Kunene regional health director Thomas Shapumba has revealed that the Ministry of Health and Social Services intends to build an old age home in the region as soon as the directorate secures land for the purpose.
Shapumba said plans to build an old age home in Khorixas is on the cards, as well as one at the town of Opuwo. “Our ministry wants to acquire land in Khorixas and once it is available we will start with planning and budgeting as soon as possible,” Shapumba said.
The health director said, given that both Khorixas Town Council and the health ministry are government entities, “I don’t see a need for our ministry to buy the land, as it is their (town council’s) social responsibility to take care of the aged.”
“The town council is a government entity, so is the Ministry of Health and Social Services, so we would not [want to] buy the land, but want it as a donation, free of charge. It’s their obligation as part of their social responsibility to offer land for the elderly.”
Shapumba wrote to the chief executive officer of Khorixas Town Council Nicodemus #Gaeseb on August 31, requesting the donation of land for the construction for housing units for use by independent elderly people on low-income. In the letter Shapumba says the ministry needs between 10 and 15 hectares for the proposed development.
The same letter was also sent to Kunene Regional Governor Angelika Muharukua, as well as the Minister of Health and Social Services Bernard Haufiku. Currently, many elderly people at the town are living in dilapidated houses at the !Goas location of Khorixas, without a proper functioning sewerage system and without running water in their homes.
They have to share one water-point from whence they fetch water, located quite a distance from most of the houses of the elderly.
Once the health ministry is offered land for the project at Khorixas the ministry will also approach Opuwo Town Council with the specifics of their plan, Shapumba said.