New Era’s regional reporter in Rundu, John Muyamba, recently caught up with Athanasius Maghumbo, the chief executive officer of the recently proclaimed Divundu Village Council in Mukwe Constituency in Kavango East Region to hear his vision for Divundu as well as what is needed in in terms of services.
NE: What is your personal vision for Divundu?
AM: “My personal vision for Divundu is to guide and grow the village up to the attainment of town status within the next five years. The growth will add value to the well-being of the residents in the advancement of their socio-economic status.”
NE: How many staff do you currently have and what key positions are currently filled?
AM: “At present, none of the positions are filled, with the exception of the CEO’s position, but we are currently in the process of recruitment. Of course, we are challenged by the lack of office accommodation, as our civic complex is not yet completed. I am not in a position to inform you as to when the office is going to be completed, as the project falls under the Kavango East Regional Council. The only information at our disposal is that the contractor is still owed money by the regional council, thus the project is at a standstill.”
NE: What is needed in Divundu in terms of services and investments?
AM: “All services are of equal importance for human existence but in terms of ranking or prioritisation, water is a priority. Now, that is why we are rushing our recruitment process so that by end of March we can have our plumbers to connect our residents to the new water plant which has been constructed by Namwater in Divundu so that potable water can be available for everyone and thereafter the rest will follow. Furthermore, as more services are being introduced in Divundu, accommodation is becoming a challenge as there are, and will be, more people coming to work and settle in Divundu as well as visit so we need developers to make Divundu their choice to come and invest in properties and other service areas.”
NE: What services are there now, hospital/clinic, schools, shops?
AM: “There is a government clinic and a private doctor’s practice, a combined school, a secondary school and two supermarkets with one service station and police station. The office of Mukwe Constituency is also based here in Divundu. There is also a lot of informal trading in and around Divundu, which complements the commercial activities of Divundu.”
NE: Why should investors chose to invest in Divundu?
AM: “Divundu is strategically located, as it is a gateway to neighbouring countries like Angola, Botswana, Zambia and Zimbabwe, and on the opposite north-western banks of the river lies a village called Kakutji in Angola, and the two villages are linked via a nearby border post. Divundu is home to tourism establishments such as Divava Lodge, Divundu Guest House, Nunda River Lodge, Shametu River lodge, Rainbow Lodge and Popa Falls Resorts and, for your info(mation), Divundu is adjacent to Bwabwata National Park, which teems with a variety of wildlife.
“In simple terms, Divundu is a leading tourism en-route destination stop. For your info, Divundu is situated 200 kilometres east of Rundu along the Trans-Caprivi/Zambezi Highway on the south-eastern banks of the Kavango River in the Kavango East Region, which means it’s a transit centre to SADC and at the same time also a tourism hub. According to the last census results, Divundu is a settlement of 5 430 residents and I know the population has grown since then.”