A total of 42.6 percent of households in Oshikoto Region, out of its population of 181 600, are poor due to a lack of enhancement of productivity in income-generating activities and appreciation and utilisation of indigenous skills in the region, among other factors.
This is according to Oshikoto Governor Henock Kankoshi, who made the revelation in a speech delivered on his behalf by his special adviser Erwin Nashikaku.
He added: “For the past years ‘human capital’ has been increasingly emphasised by our regional council as a key factor in explaining the economic growth and development of this region. These are also issues that are rightly observed in the National Development Plan, as well as in the Harambee Prosperity Plan, that human resources development is the key strategic component of economic development.”
The speech was made at a graduation ceremony of 27 community members from Tsintsabis, a settlement situated some 70 kilometres from Tsumeb. The students graduated in needlework, leather and beadwork, the courses for which were jointly offered by Cosdec Tsumeb and the Ministry of Gender and Social Welfare.
The programme was also rolled out to Tsumkwe where other underprivileged community members had graduated in the same fields. It provides income-generating activity equipment as well as start-up funds, complemented by training in basic business management skills as an incentive towards poverty alleviation.
The graduates received start-up equipment in their respective fields at a total cost of N$144 000.
“This is one Namibia where no one should be left out, irrespective of their race, tribe or religion. The year 2016 is for implementation, thus the ministry will provide start-up equipment to the less privileged so that they can generate income and sustain themselves,” said the Minister of Gender Equality and Child Welfare, Doreen Sioka.
Kankoshi strongly urged recipients to seriously commit to generating their own income because they are now equipped with production skills that include costing, pricing and bookkeeping, which should assist them in maintaining their businesses and cash flows.