Nandi-Ndaitwah promotes regional development

Niël Terblanché

Synergistic efforts of local and national governments, backed by international support, hail a promising future for transformative growth of the Kunene Region.

During a visit to the Kunene region, Vice President Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah was briefed by Governor Marius Sheya on various developmental initiatives aimed at enhancing the quality of life for local residents.

The regional proposals include significant road upgrades, drought relief, and the transformation of communities like Sesfontein into recognized village councils.

In tandem with local developments, Nandi-Ndaitwah inaugurated the Harambe-Oyetu community garden in Outjo.

This 20-hectare project, supported by funding from the Chinese embassy, focuses on crop and vegetable cultivation, with future expansions to include fish and chicken farming.

“The gardening project will serve as a commercial hub and training centre for horticulture students and local farmers,” Nandi-Ndaitwah said during the inauguration ceremony over the weekend.

The Vice President’s engagements with local entrepreneurs promise a new dawn for the region’s infrastructure and agricultural development.

Sheya presented a comprehensive briefing note to the Vice President, outlining ambitious goals aimed at boosting the region’s economy and living standards.

“The Kunene Regional Council’s strategy includes upgrading roads, providing drought relief, and officially designating Kamanjab, Torra Bay and Terrace Bay as towns, thereby setting the stage for enhanced administrative services and infrastructural development,” Sheya told the visiting Nandi-Ndaitwah.

He said that villages like Sesfontein, Fransfontein, and Okanguati are on track to gain village council status, promising improved governance and local development.

Sheya added that another infrastructure highlight is the ongoing upgrade to a bitumen standard of the Henties Bay-Uis-Khorixas-Kamanjab-Opuwo road.

“This major roadway promises to knit the region more tightly together, facilitating smoother transit and potentially sparking economic activities along the way,” he said.

According to Sheya, the plan also encompasses a second phase of road enhancements starting from Khorixas Junction.

The Governor highlighted initiatives to explore the potential benefits of green hydrogen, with specific targets set for establishing a harbour at Agra Fria.

“Such developments aim to leverage Kunene’s natural resources sustainably, fostering an environment-friendly economic surge,” he said.

In Outjo, Nandi-Ndaitwah inaugurated the Harambe-Oyetu community garden, a 20-hectare venture that integrates crop and vegetable farming with future expansions planned for fish and chicken farming.

This initiative, sponsored by the Chinese embassy, bolsters local food production but also serves as a practical training ground for horticulture students and small-scale farmers.

She emphasised the importance of community support for projects such as the Harambe-Oyetu community garden.

Nandi-Ndaitwah urged residents to buy locally produced goods to sustain regional economies.

Upon receiving the briefing note from the Regional Governor, Nandi-Ndaitwah committed to closely studying the proposals with relevant ministries to ensure that the developmental aspirations of the Kunene region are realised.

She said that she recognizes the critical challenges posed by inadequate infrastructure and the pressing need for drought relief, reaffirming her dedication to addressing these issues promptly.

Nandi-Ndaitwah added that by setting a proactive governmental agenda that is focused on sustainable development, community empowerment will flow naturally from such actions.

Sheya confirmed plans to replicate this successful model in other constituencies, which would further diversify economic activities across the region.

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