Mbumba urged to help poor San

02 November 2018 | Social Issues

The Okongo village council is set to engage with Vice-president Nangolo Mbumba's office, after a San community was allocated ancestral land inside the village boundaries, but cannot afford to pay for municipal services.

Village council CEO Wodibo Haulofu told Namibian Sun they decided to allocate the San four plots registered in their names, because the community had been living on them when the village council was established in 2015.

Haulofu said the community has already erected makeshift structures on their land and are expected to pay municipal rates.

He said Okongo is the ancestral land of the San, who used to hunt in the area, and they decided to give them a portion of their land inside the village boundaries.

However, they are not exempt from paying for municipal services.

“We allocated four plots for free to a community of San people that were found within the council boundary and we extended them services, including water. That has now gotten us into trouble, as they cannot afford to pay for the services, and we just do not know what we can do, as there are no free services,” Haulofu said.

“We have been advised to approach the vice-president's office to see how they can intervene. They were expected to be paying N$50 a month, but we do not get anything from them and we are quiet for now, but later we may start to demand payment.”

Haulofu said that they are going to engage the vice-president and see how best to resolve the issue.

The director for the marginalised people in the vice-president's office, Gerson Kamatuka, said they are not aware of the situation, but they will engage the village council to see what can be done.

“We are not aware of this, but we are going to engage them to see why they allocated land to people who cannot afford it. We are going to see what we are going to do together with the village council that allocated the land,” Kamatuka said.

ILENI NANDJATO