NHE Completes 800 Houses

The National Housing Enterprise (NHE) is well on track with the mass housing programme despite having received a good tongue-lashing from President Hifikepunye Pohamba for only fitting doors on some houses.

Pohamba on Tuesday blasted NHE while viewing the houses, saying the houses with single doors reminded him about the apartheid years and have no place in an independent Namibia.

Councillors, contractors and sub-contractors all received harsh words from the president who was not at all impressed with the core 5 and 6 houses built by NHE.

The president did not complain about the quality of the houses this time around but he was concerned about the safety of those that will live in the houses, in the event of a fire.

Pohamba handed over 89 houses under the mass housing development programme on Tuesday. The 89 houses are part of the 800 houses completed by NHE countrywide.

A total of 507 houses are ready for occupancy.

Towns where the houses have been completed are Katima Mulilo, Swakopmund, Keetmanshoop, Outju and Nkurenkuru. The remaining 300 houses are completed but they just need to be connected to municipal services such as water.

The president said during the ceremony that government is determined to see that its housing programme is implemented successfully. “It is pleasing that despite some teething problems the construction of houses in the country has gained momentum and more houses will be handed over to new home owners in the coming month. Everything must be done to avoid delays in the implementation of this project. Delays and poor workmanship will not be tolerated. All contractors must therefore comply with the required standards,” implored Pohamba.

Pohamba added that all stakeholders are under strict instructions to ensure they fulfil their responsibilities and the Ministry of Regional and Local Government, Housing and Rural Development is mandated to monitor the progress and ensure its targets are met.

According to Pohamba the mass housing programme could run a risk of not reaching its targets without serviced land. “Therefore I call upon all local authorities to speed up the process of servicing residential land for the successful implementation of the housing programme. Through this programme, the Namibian people will not only be provided with affordable housing but will also have access to better sanitation which is necessary for the promotion of the health of our communities,” he said.

NHE CEO Vinson Hailulu said the project is well on schedule especially the construction side, but he raised his concern over the slow pace the servicing of land is moving at. The N$45 billion mass housing programme was launched last year in November by the president to build 185 000 houses by 2030 to alleviate the present nationwide housing deficit.

Namibia has a housing defit of 100 000 houses.

By March 2016 a total of 1 595 houses would be constructed at Walvis Bay, 3 554 at Swakopmund, 54 at Arandis and 80 at Henties Bay.

Source : New Era