Germany availed N$850m Covid war chest

22 October 2020 | Local News

JEMIMA BEUKES



WINDHOEK

The German government has spent nearly N$850 million to support Namibia since the start of the Covid-19 outbreak.

This was confirmed yesterday by the chargé d'affaires of the German embassy, Ellen Gölz, who said the funds helped mitigate the effects of the pandemic on livelihoods and businesses.

Speaking at the launch of Covid-19 support measures for the public transport sector, Gölz said Germany has, through the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit, given an additional N$9.5 million to develop the transport sector and improve the safety of drivers and passengers.

“This builds on the support provided to the City of Windhoek with regard to the safe resumption of public transport after the end of the lockdown in May. This will also be extended to support the taxi industry, on which almost 90% of Windhoek’s residents depend for their mobility,” she said.

According to Gölz, given the green economic recovery, an efficient and affordable public transport system could make an impact on sustainable development and poverty alleviation, such as the use of bicycles as a means of transport.

She also pointed out that the Sustainable Urban Transport Master Plan for Windhoek can present opportunities to develop affordable, accessible, attractive and efficient public transport and a non-motorised transport system in the next 20 years.

In the pipeline

“I would like to encourage all stakeholders to strengthen their cooperation to ensure that the transport sector can play its role for a green and inclusive economy and social recovery from the impact of the corona pandemic,” Gölz said.

Meanwhile, transport minister John Mutorwa said the Public Passenger Transport Bill is in the pipeline and has already been scrutinised and approved by the Cabinet Committee on Legislation (CCL).

He added that the Vehicle Mass Bill and the Roads Bill have also been considered and approved by the CCL.

“Taxi drivers are one of the very essential service providers in the public transport subsector that are on the frontline to provide much-needed transport services to both the general public and healthcare workers,” he said.

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