Food Bank to be launched at Bethanie

27 Oct 2013 16:00pm
KEETMANSHOOP, 27 OCT (NAMPA) – The Food Bank initiative will be launched at Bethanie village in December this year, //Karas Regional Governor Bernardus Swartbooi announced on Friday.
He was speaking at Keetmanshoop at his annual meeting with employees of the //Karas Regional Council and other Government officials from the region, where he updated them on development progress in //Karas.
The Prime Minister, Dr Hage Geingob’s Food Bank idea is aimed at reducing hunger and poverty in the country by helping impoverished Namibians to obtain food. This would also help prevent situations where people end up scavenging for food at dumpsites.
Swartbooi noted that residents of the region can look forward to the establishment of an irrigation programme in Bethanie where fruit and vegetables will be harvested for distribution to needy people.
The irrigation programme will be financed by the Ministry of Trade and Industry at a cost of N.dollars 1 million.
“There is 5 000 hectares of land in Bethanie that will be used for irrigation. Recently we also bought 200 goats as part of the Food Bank programme,” the governor announced.
He explained that the idea is to breed and increase the number of goats before identified residents can receive 40 goats each to farm with and feed themselves.
“We are requesting for the names of poor people in need of food to be submitted to my office, so that we know how many people need assistance,” Swartbooi said.
In August, two needy Keetmanshoop residents received a corrugated iron house each through the Food Bank programme initiated by the Swapo-Party regional office here in July this year.
They also received food, matresses and blankets from the same initiative which collects donations from Good Samaritans and passes these on to poor people in dire need of such necessities.
Swartbooi also noted that the recruitment process for employees needed during the construction of the Neckartal Dam is progressing well.
These include labourers, bricklayers, drivers and heavy equipment operators.
He estimated that 500 people are needed to start the project, but the number might increase to 700 as the project reaches its peak.
Swartbooi said temporary accommodation for about 300 employees of Neckartal will be provided in Keetmanshoop.
He used the opportunity to encourage people of the region to take their jobs serious, avoid absenteeism, alcohol abuse and maintain good discipline.
“There is too much indiscipline and unproductivity amongst our people here. I therefore urge all of you to change your behaviour and make things happen for yourself and the region,” he said.
The governor further motivated residents to study hard and obtain drivers’ licenses.
“Most of the young people here do not complete their studies at all, that is not good. We have had enough of laziness. People must also get drivers’ licenses, especially women,” he said.