Fisheries Ministry’s N.dollars 40 million returned to treasury worries Nakambare

24 May 2019 15:10pm
WINDHOEK, 24 MAY (NAMPA) – Nkurenkuru Constituency councillor in the Kavango West Region, Damian Nakambare on Thursday said he is disturbed by the funds returned by the Ministry of Fisheries and Marine Resources to treasury for no apparent reason.
Nakambare expressed this in the National Council (NC) during his contribution to the Appropriation Bill Vote 22 of the Ministry of Fisheries and Marine Resources.
Nakambare wanted to know why funds that were budgeted for planned activities were returned to the government.
“I was not comfortable when I saw the ministry returning an amount of N.dollars 39.9 million to treasury for the 2018/2019 financial year,” said Nakambare.
If this trend continues, he said it is advisable for the Ministry of Finance to take this seriously and allocate more funds to ministries that spend their budgets, and to drastically reduce those continuously returning funds.
Meanwhile, Nakambare commended the work done by the Fisheries Ministry for having constructed a three-bedroom house for its officials at Mpungu Fish Farm at a cost of N.dollars 3 million, however, he said the house is not yet handed over to the officials and requested that this be expedited.
Nakambare said the fish farm was established in 2002 with 20 members but this has decreased to 18 currrently, adding that they are not employed as permanent staff.
“These are Namibians, who are doing the work for the farm on a voluntary basis, they don’t receive any salary, they only get their small shares after harvesting and sell fish to the community and the harvest happen only twice a year,” he said.
The councillor further expressed his unhappiness with the idea of extending fishing rights of the current holders, saying people in rural areas have rushed to apply for close corporation (CC) licences as required by Government.
“But when the advert was out calling for applications, it stated that CC will no longer be accepted for fishing rights, only PTY Ltd will be considered,” he said.
He said the majority of the fishing rights have been extended since independence to the same people and individuals, benefiting few and leaving the majority of Namibians in abject poverty.