Corruption will not be allowed to sabotage 28 years of progress: Geingob

21 Mar 2018 16:20pm
TSUMEB, 21 MAR (NAMPA) – Corruption, which has tainted Government’s image and credibility, will not be allowed to undo 28 years of progress in Namibia, President Hage Geingob said on Wednesday.
He was speaking during the 28th commemoration of Namibia’s independence at the Oscar Norich Stadium in Tsumeb.
Geingob said inequality and corruption need to be addressed if shared prosperity is to be realised.
“We cannot allow corruption to sabotage 28 years of progress. Corruption undermines stability and social cohesion. Let us adopt the fraternal characteristics of sharing and looking out for those in our society who are entrenched in poverty,” said Geingob.
The Head of State said allegations and perceptions of corruption continue to taint the government.
“This has led to the public losing faith and confidence in a few government ministries and agencies,” said Geingob.
He further said it is imperative to tackle inequality and unemployment.
“A country where inequality is high can never be successful,” Geingob stated.
The president in addition said Namibia’s economic growth in the last 28 years has neither been sufficiently inclusive, nor has it generated sufficient jobs.
“Interventions aimed at addressing these inherent imbalances should therefore be supported,” he said.
Although criticised, Geingob noted the importance of government’s interventions to arrest poverty.
One such intervention is the Food Bank initiative under the Ministry of Poverty Eradication and Social Welfare. Around 100 000 Namibians benefit from the Food Bank.
However, critics argue that the initiative creates a dependency syndrome amongst Namibians.
To this, Geingob said: “We didn’t say it is a panacea, so don’t distort things. Also take money from your own pocket and give it to those who are poor. They will appreciate it. They are not going to be dependent on you.”
He said since 2015, Government has increased the old age pension by 66 per cent.
“This grant is truly transformational in nature as it not only benefits the elderly, but helps to arrest childhood poverty,” he said.
Geingob further gave his assurance that the government is doing everything it can to find remedies to problems such as unemployment and the land issue.