Elina — In a quest to boost business and promote self-reliance among entrepreneurs, the Ministry of Gender Equality and Child Welfare on Wednesday handed over equipment to nine small and medium enterprises (SMEs) at Omuthiya.
The equipment is worth over N$270 000.
Gender equality minister Doreen Sioka, in a speech read on her behalf by Oshikoto governor Henock Kankoshi, stated the ministry aims to improve the quality of life for the Namibian people by motivating the local residents to engage in different businesses and promote self-employment initiatives.
"The ministry has been supporting small entrepreneurs with material and equipment, and this initiative has provided jobs and improved lives for many for the past eight years," said Sioka.
She in the same vein cautioned beneficiaries to guard the equipment and use them for the intended purpose.
She further advised that the equipment is still government property.
"Any mismanagement of the material and equipment, the ministry has the right to reposes them as indicated in the memorandum of agreement signed by the beneficiary," warned Sioka.
The beneficiaries were from Omuthiya, Tsumeb, Oniipa, Onayena, Eengodi, Nehale LyaMpingana, Guinas, Onyaanya and Okankolo constituencies.
Beneficiaries received different equipment for conducting businesses such as barbershop/salon, laundry, tailoring, welding and catering services.
An excited entrepreneur John Nuuyango from Ihuhwa Yandundu in Onyaanya Constituency, who received barbershop equipment worth N$7 768, applauded the ministry's effort, further urging the government to continue providing a helping hand to other people, especially those in villages.
Nuunyango added that the biggest challenge he will be facing is that there is no access to electricity.
"I am very happy of what the ministry is doing; I am honoured to be part of the project, but it will not be easy for me to use some of my machineries since there is no electricity at the business, so I just use solar power," he said.
Another beneficiary Rosalia Jonas from Omuthiya Constituency, who received laundry machinery valued at N$ 61 282 to boost her Rejoice laundry business, exclaimed her life was transformed by the ministry.
"This was an incredible experience; my life has changed for good. I have been struggling for so long. Now I can provide for myself and create employment for others. As you can see, the employment rate is very high in Namibia. I will be working tirelessly to ensure others are also benefiting through job creation," stressed Jonas.
*Elina-Ombili Shishaki is an intern at the Ministry of Information Communication and Technology in Omuthiya, Oshikoto Region.