26 Jun 2016 10:30am
KEETMANSHOOP, 26 JUN (NAMPA) Minister of Urban and Rural Development Sophia Shaningwa has warned local authorities to refrain from corruptly tampering with beneficiary lists of the Mass Housing programme.
Officers guilty of such practices would be dealt with, the minister said during a handover event of five houses in Keetmanshoop on Saturday.
Somewhere in this country there should be order. You cannot damage people and hurt fellow citizens for your own reasons by denying them decent shelter.
Shaningwa said she learnt of instances where lists were altered during her recent travels to hand over completed houses under the nationwide initiative.
Former Hardap Governor and current education minister Katrina Hanse-Himarwa reportedly is the subject of an Anti-Corruption Commission investigation after she replaced two names on a 40-person beneficiary list at Mariental in December 2014.
Shaningwa said beneficiary lists have to be transparent and open for scrutiny.
Applicants must be given an indication of their position on the list and that same master document must be shared with the ministrys head office, she said.
The five completed houses - received by five overjoyed families - are the only fully-functional houses out of 110 built at Keetmanshoop so far.
Initial plans by the local municipality, ministry and National Housing Enterprise to hand over 60 houses were spoiled by the ongoing renovations of vandalised structures and botched electrical wiring on the houses.
Keetmanshoop Municipality Chief Executive Officer Desmond Basson said houses will be assigned as they become available.
The town is building 250 houses in this first phase.
Shaningwa implored recipients to protect and safeguard the homes and to honour monthly payments on the properties.
No shacks will be tolerated and owners are prohibited from selling their homes privately.
The house or property cannot change ownership for the first 10 years. If after this period the beneficiary opts to vacate and sell the house, Government will have the first option to buy that property, she said.
The low-cost social houses are subsidised by Government for up to 60 per cent.
A one-bedroom house in the D1 category constructed at N.dollars 160 000 is sold to beneficiaries at N.dollars 70 000. The instalment on this house is N.dollars 550 for people earning N.dollars 2 700 per month.
The Core 5, Core 6 and Core 7 category houses have two bedrooms.