31 May 2013 09:40
OKOMUKARU, 31 MAY (NAMPA) - Chief Berthold Tjiundje of the Ovaherero Traditional Authority in Aminuis has called on Government to consider extending the communal lands here through the acquisition of commercial farms bordering the area.
Tjiundje said the Aminuis Constituency has become too small for the growing number of livestock in the area and as such, remedial action to avoid the overpopulation of livestock in the constituency is needed.
The chief made this call during a briefing session on drought with Prime Minister, Dr Hage Geingob on the latter?s whirlwind visit to the constituency on Thursday.
Tjiundje said despite the increase in the number of livestock in the area, the surface area of the constituency has remained constant, which has led to a squeeze for grazing.
?Many people have come to settle in Aminuis, while young people are now constantly building their own homesteads, and therefore acquiring their own livestock.
We just cannot cope with the current size of the constituency, and request that Government looks into it,? he said.
Tjiundje said the proclamation of adjacent commercial farms as an extension to the communal land will go far in Government?s efforts to contain the prevailing drought conditions.
Nearby commercial farms have adequate grazing, which would assist communal farmers during droughts.
?We see this happening in other areas, and it could also help us a lot in the Aminuis Constituency. Despite our vast underground water resources, our constituency faces huge grazing challenges, which need urgent address,? he continued.
The Aminuis Constituency is home to about 12 000 residents, most of whom are farmers, whose sole form of livelihood is subsistence farming.
This form of farming is, however, made difficult by the ever-persistent drought conditions, which often result in the death of livestock and a lack of food supply for the farmers.