Pupils suffer after freak wind

11 October 2019 | Accidents

Over 300 Oniipa Primary School learners are being taught under trees after a strong wind blew off the roofing of eight classrooms.

Wednesday's wind also caused damage to houses, tombstones, trees and electricity and other infrastructure at Oniipa and Ondangwa. No human injuries were reported.

School principal Mpinge Matias said: “We are very fortunate that there were no learners within the school premises at that time, otherwise it could have been a disaster, because when the wind blew away the roofing, corrugated iron sheets were just flying all over the place.

“Classes are seriously damaged, but no one was injured.”

He said they reported the incident to the education circuit office and regional council.

“Teaching has been affected and we will be teaching learners from the affected classes under trees, unless we get other assistance.”

Liina Hafeni said she was preparing to go to work in the afternoon when the wind hit and blew off the roof of one of the buildings on her property.

“No one got injured, but the damage is severe and will cost me a lot of money to repair,” said Hafeni

Oniipa town council CEO Junias Jacob said major damage was caused at the town, especially to old and poorly built infrastructure.

“It was indeed a strong wind, but many of the buildings destroyed are either old, of poor workmanship or inferior material was used. This is not the first time we are getting this kind of disaster. In 2016, a wind blew the roofing off the building we are renting at the Elcin complex,” Jacob said.

“I am urging the residents of Oniipa to adhere to the building and development control regulations whenever they are considering building their houses.

“They must make sure that their building plans are approved by the town council. Those with old buildings must renovate them, but still their plans must be approved,” Jacob added.

Ondangwa town council spokesperson Petrina Shitalangaho said the Onguta complex was damaged at the town, as well as the boundary wall of a house in Shinime township.

ILENI NANDJATO