Divundu council endures office shortage

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John Muyamba

Divundu-Divundu Village Council in Mukwe Constituency in Kavango East still has no administrative facility due to a lack of funds to pay a contractor to finish work on the planned building.

The council still rents office space which is not sufficient for its operations and is unable to fill all vacancies as it does not have offices, which furthermore delay service delivery at the newly-proclaimed village council.

Apart from a CEO, the council now has a human resource (HR) practitioner as well as an assistant HR to help with staff. “We have also appointed an assistant accountant and a technical foreman who will be in charge of technical operations like installing potable water infrastructute as well as sewer lines to households – all urgently needed at the moment and other things,” said Athanasius Maghumbo, the newly appointed CEO of Divundu.

The project for the construction of the new administrative building is being implemented by the Kavango East Regional Council (KERC) but it still needs to pay for the construction’s final phase.

New Era spoke to the Kavango East chief regional officer Ludwig Thikusho who said that before last year’s budget cuts they had set aside funds but after the cuts they cut down the budget for the administrative building.

“At the moment we are unable to finish the contractor’s last payment due to budget constraints. We still need to pay outstanding invoices and are still owing the contractor and consulting engineers and all together it’s more than N$2 million,” Thikusho said.

The regional council has already constructed roads, sewer lines and electrified Divundu, among others.

“Despite the lack of offices we are busy with work and are now looking into the process of providing water to Divundu households as we have just hired a foreman who assumed duty beginning of May and the council is now busy with the process to connect properties to the water distribution system,” noted the CEO.

“We also plan to expand our existing basic services to all surveyed extensions as well as survey and service additional plots as the demand for land is enormous and overwhelming, looking at the number of applications we have received to date,” Maghumbo added.

If the office building was handed over the village council feels it will have its staff in place so that it could start delivering much needed services. The administrative building has been under construction since 2014.

Divundu is located 200 kilometres east of Rundu along the Trans-Caprivi/Zambezi Highway on the south-eastern banks of the Kavango River in Kavango East Region.

Divundu is a settlement of 5 430 residents, according to the last census results. For now the council will operate from rented offices at Divundu until the planned offices are fully built.

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