'More alcohol, drug abuse rehabilitation centres needed'

26 Jun 2016 10:20am
REHOBOTH, 26 JUN (NAMPA) – There is an urgent need for alcohol and drug rehabilitation centres in Namibia, First Lady Monica Geingos says.
Geingos, who is also the patron of the Shack Dwellers Federation of Namibia (SDFN), raised the concern during the handing over of more than N.dollars 1.3 million to the federation through Standard Bank Namibia’s buy-a-brick initiative at Rehoboth on Friday.
Geingos cautioned that alcohol and drug abuse fuels gender-based violence.
“GBV is alarming and we have to do something very seriously. Alcohol abuse in the entire Namibia is a problem. We need rehabilitation centres,” she stressed.
Currently, the Etegameno Resource and Rehabilitation Centre near Brakwater is the only State-owned treatment centre for those struggling with alcohol and drug addiction. The privately owned rehabilitation centre Okonguarri Psychotherapeutic Centre situated south-east of Outjo, is expensive, while the Telecom Namibia-owned Nova Vita Rehabilitation Centre in Windhoek closed its doors some two years ago.
Etegameno only takes in 60 patients older than 18 per year. The situation is very worrisome, especially for the youth, Geingos said.
She added that the Hardap Region has one of the highest rates of gender-based violence in Namibia and a rehabilitation centre here should be a top priority. She also said women in this region with its population of 79 000 have double the chance of suffering domestic violence than a woman from the Otjozondjupa Region with a population of 140 000 people.
“This is a problem and we need to address this problem,” Geingos said.
She further said on a recent visited to correctional facilities, she found that a lot of young men blamed not having fathers, not growing up in a loving environment and alcohol and drug abuse in their homes for how their lives turned out. Earlier intervention from community members and family members could have prevented such problems.
“The jails are full of our children because we do not do our part as community members,” an emotional Geingos remarked.
She also called on Namibians to work together to fight tribalism and nepotism.
Management and staff of the bank assisted members of the federation residing in Extension Eight in Rehoboth to produce bricks for the building of 40 houses.
The Rehoboth Town Council provided 51 erven for N.dollars 15 per square metre to members of the federation.