New Era (Windhoek)

15 November 2012

Namibia: Ekandjo to Table New Delimitation Commission? Could Create 14th Region

Oshakati — The Ministry of Regional and Local Government, Housing & Rural Development, Jerry Ekandjo, will soon table a draft Bill in Parliament putting forward three names as new members of the fourth Delimitation Commission for approval.

The proposed Delimitation Commission should have a judge, Ekandjo said last weekend during a Swapo Party rally at Oshakati where the Oshana Region endorsed him as their preferred candidate for the party's vice-presidency at the upcoming watershed congress.

The endorsement of Ekandjo was announced by former Swapo MP Henock yaKasita, who said the veteran struggle stalwart has the pedigree and a clean record to lead the country.

Ekandjo said every ten years there should be a new commission to deal with the demarcation of regional and local authority areas.

The first Delimitation Commission was appointed in 1992, and the second one in 2002.

In the Oshikoto Region, Ekandjo said, it has been suggested that there are some constituencies that are too big and need to be divided in two, while in the Kavango Region, it was suggested that the region is too big and the Mpungu Constituency also needs to be divided into two. This may result in the introduction of a 14th region for the country.

Ekandjo also announced he would soon table a Bill that prohibits foreigners from buying land. He further said that if Namibians want to buy land, the price would be set by the government and no longer by the municipalities or local authorities.

He warned if local authorities continue to auction land, this may result in the entire country being owned by foreigners and it would be a betrayal of the noble aims and objectives of the liberation struggle, which was about land acquisition for the benefit of all Namibians.

Ekandjo further announced that a moratorium has been placed on the auctioning of land by local authorities until the relevant law has been enacted. He also spoke at length about the colonial occupation of Namibia by the Germans from 1884 to 1915 and the 'Boers' during the period 1915-1990, adding that the liberation struggle was long and bitter, hence the freedom and independence being enjoyed today should be treated properly and with care because it remains fragile.

He also lauded the Swapo Party for having liberated the country under difficult circumstances and for having developed the country in a short period of 22 years - more than what the Germans and 'Boers' accomplished during the colonial occupation of 106 years.

The minister also seized the opportunity to condemn the ongoing strikes by teachers and urged them to go back to work and to follow the proper procedures if they want to strike.

He compared the situation to the Arab Spring Revolt, which swept through Tunisia, Egypt and Libya resulting in regime change. "We need to be united against those forces which are dividing us," he stressed.

Ekandjo addressed similar rallies in the Oshikoto and Ohangwena regions and will address another one today in the Omusati Region.

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