Eenhana Budgets N$13 Million for Mass Housing

THE Eenhana town council will spend N$13 million on the mass housing project during its 2014-15 financial year.

Julia Shikongo, the Eenhana mayor, revealed this during the tabling of the town’s budget at Eenhana on Saturday. She said the project will be held in conjunction with the Ministry of Regional and Local Government and Housing and Rural Development.

The Development Bank of Namibia will also work with the council to service 172 plots, she said.

“A block erf will be demarcated to about 500 plots that will be allocated to the line ministry for the mass housing project. This is indeed notable progress in terms of the development of our town,” said Shikongo.

Some of the capital projects include the surveying of 400 plots and the developing of 950 other plots in a residential area. All capital projects are estimated to cost N$105 million.

According to Shikongo, N$5 million has been put aside for servicing plots, N$15 million for compensating people who lose crop fields, N$1 million for the new cemetery, and N$33 million for the construction of a new office complex. Expenditure has been estimated at N$145 million.

Salaries and wages increases are expected to chew up N$14 million, which is about 35% of expenditure, and the remainder of N$1,7 million will be spent on the salaries reserve fund.

Inflation, the mayor said, dropped to about 4,9%, while increases in other products and services have put a strain on how the council disburses funds.

About 65% is expected to be raised from council operations, 5% from land sales, 16% from government subsidies, about 1% from other sources and 13% from the year-end surplus.

“We envisage a surplus of about N$2 million in the budget,” the mayor said.

She said the council has also proposed to increase water tariffs from N$10,10 for households to N$12,50 per cubic metre, and for non-household consumers from N$13,55 to N$17,25 per cubic metre effective from 1 July this year. While demand for housing and business erven continues to outgrow supply, Shikongo said, her council does not have the necessary resources to tackle the matter. However, she said, they have a couple of public private partnership agreements to accelerate housing delivery.

The mayor said the town has recorded achievements in access to education and training, health and basic amenities, financial stability, and good physical infrastructure in the telecommunications, roads, water and sewerage sectors.

“It is, therefore, in this light that this year’s budget is designed to address specifically the need to continuously reinventing ourselves, challenging mediocre around and the status quo in order to live up to the aspirations of our President and to those of the masses that we are serving,” she concluded.

Source : The Namibian