Makgone Land Bid Blocked

IN a twist of fate, mayor of Windhoek Muesee Kazapua has blocked the sale of land being sought by urban and rural development deputy minister Sylvia Makgone.

Makgone and partners want Erf L3387KW measuring 5 570 square metres that is between Stein Street and Sam Nujoma Drive in Klein Windhoek.

She will however get it if some councillors keep supporting her efforts, but for now Makgone’s pursuit of the land has been blocked pending further consultations. During the council meeting on Thursday, Kazapua blocked the land application though, while the chairperson of the management committee, Moses Shiikwa, and Swapo councillor Gerson Kamatuka wanted to push it through.

Makgone, a former deputy minister of education, co-owns Ramosi Investment CC whose application was one of those that dominated the council meeting on Thursday.

Bank Windhoek also applied for the same land on 14 July 2003 for building an office park, but could not get it after the technical committee decided that the plot may be subdivided in the future to create street access on the traffic lights at the junction of Sam Nujoma Drive and Stein Street. Council meeting records show that Bank Windhoek was informed of the technical committee’s decision through a letter dated 11 December 2003 and aised to contact the municipality in 2004.

An email attached to the council minutes show that Kamatuka wrote to the acting chief executive officer, Edward Kawesha, telling him that Makgone’s application should be considered for private treaty as it was applied for at the beginning and should not be put on tender for consistency purposes.

An application dated 21 July 2013 was received from Ramosi Investment CC with supporting information that the proposed development can ease the current rising housing costs and that the solution to the current housing shortages should be the responsibility of all the people of Namibia. Furthermore, Makgone and partners said in the application that Ramosi Investments is a close corporation formed by previously disaantaged Namibians and has a 5050 gender balance.

The councillors wanted to approve Makgone’s application on Thursday night, but the management committee gave one option – to give the land to the company on public tender. Council rules state that a plot should be put on public tender if there are more than one applicant for the same piece of land.

Shiikwa and Kamatuka publicly supported the idea that the land be sold to Makgone’s company.

Their efforts, however, fell through when the majority of the councillors agreed that the item should be referred back for consultation.

” If there is more than one application, let it go to tender but with one application, there is no need for tender,” Shiikwa argued.

Councillor for the Rally for Democracy and Progress Brunhilde Cornelius said many deals have been pushed through for private treaty applicants, saying council policies are not consistent.

“We approved so many in the past on private treaty, but all we are recommending these days is that it must go for tender. Why all of a sudden tender?” Cornelius asked, suggesting that policies should be amended if need be to match the Local Authorities Act.

Supporting her was Kazapua who said it should be deferred to allow them ample time to re-consult their policies. “It will become a Kazapua issue of dishing out land. We are becoming frustrated. I am not trying to defend myself but I am putting it clear,” he said.

He also suggested that councillors organise themselves into groups and ask lawmakers to amend laws, because some of them are not in their mandate. Kazapua said they will have to call for another land delivery workshop.

Kamatuka said: “We cannot push things back and forth. We must approve now to protect our image. That is not the way to deal with this poor person who applied two years ago. We can workshop after this.”

Another application that was deferred was dated 16 March 2013 which was from Ritta Khiba Consultants CC, on behalf of One Square Properties Investments CC, for the purchase of Erf 260, Kleine Kuppe. This application indicates that the development potential of this plotis 47 dwelling units.

Source : The Namibian