AR happy with rent control progress
The Affirmative Repositioning (AR) movement has submitted five names to the Minister of Industrialisation and SME Development, Immanuel Ngatjizeko, for consideration as members of the Rent Control Board.
This comes after the land activists were requested to submit their nominations last month.
AR co-founder, Job Amupanda, told the Windhoek Observer that they are awaiting feedback from the minister on whether the names submitted would be appointed.
Amupanda could, however, not provide the names of the five nominees they had submitted, but said that all of them were land activists.
He said that he is happy with the progress being made, in terms of the establishment of the Rent Control Board.
“There is still a lot of work to be done, but we are glad that this is where we are,” he said, adding that they can see light at the end of the tunnel.
“Rent research committees were set up in the regions, so once the board has been established, we will be in a position to normalise the escalating rent prices,” he said.
Amupanda said that those who are depending on rental payments for a living should find proper jobs, so that there is “production in the country”.
“You cannot sit and wait for rental income. We have no mercy on evil business, based on exploitation,” he said. The implementation of rent control was announced by President Hage Geingob, after a meeting with the AR leaders earlier this year, where it was agreed upon that Prime Minister Saara Kuugongelwa-Amadhila will, in line with Section 33 of the Estate Agents Act 11/1976, summon the Estate Agents Board to review and address the escalating property prices before 1 August.
In a joint statement, both parties agreed to speed up the implementation of the Rent Control Board, as set out in the Rent Ordinance 13/1977, which among other things, will regulate rental prices, as well as resolve any disagreements arising from rentals.
The Estate Agents Act states that the Estate Agents Affairs Board shall consist of 15 members appointed by the trade minister.
It says that the minister shall appoint as members of the board, five members from the estate agents’ industry, five members from civil society, representing consumer interest, and five members from related professions and institutions, such as the legal profession, financial institutions, property owners and developers. Meanwhile, estate agents have warned that regulating rentals could result in the sector collapsing.
In their view, government has no role in regulating private property.
Efforts to get a comment from Ngatjizeko on how far they were with the process proved fruitless by the time of going to print.