Residents demand land and housing

Petition handed in

01 December 2020 | Infrastructure

Roger Basson; Chairman; “We need plot portions that we can service ourselves and build our houses on at our own cost …”

Swakopmund • [email protected]

Fifteen members of the Swakopmund Housing for All group handed over a petition at the Swakopmund municipality after a peaceful march from the DRC informal settlement.

This came after the group drafted letters to the Swakopmund town council chief executive on 9 November, but did not receive any response.

According to group chairperson Roger Basson, they are Namibians being treated like foreigners when it comes to housing. “We need plot portions that we can service ourselves and build our houses on at our own cost since we are classified as low income,” he said.

Basson expressed his dissatisfaction at the fact that there are residents that have been living in Swakopmund for a year or less who he said now own houses.

“There is open land near DRC. This land is already serviced but unoccupied for the past few years. We want that land for housing. We have community members that are born and raised in Swakopmund but do not have accommodation of their own, yet people relocating to Swakopmund for work, business and other reasons get housing, just because they have money or can be funded by the banks,” he said.

The group wants fair housing allocation in the town and say that only 108 persons have received houses in 2020 from the 17 000 registered members on the housing list.

“Calculated at this rate, land delivery will take 157 years for each person on the list to get housing. Most of the registered members will be dead by then. This list grows daily as a result of the influx of people relocating from other parts of the country.”

Since the municipality’s CEO was not present to receive the petition, the general manager for economic development services, Vilho Kaulinge, received the petition.

“Your petition is in good hands. We will provide you with an answer as soon as possible,” he said.

The municipality has been asked to provide answers to the group’s grievances in writing before 4 December.

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