Swakop arts and crafts vendors now trade from upgraded premises
By Adolf Kaure.
Her Worship, the Mayor of Swakopmund, Dina Namubes said informal businesses play a vital role in the economic development of the country at the re-opening of phase one of the Kavita Arts and Crafts market on Friday 18 August.
According to the mayor, this economic development is effected through the manufacturing of affordable products in convenient locations.
“It provides employment and income for low income households.The Swakopmund Municipal Council acknowledges the importance of economic advancement and thus continues to promote entrepreneural activities within its community.”
“Over the years, the selling of goods on pavements as a means to ensure their livelihoods has become a norm for vendors, not only in Swakopmund, but all over Namibia. I believe that this can empower margenilised members of society and contribute to a fairer distribution of resources,” she said.
The mayor further said that the sale of crafts in the informal sector has become a valuable tool in attracting tourism and preserving cultural heritage.
“As Namibians, we are proud to showcase our talents in various ways such as arts and crafts. The exhibition of our craft works can also provide an opportunity to tourists to experience the country’s culture which can lead to a better understanding and appreciation,” said Namubes.
The vendors were urged by the mayor to provide exceptional customer service.
The re-opening of the Kavita Arts and Crafts Market will see a total of 62 vendors as well as 22 Ovahimba sites displaying their handcrafted goods.
One of the vendors at the market, Kawaya Kabongo expressed his gratitude to the Swakopmund Municipality for revamping the centre.
“I would like to thank the Swakopmund Municipality for their hard work and dedication to the development of our market and we assure you that we will work hand in hand to take care and practise good hygiene at the market,” he said.
With the completion of the market’s first phase, new infrastructure like two toilets female and male clients, an additional toilet for wheelchair users along with a storeroom for cleaning materials and tools as well as a vendor kiosk have been constructed.
The market area has been revamped to provide ample space, which is easily accessible and visible to allow tourists to move freely. A new bus terminal and a parking area have also been added to the market, making it easy for tourists to park close to the market. To create a more relaxing and attractive environment for the vendors and visitors, a sitting bench was also provided.
Additionally, a tourism information office, which will serve as a one-stop information centre for tourists has also been erected.
The Swakopmund Municipal Council’s communications department has stated that the launch for phase two of the market will be communicated to the vendors and business owners in due course.
The Kavita Arts and Crafts Market is situated on the remnant of Block 1 of Swakopmund, near the Mole beach.
The Mayor of Swakopmund, Dina Namubes (second from left) officially opens Kavita Arts and Crafts Market in the presence of the alternate Chairperson of the Swakopmund Municipal Council, Claus-Werner Goldbeck (left) and councillors Heinrich Hafeni Nghidipaya (middle) and Suamma Kautondokwa (right). (Photograph by Adolf Kaure)