Eenhana geared for housing development

04 February 2019 | Infrastructure

The Eenhana town council plans to deliver about 10 500 residential plots by next year to address the housing backlog at the town.

The council has received an average of 1 008 applications for fully serviced residential plots annually for the past eight years.

There is also a high demand of unserviced land, with a waiting list of 1 067 applications.

This was said council CEO Walde Ndevashiya when he presented a report on the plots allocated to the Shack Dwellers Federation of Namibia (SDFN).

Last month the Eenhana town council allocated 84 plots to members of the Shack Dwellers Federation, with most of the beneficiaries being self-employed young women.

Ndevashiya said the council has allocated 264 plots to the federation since 2005 and has established a formidable relationship with the federation.

“In an attempt to address the housing challenges in Eenhana, the council recognises the importance of all stakeholders in the housing sector, especially their contribution and role they play. The Shack Dwellers Federation programme started in Eenhana in 2005 when the town council embarked upon a programme to eliminate shacks,” Ndevashiya said.

“Under this collaboration and partnership, the federation would initially engage interested people, take them through the processes of registration and qualification, submit the list of qualified beneficiaries to the council and then the council would allocate land ... depending on availability.”

Ndevashiya said in 2005 the federation was allocated 22 plots at the Tulipamwe residential area. After the houses were built the council added 50 plots at Oukango Park. Later, 108 more plots were allocated at Oukango Park.

Ndevashiya said these projects were all successfully completed and as a result, the council decided to allocate an additional 84 plots for another housing project for low-income earners.

“As a result, the council and the Shack Dwellers Federation are enjoying a positive and professional relationship in addressing the housing backlog, especially for the low-income-earning segment, who would otherwise have lived in shacks had this programme not been implemented,” he said.

“We are meeting each other halfway to improve the lives of our people, especially the low- and very-low-income earners. Should this relationship continue at its current pace, it has a great potential to minimise the number of shacks in town,” he said.

Ombili location is a densely populated informal settlement at Eenhana. In 2017 the council relocated 2 470 inhabitants to the newly established Ekolola location.

According to the survey conducted by the Shack Dwellers Federation, the Namibia Housing Action Group and the town council in October last year, there are 6 425 people squatting at Ombili.

Ndevashiya said the council received about 121 applications per year from low-income earners, which resulted in 1 331 applications over the past 11 years. He said at the moment the backlog of plots for low-income earners stood at 1 067.

“We are still challenged by the high influx of people to town in search of greener pastures and they end up setting up shacks. Although the land delivery process is a bit slow compared to the rate of migration, the council has engaged its stakeholders to ensure speedy delivery of housing in town through public-private partnerships (PPPs),” he said.

When it comes to plots in formal residential areas, Ndevasheya said the council had received an average of 1 008 applications per year for the past eight years. He said to date 2 066 houses have been completed through PPPs and more are under construction.

“The council also embarked upon a mass planning exercise under which about 10 500 plots have been planned and some have already been surveyed and developed. The council is looking forward to having about 4 500 serviced plots by 2020, mostly through the PPP programme,” he added.

ILENI NANDJATO

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