Omusati, Kunene governors to discuss Omakange land debacle

08 May 2018 10:10am
WINDHOEK, 08 MAY (NAMPA) – Kunene Governor Marius Sheya and his Omusati counterpart Erginus Endjala are set to meet in the coming weeks to find a permanent solution to the longstanding Omakange land dispute.
In an interview with Nampa recently, Sheya confirmed that he would be meeting Endjala and traditional leaders of the affected groups to chart the way forward on the issue.
According to Sheya, he will take the matter from where his predecessor – the late Angelika Muharukua – left off.
“This is a very sensitive matter and my predecessor was working on it. I am setting up a meeting with my counterpart so that we can find an amicable solution,” said Shaya, without specifying the date for the said meeting.
The dispute stems from accusations that people from Omusati Region occupy and have fenced off large tracks of land in villages such as Omakange, Otjiurunga, Omuhama, Otjerunda, Otjondeka, Otjindjerese, Otuzemba and Ehomba.
On his part, Endjala was ready to meet Sheya to put the matter to bed once and for all.
Endjala said they were looking for the right avenues to sit the two factions down together to work out a lasting solution to the land dispute which spans well over two decades.
“The traditional authorities must put their dispute aside and allow for a political intervention,” said Endjala.
“We will look for avenues where we can meet and map the way forward,” he added.
Late last year, 91 traditional leaders from Kunene petitioned to President Hage Geingob, demanding for his intervention in the land dispute.
However, this petition did not yield any response from the highest office in the land and the group reportedly resorted to mobilising and threatening to take matters into their own hands to address the land predicament.
Traditional leaders from Kunene have aired their frustrations over the manner in which the Uukwaluudhi Traditional Authority, under the leadership of Chief Shikongo Taapopi, allegedly continues fencing off huge pieces of grazing areas that are part of the former “Kaokoland”, currently known as the Kunene Region.
The Uukwaluudhi Traditional Authority meanwhile, has refuted these allegations, saying the purported land dispute is politically motivated.