Zuma's 2013 pledge still not fulfilled

Only 61 boreholes drilled

06 July 2020 | International

ILENI NANDJATO

ONGWEDIVA

The N$100 million drought aid offered to Namibia by former South African president Jacob Zuma in 2013 still has not fully materialised.

The first phase of the donation, consisting of seed and maize meal, was delivered in 2015.

The second phase made provision for 104 boreholes to be drilled to help drought-stricken communities. Only 61 boreholes have been completed.

Twenty-five were drilled in Zambezi, 14 in Kavango East, 17 in Kavango West, 16 in Ohangwena, 21 in Kunene and 11 in Omaheke.

The condition of Zuma’s funding agreement was that half of the money was to be used for boreholes.

Hiccups

In response to Namibian Sun's questions, agriculture ministry spokesperson Margaret Kalo said: “The ministry of agriculture, water and land reform planned to install 104 boreholes. To date, 61 boreholes were installed and are operational.

“Moreover, the ministry has earmarked 41 boreholes for installation whereby 16 boreholes will be installed in Ohangwena Region, while 25 boreholes will be installed in the Zambezi Region.”

Kalo said the installation was done by the following companies appointed by the South African government: Entiska Consulting Services (Omaheke Region), Sebushi Somo Construction and Projects (Kavango East, Kavango West and Kunene Regions).

“Dumezulu General Dealers and Construction was supposed to install the boreholes in Ohangwena and Zambezi Regions, however the company requested for a price variation from the South African Government Steering Committee, but its request was not approved. Therefore, the outstanding installation will be re-tendered. The Namibian government is still waiting for the way forward since the tender was cancelled in March 2018,” said Kalo.

Nghaamwa intervention

While the agriculture ministry plans to install 16 boreholes in the Ohangwena Region, the former governor of the Ohangwena Region, Usko Nghaamwa, has already equipped half of these boreholes.

Nghaamwa did this to supply water to communities that had to travel long distances for potable water. The boreholes were equipped to the tune of N$714 000 which was donated to Nghaamwa's fund by the Seaflower Fishing Company.