… while Chief Mbambo eyes over 10 000 hectares
Ohangwena Regional Governor Usko Nghaamwa and his daughter Rhauna Nghaamwa will soon take ownership of two farms measuring 11 000 hectares in Kavango West, provided no one makes a noise.
Although the duo are yet to receive leasehold rights, they have been using the two farms each measuring over 5 000 hectares for over a decade now.
They both applied to lease the farms for 99 years, according to a public notice placed in New Era yesterday by the Kavango East Communal Land Board.
“The Kavango East Land Board would like to invite interested parties to lodge written objections within a period of days through the Chairperson of the Board to the Chief or the Traditional Authority in writing on or before 29 May 2015,” states yesterday’s notice.
Nghaamwa said he “bought” his farm in 2000 and thus sees nothing illegal in applying for a leasehold.
“Everybody knows about the farm, even the traditional authority, there is nothing illegal about it,” said the wealthy Ohangwena governor.
“ The farms have been there for years and we have been making use of them all these years,” said Nghaamwa.
Nghaamwa also said four boreholes have already been drilled on his daughter’s farm.
“I am not the one who decided how big the farm should be. I already found it like that when I bought it from the previous owner,” he explained.
He did not reveal how much he paid for the farm.
Sources told New Era that Nghaamwa and his daughter are already making use of the two farms and that the land has already been fenced off.
In 2012, the former Chief of the Ukwangali Traditional Authority, Daniel Sitentu Mpasi, revealed in the Kahenge Magistrate’s Court how Nghaamwa gave him a Toyota Land Cruiser as a token of appreciation for the farm he gave to him.
Speaking to New Era yesterday, Senior Headman of the Ukwangali Traditional Authority, Frans Hauwanga, said: “For now I cannot confirm anything but we will be able to confirm by tomorrow morning because we have to see when the farm was given to him because it might be that it was given to him in 2002 or 2003 and that time we, the new traditional council, were not in office.”
Meanwhile the Hambukushu Traditional Authority Chief, Erwin Munika Mbambo, has applied to get a leasehold for two farms measuring over 5 000 hectares each in Kavango East.
The 75-year-old Mbambo wants to lease the farms for 45 years for agricultural purposes.
Community members have been up in arms in recent years over the fact that the government recently pronounced that no one should have more than 20 hectares of land in a communal area yet top government officials are allowed to buck the ruling.
Many have complained that the influx of top government officials is the reason for the decreasing grazing area in the region.
Several top officials such as former president Hifikepunye Pohamba, the late Dimo Hamaambo, Shapwa Kaukungwa, Frans Kapofi, Ndali Kamati, Kavango West Police Commissioner Olavi Auanga, Erkki Nghimtina, Sebastian Ndeitunga and Charles Namoloh have all been recipients of large tracts of farming land in the Kavango.
Yesterday one concerned resident of Kavango was full of questions asking why some of the applicants mentioned in the public notice got two hectares while other applicants got three hectares in comparison to the thousands of hectares allocated to Nghaamwa and his daughter and most likely to Chief Mbambo.
The caller said it appears that land allocation continues benefitting the elite and those who have influence in society.