Levels of poverty are critical

Poverty ministry Zephania Kameeta has reported to parliament on the work done by his ministry to alleviate the abject poverty so omnipresent in the country.

30 November 2018 | Local News

Poverty eradiation minister Zephania Kameeta said this week said the poverty situation amongst people in rural areas is critical.

He made the statement in the National Assembly this week, adding that this situation persists despite long-term government efforts. Those living in informal settlements of our cities and towns, are deprived of basic services and live in extreme poverty.

Kameeta's remarks follow President Hage Geingob's assertion at a gala dinner on Monday evening that homelessness is a humanitarian crisis.

Kameeta this week told parliament that as a result, his ministry has established a donation account, where “generous organisations and individuals” can donate money to address what is often referred to as low-hanging fruits.

“I am pleased to announce that since the establishment of this donation account, the response from the public, including the embassies, local and international NGOs, local businesses and even individuals, has been positive towards this noble initiative of the ministry.”

According to him, the account is linked to the Special Programmes of the Ministry and it is aimed at addressing the immediate needs of people in informal settlements who have confronted fires and floods.

It is also aimed at assisting more long-term sustainable poverty eradication initiatives and projects ranging from agricultural food production projects, income-generating projects, water provision, education and provision of decent shelter to those living in extreme poverty.

Kameeta also added that the first ever-draft policy on social protection is now available and will be shared with stakeholders for inputs and validations, before it is tabled in parliament. According to him the main aim of the policy is to create a comprehensive social protection system efficient and effective in addressing risks and vulnerabilities that people face at different stages of their lives.

Kameeta added that the ministry is coordinating the country's Zero Hunger Strategy as part of Namibia's commitment to the implementation of United Nations's second Sustainable Development Goal - that of zero hunger. This implementation is done by ensuring that sustainable food provision and food production systems are put in place and are effectively implemented. “The implementing stakeholders for the Zero Hunger Strategic Roadmap have submitted their action plans and a Monitoring and Evaluation Framework has been developed. Additional to this, a food and nutrition security draft policy is available and ready for validation. The policy will assist the implementation of a holistic food and nutrition security and a holistic programme on infant and young child feeding within the existing food safety nets programme,” said Kameeta.

He also said that an implementation plan has been developed and all implementing organisations, ministries and agencies (OMAs) are expected to provide quarterly reports on the progress made.

According to him the ministry has also developed comprehensive reporting tools for each strategic priority area to be populated by the each implementing OMAs.

“I am equally pleased to announce that significant progress was made in the implementation of activities under these strategic objectives; including the elimination of the bucket system, building of environmental friendly toilets for rural communities, acceleration of rural electrification; upgrading and construction of new vocational training centres,” he said.

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