Namibia: More Windhoek Residents Get Land Certificates

The City of Windhoek last week issued certificates to 730 Otjomuise residents acknowledging their occupation of municipal land.

So far, the municipality has issued a total of 1 300 certificates.

The city council has committed to issuing a minimum of 20 000 certificates of acknowledgement of occupation by the end of this year.

Speaking at the occasion, Khomas regional governor Laura McLeod-Katjirua, said to implement this programme successfully, the city council took cognisance of the need to formally acknowledge residents' occupation of land, thereby ensuring orderly development.

The programme requires the registration of all households and their respective settlement conditions. "It is for this reason that we are today gathered here . . . to acknowledge that the council is aware of the existence of each household," the governor said.

Mcleod-Katjirua said this entails that once an area is issued occupation certificates it would be considered "locked" and any person seeking to erect a structure in the area should approach the municipal council for guidance.

"The handover of these certificates today symbolises our council's resolve to spare no effort in ensuring that all residents of Windhoek have a decent place to call home. It is also an indication that the council is committed to making funds available for important projects like this," she said.

Windhoek's municipality approved the Development and Upgrading Policy in 2019 to guide the management, formalisation and upgrading of the city's fast-growing informal settlements.

As per this policy, existing informal settlements that were unplanned at the time of implementing the policy were declared 'reception areas' - in line with the Local Authorities Act of 1992, she said.

Stakeholders include members of theconstituency development committee for Khomasdal and the leadership of the Shack Dwellers' Federation, the governor said.

The City of Windhoek has already issued occupation certificates to residents of the Okatunda informal settlement in the Tobias Hainyeko constituency, residents of Mandume Ndemufayo in the Moses //Garoëb constituency, occupants of Mix settlement, and those residing at the Hadino Hishongwa settlement of the Samora Machel constituency.

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