Over 800 DRC residents in Swakopmund set to become home owners
By Adolf Kaure.
An erven ownership certificate signing ceremony took place at Swakopmund on Sunday 16 April to offord 805 of Swakopmund’s DRC informal settlement residents an opportunity to own land and construct a house at their own pace.
These first cohort beneficiaries make up phase one of the project, which was made made possible by the Swakopmund Municipality’s N$2.5 million contribution together with Erongo RED availing N$1.5 million.
The first-time landowners received their plots pro-bono, with the municipality charging only a once-off N$1000 admin fee.
The municipality’s corporate affairs general manager, André Plaaitjie said that co-operation is needed to avoid people who already own land from benefitting from the project.
“Our waiting list for people who want land and housing is 22,000 people. So, we want everyone to work together because we are giving it to people who don’t already have land,” said Plaaitjie.
One of the beneficiaries, Monica Moses (35), a single mother of five children, expressed her gratitide for getting the opportunity to receive an erf.
“I am happy because I was a renting a shack, so to get my own place is nice. With my N$700 pay, I was paying rent for N$200 for my shack and I only remained with N$500. It is not enough for food and it is not enough for food and other needs, so when I have my own home, I will not have to pay rent.”
“I will also have electricity, I used to pay N$5 every day to people with electricity to charge my phone because it was off, but now we are getting electricity also,” said Moses.
After making a N$2500 (paid once off or in installments) beneficiary contribution, along with submitting an “Electricity Supply Project” form, the first 200 of the 805 beneficiaries are set to receive electical supply from Erongo RED.
The head of corporate communications at Erongo RED, Benjamin Nangombe urged the beneficiaries to use the electricity sparingly after it is installed at their homes.
“I know that you are all very excited, but I want to tell you that to use the electricity wisely, so that you are safe. Do not do things like connecting too many plugs as this can be a danger to you,” said Nangombe.
The “Electricity Supply Project” forms are available at the Erongo RED offices in Swakopmund at either APEX or Mondesa.
Other services like street lights are set to be connected by the government.
The second phase of the project will see another 560 residents from Wagdaar (a section of the DRC informal settlement) go through the same process.
The DRC informal settlement was established in 1999 on the outskirts of Swakopmund. It has three different sections namely DRC proper, Section 184 and Wagdaar.
An historic moment as Swakopmund’s DRC informal settlement residents gathered at the Multi-purpose Centre to sign their erven ownership certificates. (Photograph by Adolf Kaure)