14 September 2017

Namibia: PPP Sought for Keetmanshoop Mass Houses

In line with cost-cutting measures in tough economic times, the Ministry of Urban and Rural Development and the Keetmanshoop municipality are looking into public-private partnerships to complete 88 houses under the mass housing programme in the town.

The houses in question are in the Krönlein suburb, and are part of 287 houses built under the national housing scheme in this southern town.

In some instances, only foundations have been laid. The project was abandoned after the suspension of the programme nationally and the eventual departure of the contractor at the time.

Line minister Sophia Shaningwa halted the entire project in June 2015 because the National Housing Enterprise, which was mandated to implement the project, could not acquire the necessary funds to finance the programme that was meant to build 185 000 houses by 2030.

Construction resumed in February last year when money became available.

The Keetmanshoop municipality will now engage private developers to complete the houses.

The municipality's public relations officer, Dawn Kruger, on Tuesday told Nampa that the main consideration is the affordability of the houses for lower-income residents.

The rest of the mass houses are in Tseiblaagte Extension 5, and out of these, 110 have been handed over to beneficiaries. Kruger said the costing of the remaining 89 houses has also been concluded.

"The houses are in various stages of completion, while some have been severely vandalised. We have estimated a cost of about N$5 million to finish the construction," she explained.

The municipality will soon advertise for the services of three contractors who will be assigned the houses according to the levels of completion to ensure speedy delivery, Kruger said.

The houses are expected to be completed in the first quarter of 2018. The municipality provided the land, and construction will be paid for by the ministry.

Kruger said a requirement will be for contractors to appoint around-the-clock security to prevent the vandalism of properties until construction is completed.

- Nampa

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