the best of our ability for the next five years. Our vision is to make Khomas a well developed, knowledgeable and peaceful region, she said.
She singled-out extreme poverty, crime, hunger, unemployment amongst the youth, and preventable diseases as issues that will get the highest attention.
The high rate of unemployment, especially amongst the youth, has become a burden to our economy, and the regional council has initiated a Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) support programme called Income Generating Activities to assist SMEs with equipment, she said.
Jacob said N.dollars 3 million was spent on this initiative last year, with over 400 beneficiaries assisted and several jobs created.
The chairperson further noted that a lack of classrooms in the Khomas Region is one of greatest challenges in the region, especially for Grade One and Grade Eight learners.
It is worsened by the influx of people from other regions to the city. It is unacceptable that the region has tent schools such as the Havana Project School and tent classrooms at Moses Garoeb Project School and the Elim and Faith Primary Schools. The tents are not conducive learning environments, she said.
Jacob went on to say extreme temperatures in both the hot and cold months can have far-reaching effects on learners.
As we speak we still have learners that need placement. We need at least 12 schools in order to overcome this problem, and I call on the education ministry to look at the Khomas Regions situation as a unique case that requires urgent attention, she said.
Speaking to Nampa on Friday, Margaret Mensah-Williams, who is also the chairperson of the National Council, said a lot of development plans are underway and the National Council will request obligatory regional reports to monitor and gauge the performance of promises made to the electorate.
I want to call on all residents to participate in development. It is their region, it is their constituencies, they have elected us so we have to serve them, and we have to listen to them.
There should be collaboration between the regional council, the local authority and Parliament, as well as the National Council where the regions are represented, said Mensah-Williams.