By Albertina Nakale
MALTAHÖHE – In 2013, the Hardap education directorate almost achieved a 100 percent Universal Primary Education goal with a 97 percent net access rate through a primary school enrolment of 97 percent.
In 2013, the government abolished the payment of school development funds (SDFs), as part of its commitment in public schools.
Plans are also underway to exclude secondary school learners from paying SDFs in the next phase starting the next financial year.
Between 2010 and 2014, classrooms for the pre-primary phase were constructed at Danie Joubert, Vooruitsig, Rehoboth, Mutschuana and Salmon Boois primary schools.
While for the secondary phase, classrooms were constructed at Rooiduin, Dr Lemmer and Daweb combined schools, among others.
These were some of the development highlights mentioned by President Hifikepunye Pohamba during the Swapo Party star rally held at Maltahöhe over the weekend, in the Swapo Party campaign for the presidential and National Assembly elections.
The rally was attended by a huge crowd, with people sitting in tents and standing in the heat singing and chanting Swapo liberation songs.
“I am appealing for the sake of progress and the welfare of our people that we vote for Swapo members to go to parliament. Vote for Hage Geingob to continue implementing projects. I understand there are parties like Radopa, and if you vote for them do you think they will continue those projects?” Pohamba asked cynically.
He said government constructed and renovated several schools in the Hardap Region, which brings the total number of schools to 56 schools from Grade 1 to 12.
He said teachers’ houses were also renovated at Aranos, Gibeon and Amperbo with the aim to improve infrastructure and expand access to quality pre-primary education.
Between 2010 and 2013, hostel renovations took place at PJ Tsai/tsaib Combined School, Rehoboth High School, Sonop Primary School, PI Groenwaldt Junior Secondary, Kalkrand Primary School, Daweb Combined School, Empelheim Junior Secondary School, Aranos Primary School and at Stampriet.
He said the 2012 educational supplies consisting of laptops, desktops, headsets, classroom projectors, classroom DVD players, television sets and internet connections were procured for all high schools in the region. He added that plans are underway to bring such technological advancements to primary and combined schools in the region next year.
“Education is the gateway to prosperity and to development hence government has been working to ensure educational institutions are attended to for the the sake of our Namibian children,” stressed Pohamba.
Government also plans to construct a school and hostel at the Tsumis Agriculture College, as well as a primary school at the Hardap agricultural scheme.
Other capital projects Pohamba highlighted included the construction of a new village council office at Maltahöhe at a cost of N$1.5 million in 2010 and the construction of two houses for rural extension workers at Gibeon at a cost of N$1.7 million in 2011.
Another achievement was the construction of the primary health clinic and staff house for N$2.6 million in 2012.
He also revealed plans to build the Daweb constituency office in Maltahöhe for N$10 million, which is scheduled to commence in the 2014/2015 financial year.
Other projects earmarked for Maltahöhe include the construction of an electrification network, oxidation ponds as well as the expansion of a sewer system to the informal areas of Maltahöhe.
Regarding road infrastructure, he revealed plans are underway to expand the B1 road between Windhoek and Rehoboth at a cost of N$47 million.
He also touched on health, saying towards this end clinics were constructed at Schlip and Kalkarand to provide health services to residents.
On land, he said government has acquired 59 farms of more 400 000 hectares for resettlement purposes in the Hardap Region, and about 222 beneficiaries have already been resettled.
About 310 customary land rights have been verified in the Mariental Rural Constituency, while 1 101 customary land rights have been verified in Gibeon Constituency under which Maltahöhe falls.
Hardap Stud Breeders donated 28 ewes and three rams to Pohamba to go and farm with once his term of office ends in March 2015.