Katima Mulilo — Houses constructed under the government Mass Housing Scheme in Katima Mulilo but have been unoccupied for more than two years will be handed out to their new owners before the end of the current financial year.
The Chief Executive Officer of NHE Gisbertus Mukulu revealed this during a consultative meeting with the Katima Mulilo Town Council on Friday. Mukulu says all the 202 houses constructed under the mass housing scheme in Katima Mulilo have been allocated to new owners, but the delay to hand over the houses was due to various issues that needed to be ironed out.
He says 89 of the social houses were already handed over, with only seven - despite having owners - yet to be handed over because they have sewer problems, which Mukulu says will soon be resolved.
However, most of the credit-linked houses are yet to be handed over and this delay was caused by the slow processes by banks to approve the housing loans. He pointed out that only 25 of the 106 credit-linked houses were approved by the banks, 13 of which were already handed over.
Mukulu added that this has so far been resolved after Cabinet in November last year approved that NHE can now finance the credit-linked houses adding the process is now moving fast.
"From November 46 houses were approved and they are ready for hand over on the 28th of January. And 35 we are waiting for the documentations from the clients. Meaning this process of documentation might also be done by the end of January and come February we will hand over these houses," he said.
However, during the meeting officials from the Katima Mulilo Town Council were not pleased with how NHE handled the whole process. They accused NHE of having ignored recommendations from the town council when they were allocating the houses. They say most of the people allocated the houses already have houses or plots.
"We have a lot of people who qualify - they do not have plots - they been renting since 2008, some 2005. They don't have plots, they don't have houses, but still Rundu office has allocated the people who are having plots and those who are having houses. That is why we are not really happy.
"Now we are sitting with the issue where one man one plot will not work in Katima. It will not work here. We took a decision but you have created a lot flows and questions. These gentlemen at Rundu knew exactly what they were doing," said the CEO of Katima Mulilo, Raphael Liswaniso.
"It is either they knew when they were allocating that they are allocating these houses to create problems. Because the list was given to them clearly - this person has a plot, this one has what and so forth. But they just continued allocating, that is why we have a problem," he stated.
Officials from NHE Rundu office however defended their stance stating that recommendations from the town council have not been side-lined, and "if the person is having a plot or allocated a property they are not considered, unless it is not indicated on this list that that person is having a house."