Harambee under threat
President Hage Geingob’s plan to have 5,000 new residential plots serviced, 6,000 new houses constructed and 10,000 toilets built in rural areas, among a host of Harambee Prosperity Plan (HPP) targets for 2017, will be nearly impossible to achieve, given the unfolding economic crisis.
This is according to social commentator, Rosa Namises, who said that Government should be honest with its citizens, by revealing the real state of the economy.
“We are being misled about the real situation, but to those that are awake and read between the lines, we know that we are in an economic crisis,” Namises said.
“There is no money for these Harambee projects, and it will be hard to say that they will be completed.
“Even when you look at the Food Bank issue, the maize meal bags have decreased from three to two per month in areas like Ovitoto and Omitara. Why is this happening? The communities are not satisfied.”
Namises stressed that an urgent review of the HPP was required, as most Namibians had been left out.
Political commentator Andrew Niikondo likened the HPP to other development plans, adding that there was always room for eventualities.
“In any plan, you can’t expect everything to be established, because there are these things that cannot be foreseen,” said Niikondo.
“Even when you look at the National Development Plans, no one can convince me that all the targets were met.”
He said if the HPP targets are not met, it will not be because of a failure on the part of the implementers, but because of the country’s current economic situation.
State House said this week that Geingob will shed more light on the country’s economic challenges and their potential impact on the Harambee targets, during his State of the Nation Address (SONA), slated for April.
The presidency added that at this stage, it cannot comfortably say whether there is money to meet the targets set out in the plan.
United Democratic Front (UDF) parliamentarian, Dudu Murorua, said the current financial situation could well result in the Harambee targets, which includes the creation of 2,000 jobs in the manufacturing sector, being unachievable.
“We will have to be very economical and stringent on how we spend money,” Murorua warned, while emphasising that the Harambee target for providing new houses should not be dealt with in isolation.
He said Government should at this stage concentrate on how the nation will survive, but this does mean that toilets and houses are not important.