RUNDU – The construction of a fish shop in the Kavango Region officially started with a ground-breaking ceremony in Rundu last week for the Namibia Fish Consumption Promotion Trust (NFCPT) Rundu Fish Shop. The Minister of Fisheries and Marine Resources, Bernhard Esau, accompanied by the fisheries minister of Angola, Victoria de Borros Nesto, as well as representatives of the fish consumption trust, and local and regional councillors, attended the ceremony.
“I believe the building of this fish shop is long overdue as has been attested by the ever increasing number of people standing in long queues every day for long hours in order to get access to the fish products the trust is selling,” said Esau.
Esau said the new fish shop might not eliminate the challenge of queues completely, but it will at least lessen the time customers have to stand in queues before they can access the fish shop to buy their products.
The minister announced the NFCPT has distributed 4 800 metric tons of horse -mackerel all over the country from January to August 2013 compared to 3 700 metric tons during the same period last year.
In Rundu, the trust distributes between 30 and 60 metric tons per week. The fish shop, which will be built at a cost of about N$3 million will be equipped with cold storage facilities, offices, a boardroom, canteen, storeroom, showers and toilets.
Construction of the fish shop is expected to be completed by April next year. Esau cautioned everyone involved in the construction process to ensure that they complete their work on time, adding: “As per standard procedure, if you fail to complete the work within the given time, you will be penalized.”
With a huge public outcry about the price of fish on local fish markets, Esau said: “The trust must take its mandate of distributing fish at affordable prices very seriously.”
Speaking at the same occasion, Rundu Urban Constituency Councillor, Nimrod Muremi, lauded the NFCPT for coming to Rundu.
Horse-mackerel’s remarkable popularity on the Namibian food market is normally in high demand in the region, with buyers camping for hours at the NFCPT distribution point at the Rundu open market to get their hands on the fish.
The fish demand in the region is by far exceeding supply, as the stock runs out almost in an instant.
By Mathias Haufiku