Helao Nafidi Town Council has availed N$11 million for the construction of its first 70 houses for low-income earners at the town.
Helao Nafidi Mayor Eliaser Nghipangelwa said the houses under construction are the council’s first houses, following the construction of about six houses under the Build Together programme in 2012.
The houses will be constructed at Ohangwena and at extensions 1 and 2 at Engela and Omafa. Council had initially planned to construct 200 houses, but the figure was reduced due to a lack of funds, Nghipangelwa said.
“I cannot say I am happy. That was not what we planned for, but it is step in the right direction and indeed an achievement,” he said.
Nghipangelwa further said the idea for council to construct affordable houses for people whose income category does not qualify them for bank loans was borne from a meeting in which Urban and Rural Development Minister Sophia Shaningwa called on local authorities to seek ways to provide affordable accommodation.
“That is the action we undertook. As a council we have committed ourselves to deliver affordable houses to our residents and this is why council opted to provide the 12 contractors on board with building materials to ensure the houses are affordable,” Nghipangelwa explained.
The two-bedroom houses under construction are estimated to value between N$180,000 and 190,000 each and are being constructed by local small and medium enterprises.
Nghipangelwa says the council will offer loans to applicants on the council’s waiting list, however those who can buy the houses cash will be given preference.
Apart from the houses currently under construction, council is also planning to register a number of plots in the current financial year. The registration of plots will enable the council to allocate more residential erven.