Illegal structures built during weekends and after hours: Muma

26 Jan 2014 16:00pm
OSHAKATI, 20 JAN (NAMPA) – The northern town of Oshakati continues to experience deliberate illegal squatting by some of its residents since the end of last year.
The town’s corporate communications officer Jackson Muma revealed this at a media conference here on Monday, saying the Oshakati Town Council has noted that some residents continue to deliberately erect structures in water ways/streams with the hope that council will relocate them to elsewhere.
He said this perception is not correct and should be avoided.
According to Muma, the erection of said structures is normally done during weekends and after hours, making it difficult for council’s building inspectors to detect illegal structures during normal business hours.
“As a result, most of those who erected such buildings become victims of storm water, even just by a normal rainfall,” the communications officer noted.
He explained that an announcement was made by the council last year that it is busy preparing for a reception area at Onawa yaKilliana village, where existing and new residents who are not in position to afford even low-cost houses, would be accommodated.
“This announcement has seemingly influenced some residents to engage in illegal squatting anywhere in town,” Muma charged.
He singled out Uupindi, Oneshila and Oshikango as the town’s informal settlements mostly affected by illegal erection of structures.
Some of the illegal squatters, according to Muma, are found on the edge of the embankment which the council has put up recently in its efforts to mitigate the flooding at the town.
“The process of acquiring land for the reception area is in full swing and it is expected to be completed early next year. Therefore, residents are cordially requested to exercise patience while council is working on their plight of housing needs, as it is the priority of the Oshakati Town Council,” he promised.
He added that the council is in the same vein kindly requesting the community to refrain from erecting structures in water ways/streams as this pose much hazard to their health and has a high risk of damage to properties, including valuable documents.
Muma further reminded the public that the increase in illegal structures is hampering proper town planning, and it is contrary to the town planning scheme as well as other legal documents which the Town Council operates within.
He noted that members of the community are also urged to always visit the council’s offices before commencing any erection of a building.
Muma advised members of the community who want plots to obtain application documents at the council offices or from its website.
“The council will continue to ensure, monitor, execute and strictly implement the laws and regulations to prevent further expansion of illegal construction within the domain of the town boundary,” Muma stressed.