By Michael Liswaniso
A six-member parliamentary Sub-standing Committee on Economics, Natural Resources and Public Administration under the Chairmanship of Swapo Member of Parliament Peya Mushelenga visited Opuwo on Friday for a consultative meeting.
The aim of the consultative meeting was to engage residents to gather their views regarding two motions that were introduced in Parliament last year.
The motions are on the role of insurance companies and modernising property rights.
Residents expressed dissatisfaction over the operation of insurance companies, saying some of them sidelined people living with HIV/AIDS. They also said their monthly premiums are high. They said these companies are quick to register clients but when it comes to payment, they take too long to pay back what belongs to the client.
They appealed to the committee to recommend a policy that would change things for the better.
Deliberating on the modernisation of property rights, most senior citizens who somehow seemed to have a misunderstanding of the modernisation of property rights in the first place, said they were against such proposed motion.
They said they were happy with the current situation, saying it would destroy culture and lead them into debt if villagers were to be given title deeds.
Kunene Regional Governor Dudu Murorua also backed the residents saying it would lead to many people having their community structures repossessed by the banks.
“People with big money will again benefit, look at what happened to the Build Together project in most parts,” bemoaned Murorua.
Murorua also expressed dissatisfaction about the sizes of erven these days, noting that in the past, the sizes were big compared to the present while the population of the country is relatively small leaving a vast area unutilised.
Given the fact that most residents expressed dissatisfaction with the modernization of property rights, Chief Ankama who was part of the delegation emphasized the need for workshops to educate residents on how the Government operates.
At the end of the meeting, one senior traditional councillor complained about Government’s priorities, saying: “You are indeed welcome but when I saw you here I thought you had come for the drought relief food or increments to our monthly allowances, not this property rights …”