Control over farms questioned

The N‡aJaqna conservancy says the establishment of nine farming units will not improve the livelihoods of legal San residents in Tsumkwe West.

06 July 2018 | Environment

Chairperson of the N‡aJaqna conservancy in Tsumkwe West Sarah Zungu in a recent statement said the Namibian authorities should inspect the area to ascertain if a 2016 High Court order calling for the removal of illegal fences has been complied with.

She said the conservancy has been struggling unsuccessfully for years to get the authorities to respond to illegal fencing and illegal settlement in the area and should make a concerted effort to remove all illegal fencing during such an investigation.

Zungu has earlier expressed her objection to the envisaged establishment of nine farming units in the Aasvoëlnes area and now says that these will only benefit a few.

“Instead of creating farms for a select few, the alternative and preferred solution should be to install donor-funded solar water infrastructure in local San villages. At the moment they are struggling to create gardens and farm livestock due to poor unsustainable water infrastructure,” Zungu said.

The establishment of these farms, each to measure 2 500 hectares, is a N$20 million project of the Ministry of Land Reform for agricultural commercialisation under its Programme for Communal Land Development (PCLD).

It is envisaged that eight of the farms will be kept unfenced and be rented out for the first five years as an income for the San communities who are then to take over the units at a later stage. One of the farms will be fenced in and used as a model farm. Other projects related to this include a community tourism project and a community garden.

Zungu says it is a fallacy to think that these farms will be rented out successfully, arguing that there are no mechanisms to ensure that rent will be paid and no guarantee that the lessees will not erect more illegal fences.

“Who will ensure that they do not start grazing on conservancy land when [the rented] farms are over-grazed? None of these basic issues have been thought about,” Zungu maintains.

The N‡aJaqna conservancy said the PCLD project should instead consider investing N$10 million for ten new boreholes in ten San villages, that N$2.6 million rather be spent on solar infrastructure in the San villages and assistance be given to them to set up their own gardens.

The conservancy further proposes that N$6.8 million be spent on a rigorous analysis of a proposed living museum and campsite.

It said the two existing living museums have failed and the Omatako campsite was abandoned.

Namibia Premier Research Solutions (NPRS), which was commissioned by the lands ministry to facilitate consultations with the local San communities, the !Kung traditional authority and the N‡aJaqna conservancy, has earlier expressed surprise at Zungu's apparent “change of heart” concerning the proposed farming units.

The NPRS in a report said Zungu had at first supported the establishment of farming units but that the conservancy and “by extension” the Legal Assistance Centre (LAC), which offers legal advice to the conservancy, now holds the process at ransom.

Team leader of NPRS, George Eiseb, this week said the lands ministry has given the go-ahead for the farming units, but said the conservancy would be given another opportunity to give its input at a meeting on 20 July.

Eiseb said conservancy members have not attended a crucial meeting on 29 June held at Grootfontein.

He said more meetings will be held where eligibility criteria for the farming units will be discussed.

“We are asking the conservancy members to come to meetings to give their ideas; they must engage in the process. They must return to the planning process,” Eiseb urged.



Catherine Sasman

Similar News

 

Shifeta clarifies trophy posts

5 days ago - 13 July 2018 | Environment

Tourism minister Pohamba Shifeta has clarified confusion in the tourism and hunting industry regarding the ban on posting trophy photos on social media, saying that...

Oondoolopa tadhi ndopa

6 days ago - 12 July 2018 | Environment

ILENI NANDJATO & NAMPAOminista yomidhingoloko, Pohamba Shifeta, oya popi oshiwike sha piti kutya omatoto agehe giiyagaya ngoka ga ningwa komalelo goondoolopa moshilongo kage li pamulandu.Okwa...

Environment law flouted

1 week ago - 11 July 2018 | Environment

Environment minister Pohamba Shifeta said last weekend that all the local authorities' dumpsites in the country are illegal. He said they do not meet standards...

N‡a Jaqna dispute clarified

1 week ago - 09 July 2018 | Environment

The lands ministry, along with the EU Delegation to Namibia and the German embassy in Windhoek, have issued a joint press release regarding the objections...

Control over farms questioned

1 week ago - 06 July 2018 | Environment

Chairperson of the N‡aJaqna conservancy in Tsumkwe West Sarah Zungu in a recent statement said the Namibian authorities should inspect the area to ascertain if...

Trophy photo ban questioned

1 week ago - 05 July 2018 | Environment

Questions are being raised about the enforceability and extent of a just-issued ban by the Namibian environment ministry that prohibits hunters with valid permits to...

N$100 000 for wildlife-related human deaths

2 weeks ago - 03 July 2018 | Environment

Namibia's revised national policy on human-wildlife conflict (HWC) management that was launched yesterday includes a steep increase from N$5 000 to N$100 000 of the...

MET hits back at critics

2 weeks ago - 29 June 2018 | Environment

The environment ministry has responded sharply to international and local critics following the social media outcry after the green-light to kill a livestock mauling lion...

Middle income tag irks Shifeta

2 weeks ago - 29 June 2018 | Environment

Environment minister Pohamba Shifeta has asked global financing institutions to stop classifying Namibia as an upper-middle income country, saying that it hid away stark inequalities....

!Kung chief welcomes farming units

2 weeks ago - 29 June 2018 | Environment

Glony Arnold, chief of the !Kung traditional authority, says she is surprised at Sarah Zungu's “change of heart” on the introduction of nine farming units...

Latest News

Calle urges parties to account

20 hours ago | Economics

NDAMA NAKASHOLEFinance minister Calle Schlettwein has urged each political party to remain accountable to the public in regard to the public funds it receives.The figures...

Rest easy, gentle giant

20 hours ago | Opinion

The late Theo-Ben Gurirab was without an iota of doubt a gentle giant, whose life was lived in service and dedication to Namibia's struggle for...

Dangote signs US$650mln Afreximbank loan

20 hours ago | Economics

Africa’s richest man, Aliko Dangote, has signed a US$650 million loan facility with the African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) for his oil refinery project in Nigeria.Africa’s...

New revenue agency operational by...

20 hours ago | Government

Finance minister Calle Schlettwein is optimistic that the much-anticipated Namibia Revenue Agency will be operational come 1 March 2019. This will coincide with the start...

Dippenaar blames Joschko for crash

20 hours ago | Justice

Jandré Dippenaar has placed the blame for a crash in which six people died squarely on the shoulders of Markus Walter Joschko, who was also...

CIF, NSI highlight criticality of...

20 hours ago | Economics

STAFF REPORTERAn efficient use of scarce financial resources both in the public and private sector demands an awareness and application of building standards and adherence...

Ramaphosa talks tough on mine...

20 hours ago | Economics

Safety is a huge issue in South Africa’s deep and dangerous mines and increasingly a focus for investors. A spate of deaths at Sibanye-Stillwater’s gold...

NAB appoints new CEO

20 hours ago | Agriculture

The Namibian Agronomic Board (NAB) has announced the appointment of Dr Fidelis Nyambe Mwazi as its newly appointed CEO. Mwazi takes over the reins from...

Seed bill could limit imports...

20 hours ago | Agriculture

The Seed and Seed Varieties Bill, expected to be adopted by the National Assembly, could limit the importing and exporting of seeds, finance minister Calle...

Load More