10 Oct 2018 15:50pm
WINDHOEK, 10 OCT (NAMPA) The Ministry of Finance should use the power vested in its Procurement Act to accelerate directives that will allow farmers north of the Veterinary Cordon Fence (Red Line) to provide beef for consumption in government-owned entities, President Hage Geingob has said.
According to a statement issued to Nampa on Wednesday, Geingob made this directive during a Cabinet session on Tuesday, following the conclusion of the second National Land Conference held in the capital last week.
We can no longer afford to deprive northern communal farmers from wealth creation by leveraging on their land and livestock. The Ministry of Agriculture must accelerate completion and renovation as well as construction of additional abattoirs in places such as Eenhana, Rundu and Katima Mulilo, Geingob said.
He noted that the amendments should take effect before the end of 2018, while existing contracts that were entered into based on criteria in the bidding documents, which excluded northern communal farmers, should be withdrawn.
Geingob further noted that a government that cannot enforce laws or observe the rule of law is not sustainable, therefore the Ministry of Safety and Security should commence the task of enforcing laws prohibiting illegal fencing in communal areas.
He added that a sensitisation and consultation process should start before law enforcement agencies move swiftly to enforce the law without fear of favour.
By the end of October, all illegal fences should be identified and notice given to those committing the illegal act of fencing areas to remove their fences within a reasonable time-frame, he said.
The Head of State further said the inclusive conference gave Namibians a mandate to commence the journey of land justice with the urgency it deserves.
I do not want to hear explanations as to why this or that cannot be done. I do not want to hear about money and bureaucratic delays as the conference laid challenges bare and highlighted the lack of accountability, which has led to high levels of mistrust in what we as government are doing on the land question, he noted.