Helao Nafidi council squanders govt resources: Shimwooshili

10 Aug 2016 18:00pm
HELAO NAFIDI, 10 AUG (NAMPA) – The Rally for Democracy and Progress (RDP) member of the Helao Nafidi Town Council, Vilho Shimwooshili says government resources are being wasted on compensating people who give up their crop fields for development purposes.
Speaking during the town council’s monthly meeting here recently, Shimwooshili said the town’s leadership is wasting the funds it receives from Government on buying traditionally owned fields from private individuals for “unrealistic” town development purposes.
He charged that several people have been compensated to surrender their fields but the Helao Nafidi Town Council has failed to secure developers for such fields.
“Several fields surrendered to the council years ago remain dormant… after the council compensated the owners and ordered them to stop cultivation on such fields under the pretext of town development,” Shimwooshili claimed.
He said some people were compensated as far back as 2008, but development on those fields is yet to take place.
“It is irresponsible to let government resources be squandered on useless projects at the expense of crucial programmes such as the construction of schools, clinics and hospitals in the country.”
Helao Nafidi Mayor Eliaser Nghipangelwa however rubbished the allegations when approached for comment on Monday.
“Knowing little is dangerous, he (Shimwooshili) should learn to obtain correct information from the office in order to be informed of the situation on the ground,” the mayor said.
Nghipangelwa said developing land could take three years or even more as there are several steps involved in the process.
Before rezoning and actual development, Nghipangelwa said, other processes include compensating the land owners, the planning and drafting of the land, submitting of the draft to the Namibia Planning Advisory Board and Township Board, and registration of the development with the Deeds Office.
Sometimes, submissions are referred back to the council if it does not meet certain requirements, prolonging the process.
He indicated that the land obtained at Helao Nafidi, although not yet rezoned or developed, all form part of extensions that are already under planning.
Shimwooshili however said these are “mere excuses.” He alleged that Swapo-Party councillors of Helao Nafidi are just serving the interest of their party leaders and are controlled by the town's chief executive officer.
“People have elected us to serve on the council for just five years. They expect speedy development and will not be satisfied with service delivery after the 15 years that Nghipangelwa has been a councillor,” he said.
He went on to say development will without question be hampered if political office-bearers are “incompetent” and the administrative staff “lack the skills needed to speed up the process.”