Thousands of traffic summonses issued in Otjozondjupa

Martin Endjala

The traffic law enforcement in the Otjozondjupa Region has issued 5 811 summonses that amount to a total of N$6 257 550 in fines.

This was revealed by the region’s Governor, James Uerikua last week during the State of the Region Address, where he indicated that the total number of people arrested on drinking and driving charges stood at 1 420.

Meanwhile, the total number of accident fatalities reported was 14 while 139 people were taken into police custody on warrants of arrest. The total amount in fines accrued from warrants of arrest was N$162 107.

“Road accidents in our region have been one of the biggest challenges, especially along the B1 road between Okahandja, Otjiwarongo and Otavi,” said Uerikua.

As a result, the region has established a Road Safety Regional Forum aimed at coordinating road safety efforts and programs within the sector to save lives and coordinate resource usage.

The work of the forum has already yielded a drastic decrease in road accidents in key hot spots of the region.

Fewer road accidents than usual were recorded in the region due to the efforts of the forum during the last Festive Season.

However, incidents of traffic offences, are still rampant, with the main causes being over-speeding and failure to respect road traffic rules.

He reiterated that the key focus of the region is to enhance good governance through strict adherence to all its principles.

One key principle is to embody a participatory approach to ensure that every sector whether government or private, is part of the synergic efforts of prompt, effective, meaningful and sustainable service delivery.

Furthermore, the Governor maintains that the enhancement of security and the rule of law is one of the strategic objectives of effective governance, adding that the paramount to effective governance is a conducive and peaceful environment through the enhancement of security and the rule of law.

Moreover, the Ministry of Home Affairs, Immigration, Safety and Security, through its law enforcement mandate has also successfully executed ten joint operations with other key stakeholders in the region during the 2022/23 financial year.

However, despite these successes, there is a concern given some of the challenges experienced by the Namibian Police, such as the shortage of housing, as it is still evident that there is still a great shortage of housing for men and women in uniform not only in the region but countrywide.

Uerikua urged all Local Authorities to avail land for housing purposes for the men and women in uniform so that they too can leave a dignified life which will then enable them to carry out their duties without having to worry about some of these shortcomings.

Police Mortuary and Police Pathology unit for the region are some of the needed services as well.

In terms of Fleet Management, during the period under review, 15 vehicles were decommissioned with 50 to 60 percent of the fleet still grounded, due to accidents and mechanical problems.

Mangetti Dune, Okakarara, Rooidag, Osire, Hochfeld, Kalkfeld, Kombat Police Stations and Otjiwarongo Crime Investigation Unit are without vehicles. Transport at these stations is sourced from nearby stations to assist in cases of emergency.

It is further alleged that the Mayor and the LPM council members have been convening illegal council meetings after working hours to find the best way to suspend Titus.

This, despite Erastus Uutoni, the Minister of Urban and Rural Development’s directives that the council does not have the authority to suspend Titus.

The council has, in the past illegally suspended Titus on two separate occasions.

Titus told the Windhoek Observer that his suspension lapsed on 29 June and that he has since been going to the office daily. He added that he was barred from entering the building for the first time on Monday after tensions skyrocketed.

In the meantime, Titus sent a report concerning the status quo of the town council and the current developments to Uutoni.

The recent meetings held by LPM are believed to be driving this whole saga, as community members believe that they are all out to get him out of the job.

According to a source on the ground who wishes to remain anonymous for fear of being targeted, the Karaburg Town Council is currently in an unstable state because the current acting CEO, Hansina Isaak and Personal Assistant, Kallie Goliath from the LPM council members are embroiled in a feud with the Human Resource Manager who refuses to pay the two acting members’ salaries.

The source said that both Goliath and Isaak are not on the payroll systems since they were not elected as per the council resolution structures nor were they recommended to the Ministry of Urban-Rural Development by the council.

The two acting members were brought in to act while the elected Chief Executive Officer was serving his suspension while he was under investigation.

The appointment of the two acting members was strongly denounced by Uutoni following letters written to his office by the community and during his visit to Karasburg earlier this month.

During the visit members of the community vented their anger towards the appointment citing it as unnecessary and a misuse of council finances.

Another community member by the name of Josef Pieters echoed his frustration towards the LPM leadership saying that they are busy tarnishing the image of the town with the way they are conducting themselves.

The community member said “We do not want the appointed PA and CEO since the current ones are still in the positions. The town council has now turned into a circus because the LPM feels that they can just do whatever they want,” he said.

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