Otavi shack dwellers start to build houses

20 Jul 2016 08:20am
OTAVI, 20 JUL (NAMPA) - The Shack Dwellers’ Federation of Namibia (SDFN) on Tuesday launched the construction of 20 brick houses for its members at Otavi in the Otjozondjupa Region.
The foundation for one house was dug and the concrete cast on Saturday.
SDFN National Facilitator Edith Mbanga told Nampa on Tuesday the houses are expected to be completed by the end of September.
“So today, we officially launched the actual construction of the 20 houses for our members here in the presence of our key stakeholders from the Ohorongo Cement Factory and the Municipality of Otavi,” she said.
Mbanga said about 35 members of the SDFN at Otavi are participating in the construction process and manufacturing of bricks.
The federation members buy building materials themselves, make their own bricks and use the knowledge of experienced builders among themselves to build the houses with their own hands.
Mbanga said a one-bedroom house with an open-plan kitchen and toilet is built at a cost of less than N.dollars 30 000 when done by members of the federation.
The beneficiaries acquired these plots of between 300 and 400 square metres each from the municipality at the beginning of this year.
She thanked the Otavi Municipality for allowing members of the federation to purchase their plots at N.dollars 10 per square metre.
The houses under construction are funded by a joint donation of N.dollars 3 million made available by Ohorongo Cement, the Pupkewitz Foundation and First National Bank (FNB) of Namibia Holdings' Foundation Trust to the SDFN for houses to be built in Otavi, Tsumeb, Omaruru and Tsandi in the Omusati Region.
Ohorongo Cement’s Marketing and Communications Manager, Carina Sowden said Tuesday that a total of 91 houses are expected to be built with this donated money.
“We expect the federation to build about 32 houses at Tsumeb in the Oshikoto Region; 13 at Omaruru in the Erongo; and 26 at Tsandi in the Omusati Region with the money that was donated in March,” she said.
Otavi Mayor Martha Shipanga and Managing Director of Ohorongo Cement Hans-Wilhelm Schutte among others also attended the official launch on Tuesday.
The federation has a total of 20 111 members and has built over 4 200 houses in the country's 14 regions for its members since operations commenced 18 years ago.
First Lady Monica Geingos is the SDFN patron.