New Hub Market opens soon in Oranjemund for Munders to trade their wares and tares
Oranjemund, the secluded mining town in Namibia’s diamond quarter, is moving fast to transition to a normal civilian establishment from its former protected and isolated status. On 01 February this year it will host its first Night Market in the newly-built hub market premises, followed by the facility’s official opening a week later on 08 February.
On 21 October 2018, the town marked its first anniversary as an open town, accessible to all Namibians and visitors. Prior to this, it was the property of Namdeb, fully managed and controlled by the De Beers diamond mining affiliate. Access was restricted and visits could only take place with special permission.
Helping Oranjemund integrate into the rest of Namibian society is a taskforce operating as OMD 2030. This group of people consists mostly of volunteer Munders who have taken on the task of transforming their town into an independent, self-sustainable community with a functional local economy based mostly on tourism. In its earlier history, the entire Oranjemund economy was based only on diamond mining.
As part of their strategy and to support operations, OMD 2030 has constructed what they call the OMD Hub, consisting of offices, a tourist bureau and the new hub market, designed by OMD 2030 volunteer, Helena Panda and assisted by Debbie Virting to manage the project. The market is being built with funding from the United States Embassy in Windhoek.
Late last year, the US Ambassador, HE Lisa Johnson, visited Oranjemund to view the site where the then-proposed Hub Market were to be built.
“The Hub Market will be a community space where local vendors can sell their crafts and freshly made goods on a daily basis to local people and visitors alike. Three VIP stalls and seven smaller stalls are available to book for a small daily fee that covers basic maintenance, upkeep of the facilities and the use of power or water,” stated the OMD 2030 group in their redesigned quarterly bulletin, The i.
“Parents can bring their children to enjoy the ‘kiddies area’ while they relax, meet friends and enjoy the local produce on offer. The waterwise garden and beautifully designed benches will provide the perfect backdrop to relax, unwind or catch up with the latest gossip. Braai facilities and a communal fire-pit area will also be available for hire to provide the perfect atmosphere for informal evening gatherings,” stated OMD 2030 adding that they anticipate the Hub Market to develop into a focal point for future community activities.
The Hub Market will still be decorated this month through a competition for Munders to paint their own designs as murals on the market’s walls.