Court orders government to engage Amushelelo on Mass Housing occupation dispute

Hertta-Maria Amutenja

The High Court in Windhoek has ordered the Ministry of Urban and Rural Development and property developer Calgrokuumba Planning and Design (PTY) LTD to engage social activist Michael Amushelelo on the planned occupation of vacant houses that were built under the Mass Housing Program in Windhoek.

CalgroKuumba and the ministry approached the court last week on an urgent basis, in an attempt to stop Amushelelo and his followers from occupying the houses as planned on 29 February 2024.

The court ordered Amushelelo and followers to halt their plans, but also ordered the ministry and ColgroKuumba to engage them and find a solution.

CalgroKuumba is a joint venture between a South African firm, Calgro M3, and Afrikuumba, owned by businessman Titus Nakuumba.

The purpose of the application, as outlined in the affidavit, is to interdict the respondents and their supporters from entering and unlawfully occupying properties in Otjomuise, Windhoek. The properties in question are part of Phase 1A and Phase 1B of Extension 10, Otjomuise, consisting of a mix of developed and undeveloped erven.

“The main purpose of this application is to uphold the rule of law and to prevent unlawful conduct by persons who are aware of their rights and the lawful remedies available to them, but still choose to commit unlawful acts and incite others to do the same at the risk of injury to themselves and others and damage to others’ property,” read the founding affidavit by Andre Olivier.

Amushelelo accused Nakuumba of the houses hostage and preventing homeless and landless Namibians from getting decent houses.

“My fellow Namibians, this tenderpreneur Titus Nakuumba, who built the Mass Houses in Otjomuise has been holding them hostage and has teamed up with Erastus Uutoni, the minister responsible for housing,” said Amushelelo.

He further alleges a collusion between the government and property developers, accusing them of prioritising profits over delivering affordable housing.

Amushelelo alluded that the minister is diverting taxpayer money towards legal battles instead of finding solutions to the housing crisis in the country.

The planned Occupation of Houses and Land on February 29, is currently on hold, with the matter postponed until March 27, allowing registered individuals to file motions opposing a final order.

Amusheleo further announced that there will meeting on March 2, to register more people.

Moreover, Amushelelo alleges it is the government’s failure to keep houses vacant for over a decade while citizens don’t have houses.

Earlier this month, the ministry disclosed that 362 dwelling units in Otjomuise, extension 10, constructed under the Mass Housing Development Programme, are currently unfit for occupation.

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