A non-governmental organization has called for advised for caution over the proposed Affirmative Repositions movement petition, arguing that it land distribution proposals should not create further conundrums but look at how to resolve the sensitive matter, without having to pick fights with foreigners.
The petition was submitted to the Speaker of the National Assembly in 2018 and is now the subject of a public hearing by the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Natural Resources and Legal Affairs.
The Women’s Action for Development (WAD) when delivering its position paper at hearing today, through its legal representative challenged the AR proposed regulation on expropriation of land from foreigners.
WAD there are quite a number of regulations proposed in the petition that raises eyebrows and need to be clarified to avoid misinterpretation, adding that not many Namibians understand some of the terminology that is being used in the petition.
“The petition should avoid any ambiguity particularly with the traditional authorities who are the custodians in granting approval of customary land”.
However, WAD is in agreement with the AR petition on the 51/49 percent partnering in the ownership with land with foreigners, with Namibians holding the majority shareholder, especially in communal land settings.
The WAD national coordinator Absai Kashululu took particularly exception to an inheritance scenario, where a Namibian is married to a foreigner who has legally acquired the land in Namibia. Kashululu, stated that despite the provision in place prohibiting a foreigner from selling their land to other foreigners, land in communal areas is being sold in similar fashion by the traditional authorities, leaving the entitled spouse and their children without land.
“It is on some of these grounds that we want the petition to also look into or consider for we as an organization, we are running communal projects, hence why we are advocating for communal land to also to be looked at and not only commercial land of which we surely support and have no objections on,” Kashululu said.