The National Unity Democratic Organisation (Nudo) yesterday welcomed President Hage Geingob’s announcement on Monday on the establishment of a Rent Control Board.
Many university graduates with jobs and even some managers are forced to live in shacks, especially in Windhoek where housing rentals are beyond the reach of many.
A joint press statement by the government and the Affirmative Repositioning (AR) movement stated that Prime Minister Saara Kuugongelwa-Amadhila would, in line with Section 33 of the Estate Agents Act 11/1976, also summon the Estate Agents Board to review and address escalating property prices (tariffs) before August 01.
Yesterday, Nudo presidential spokesperson and advisor Joseph Kauandenge said the party welcomes and appreciates government’s intended legislation to bring in a Rent Control Board to resolve the issue of high rentals and accommodation problems.
“Estate agents and landlords have become parasites that continue to suck the blood of innocent and helpless Namibians for far too long,” stated Kauandenge.
Kauandenge said it is a travesty of justice and above all regrettable that poor Namibians have been at the mercy of sharks called landlords without an enabling legislation that protect them against exploitation.
He said that with the ever-widening gap between the rich and the poor in the country and the unbalanced social dynamics, coupled with income disparities, middle-income and low-income Namibians have continued to spend much of their earnings on renting apartments.
“Prices have been set only by the landlords and estate agents, often without any regard to the affordability by tenants, as those renting out the places are only preoccupied to maximize their profits at all cost,” he added.
It is therefore, he said, refreshing to note that government has finally woken up from its self-induced coma to finally come to the aid of citizens.
“It is imperative that this Rent Control Board be established with the haste and urgency required as our people are bleeding to death with these ever-increasing rental prices that continue to rise unabated,” he noted.
According to him, the society will only be at peace with itself when it looks after its vulnerable members and seeks ways and means to address social and economic ills that have a far-reaching bearing on their progress.
At present nobody controls landlords on how much rent to charge for properties. Currently there is an enormous market for rentals with all the daily newspapers having columns for rentals. Some landlords charge N$1 200 for a backyard corrugated-iron sheet shack in Katutura, while a mansion in Klein Windhoek goes for N$35 000.