By Reagan Malumo
Lack of monitoring and consultations between political leaders and their communities in the Caprivi has been identified as one of the major factors that has contributed to the collapse of many development projects in the region.
Various communities in different constituencies aired this complaint when the Deputy Prime Minister Dr Libertina Amathila visited their constituencies last week.
Among some of the projects that were supposed to be monitored constantly by regional councillors but collapsed are a goat and bee-keeping project in Western Caprivi and gardening projects.
Amathila was stunned to learn that the two garden projects and a goat-farming project which her office set up for the San people at Omega 3 and Cheto in the Kongola constituency had collapsed despite all necessary tools being provided.
Amathila said she had expected the projects to be properly managed and monitored by both the councillor and communities in order for them to succeed.
When the Deputy Premier arrived at the project sites, neither the Councillor for Kongola constituency Moffat Sileze nor the communities in those areas were able to render satisfactory explanation as to why the projects were not productive.
The two garden projects were fenced and had water tanks installed as well as solar panels to help pump water for irrigation, but all these were not utilized and instead the communities vandalized the fence and other materials at the gardens.
As for the goat-farming project, the community was unable to provide substantial evidence about the goats.
The projects were initiated by the Office of the Deputy Premier for the San people in Western Caprivi to produce both food and to generate income for themselves.
At Sangwali in the Linyanti constituency, communities and traditional leaders showered the Deputy Premier with complaints pertaining to lack of consultations between the communities and their councillor Dorothy Kabula.
The communities complained that Kabula hardly visits them so that they can share their plight with her. They said that the Linyanti constituency office which is located at Sangwali is forever closed.
“Deputy Prime Minister we are telling you the truth that next time we won’t vote because the councillors we vote for are doing nothing. We are not dreaming, but we are telling you the things that we know and we can see that is happening in this constituency,” said one villager who was only unidentified as a senior induna.
The speaker felt that his tribe was being discriminated against.
“It is difficult that we should have one councillor from the Mafwe tribe and another one from the Mayeyi tribe in one constituency, so it is good that when a councillor is elected, he must serve all communities and must not discriminate on tribal lines,” continued the senior induna.
Meanwhile, during her short stay in the region, the Deputy Premier joined the Director of the Emergency Management Unit Gabriel Kangowa to distribute drought and flood relief food and blankets to affected communities in the region.
She also distributed nine boats which were donated by the Federal Republic of Germany to all affected communities. Two boats were given to communities at Schuckmannsburg, Sangwali and Muyako to be used at Lake Lwambezi, while one boat was provided to communities at Impalila, Mbalasinte and Kongola.