22 Feb 2016 19:20pm
SWAKOPMUND, 22 FEB (NAMPA) - The slow registration process of war veterans should be done away with, the Deputy Minister of Veterans Affairs Hilma Nicanor said here Monday.
There has been inundated outcries on issues pertaining to our programmes and projects. These include long-awaited responses for veteran status applications, and applications for individual veteran projects taking too long to be processed, she said during the opening of her ministrys 2016/2017 annual review and planning workshop.
The Veterans' Board verifies facts and information of aspiring applicants.
But this verification phase seems to slow down the process, said Nicanor, adding that this slow process should no longer be the culture in the ministry, neither should it be business as usual.
There should be zero tolerance for complacency in the implementation of activities and programmes.
She directed cases of unethical behaviour such as telephones at the ministry going unanswered, staff coming late to work, and the delay in service delivery to the veterans be discontinued with immediate effect, be it at regional offices or head office.
Those found making themselves part of such unbecoming and bad practices is warned to cease from such practices. The ministry must make sure necessary measures are instituted against such officials.
Some of the veterans ministrys achievements for the 2015/2016 financial year include the registration of 1 004 war veterans, the completion of 70 houses for war veterans, funding of 871 empowerment projects for individual veterans, and counselling provided to 118 veterans and dependants.
The ministry also managed to provide medical assistance to 201 veterans, while a total of 157 veterans benefitted from the Education Training Grant during the course of 2016.
The ministry is, however, facing a challenge of inadequate funding for individual veterans projects.
The five-day workshop aims to produce a practical annual work plan geared towards the realisation of a veterans affairs mandate, mission and vision.
This encompasses keeping the history of Namibias liberation struggle alive, as well as providing social and economic support to veterans to enable them to engage in sustainable economic initiatives that will improve their livelihood and eradicate poverty.
There are 29 677 veterans registered in the country since 2008.