CoW approves 2014/15 budget of N.dollars 4.1 billion

WINDHOEK: The Windhoek City Council on Thursday approved the municipality’s total budget of N.dollars 4.1 billion for the 2014/15 financial year.

Of this amount, N.dollars 567 million is allocated to capital expenditure, while the N.dollars 3.5 billion will go towards the operational budget, the chairperson of the Management Committee, Moses Shiikwa said during the monthly City Council meeting here.

This year’s budget estimates were tabled under the theme ‘Expediting land delivery’.

Shiikwa said of the N.dollars 567 million for capital expenditure, N.dollars 436 million will go towards ongoing capital projects, whilst N.dollars 131 million has been earmarked for new capital projects.

“As part of our commitment to the consultative budgeting process, we continued to solicit inputs to the capital budget from our key stakeholders, such as the Khomas Regional Council, Windhoek residents and ratepayers association, the business community through the Namibia Chamber of Commerce and Industry, and the public at large for the preparation of the 2014/15 budget estimates,” he said.

Shiikwa noted that the Management Committee consulted the Khomas Regional Council on 19 June 2014 as prescribed in the Local Authorities Act, and they gave their blessing for the budget estimates.

However, the chairperson indicated that not all proposed projects received from the aforesaid consultations could be accommodated in the capital budget estimates.

He added that the decisions in preparing the capital budget were therefore influenced by the prevailing economic realities and resource availability.

“For this reason, I am tabling before this august House a capital budget for the next financial years. For 2014/15, capital expenditure to the tune of N.dollars 567 million is proposed. For 2015/16, we propose N.dollars 353 million. For 2016/17 N.dollars 242 million, is proposed,” Shiikwa said.

He further stated that the budget is being tabled with an appeal that the servicing of land and the demarcation of erven should be expedited in low income areas.

He went on to say that the operational budget was compiled under difficult circumstances as the cost operation is continuously escalating.

Shiikwa said increases by the bulk suppliers (NamWater and NamPower) has left the City with no option but to propose a tariff adjustment which is aimed at reducing the budget deficit.

He further noted that it was not possible for the City of Windhoek to present a balanced budget; hence the deficit of N.dollars 369 million would have to be approved on Thursday.

Shiikwa said the Management Committee directed Chief Executive Officer Niilo Taapopi and staff of the CoW to implement strict cost control and saving measures in an effort to reduce this deficit; and work tirelessly to broaden the revenue base of the City.