Maintenance of roads daunting during rainy season: Nghimtina

26 Mar 2014 13:40pm
WINDHOEK, 26 MAR (NAMPA) – Namibia is daunted by the formidable task of maintaining roads and railway lines due to flood waters during rainy seasons, says Minister of Works and Transport (MWT), Erkki Nghimtina.
He made these remarks while introducing the MWT’s budget allocation for the 2014/15 financial year in the National Assembly (NA) on Tuesday.
Nghimtina said maintenance and proper management of Government assets is necessary and needs to be preserved and intensified as easy mobility for people and industries remains the ministry’s main focus.
The MWT is responsible for the development of efficient and effective transport infrastructure, which contributes to the promotion of the country’s economic development and social upliftment.
He said one of the programmes to benefit from this allocation is the Air Transport Administration programme, with an amount of close to N.dollars 1,48 million.
Activities under this programme include investigations of civil aircraft accidents and serious accidents in order to determine the factors, conditions and circumstances pertaining to accident prevention activities in Namibia.
Nghimtina explained that the programme also covers investigations of civil aviation accidents and incidents which occur to any civil aircraft in or over Namibia to aircraft registered in any country other than Namibia.
“The purpose of the programme is to promote aviation safety within the aviation industry, monitoring and bench-marking accident trends with the international aviation community to make sure Namibia is on par,” he said.
The minister indicated that the MWT launched an investigation on the aircraft that crashed in Etosha earlier this month which killed well-known photographer Paul van Schalkwyk, and based on the evidence obtained so far, it might be a complex exercise which might require the aircraft components to be sent overseas for further investigations.
“In order to achieve our mandate under this programme I request an amount of N.dollars 8,28 million,” he said.
Nghimtina further explained that another area of the Air Transport Administration programme to benefit from the budget allocation is the Government Air Transport Services with an allocation of N.dollars 57,7 million.
“The objective of this activity is to provide air transport services to the President, the Prime Minister, Cabinet Ministers, visiting dignitaries, Government offices, ministries and agencies, as well as private individuals on international level,” he said.
The third area of the programme involves the Civil Aviation Infrastructure Administration with an amount of N.dollars 1,4 billion.
Nghimtina said this programme aims to ensure the construction and rehabilitation of civil aviation infrastructure and service provision, administration and regulations in compliance with the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) requirements.
He noted that under this programme, the ministry has already constructed an air traffic control tower at the Mpacha Airport in Katima Mulilo, which is nearing completion, adding that his ministry is in the process of starting with the construction of a new air traffic control tower at Ondangwa in the Oshana Region.