Kalkfeld – Kalkfeld residents in Otjozondjupa Region have expressed anger and frustration over the untidiness at the settlement where flying plastic bags have become a common sight.
When New Era recently visited the area, plastic bags and nappies lay scattered in people’s yards.
Residents who spoke to this newspaper said uncollected bin bags containing discarded waste have been clogging the settlement for years.
Residents said although someone is contracted to collect the rubbish, this is not being done. Cats, dogs and foxes rip open the bags and the rubbish end up being eaten by livestock because there is no grass.
“We don’t have enough land to graze our livestock; the little land we have is covered by these bags of rubbish and cattle end up eating the plastic, and later die,” said Justice Kairana a communal farmer at the settlement.
“We are already faced with a drought and lack of grazing areas but we are disgusted to live in such a smelly settlement,” he added.
The issue has reached boiling point and residents want the government to come up with a solution.
Kairana said the August winds worsened the situation.
“We are losing livestock to the drought, the trains and bags of rubbish,” said the outspoken Kairana.
Another resident Jazema Kairua said the issue was not new. “We have reported this to the government on numerous occasions but they seem unable to come up with a permanent solution.”
“This is not acceptable, this mess has to be cleared. We are losing our livestock to this,” he added.
Justice Zariua said he was fed up with the uncollected dirt. “I can’t sit in my yard, my grandchildren can’t play in the yard, I can’t go in the backyard. There’s dirt everywhere.”
Zariua said he can’t even open his windows and he can’t hang his clothes outside.
“It’s like a pig pen out there.”
When contacted for comment, the Otjozondjupa chief regional officer, Jeaneth Kuhanga, said she was not aware of the complaints, but added that someone was appointed to clear the rubbish.
“We have appointed someone who is being paid on a monthly basis to clear the settlement of rubbish,” she said.
Kalkfeld is a settlement with a population exceeding 3 000, situated halfway between Omaruru and Otjiwarongo on the national C33 road in Omatako Constituency.
Kalkfeld was proclaimed a village in 1991 but in 1996 it was downgraded to a settlement due to a lack of economic growth.
by Kuzeeko Tjitemisa