City pre-allocates land

Mayor Job Amupanda says the plan is to deliver 5 000 plots within the next three years.

18 February 2021 | Local News

JEMIMA BEUKES

WINDHOEK



The Windhoek city council has resolved to pre-allocate 3 033 plots in the city's informal settlements as part of its plan to alleviate landlessness in the city.

Mayor Job Amupanda said the plan was to deliver 5 000 plots within the next three years.

In the meantime, a group of town planning interns have been contracted to work through the waiting list of applicants, digitise and clean the list to remove those who already own land.

Pre-allocation of land is an initial allocation of land based on the council's proposed layout plan before the statutory planning process has been completed.

According to Amupanda, the allocation will be done in line with the council's Development and Upgrading Policy for lower-income residential areas, which was approved in 2019.

“It is worth noting that for nearly a decade, the delivery of serviced land in informal settlements almost ground to halt, mainly due to a lack of funding and a protracted land development value chain.

“The residents residing in informal settlements and those on the waiting list are frustrated with a slow land delivery process that stands in their way of securing land tenure and its associated benefits,” said Amupanda.



Humanitarian

The city council has also approved procedures for handling humanitarian and shelter requests due to the deteriorating living conditions in the informal settlements. According to Amupanda, the City's response to natural disasters in informal settlements has been delayed because of a lack of common operating procedure. “In case of fire, flooding or similar incidents, temporary relief in form of blankets and mattresses is provided by the emergency response team. While this is a good gesture, the intervention does not go beyond temporary relief. It is reasoned that hazards or unfortunate events are a permanent fixture in every society,” he said.

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