Ecotourism in Zambezi
Millennium Challenge Account Namibia CEO, Penny Akwenye, with Senior Traditional Councillor Jonathan Limbo, Zambezi Governor Lawrence Sampofu and MET Director of Regional Services and Park Management, Colgar Sikopo, at the ceremony where ten tourism projects were handed to the respective conservancies in which they operate. These ecotourism projects to the combined value of N$17 million are located in Kwandu, Mashi, Mayuni, Baljerwa, Kasika, Wuparo, Sikunga, Impalila, and Salambala. The colourful handover ceremony took place at one of the project sites, the Namushasha Cultural Centre near Kongola at Mashi Conservancy, and was attended by representatives of the Ministry of Environment and Tourism (MET), local politicians, traditional authorities and close to 100 conservancy members. Investment by the private sector in ecotourism has increased from N$3 million to N$100 million since 2010. The Zambezi projects consist of three lodges that are joint ventures between conservancy members and private investors, a Cultural Centre, the upgrade of several craft centres, a community bakery, boats and equipment for a fishery project, and various activities to mitigate human wildlife conflict.