Birth Certificates a Rare Commodity in Okanguati

Many children among the Ovatue community at Okanguati in the Epupa Constituency do not have birth certificates because their impoverished families do not have the means to travel to Opuwo to apply for the national documents.

“Many of our children at Okanguati do not have birth certificates and we don’t have money or cars to travel to Opuwo to apply for these documents,” Uatiminua Tjambiru informed New Era in a recent interview.

She said people do not have the N$60 transport fare to travel to Opuwo. “We are appealing to government to bring services of birth certificates closer to us because many cannot afford to travel to Opuwo,” said Tjambiru, who was speaking from Okandundu ko Vatue (mountain of Ovatue) in Opuwo.

Tjambiru and her family occasionally travel to Opuwo in search of a better life.

She further added that many of the indigenous communities are finding it hard to survive as a result of the drought ravaging the Kunene Region.

Tjambiru, who is an elderly woman, explained that when her pension money is finished she has to come up with alternatives to survive until the next month’s pension grant.

“We are here to make beads, which we sell for N$250. We are really struggling to survive because of the drought. If the people don’t buy these beads then we will die of hunger,” she explained.

She said most of their livestock have died because of the recurrent drought.

“Namathila (Libertina Amathila, the former Deputy Prime Minister) gave us livestock in 2008 and they died out because of the drought. Now we don’t have anything,” stated Tjambiru.

Source : New Era